We all get angry at times. It is perfectly normal, and even healthy if you know how to express it in the right way.
Anger is an innate emotion which can also be used to encourage yourself when you want to accomplish something.
Problems occur when it comes out in a negative and uncontrolled manner. Unchecked anger can also cause all kinds of problems in your personal, professional, and social life. It can damage your relations, destroy your image, hinder your judgement, and hurt people around you, and ultimately yourself.
Unmanaged anger could also result in a number of physical and mental health problems. Suppressing or ignoring it on the other hand, won’t do you any good either. In fact, anger explosions and anger repression are both two of the most harmful and unhelpful ways of dealing with anger. Something you should really refrain from.
Now, while it’s okay to lose your temper once in a while, it’s more important to be able to get it out in a creative and constructive manner. And that’s what we’ll be talking about in this post.
But before we get into that, let’s quickly understand what anger management really is.
What is Anger Management?
Contrary to popular belief, anger management does not mean suppressing your anger, or never getting angry. In fact, it’s the very opposite of it.
Anger management is the practice of recognizing, understanding, and expressing your anger in a healthy and productive fashion. It’s a skill that takes years of practice, but once you learn it, you’d be amazed at how fast your life changes for good.
Anger management involves various tools and techniques to help you cope up with sudden anger attacks and the negative feelings associated with it.
It’s usually done in three steps:
- Recognizing the early signs and triggers
Anger is a strong emotion! So, the early you detect it, the easier it is to manage. Just ask yourself “why am I angry?” as soon as you feel annoyed or frustrated the next time. And I’m sure you’ll be in a better position to assess the situation.
- Understanding the triggers
By giving yourself some time to process the triggers, you can avoid reacting on an impulse. There are many ways to do so, which we’ll talk in a short while.
- Applying anger management techniques
Once you’ve figured out the real cause of anger, and are able to process it, you can apply various anger management techniques at your disposal to calm yourself down. As a result, you’d be able to communicate your anger in a civil, and constructive manner.
Yes, I understand that following these steps, especially in times of sudden outbursts, may not be as easy as it sounds.
But that’s exactly why I have compiled a list of anger management techniques below that you can choose from to maintain your composure especially when you’re about to lose control.
Tips to deal with anger
You must have heard about counting backwards, which is a pretty basic anger management tactic. But there are other ways to cool down when it’s about to cross your threshold. Here it’s:
Breathe in and out, using your nostrils and mouth respectively. Take deep, and slow breaths while focusing on the rhythm. Breathing slowly, with awareness is a perfect way to calm your heart rate and reduce the tension.
- Count backwards
As I said before, counting backwards is a typical way of controlling your anger. By the time you’re done counting, you’d lose most of the intensity and thus avoid doing something that you’d regret later on.
- Take a break, and relax!
When you’re about to explode, just take a pause, and stop! You can go out for a breather, have a glass of water, or do anything that relaxes you instantly. Besides, walking away from an irritating situation is always better than getting into unnecessary conflicts.
- Move your body (Exercise)
Physical activity is a natural master key that can unlock doors to eternal bliss.
A quick brisk walk or run, a little stretching, or a dozen of push-ups can do wonders when you’re trying to control your anger. Not only will it safely drain away the excess adrenaline from your body, but in the process would also reduce the stress and tension from your nerves.
- Practice mindfulness
Mindfulness exercises such as yoga and meditation can help you keep your temper at bay, and also improve the over-all quality of your life.
It’s also a great way to look inwards and meditate upon your own thought process.
By looking inwards rather than outwards, you’d be in a better state of forgiveness and empathy, and thereupon, would be able to act appropriately.
- Jot down your feelings
Writing down how you feel when you’re angry can actually help you get to a different perspective on the entire situation. This process will also calm you down, all the while providing you with a non-offensive and smart way of conveying your feelings.
- Repeat a mantra
Take a resolve or reiterate on a particular word or phrase that calms you. For instance, “relax”, “take it easy”, “you’re going to be okay”, and so on. You can also sing or hum your favorite song to distract yourself.
- Use “I” statements
Instead of playing blame game and saying “you did that”, or “you’re pissing me off”, use “I am upset or disappointed of you”.
Along with sounding respectful, it would also help you strengthen your relations and swiftly get to a solution.
There are several techniques that you can use to control your anger. The point is to figure out which one works for you. If the above-mentioned techniques do not work, you can always find and use alternatives such as humor to ease-up on the tension, talking to a friend, or indulging in a happening activity such as music, comedy, or reading.
However, if you are still unable to tame your temper using these techniques, then it’s always recommended to speak with a medical advisor.
For my readers in Canada, you can now get a wide range of medical support virtually by registering with mednow.ca. It’s an online healthcare provider that you can use to get consultation, prescription refills, and lab references among many other things almost instantly.