Four Coping Skills for Anger

Anger is intense and hard to ignore, and it is almost taboo to talk about. Most of the time anger is seen as something bad, although sometimes it serves a purpose. Times where it would be useful is cluing you about when situations in your life are not working out, and there must be a change. It can be motivating. Chronic, deep settling anger is not the good type. Anger of that intensity grates down your being until there is little left.

I consider myself a rather stoic person who gets frustrated at the very least. However, recently I have been processing events that happened in my past that I previously pushed away. Anger came with it. It is problematic because getting angry over trauma that happened in my childhood is too late of a reaction to do anything constructive with it. Is it justified? Yes. Can I hone into something tangible? No.

When thoughts of the past pop into my head the low-key anger weighs my chest down until it is all I can feel. I honestly do not feel like myself because I am not very much of an emotional person. Anger is unfamiliar. Most of the time I explode once a year over a small issue because I kept undetected emotions bottled up too long.

Other times thoughts about how messed up the world is makes me mad. I am also rather jaded due to working a job as a crisis counselor, so sometimes it is easy to only see the bad in the world. I get frustrated because I can see what is wrong, but there is not much I can do to fix it besides sharing my thoughts with others. Surrounding myself with positivity helps me with this, but the frustration can be overwhelming if it settles in for too long.

So obviously this causes dissonance, which I always nip in the bud. Anything that prevents me holding my frame must be dealt with. When I am angry, this is what I tell myself.

  1. Is there any point to this?

Is my anger useful in my current situations? Does it even apply to any current situations? If not, take a few deep breaths and calm down.

  1. What can I do to control my biological response?

Focus on slowing my breaths and imagine all my limbs feeling heavy. If I feel tension in any body parts, relax them. Often once the biological responses to anger are taken care of the mind follows.

  1. Is it within my direct control?

The only thing you have complete control over is yourself. Unless someone is literally threatening your life, often you have a vast array of choices. If you are angry about something that is within your realm of control, you should fix it.

  1. Can you offer forgiveness?

The power of forgiveness is highly over-rated. Forgiving others or yourself relieves a major burden. Do you think you can do it?

 

Anger is an intense emotion that can be all-consuming. I hope these tips help to bring you inner peace.

 

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