Anger Management Help
Anger brings a simple message:
The message of anger is: “Your needs are not met right now. Do something about it!”
Dealing with anger is something we are not used to doing, but ignoring it means that we are also ignoring our basic human needs.
Many people would rather not have anything to do with anger because of cultural and personal reasons.
Anger, like any other emotion. does not go away simply because we don’t want to feel it and it is important that you learn how to deal with. If we do not have ways to deal with anger, we develop anger issues of various types. The most common anger issues are
You don’t know that you are angry
You take your anger out on people and things that have got nothing to do with what makes you angry (wrong target). This includes taking it out on yourself
You lash out at people, are snappy, shout at them or even feel like being violent (wrong way to express you anger - you are very unlikely to get your need met this way)
For a detailed description of anger issues, click here to visit my anger issues page.
This is when anger management help comes handy. As I said, once you feel angry, you have the responsibility to do something about it. You owe it to yourself to make sure you live a fulfilling life.
Anger management helps from helping you understand if you are angry (you might be not aware of it), to doing something constructive to address your needs, because this makes anger go away.
Here is what anger management can help you with:
Identify your angry feelings (so you know that you are angry)
Understand what triggers your anger
Get in touch with the needs of yous that are not met
Take action to get your needs met (this ultimately lowers your anger)
I am going to help with anger management by giving you 3 tips to guide you.
Anger management tip 1 - understand if and why you direct your anger to the wrong target
Spend some time identifying what targets you are using right now. By targets I mean who or what gets to see your anger.
You might be managing your anger by taking it out on one of the following 3 targets:
Someone who has got nothing or little to do with what makes you angry
An object to smash or shouting when you are by yourself
This is, right now, the strategy you know best to manage your anger. To begin a process of change, I invite you to do the following
do a reality check and see how effective your current strategy is. Do you really solve the issue that is making you angry by taking it out on people, objects or yourself?
Now think of what is it that you are gaining by taking your anger out on the wrong target. Usually it is to avoid conflict or to avoid challenging an authority figure (boss, teacher, parent, etc.)
99% of the times, the best tip to manage your anger is to engage in an action that will have an impact on the person or situation that is causing your anger. There are risks in doing this though, and you need to feel confident enough to take these risks before you change your behaviour. Better safe than sorry!
Anger management tip 2 - identify early signs of anger
You can avoid the majority of anger issues if you recognise the built-up of anger as soon as it starts.
To do this exercise you need to be in a state that you consider “normal”, so do not do this when you are already angry. The whole point here is to find out if you are a little angry when you believe you are feeling “normal”
Take a pause and move your attention gently to what is happening in your body. Take a couple of breaths
Ask yourself these questions
Is there something I dislike right now?
Am I irritated at something or someone right now?
Am I in disagreement with someone right now?
Am I frustrated at someone right now?
You should get a reaction from inside of you when the answer to these questions is “yes”. If you got a clear “no” or no answer at all, then you might have no anger floating in you at all.
If you answered “yes” to one of these, then it is time to take action. Is there anything you can do to address whatever or whoever it is triggering dislike, irritation or frustration in you? There are various skills that go under the name of “assertiveness” if you would like to know how to approach someone and express yourself.
If there is actually nothing you can do about these triggers, then you might need to work on yourself and try to calm down or get out of the situation that is triggering you.
Anger management tip 3 - express anger safely
You can resolve anger issues if you find ways to express your anger that are safe for you and others.
This is not easy because we are generally scared of showing anger and we think that we should not… so we end up showing it only we have a lot of anger and cannot keep it in any longer.
First step - is it safe to express anger in your situation?
Answer honestly and carefully. If you believe that you are too angry to speak and that, if you were to open your mouth, you would not stop, then it is likely that, if you express your anger in that state, you will not solve much. If anything, you might make things worse and regret doing what you did. Best not to act and take a break in this case.
Second step - identify the need behind your anger
This is where Nonviolent Communication is extremely useful. You can find a free list of human needs in various languages here. Read through the list and make a note of the needs that are not met in you.
Third step - link the situation to the needs
Once you have identified yours needs, you need to make a clear link between your needs and the situation that is making you angry. The clearer you are on this, the better you can express it to someone else. For example, if you are angry after your boss talked to you, you might find out that your need for safety was not met.
Take some time to imagine what you would say to your boss or someone else so they really understand how the way your boss speaks to you is making you feel unsafe.
Final step - communicate to the person
Now that you know what is making you angry and what need of your is not met, you can try to speak to whoever is that is triggering your anger. Please only do this if you feel safe enough. Remember that your job or relationship can be damaged if you are careless. If in doubt, it is best to speak to a trained mental health professional.