7 Healthy Ways to Deal With Anger
BY ESTHER RIVERS edited by Nick Matthews – 7 Healthy Ways to Deal With Anger
Anger is a part of life. We will all come into contact with a person, or a circumstance, that results in us feeling angry. But anger varies on a great scale, ranging from mild annoyance to intense rage. Studies have shown that due to environmental, genetic, and psychological factors, certain people are more susceptible to anger than others. Some people are noticeably angry, others more internally irritable.
Yet when anger becomes too strong it can grow out of context, and we are more incensed than what is considered to be normal. We must find ways to release anger before it multiplies within us. And while it is good to “release the rage” it must be done in ways that are both responsible and cathartic. In other words, we must find resourceful ways to deal with our anger that are also peaceful and beneficial for our health and for those around us. These are a few tried and tested tactics that we can keep with us in times of need.
7 Ways To Deal With Anger
1.Take 5/ Pause
Seemingly the most sensible of options is often the easiest and most rewarding. The first step is to recognize that the anger is happening. When you feel it bubble up, step away for a minute, pause, and breathe deeply from your diaphragm. Visualize something relaxing. Do this before having a reaction. You will thank yourself.
This means to replace negative, unhelpful thoughts with more positive, realistic ones. For example “I am so bad at this!” could be replaced with “Even though this is frustrating, anger will not help me right now.” Again use breathing techniques to pause and reassess.
A great way to express yourself and release aggression is through writing. It might be the last thing you feel like doing in the moment, but if you can get into a habit of putting your pen to the paper and writing out how you feel, it can become a very helpful habit in times to come. You can tear up the end product if you wish! But getting it out is the main point. (Even if you scrawl really, really hard.)
Verbalize your meaning. Say what you really wish to say. Listen to what is being said to you, and listen also to what you are really wishing to convey. Try not to let the anger take over (again, step 1). Even though we may feel defensive straight away, if we take the time to better understand the situation, we can get a far more peaceful and happy result.
Have a sense of humor
Silliness can be a great tool. And while it is not healthy to ‘laugh off’ and dismiss your feelings, having a mentally silly picture you can reach for in times of anger can help diffuse the heat. We aren’t talking sarcasm or bitter humour, which is also unhelpful. Just enough silliness to again be able to cool things down enough to deal with the situation rationally.
Go for a run. Go for a walk. Go to a spinning class. Do anything that will get rid of that anxious energy that is building up inside you, that might otherwise explode in different areas. Release the hostility and just literally blow off the steam. Then see how you feel, when the anger has been physically exhausted.
Sleep it off
Don’t deal with things when you are tired. If you are grumpy or run down, you can easily snap or say or do things you don’t really mean. Get some rest. Let it cool down. Deal with it in the morning, when your feelings have moved somewhat. And they will. That’s the beauty of feelings. They always change.
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