Anger management is defined as a process of learning to identify symptoms that you are becoming angry and doing something that can calm you down and help you deal with the given situation in a positive way. Anger management doesn’t prevent you from feeling anger and doesn’t make you hold it in as well. When you know how to express it appropriately, anger is a healthy and normal emotion – anger management has to do with learning how to do that.
So, anger management is not about denying the feeling of anger nor about making yourself suppress your feelings. Anger management is learning how to handle anger. Uncontrollable anger is a dangerous thing and it can lead to many serious consequences, even to death at worst.
Many of us experience this anger rush in different degrees once in a while. The reasons for this are countless: sometimes it happens when we are stuck in the traffic jam or because of some inconsiderate driver, or when a family member starts a conflict, or when a co-worker refuses to work together with the team. There are many more other scenarios that may lead to uncontrollable anger, if we don’t know how to manage it properly. However, the best thing to do when an anger rush appears is to accept that feeling and deal with it. Now we’ve come to the topic of this article and that is: effectively dealing with anger.
So let’s start.
HERE ARE 5 ANGER MANAGEMENT TECHNIQUES YOU SHOULD LEARN SO THAT YOU CAN HANDLE ANGER EFFECTIVELY.
FIND A POSSIBLE WAY OUT
Instead of focusing on the thing that caused the anger, try to find a solution consciously. Is your child’s misbehavior making you upset? Then, think of what can be done to solve that problem, like for example, keeping him/her occupied with something. Is a family member or a friend doing something that makes you angry? Try to calm down and then talk to them about the problem or set some definite boundaries.
You have to remember that uncontrolled anger won’t solve anything. Actually, it will even worsen the situation. Take a deep breath, be self-disciplined and think of a rational solution.
FORGIVE AND (IF IT’S POSSIBLE) FORGET
Forgiveness is the most powerful way to get rid of anger. Stop being angry and stop all the other negative feelings and thoughts that come with it and ruin your daily life, because holding all those emotions will cause nothing more than bitterness, pessimism and more anger.
If you are able to forgive the person that made you angry, both of you will learn a priceless lesson. You will learn that being able to forgive means that you can control your emotions and that nobody is able to interfere with your state of mind. And the other person will learn that you are a stable and tolerant person and they may realize how important it is to remain true to one’s word.
If you notice that the person you’ve forgiven takes advantage of your tolerance and kindness, it means that it’s time to put an end to that relationship. It depends on the frequency of mistrust and the types of the offence(s), whether you are going to decide to forgive and forget or just to forgive. Sometimes forgetting is impossible.
IMPROVE YOUR LISTENING SKILLS
Listening to what the person has to say is one of the most important things that lead to a solution to the problem, even if it might seem like irrelevant thing at first glance. Attentive listening helps us improve the communication between the other person and us.
Showing the other person that you are listening to them carefully accomplishes three things:
- It reminds the other person that your relationship matters to you.
- It demonstrates that you care for their thoughts and emotions.
- It makes you empathic person.
Sometimes people misinterpret some things that are said, so active listening can prevent misunderstanding and much more!
American Psychology Association (APA) suggests some relaxation techniques like for example deep breathing or relaxing imagery that can help you deal with angry feelings.
They also suggest repeating reassuring words like “calm down”, “relax” or “I can handle this” while you are taking deep breath.
When it comes to using relaxing imagery, it includes visualizing something that may calm down, it may be something that you’ve already experienced or you can imagine something.
Practicing yoga or meditation can also help you calm down your anger and relax your body.
When people feel angry, they usually curse or swear when they find themselves face to face with the stressor. This obviously leads to a serious problem – such behavior just produces more negative feelings and emotions in both persons and it’s impossible for them to find any solution.
Cognitive restructuring is actually changing the way of thinking. Every action and thought is exaggerated or dramatized when we feel angry. So, this method is very effective because it is related to anger management.
Here is one example for this: Imagine that you are waiting in line at your favorite coffee spot, when one of the customers complains that their order is messed up. You are aware that solving that problem will take a lot of time; your negative emotions immediately begin to surface in your mind. You will probably think: “Damn it, I am going to be late for work”. However, instead of this, you should silence the negative words, try to calm down, understand the situation and think rationally. Say to yourself something like “This will take some time but there is nothing to worry about, they’ll eventually figure it out.”
If we consciously rationalize our thoughts, it’s very likely that there will be a favorable outcome.