Why so angry?

Anger is a healthy human emotion just like happiness or sadness, which is usually perceived negatively in our society. Most of the time we confuse anger with aggression, anger is an emotion whereas aggression is behaviour. Anger is an intense emotional state of human beings. Lot of times, aggressive behaviour gives an opportunity to express our feelings of being hurt, frustrated, resentment, guilty, sad or any alike emotion. All these emotions are experienced by all the people of all age groups from a child to elderly. There are various triggers of anger outbursts. Although, many times we fail to see the underlying cause of anger which could be sadness, frustration, guilt or any alike emotion, instead we blame our aggressive behaviour because we fail to realise that aggressive behaviour could be other emotions not necessarily just anger.

Preventing expression of our feelings, triggers aggressive behaviour, for example- Ram is upset as his parents always demean him and shout at him, for years he did not express his feelings with anyone, one day his parent broke his pen unintentionally that triggered him, and he expressed his anger which was repressed beneath all these years like a volcano.

What Ram was doing is building his anger volcano which broke out one day and created a big fire in everyone’s life. As rightly said, “Words hurt more than actions”. When someone expresses his repressed anger there is no control over words or actions. Later, we feel another strong emotion that is guilt, guilt about our outburst. When a person expresses their anger over fragmented things then it affects their relationships with people around them; affects their career, and affects their psychological well-being too. They are usually called “short tempered people” or “violent people”. So the question arises, is there an alternative to expressing anger ? because expression is important as it brings peace within us.

Managing our Anger

Managing anger is a skill that helps to identify our triggers and work on them before it creates troubles. Do not confuse between “managing anger” with “controlling anger.” Identifying early signs of anger and expressing them appropriately without causing any harm is called management of anger. Early signs could be anything from being physiological symptoms like rapid heartbeat, breathing fast, heaviness in the body, sweating, clenching fists or restless to emotional symptoms like feeling irritated, feeling upset, feeling agitated. We sense all these early signs of anger because our brain sends a “fight or flight” signal to our body.

Ways to Express Anger

Communicate appropriately– Choose correct words, like using more affirmative words/ statements. Affirmative is the opposite of contradicting or negative words. Being more assertive that is speaking confidently, but try not to abuse and accuse anyone. Communicating your frustration to the person directly and privately.

Practice deep breathing– After identifying early physical or emotional signs of anger practice deep breathing to calm our symptoms and to communicate appropriately.

Use other mediums of Expression– If you find it difficult to express your resentment or anger onto someone, find other mediums to express it. Engage in documenting your thoughts or journal them together. Express your agitation through paintings or drawings or following your hobbies.

Seek professional help– When anger affects our daily lives that is behaving violently or dangerously then it’s time to seek professional help.

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