Anger is a completely normal, not to mention healthy response when someone or something is directly threatening your way of life. However, just because it is normal to get angry, letting that anger go unchecked can lead to destructive consequences. What may first just start out as angry thoughts will lead to angry verbal responses to the people around you. And if you let anger really get too far, it can lead to physical violence that may cause harm to not only you, but to the people around you as well. It is something no one every wants to see happen, which is why we made this guide to help you manage and control your anger so you never get into that situation.
Talking to others while angry
Often times when you are angry, there is a direct person responsible for the anger that you would like to confront. Or you may just be generally angry and end up having conversations with others while angry. In any case, there are a few key things to follow, not only to have a more constructive conversation, but also in the case talking to people you know, to maintain healthy relationships way after your anger goes away.
Always Think Before Speaking
Like we just mentioned above, anger always starts with the thoughts going on in your head. During this time you are very emotional and so great care should be taken before letting any of your internal thoughts out verbally. There are a lot of things that you may regret saying in the heat of the moment, so before you do anything, think about what you want to say. This is especially important when lashing out your anger on personal friends and family, or coworkers. Saying something in the heat of the moment can lead to long term damage between you and that person, once that may be very difficult to recover from depending on what you say to them.
I know this is a very hard thing to do when you are angry at something, but staying calm is the best way to communicate effectively with other people. The idea here is to not be confrontational with the other person, but to be assertive. Calmly explain why you are angry, making sure to state your concerns clearly and directly. This not only presents yourself to the other person as someone who can be reasoned with, but someone who is worth their time trying to resolve the situation. Yelling and screaming like crazy will clearly show you are angry, but it won’t help you resolve your anger with the person in the slightest.
Don’t hold a grudge
This is so important for when dealing with anger directed towards close friends and family, and even coworkers. Forgiveness is always the best way to approach conflict. It allows you to maintain a healthy and strong relationship with those around you, instead of letting it deteriorate into something unrecognizable with each passing argument. Forgiveness also allows you to let things go, thereby avoiding a long-lasting sense of injustice or bitterness towards the people around you, which can affect your mood negatively in the long-term. Basically, anger should be a short-term emotion, and should never have long-lasting effects on your relationship or your health.
Dealing with Anger By Yourself
If you aren’t verbally engaging with people to express your anger, there are plenty of other ways to deal with your anger on your own. These involve getting back into the right mental state and going through the process of finding the root of your anger and squashing it.
Exercise to feel better
Physical activity releases endorphins into your body which elevates your mood. This not only means you become less angry when you work out, but also less stressed. And actually, exercise not only works on a chemical level to reduce your anger, but also on a mental level as well, by distracting you from whatever is currently making you angry. Your mind is focusing on the physical activity, meaning it can’t actively focus on your anger, at least for the time being. Anything that gets your heart rate up, such as running or swimming, will help you diffuse the anger you are currently feeling. Or you can take part in team activities as well, which may help you deal with your anger through interacting with people and having fun with them as well.
Give Yourself Breaks
Timeouts are a great way to just take a few moments to slow your day down and get into a calm, relaxed, stress-free state. Doing so can definitely help you feel better prepared to handle situations that may make you angry in the near future. Or you can give yourself breaks as soon as the anger and stress start to kick in. In the heat of the moment, often the best thing to do is to just walk away, take a time out, and come back to the issue at hand later on, when you’ve cooled down a bit.
We often get so angry at a situation that we don’t even bother to think about solutions to the problem. And often times the solution is such an easy fix. Is there too much talking near your desk at work? Ask to move your desk somewhere quieter or learn to use headphones during the day. Is your partner constantly late for dinner every night? Reschedule when you eat so that you are not wasting your precious minutes sitting and waiting for her every time. Someone rear-ended you on your way to work? Make sure you get their insurance information and let your insurance company handle it for you. The key here is to remind yourself that anger on its own won’t fix anything. Anger is a signal that something is wrong and that you may need to take a step back and see how you can fix the problem so that you don’t get angry again.
Anger is a tool for driving resolution
While getting angry is not fun for anyone involved, it is a way for us as humans to resolve situations and make our lives better. However, the first step in doing that is to make sure that you deal with your anger in an appropriate way. When interacting with people around you, stay calm and think before speaking. And when you are alone and need to cope with your anger, simply exercise or give yourself some breaks. And most importantly, whenever it is possible identify solutions for how you can stop being angry and move on with your life. Follow these tips and we can assure that your anger will no longer control your life, either in the short term or the long term!