HOW TO PUT YOUR ANGER IN CHECK
- October 5, 2021
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The frustrations and adversities we have all experienced in the pandemic have caused the level of anger to go up globally. Anger is an internal reaction that is perceived to have an external cause.
Angry people almost always blame their reactions, but rarely do they realize that the reason they are angry is because of their own underlying primary emotions.
Anger is a secondary emotion. It is a strong emotion of displeasure caused by underlying primary emotions like Fear, worry, and anxiousness. Anger as we know it is a function of the state of one’s mind and it is aggravated by sadness, loss, hurt, rejection, disappointment, or discouragement from past experiences. We almost always feel something else first before we get angry, as a result, we subconsciously resort to anger to protect ourselves or cover up other vulnerable emotions.
Uncontrolled anger can be problematic for personal relationships, work relationships and your health. In some circles, depression has been described as frozen anger because anger is the most common emotion among people experiencing depression. Turning anger on ourselves contributes to severe depression. The following are a few tools among many we use to keep our anger in check.
- Acknowledge your Anger: … Like everything else, you cannot deal with what you do not acknowledge. First, acknowledge that you are angry and try and understand your underlying primary emotions causing your anger. It is important to come to an understanding within yourself that you need to put the anger in check otherwise it could become destructive.
- Think before you speak: When Angry, take time out – A few moments of quiet time might help you feel better prepared to speak. Once you are calm, express your frustration in an assertive but non-confrontational way. You must stick with “I” statements. Avoid criticizing or placing blame which might only increase tension. Be respectful and specific. [For example, say, “I am upset that you left the table without offering to help with the dishes” instead of “You never do any housework.”]
- Set your will to forgive: Forgiveness is the most powerful tool there is to let go of anger. If you find it difficult to forgive, ask God the higher power than yourself to help you forgive. Ask God to help You deal with your angry feelings. If you allow anger and other negative feelings to crowd out positive feelings and overwhelm you, you might find yourself swallowed up by your bitterness or sense of injustice.
- You forgive for yourself: To be set free from the emotional bondage of resentment, bitterness, anger, and depression, you forgive for yourself. You need to forgive, not for anyone else but you. If you can forgive someone who angered you, you might both learn from the situation and strengthen your relationship. Get rid of that anger as soon as you can as you resist ruminating and thinking about the offences. Note: Sometimes forgiveness is a process it does not happen all in one go.
If anger is left uncontrolled and free to take over the mind and body at any time, then anger becomes destructive. Chronic anger, which is prolonged, can impact the immune system and be the cause of other mental disorders.
Key Things to Remember about Anger
Anger is a natural response to primary emotions, and you have every right to be angry, however, you must learn to keep that anger in check, otherwise, it will begin to destroy your relationships. The Bible says, “Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry”. It is also worthy of note that it does not say “do not get angry”, but it cautions about how long you let anger linger on.
In conclusion, let me leave you with these words. Being angry or frustrated is just like being under the influence of a drug. It prevents you from rationalizing and thinking logically.
 Lisa Firestone Ph.D. The Role of Anger in Depression: Turning anger on ourselves contributes to the severity of depression. October 9, 2017. Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/compassion-matters/201710/the-role-anger-in-depression