What is Anger?

 All of us have experienced this feeling of irritation, frustration, and stress combined with an adrenaline rush, increased heart rate, and tightness of muscles. This is what is called anger. Anger is a completely normal human emotion that can be both destructive and productive, given the way it is expressed and the situation that it is directed to. Did you know that there are three types of anger? These include:

  • Assertive: This is the anger that you feel towards wrongdoings and is directed towards bringing a positive change.Â
  • Passive-aggressive: This is a non-confrontational form of anger and is avoidant. It involves repression of feelings and actions such as being silent, sulking, or pretending that everything is fine.
  • Open aggression: This is when the feelings of frustration are coupled with verbal or physical anger. This includes lashing, shouting, hitting, etc. and you cannot control your anger.

All of us get these feelings from time to time and get resolved either on our own. However, when you can’t control your anger and it becomes chronic converting into constant feelings of resentment towards oneself or others, you need to get help through interventions such as anger management techniques.

What are the Things that Trigger Anger?

It’s good to know the things that trigger your anger to manage them better. Here are some common anger triggers:

  • Feeling cornered, attacked, or threatened.
  • Being treated unjustly.
  • Getting physically harmed.
  • Being disrespected or insulted.
  • Feeling powerless in a situation.
  • Places that bring up bad memories.
  • When you are gossiped about.
  • Poor work conditions.

What are the Ill-effects of Anger on your Health?

Anger, especially when experienced for longer durations and frequently, ruins your health. Here are some great reasons to control your anger:

  • When you experience anger, your body produces adrenaline that puts your body in a ‘flight or fight response. This increases your heart rate, breathing rate, and high blood pressure. When these are experienced frequently, it compromises your heart health and leads to more chances of getting a heart attack.
  • An increase in your blood pressure also creates intraocular pressure that has a direct impact on your eyesight.
  • Anger increases the risk of clotting or bleeding in the brain, which increases your chances of getting a stroke.
  • Your body releases cortisol when you are angry, which in turn decreases serotonin. This makes you more prone to anxiety, stress, and depression in the long run. This affects your productivity at work, hampers your interpersonal relations, and increases your chances of dependence on substances and alcohol.Â
  • Stress hormones released during an episode of anger, disrupt the functioning of your digestive system and gut symptoms. This may cause abdominal pain, cramps, and even diarrhea.
  • When you are angry or when you recall an angry experience, your antibody immunoglobulin A levels dip. This is the first line of defense against infections. Over a long period, this makes you more prone to seasonal infections and cancers.
  • It leads to throbbing in the head, headaches, and migraines.

Can Anger be Managed?

The good news is that, with a little bit of hard work, anger can be controlled and managed through anger managementAnger management therapy is a focused process that is designed to help people with anger issues. Anger management goes back a thousand years and has gradually developed as a discipline. If you take an anger management class, your therapy will include things such as:

  • Anger management techniques such as breathing exercises, meditation, relaxation, etc.
  • How to identify the stressors or triggers?
  • Training your mind to slow your reactions to anger and control your emotions is a part of anger management therapy.
  • Recovery guidelines and clear goals
  • Anger management offers a controlled environment to practice releasing emotions

Which are the 10 Best ways to Control your Anger?

Here are some easy and practical anger management techniques that help prevent the ill-effects of anger:

  1. The first step in anger management is to understand yourself and know if your anger is uncontrollable. If yes, seeking help and joining an anger management class is the best way to start your journey. Taking a therapist consultation gets you professional guidance on how to best manage your emotions.
  2. One of the best anger management techniques to put things in perspective and give yourself a breather is to write down why are you feeling angry. This also helps in processing the triggers of anger.
  3. Taking a timeout or giving yourself a break is a great way to let the angry emotions pass. One of the best anger management exercises is to count to 100. This works like magic in neutralizing your emotions.Â
  4. Moving around is a very effective anger management exercise that calms you down and lets you off steam. You can go for a walk, play a round of golf, or go for a light jog.
  5. Wondering how to manage stress? A very effective way is to talk it out with someone you can trust. This not just takes things off your chest but also gets you sound advice when needed.Â
  6. Want to learn how to control emotions for the future? Immerse yourself in things that you enjoy and give yourself a goal of getting better at them. These could be painting, making music, or doing crafts.
  7. A great anger management exercise, especially when it is about social good or injustice, is to do something about it. When you engage in positive things, you will eventually feel better.
  8. Practicing anger management techniques such as breathing exercises, meditation, and mindfulness are great ways to control your anger. They also put you in a better frame of mind and reduce anxiety and stress.
  9. Divert your hyper energy into something that’s not destructive. For example, as an anger management technique, you can punch a boxing bag, let out a good scream, or even cry it out.
  10.  Staying away from potential triggers that may include people, situations, and places work wonders in anger management. This works great for your state of mind and lets you concentrate on more important things instead of unproductive ones.
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