This week (Feb 10th) will mark 5 years since I was diagnosed with a mental health illness (Depression & Anxiety). I can remember back to before I was diagnosed, when I could not control my anger, I did not understand why it was so bad. I would say and do things to offend (and sometimes hurt) people and not even give it a second thought. Post-diagnosis, my son bore the brunt of my anger, as I kept my diagnosis a secret for months, which caused me to have a lot of pent up emotions and thoughts that needed to be released. Unfortunately, I would release it by screaming and shouting at him for no apparent reason. On hindsight, I can see that if I had spoken to someone earlier, a lot of difficult situations could have been avoided.
All of us get angry. Some of us get angry very often. Some are able to control our anger. Some of us express our anger freely, whereas some suppress it. Why do we get angry? Is there any way to control the anger? How to do that?
We get angry when we are stopped doing something. Or when we don't get our way. We get angry when our desires are not fulfilled, or when people don't agree with our viewpoint. Many times we get angry when we find our views at great variance with others and are not able to understand the other viewpoint and disagree with that.
List your friends.
Think about a situation and imagine the reactions. For example, let us say that the situation is this - your friend is sitting in a restaurant and someone spills something hot on his/her hands unintentionally.
Now imagine the reactions from your list. Their reactions will vary greatly.
You will imagine a friend of yours laughing it off and another friend calling the manager and making a big scene. The reactions are different because they are controlling their anger differently.
Some of us never take things very seriously. So they don't get angry over small things at all. That is the nature of these people. Can we use any techniques to control anger? Let us examine. Do you react immediately, or think about what went wrong before reacting? Those of us who react spontaneously, get angry fast. Those who think about it before reacting are able to understand and control their emotions better. Why not count up to ten before reacting?
Understanding others viewpoint helps in many situations. As we have our viewpoint, so do others. Why try to enforce our thoughts on them? Why not at least try and understand what they think and why? If your boss is angry with you, you need not react immediately. Give some time and think about all the possible reasons and you may find the answer to his anger. If at the end you realise that his/her anger was totally unjustified, you chose to forgive and not react angrily.
Emotions such as anger can be controlled. It needs reflection. It takes practice to exercise restraint. By winning over your anger you will become a better person.
Make your anger your slave and not get enslaved by it.
Leave a comment and let me know how you control your anger.