Feeling emotions is a natural phenomenon and a healthy human trait. However, emotions can be pretty overwhelming at times, because they lead you to act in certain ways that end up being dangerous to not only the ones around you but also yourself. What is important is not to stop feeling negative emotions like anger or grief, but to deal with these emotions in a positive manner.
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Learning to manage your anger actually makes you an emotionally stronger person, who’s more in tune with their mental sanity and emotional needs. It lends you a sense of control in the life that not only helps you achieve great things but also remain happy and content with what you possess. Here are the top 10 recommended ways to manage your anger:
1. Be careful how you respond
Effective anger management occurs when you follow the 9-second rule, in determining your fight or flight responses. When your body is exposed to a crisis or stress, the first physiological reaction in your brain determines whether you’d flee the situation or confront it. People with anger management issues, of course, take the route of flight. Experts suggest that when you’re angered by an event or an action you’ve no control over, you must take a deep breath and not respond in the first 9 seconds.
After these minuscule moments have passed, your brain can calm down and respond in a composed manner. The first 9 second responses are very disruptive. Hence, if you’re angered, it is best to talk after you think, and not reacting right away to your anger generating source, is a great place to begin with.
2. Once you’ve calmed down, acknowledge and express your anger
Effective anger management does not entail repressing your anger. Repressing your emotions can have far-reaching consequences for your mental health. And, as the great Sigmund Freud deduced in his works, the harder you repress something, the worse it returns. Once you’re in control of your actions, and you’ve not lashed out, express your anger to the person or people involved, but do so in an assertive manner. A confrontation approach usually does not help. You’ve to articulate your needs clearly and in a direct manner, keeping in mind not to hurt anyone else in the process.
3. Work it out, quite literally
As redundant it might sound, working out actually helps to be in tune with your emotions a lot more than you think. Physical exercises lend a certain sense of unwavering clarity to your mental health and reduces the stress you’re experiencing. So, if something angers you, going out for a run, or just a walk in the neighborhood would help you way more than you can imagine. Effective anger management techniques by experts often include participating in physical activities every day, so that you can enjoy the delight of a clear mind and controlled emotions.
4. Take a break
When you feel angered by a person or their action, it is best to take a timeout immediately. Go for a walk or to another room, when things happen. Remind yourself it is alright to be not in control of everything happening around you, and take the time to calm down. Also, effective anger management tactics, as recommended by anger management professionals, include taking a break for yourself every day, so that you have time to yourself, to just relax or do something you like doing, for instance, gardening or painting, some fodder for the soul. If you have time to yourself, you often seem to get less angered or irritated.
5. Identify the cause
When you’re angered, it is best to sit down and try to find patterns that help you understand where your anger is stemming from. What are the issues that make you angry? Does your husband getting home late make you angry? Or, your child not doing his homework, or cleaning his room? If you identify what makes you angry, and communicate these to people involved, and work out a solution that works for both parties involved in the process. Anger does not help any of these problems, and the sooner you help yourself to understand that, you’d realize you’re a happier person and your happiness should be your priority.
6. When you articulate your anger, do so in an active voice
When you’re communicating your anger to the people involved, a direct approach is suggested. Rather than passing the blame, or criticizing others, which might increase the tension, or make things worse, try saying out how you feel by the action of the person. Instead of saying you do not help me clean the house, try saying, I feel upset that you do not clean the house. Instead of yelling at your employees: you’re late every day, try telling them: I’d appreciate it more if you were punctual. These tactics might sound little but actually go a long way in helping you manage your anger, and become less stressed in day to day life and also reflecting you positively in front of others.
7. Give up the grudge, forgive
Holding on to a grudge is not a great thing, even for yourself, and especially for yourself. Forgive, and as fast as you forgive people who make you angry, you let yourself move on. If you don’t forgive, you would find yourself swallowed up by a sense of negativity which would increase your stress. Communicate it to the person, forgive that person, and allow incidents to strengthen your bond rather than make you a weaker and bitter person.
8. Seek help
Finding ways to calm your anger might be difficult. If you’re trying your best and yet you feel you’re unable to control the unbridled anger and you end up lashing out at others, which have further consequences, it might be a great time to accept that it is absolutely normal to feel things. But, to have you help calm down and manage your emotions better at the spur of a moment, reaching out to a professional is a great help.
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