In our modern life, there are a lot of things that might cause anger to us! Various incidents, people who disappoint us, the fact that we don’t like ourselves sometimes, are some of the sources leading to anger and frustration. Anger is a healthy emotion provided that it is kept within healthy boundaries… The scope of anger is to focus our attention on something important that is happening, which might be a potential threat. Thus, anger is a “red light” turned on to signal that we should protect ourselves from a dangerous situation (e.g. in case we are unfairly treated, thus it is likely we will be taken advantage of, and so on).
Yet, excessive and prolonged anger can literally destroy our life! It leads us to fight with almost everyone in the world: our friends, relatives, parents, colleagues, clients. We lose people who are valuable to us. And the most important thing is that we lose our own peace and balance, the prerequisites of our well-being.
But how can we, practically, cope with anger?
At a first level, we should control it when it actually happens. As soon as you feel something (or someone) makes your blood boil, just tell yourself to “stop”, take 2 slow, deep breaths, count from 1 to 10 and then, ask yourself whether it is a good, effective and beneficial practice to get angry. You may decide that, in fact, you should get angry, although not in the form of an uncontrollable outburst of rage that benefits nobody, but by strongly complaining to the other party for their behavior(s), while explaining that you are not going to tolerate them in the future.
On a second level, you should take some time to reflect on what anger actually is. I believe, anger is an unfulfilled expectation. You see, we may expect that others should always treat us well, respect us, satisfy us and reward us either emotionally or financially… And, as this is not always the case, we become annoyed, get angry and furious. Why? Because, as I’ve already said, we expect things from others… What happens in reality is that we fail to accept that (a) we don’t live in a perfect world, (b) some people are malicious by nature or they simply have a bad character, and (c) it is not always possible to get a “yes” from others to nourish with validation our wounded ego; we are not the center of the world!
The solution to anger management is emotional independence and personal development. We should stand on our own feet firmly and build our self-confidence, while having low expectations from others, so that we don’t get disappointed and angry. In addition, we should accept other peoples’ differences and stop expecting everybody to agree with our point-of-view! Furthermore, we should be able to work along with various kinds of people and diverse personalities, without judging or being critical of the unique characteristics of each individual, so that they respect our own uniqueness. Most importantly, we should have a good word for everybody, so that we get positive critique from others as well. And finally, with regard to those people who are chronically negative, behave toxically and gain pleasure by hurting us, we should, by all means, avoid them -period!