Every human being experiences anger. It is an acute and powerful feeling which people can experience across a wide spectrum of intensity. Some people allow their anger to be expressed outwardly in an explosive way. Others, who shun this kind of demonstration, may choose to hold their anger within. Implosion (internalizing anger) and explosion (externalizing anger) are both problematic ways of dealing with the strong but common emotion of anger.
It’s Healthier to Let it Out than Hold it in
As uncomfortable as it is when people erupt into angry outbursts, it is actually better to express anger than it is to ignore it. Holding anger inside without expressing it will not make your anger go away. Instead, suppressed anger will make itself known in other ways.
It can turn into depression, frequent headaches, high blood pressure, anxiety, digestive illness or skin conditions. Even if it doesn’t manifest in a physical or psychological illness, be assured that stuffed anger will still infect your relationships. In some cases, suppressed anger may come out in violent or criminal behavior.
Don’t Explode, Do Practice Anger Management
While it is better to give expression to anger rather than to pretend it isn’t there, it’s not likely to be helpful to explode all over the people around you. Rather than give in to explosive outbursts of anger or silent avoidance of anger’s presence, there is a healthy middle ground in which anger is acknowledged and managed.
1. Self Talk
Recognize your anger, then talk yourself through it. Spend a few minutes telling yourself to “be calm” until the strength of emotion passes. Then turn your angry thoughts into a more positively directed direction.
Write down when you feel angry. Over time you will see what commonly triggers your anger and can work on that issue.
Admit to yourself that you feel angry and then ask yourself how the other person may feel. Empathizing with others can diffuse angry feelings.
There is an important difference between aggression and assertion. An important part of healthy anger management is learning to be assertive – calmly and orthrightly explaining how you feel – without becoming aggressive toward others.
Assertiveness is a skill which can be practiced. To find out how to develop this valuable skill, contact the professionals at Family Guidance Center . We can help you establish your own solutions for healthy anger management.