ANGER MAN­AGE­MENT

Great Health Guide - - FRONT PAGE - Words Ruane J Lip­kie De­sign Olek­san­dra Zuieva

Last month’s edi­tion of Great Health GuideTM, we iden­ti­fied the an­swers to the fol­low­ing ques­tions:

1. What is anger?

2. Why do we be­come an­gry?

3. How do we ex­press anger?

4. The dif­fer­ence ways that men and women man­age anger.

5. When anger be­comes a prob­lem.

It is im­por­tant to try and un­der­stand why you feel an­gry so that you can iden­tify the root cause of the emo­tion, which can be both ra­tio­nal or ir­ra­tional. This can help you to deal with it ef­fec­tively. Deal­ing with it ef­fec­tively in­creases pos­i­tive com­mu­ni­ca­tion and your abil­ity to get along with oth­ers. This in turn can help you to func­tion more ap­pro­pri­ately and suc­cess­fully.

We will now dis­cuss how to man­age anger and a few tips on how to re­duce your an­gry re­ac­tion.

WHY DO WE NEED TO MAN­AGE ANGER? Anger is not a good so­lu­tion to prob­lems.

Un­man­aged anger cre­ates prob­lems for you and for oth­ers around you. Peo­ple with poor anger man­age­ment are more likely to have prob­lems with per­sonal re­la­tion­ships, work­place re­la­tion­ships and so­cial in­ter­ac­tion. Th­ese peo­ple of­ten be­come in­volved in ver­bal abuse and phys­i­cal fights, with dam­age to them­selves and to prop­erty.

Inwardly they can also ex­pe­ri­ence anx­i­ety, de­pres­sion, low self-es­teem, psy­cho­so­matic ill­nesses and prob­lems with al­co­hol or drugs. It is im­por­tant to man­age anger be­fore it leads to other se­ri­ous prob­lems.

Sit­ting on your anger and not ex­press­ing it may lead to the pres­sure cooker ex­pe­ri­ence which of­ten re­sults in an ex­plo­sion!

Ex­press­ing some feel­ings of anger in an ap­pro­pri­ate way, rather than bot­tling it up, gives you an op­por­tu­nity to re­lease some of your un­der­ly­ing feel­ings, so that you can start to tackle the is­sues that are mak­ing you an­gry. Although some peo­ple be­lieve that venting anger is ben­e­fi­cial, re­searchers have now found that this ac­tu­ally es­ca­lates anger and ag­gres­sion and does noth­ing to re­solve the sit­u­a­tion.

Steps to help you man­age your anger. A most es­sen­tial re­quire­ment in be­ing able to man­age your anger, is to recog­nise the sit­u­a­tions that make you an­gry and iden­tify your body’s warn­ing signs of anger. Here are three steps to com­mence with:

VENTING ANGER IS NOT BEN­E­FI­CIAL, IT AC­TU­ALLY ANGER ES­CA­LATES & AG­GRES­SION.

1. List things that can trig­ger your anger:

If you know ahead of time what makes you an­gry, you may be able to avoid th­ese things or do some­thing dif­fer­ent when they hap­pen. This would in­volve you ad­mit­ting that you do get an­gry and de­cid­ing to take con­trol of your thoughts, feel­ings and ac­tions.

2. No­tice the warn­ing signs of anger in your body:

No­tice the things that hap­pen to your body that tell you when you are get­ting an­gry, for ex­am­ple: heart pound­ing, face flushed, sweat­ing, jaw tense, tight­ness in your chest or grit­ting your teeth. The ear­lier you can recog­nise th­ese warn­ing signs of anger, the more suc­cess­ful you will prob­a­bly be at calm­ing your­self down be­fore your anger gets out of con­trol.

3. Learn strate­gies for man­ag­ing anger:

There are a num­ber of dif­fer­ent ways of man­ag­ing anger and some strate­gies will suit you bet­ter than oth­ers. The first word to learn is STOP - you need to say that to your­self – in your head or out loud. Then deep breath­ing is a good way to calm your­self down - so think about 4 times five. That is, take a deep breath from the pit of your ab­domen - in for five sec­onds, hold for five sec­onds, out for five sec­onds and do this five times. You will def­i­nitely feel calmer.

To recog­nise what trig­gers your anger and to put strate­gies in place to bet­ter man­age your feel­ings of anger and frus­tra­tion, are things you can do for your­self. They do not need spe­cialised train­ing or in­for­ma­tion, if you try. In the next is­sue of Great Health GuideTM, we will dis­cuss fur­ther strate­gies for con­trol­ling anger: Con­trol Your Think­ing; Take time out; How to use a Dis­trac­tion and Re­lax­ation.

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