Anger is a powerful emotion, and it can feel uncontrollable at times. If you’ve ever done and said things that you regret in the heat of the moment, then you know how awful it can be when you find that it is difficult for you to control your anger.
Although anyone can feel empathy for actions they did in anger, there is no excuse for harmful behavior just out of anger. This is why you need to learn to handle those intense feelings. Here are 5 habits that make it easier to control your anger.
1. Give yourself time
Anger is by nature an impulsive emotion. To prevent it from taking over you, you need to handle it patiently and give it some time. Time can allow you to see the more rational side of things and you may find that you feel completely different about a situation than before. Here are some ways to give yourself time to control your anger:
One of the most common anger management techniques for forcing yourself to pause and think is to start counting. Usually it will count up or down from 10, but higher numbers will help if you are outraged. As you count, your anger will balance out as your heart rate slows, allowing you to be calmer afterward.
Use a timer
When you are angry, the things you want to say are probably things you will regret saying later. It’s a good idea to set yourself a time rule. Set a timer for as long as you think you need to calm yourself to the point of enhancing rationality. The angrier you are, the longer you have to wait.
· To breathe
Being angry generally means that your breathing rate will increase while the actual breaths become shallower. This makes the stress you feel even worse. Reverse these effects and balance your mood by taking deep breaths, inhaling through your nose, and exhaling through your mouth. Keep doing this until you feel less angry.
· Try to understand
Anger clouds understanding and empathy. To solve problems, you must take time to understand the situation and where other people are coming from. More importantly, it would be best if you had time to understand where your anger is coming from so that you can deal with it more productively.
Sometimes the best way to handle a situation is to forcefully stop before engaging in a potentially high-tension interaction. When you know you will have a complicated topic to tackle, try rehearsing your statements and responses beforehand. It gives you the opportunity to prepare yourself mentally, so that you are not taken by surprise.
2. Work your body to control your anger
Anger has to be released to make you healthy and one of the best ways to do this is by working on your body. A little effort and movement goes a long way in managing even the most furious emotions. Here are some ways to do it:
Relax your muscles
Anger makes you tense, and that tension continues to build up stress and high emotions in your body. Relax your muscles using a technique called progressive muscle relaxation. This technique involves gradually tensing and relaxing individual muscle groups one by one, usually from head to toe in order, while taking deep breaths. After doing this, you will have much less stress on your body.
Like relaxing your muscles, stretching keeps blood flowing through your body and helps relieve tension that may be running. Yoga is a great way to do this, but any non-strenuous stretching exercise can achieve a similar effect. Slow, deliberate stretching also gives you better control of your body and, by extension, your emotions.
· To make some exercise
Exercise has great effects on positive thinking And it’s a wonderful, healthy way to release some of that angry energy. Anything that makes your heart beat and strain is a good option. Still, even less intense activities like golfing, taking a walk, or riding a bike can help your mind and body expel negativity.
Anger is overwhelming when viewed simply as its own monolith. It is not productive to refer to all negative emotions as “anger,” and there are variations in anger that change exactly what your experiences are.
This sounds arbitrary, but it is actually important to differentiate between types of anger. It allows you to separate different situations, find your unique roots, and handle them positively and effectively. In short, different types of anger have other methods of handling!
So the next time something makes you angry, ask yourself what is the real anger you are feeling. Is it even anger at all? Here are some definitions:
- Anger refers to overly intense and powerful bouts of acute irritation, often to the point where you lose your rational focus and act based solely on the offense.
- Annoyance and irritation generally refer to something that irritates your nerves, resulting in mild anger.
- Like annoyance, frustration is mild anger that generally refers to a type of feeling that arises when a particular goal cannot be achieved.
- Resentment is a specific type of anger that refers to mild but long-term negative feelings towards a person or circumstance that you may perceive to have hurt you.
There are many more specific emotions under the umbrella of general anger. While you don’t need to learn all of them, you will benefit from identifying the ones that affect you most often.
4. Use the art of stopping
We have talked about the habit of intentionally taking time to process and think about your anger. But even more crucial than that is the habit of just stopping. When you are already in the heat of your anger, how do you avoid losing yourself in it? It’s so much easier to tell yourself to pause and take time when you’ve just started to get angry, but what about when you’re so angry it’s hard to think?
This is where the art of stopping comes into play. This refers to the ability to regularly and consistently press the pause button on your emotions. It may not make a more positive situation, but at least it won’t make it worse. It’s a difficult habit to get into, but here are some tips to get started:
Imagine a stop sign
Think of a big red sign that yells “Stop.” It sounds silly, but it’s a universal sign that demands your attention, and it can be the mental trick you need to recover long enough to walk away or prevent an already bad situation from getting worse.
Enforce a waiting time
Children have waiting time because they work. They put an end to emotions that are only triggered without direction. So use this method on yourself. Say “excuse me” and walk away. You don’t have to stand in a corner facing the wall like a small child; Go to a place away from other people, where you can have some time for yourself to process and think about the events that led to your anger.
· Keep your mouth closed
If all else fails, focus on just one thing: keep your mouth shut. It’s tempting to let all those hurtful words slip out of your mouth, but you’ll likely regret them later. If you can barely contain those words, focus on “sticking” your lips together and say no more peep. This will give you time to think about the next step without making the situation worse.
5. Express your anger
Did you know that suppressing your anger is inherently bad for you? Bottling it all has nothing positive effects and can often make initial feelings worse. So while you need to control your anger to avoid overdoing things, you also need to direct that anger and find a healthy place to go. Here are some good habits that allow you to safely express your anger:
Talk to someone you trust
Tell someone you trust, such as a close friend or family member, that you would like to express your frustrations about something in your life. Tell them what you need from them, just a listening ear? Any advice? Nothing at all? Then go ahead! Talking about things with others gives you external perspectives and allows you to unravel your thoughts.
· Write a letter
Angry at someone? Write them a letter (or email) expressing all the anger you have, even if it is cruel or petty. Then tear up that letter and throw it away (or delete the email). You may find that expressing all those feelings has alleviated them, giving you a new perspective and a more charitable or relaxed view of the person in question, or, on the other hand, it may make you realize that they are not worth getting angry at. everybody!
Find a creative channel
Art is a great way to express your anger. Write stories, poems, and songs. Paint, sketch and draw. Get out in the garden, take care of your plants, play a lot of angry music on your guitar, or cross stitch an angry message. When you channel your anger in this way, you continue to create and express yourself in healthy ways in a productive and inspiring way.
· Listen to music
Angry music, sad music, and even happy music can be beneficial in helping you release your anger. Sing as long as you can, dance to your distressed tunes, and let the lyrics of the music you associate with speak for you.
Keep a journal
If you are an emotional person, it would probably benefit you to keep a journal! No one can read what you write in a journal, so you can express all your thoughts and feelings unfiltered. It’s a great way to release, process, and reflect on anger, and studies have found that journaling increases positive thinking, as well.
Controlling anger is important for positive interactions with others. It’s okay to feel angry and your emotions are valid, but you are also responsible for any actions you take that are prompted by those feelings. As such, you should practice habits that teach you to control your anger and to direct it in more positive and healthy ways.