I recently went through a phase in my life in which anger was a frequent emotion. I was angry at people, places and things because they were not giving me what I wanted, now. Not only did I react to this anger, but I let it get out of control. My friends and family slowly drifted out of my life, I slipped into a depressive state and really did not know what to do.
Today, I am so grateful to have climbed out of that mind state and found a way to really create loving relationships with others and the world at large. This did not happen overnight, in fact it really took a lot of inner work. The work however has been worth the outcome.
Yesterday, I was riding my bike home from work reflecting on the fact that I had not been really angry for quite a long time. Well… What the mind focuses on it attracts. While my home is fairly clean I could not help but let the mountain of laundry, meowing cat, dirty floors, other peoples stuff drive me to a mind state of complete anger. I wanted to scream, douse my cat in water and instead of go on my run sit in my anger. I am glad I did not act on those thoughts. I simply responded to the situation.
I put my running clothes on, laced up my shoes with a flame blazing over my head and tromped out the door. I felt like a child, who did not get the toy he wanted. How ridiculous!
As my body began tromping down the river trail I could not help but begin stirring more thoughts of fury in my mind. This person did or did not do this. Why is my house in disorder? Why isn't everything going my way? Then something happened. It was as though a light bulb went off in my head. I asked myself one simple question.
Scott - Is the reality of things really that big of a deal or is your personal perception so freaking small that you are letting relatively minor things make you angry?
With my ego aside I was able to honestly answer this question. I am just letting things get to me because in the present they are not they way I want them to be. This means I need to reflect on my past, learn from it and respond in the present to make my life better in the future.
After reflecting on the situation. I asked myself another question.
How can I share my feelings with my GF in a rational way so it does not sound like everything is her fault? Another light bulb! I have a part in all of this too. We can work together to have a happier kitty and orderly home. All we have to do is break some bad habits. I have broken habits much harder than this, so why can’t we knock this one out of the park?
My conversation with Nicole went very well and we both agreed that there is room for improvement. I love that responding in a polite manner really helps you more than getting pissed off and lashing out.
In review, here the five things to do when anger arises. Your goal should be to manage your anger before it escalates and controls you.
5 Simple Ways to Manage Your Anger
Anger is completely natural. Do not think for a moment that you are abnormal because you are going through an angry phase in your life. Spend some time reflecting on why you feel this way. I have found alone time is best before talking it out with anyone. This allows me to respond instead of react.
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