8 Effective Ways to Tame Your Anger
Anger is a usual and healthy emotion, which is neither bad nor good. All of us get irritated and lose control from time to time. However, constant anger can seriously harm your health, relationship and life. Chronic anger undoubtedly leads to heart disease, weak immunity and poor productivity. Moreover, explosive anger makes it difficult for others to communicate with you, trust you and just feel comfortable beside you. I have hot temper and when something irritates me I can hardly pull myself together and avoid a quarrel. My nearest and dearest often suffer from my uncontrolled emotions and I know I should learn to tame my anger. Fortunately, there are certain techniques and tools that can help handle intense emotions. Here are a few of them:
1. Avoid anger triggers
If you know that certain people, subjects or things are likely to get you angry, try to avoid them. Sure, it’s not always a solution, but it increases your chances to stay calm. Hurry to end the discussion or change the subject if it’s going to get you down. My friend always makes me wait for half an hour each time we make an appointment. I just started coming later as well and it solved the problem. If your partner watches TV shows that make you crazy, just spend this time separately. Avoiding conflict situations is definitely a good way to tame your anger.
2. Find out the real reason of your anger
People get angry for thousand reasons, but very often anger has a very deep and hidden motive. High level of stress, tiredness and diseases contribute to your anger. Explosive anger is often the result of unspoken feelings and other emotions. When people feel vulnerable, hurt or insecure, they often use groundless anger to protect themselves. Learn to understand people’s emotions and try to express your own.
3. Take a pause before speaking
When you cannot control your emotions it’s easy to say many things that you don’t really mean, but it’s too late. Take a pause and a deep breath, look out of the window or count to ten. It will help you to cool down and weigh your words. A short break enables both you and your opponent to collect your thoughts and carry on a constructive dialog.
4. Address the issue when you’re calm
The best time to speak to your counterpart is when you’re calm. If you really want to settle the question you should be ready to an open and constructive dialog. Express your feelings and address the issue in a polite but not aggressive way. Remember to avoid generalizing or blaming your partner. Phrases like ‘You never consider my feelings’ will only stir up the controversy, thus you should avoid them.
5. Work out
Physical activity is one of the best ways to alleviate stress and relieve negative emotions. Workouts reduce the level of stress hormones and promote the production of serotonin, which is responsible for happiness and relaxation. If you cannot spend an hour in the gym, opt for a brisk walk outside. It will cool your mind and enable you to approach the situation more reasonably. A good scalp massage also helps to calm down and soothe tension.
6. Talk to someone
If you can talk to a calm, positive and trustworthy person, do it. Suppressing anger is totally unhealthy and harmful, but a straight talk is a good way to relieve your feelings. When discussing the problem, chances are you will see the whole picture and find the way out. So the next time you experience an outburst, call your mom or best friend. If you don’t want to talk to anyone, consider writing a journal on a daily basis.
7. Use relaxation and breathing techniques
If you have a hot temper you’d better practice yoga and breathing techniques regularly. Each time you’re overwhelmed with negative feelings, take a deep breath and start repeating some phrases like ‘Take it easy’ or ‘It’s Okay’. Breathing techniques are easy to perform at home and they won’t take you much time. Regular yoga and breathing exercises will improve your concentration and composure and you’ll gradually start using these techniques automatically.
8. Use I-message
If the confrontation is inevitable you should do your best to avoid abusing your counterpart. Don’t use words ‘always’ and ‘never’ as well as ‘must’ and ‘should’. Try to make your statements as neutral and harmless as possible. Instead of pointing out your partner’s mistakes, use I-statements. For example, the statement ‘I feel upset that you forgot to call me’ sounds much better than ‘You always forget about me!’ Whatever angry you may be, try not to touch your partner’s sore point.
Remember that anger is something you can learn to control and tame. Mostly the problem isn’t in a particular situation, but in our attitude and reaction. You cannot eliminate stressful situations and you shouldn’t. But when you learn to handle your emotions you will hardly get angry no matter what. I hope these tips will help you to manage your temper. If you have your own tips, feel free to share them with us. You might help someone and not even know it!