Your alarm did not
go off and you are late for work. On the way to school, your child spills food
on the uniform.
You did not have a
good day at office and upon your return, you find the house is a complete mess.
You are trying to complete some unfinished business and your laptop hangs in
the middle of an important call.
Well, you’ve had
it. You are ready to burst into tears.
Or snap someone’s head off, who chose this inopportune moment to cross your
Does the feeling
of anger all-encompassing? How do you react? How is one supposed to react?
Did the intensity of your anger surprise you into
thinking of silencing your anger?
your anger is not a good idea. It has been clinically proven that suppressing
anger over long term is capable of damaging your heart, resulting in an eating
disorder, and raising your blood pressure to dangerous levels.
In other words,
anger is such a strong emotion that concealing or suppressing it will result in
it manifesting itself in some other form.
Taking recourse to
something like lashing out when you are angry works only in the short term at
best. Its effectiveness and potency in dealing with the problem begins to
reduce after a while.
● Every person is compassionate deep
down, but in a fit of anger might react in an aggressive way. Once they cool
down, their reaction is like, ‘what did I do just now?’
● If one has not defined self
protective boundaries, then they are apt to be suppresses and trampled upon by
● Some people tend to shame themselves
to get over a feeling of guilt by turning their anger against themselves so
that they are at par with the other person.
● Some people do not even recognise
they have a problem managing anger, thus effectively shutting themselves out
from taking corrective measure.
When the focus is
on the anger and not on the source of the anger, 2 things happen:
1. We activate our brain’s fight,
flight, or freeze system which begins to pump cortisol, or the stress hormone,
into our body. This will prime us to fight, flight, or freeze, even if there is
nobody or nothing to fight or run from. Having cortisol in our bodies for long
periods of time can damage us physically and mentally.
2. We miss the opportunity to gain
insight on our anger.
Treat yourself with compassion
According to Dr. Kristin Neff, an associate professor in human
development at the University of Texas at Austin, acting with self-compassion
holds the answer.
Dr. Neff says
self-compassion has three components:
1. Self-kindness: Be warm and understanding toward
yourself when you suffer, fail, or feel inadequate. Recognize that being
imperfect and failing is inevitable. It is far more better for you to treat
yourself with kindness and gentleness, than anger and hate.
humanity: means recognizing
that suffering and personal inadequacy is part of the shared human experience –
something that we all go through rather than being something that happens to
3. Mindfulness: allows us the space to hold our
feelings in a way so that we can choose to act on them or not. Our feelings in
mindfulness do not need to be suppressed or exaggerated. We can observe
negative thoughts and emotions with openness and clarity, without judgment.
developing a sense of forgiveness is a great help. When you have decided not to
hold a grudge, you have allowed yourself to be rid of all negativity - and that
can make a huge difference.