Manage Anger!! Before it starts to manage you.

“Anybody can become angry – that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way – that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy” – Aristotle

We all have experienced anger in our life – from tiny annoyance to full fledged rage; we have also experienced the problem associated with anger. It is an emotion which we encounter most – both within and outside. But yet we hardly understand this powerful emotion or try to control it. Before we should proceed further, let me stop you for a second to ask – what is anger? Most will probably answer in negative. However, anger is a normal and healthy emotion; it can be used for our advantage. Osho has said – In anger the mind is focused entirely on one point. That is why there is so much power in anger.’ The responsibility lies with us to use this power to our benefits.

Unfortunately, this does not happen with most of us. In reality, we let anger to go out of control so much that it starts creating problems in our life. It destroys our relationships and hampers the overall quality of life. Uncontrolled anger causes pain; it hurts us both physically and mentally.

Identify your Anger

Charles Spielberger, PhD, a psychologist who specializes in the study of anger has described anger as “an emotional state that varies from mild irritation to intense fury and rage”. Where does your anger fall on this spectrum? Is it more of mild irritation or a full blown rage? If it often converts into a rage then this anger has associated physiological and biological symptoms. In this state the heart and blood pressure goes up and the anger becomes negative and unhealthy.

Also identify the source of your anger. The source could be external or internal. In external anger, you are angry with a specific person (like your relative or neighbor) or an event (such as someone cutting off while driving). Internal source of angers are our worries and unpleasant memories. The need is to manage both internal as well as external anger.

Three ways of managing anger is – Expression, Suppression and Calming.

Expression

Expression is another term for ‘venting out or releasing anger’. The challenge is to release the anger in an assertive and positive way. If you express your anger aggressively on someone then are making him or her angry as well. Osho has compared the incorrect expression to a chain reaction – “When you are angry with someone and you throw your anger on him, you are creating a chain reaction. Now he too will be angry. This may continue for lives and you will go on being enemies. You can continue this for centuries without end. How can you end it?”

The  need is to become assertive – not aggressive – while expressing the anger. How to do it? Osho has recommended – “Remember you are not angry with SOMEONE. You are simply angry”.  Once you detach yourself with personality’s conflict then you will be able to express your feeling in a positive ways.

Suppression

Suppression is a method where you hold on to the anger and then redirect it to something positive and constructive. The intent is to suppress our anger and make it productive. The danger is – if not suppressed properly – then suppressed anger can turn inward i.e. on you.

Osho has given a good ways of suppressing anger – “Put your energies into creativity. Forget about anger as a problem, ignore it. Channelize your energy towards more creativity. Pour yourself into something that you love.”.  Remember someone (or something) you love when you are angry and this will help you in suppressing anger. Pleasant memories are the only remedy for un-pleasant memories. Create more pleasant memories and emotions by meditation and mind control.

Calming

It means controlling our internal behavior. Calm down from inside. It is probably the purest form of anger management. It can be achieved by meditation – no matter how difficult it is to change our nature. Osho has said – “Today it may seem that your anger is very strong, how can meditation break it? But it breaks — it has always broken. Rock is very strong and meditation is very delicate, but this is the mystery of life — the continuity of the delicate can break the strongest and the hardest”.

It is your choice to decide how you want to live your life. We have accepted anger a normal phenomena because we observe it in our day to day life. Example – We see angry folkes, shouting on each other, in traffic jams. And we also start to participate in shouting match. Why? Because we have convinced ourselves that this kind of anger is normal and acceptable. But we should not let external factors decide our actions. We need to ask ourselves – is this kind of anger normal and productive? No one is going to ask this question but you have to ask yourself. If the answer is negative then start changing yourself. Not all angers are bad – as I said – anger is a normal emotion. It is uncontrolled anger which is bad and you have expression, suppression and calming to mange this anger.

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5 comments on “Manage Anger!! Before it starts to manage you.

  1. Suppressing anger is never a good way to deal with anger. I believe expressing it in a healthy way is the best. Good pointers on how to deal with anger.

  2. Hi,
    I like the perspective of Calming, but I don’t understand how it can be achieved. Let’s say I faced I situation where someone has angered me, do I go to a room and meditate for 10 minutes?

  3. The phenomena explained is too good but it is much difficult to implement.
    Its hard to control our acts when we are angry.

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