We often tend to use anger as an excuse for what we have done. Yet, according to an HBR article from 2019, fifty-four percent of people who have done something aggressively have explained it with unconscious and unexpected anger. The more society moves forward faster, the more opportunities for anger demonstration arise. We are angry about how our colleague has reacted, what she has said or wrote. We are angry when our beloved people have done something that has exposed our weaknesses to others. We are mad when we do something and do not see the results we imagined: so many situations and still the same reaction.
And no matter how we plan or execute our tasks or actions, we always reach a point when we feel anger.
While there is no universal path to dealing with anger, there are many approaches to it. Some people have found the resolution in meditation. Others have seen it in beating imaginary purpose for the ager in form of something very well-known. The third group of people eliminates anger by reading books, followed by playing games, cooking, etc.
Looking at modern society, we can easily see many instruments to help us deal with anger. But still, part of them are only a projection of our anger. For example, playing games is just a projection of our anger from the real world to an imaginary line, where we can do whatever we want. Likewise, cooking calms us down, but we cut the vegetables with unusual strength or move fast through the list of things we have to do to prepare what we started cooking, just to put our negative energy into something positive at the end. The examples list of anger projections is endless.
And because anger is part of our life, we need to learn how to control it and turn it into positive energy and results. Here are five techniques I have learned from experience and validated through an entire training session with a great coach from the Dale Carnegie training society:
Anger makes us feel more pressure and does not allows us to breathe correctly. Our heads are shaking; our legs become heavy, the strength in our hands becomes bigger. And all that, because someone has said or done something, we do not like or accept. The first thing everyone can easily do I sit down and start breathing deeply. Not the fast and energetic breath with small portions of air and oxygen getting into our body. Sit down, close your eyes and start breathing deeply and slowly. This will make the pulse get out of the horse run you have entered, and you will gradually get relaxed and ready to move forward again.
After relaxing, many people make the mistake of returning as fast as possible to what they have done before the anger aggregated. This is a massive mistake because getting back to the same situation that you have experienced anger is a prerequisite to return to the same state of body and mind that have caused the outrage. Pausing means moving away from stress and anger situations and the start of searching the root of what has happened. Getting deep into the origins of the anger is a helpful way to identify the real issue, build a strategy to solve the problem, and minimize the change of repeating the situation and the behavior that has caused anger. In many cases, the real reason for the anger is hidden below all the things happening during our day. It can be something we think is small, but at the same time, this small element can be a powerful key to the anger we feel. Finding that essential element for our offense is hard work, but it cannot be done if we remain in an angry mood. Stopping everything and looking at the situation from an outsider’s perspective is an excellent technique to see the anger rot.
Anger grows in us because we often refuse to accept is something usual to our behavior or external look. Often people deny to carry their behavior and remain focused on the behavior of others. And while we see that our ability to influence others is not so strong, we tend to become angry – with ourselves and others. There is nothing wrong in admitting that you are angered by a circumstance or someone’s behavior, or even from your behavior or actions. However, people often react to situations without thinking of what has happened. That brings anger on the surface and makes the person look unstable as a personality. So many people’s reactions are based on emotions; we tend to think that being in opposition to what causes us stress is the one winning solution. Instead of using this technique, it will be easy for a person who is angered to validate the anger showing others that they understand and, most importantly, accept the anger as something normal.
DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY
What makes anger or the anger demonstrated by others more vital is the level of personal involvement or treatment that we feel while expressed. The reason why offense is always showing up so dramatically is that we use it as a weapon to hurt others and, at the same time, as a defense mechanism to defend ourselves. Realizing and accepting that there is nothing personal in anger and it is used more as a mechanism to lower pressure can quickly turn it from a heavy and demoralizing tool to an opportunity for change. The quicker the person accepts the anger and does not invest time in answering the same or even more challenging way, the faster the anger becomes a positively impacting element in our behavior and environment. Looking at the anger logically and not involving in the emotional spiral of hate, pressure, and dominance it tempts to create is one of the characteristics of the emotionally intelligent person.
KNOW WHEN TO WALK AWAY
Understanding and validating anger is a good start of the positive change, but what shows the level of emotional intelligence is knowing when to walk away. There is nothing wrong with dealing with angry people until you are sure that you have the situation under control. But when the reactions or the emotions turn too negative, you will need to cut the rope. This is more connected with the level of emotional intelligence in us. People who are highly emotionally intelligent know when to enter a situation and when and how to get out of this situation does not lead to anything productive. It is the simplest way to stop anger. Walking out from the anger-filled problem lowers the pressure and turns it harmful to positive. While in work, this will lower the level of pressure with colleagues or can save the person unpleasant consequences. In personal life, walking away from an angry person gives time and space to the person to relax and see the situation from a different perspective.
There is no way and need to stop anger. This emotionally driven element of our behavior and actions is at the same time a negative and positive effect builder. People have to learn how to successfully manage anger using different levers in their daily routines and schedules. Poorly managed situations can cause a more significant negative effect. In contrast, angered behavior-driven constructively can lead to positive outcomes at the end and personal and professional growth for the individual.