Anger occurs in varying degree of intensity – mild annoyance to violent rage. It may be hidden or expressed. May be of short duration or prolong for decades in form of bitterness, resentment or hatred. It occurs as a result of host of psychological, physical and spiritual problems.
How is anger handled?
Anger is handled in three ways:
Repression: It’s of denial. It is dangerous method of handling anger. It is usually powerful and bitter. The anger is pushed from the conscious to subconscious.
Expression: Not really verbally but through behavior. A stern look, slamming of door, ignoring another person, cold glare are example of expressing anger.
Release: It is anger that is dismissed or let go. Its conscious decision to let go of the offence that led to anger.
Causes of Anger
Frustration: result when a person’s progress towards the attainment of a goal is blocked or interrupted. The level of the frustration depends on the importance of the goal, the size of the obstacles and duration of the frustration.
Hurt or threat of hurt: Physical or emotional hurt, insult, being ridicule, humiliation, etc
Injustice: High sensitivity towards value system. When one feels there is an injustice to one or loved ones.
Fear: Worries and fear may create high level of frustration and anger. Learning from parents, family members or society especially towards those who have difference or expressed disagreement with our views.
Effects of Anger
Withdrawal: It is the easiest but the least effective way of dealing with anger, leaving the room, plunging into activities, hiding the problems by becoming drunkard and drugs, denial of the anger, etc
Physical symptoms such as headache, ulcers, accidents, etc
Psychological reactions such as anxiety, fear, tension, depression, etc
Thinking exercises such as self-pity, thought of revenge and ruminating on injustices experienced
Spiritual struggles, Attacking the substitute, Focusing on the source of anger (could be destructive or constructive).
Destructive may include verbal or physical aggression, ridicule, refusal to cooperate, and involvement in things that will hurt or embarrass someone else just to get even with them.
Facts about Anger
It is possible to be angry and not sin.
Not all anger are sinless, but such sinful anger is irrational and pointless, self-control is the primary issue.
Find out the source of anger: Who are you mad at? What is making you angry?
Using intellectual reasoning such as :
Why jumping into conclusion?
Is my anger really justified?
Are there things I could do to change the situation to reduce anger?
According to Dr. Stephen R. Covey in his book “The 3rd Alternative” he said
Between an action and a reaction is a pause. You are the one in charge of that pause and how you handle that pause moment determines your reaction.
- Separate self from conflict
- Use music
- Do something you enjoy
- Talk with a friend
- Talk to yourself
- Write your anger down and tear it later.
- Pray to God about it
- Pray for peace in your heart
- Read, memorize scripture
- Pray for the person provoking the anger
OCD – Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: a mental illness that is made up of two parts; obsession and compulsion.
Tim Lahaye in his book “Anger is a choice” said;
People don’t get you angry, you choose to be angry