Problems with anger can be reduced relatively quickly with a change of lifestyle and a new mindset. Most of us cannot change the people or environment around us but we can commit to really changing how we react to these types of triggers.
Putting a focus on dealing with your anger means reducing your overall daily stress levels. It also means learning to connect with people in a calm and approachable manner. In my experience as an anger management counsellor, clients who come for anger management therapy always have something deeper going on which is resulting in ongoing unhealthy outbursts. On top of that they are often firefighting because of the ripple effect of their anger on others. Therapy helps clients to clearly identify all their triggers and focus on changing behaviours and deal with any past trauma which may be surfacing.
Angry and unpredictable people are exhausting to be around. Its even more difficult to maintain a safe and loving relationship with a partner who appears angry and agitated all the time. Partners experience loneliness, hyper-vigilance and an overall sense of feeling disconnected from their loved one. This is a sad state of affairs for any relationship as this negative sentiment override in the relationship triggers both partners and brings out the worst in them both.
For a relationship to thrive, it’s so important that both people feel safe, loved and respected. Anger only creates negativity and distance in a relationship.
Anger can be a symptom of ongoing stress and anxiety, feelings of things being out of control and general hypertension. In most cases anger appears to be the primary emotion, but the individual is experiencing a range of other emotions which they struggle to understand and express. To access these other emotions, they need to slow down in real time and try to tune into these other emotions before they react or lash out.
How you react to situations can be a conscious choice. Most people with anger problems treat partners and family very differently to how they would treat colleagues and the general public. The common saying house devil, street angel explains this difference in behaviour. Therapy aims to help clients to become more genuine and learn to be the type of person they really choose to be and not who they learned to be.
Here are some simple stress and anger management skills which will help you to improve your overall quality of life and create a healthier more balanced mindset.
- Find ways to relax during week to help bring your overall stress levels down.
- Start reflecting on the types of stress that you may be under. Find effective ways to reduce the types of stress you are experiencing i.e work stress, commuting, rushing around.
- A healthy nutritious diet will have a strong impact on your general emotional wellbeing.
- Reducing stimulants such as caffeine, excessive sugar, cigarettes and drugs can help to reduce stress in the body, your thought processes and your life.
- Rushing round all day and feeling under pressure only increases your overall stress levels. Learn to give yourself plenty of time to do tasks and saying NO to unnecessary requests can help you reduce your daily stress.
- Exercising regularly is a great way to burn off extra energy, tension and stress.
- Practice simple short breathing exercises for a few minutes during the day can help you to focus on the present, slow down your heart rate, reduce adrenaline production in your body and generally promotes relaxation.
- Getting good quality sleep every night helps improve overall mood and energy levels. Poor quality sleep causes fatigue, irritability and hyper-tension.
- Cutting out alcohol can have a significant impact on how you are feeling in your body and how much energy you have throughout the week. Alcohol depletes the body of essential vitamins and minerals which are crucial to physical and emotional health.
- Prepare for your day the night before reduces unnecessary stress and tension.
- Start writing lists if you have a lot of things to remember and tasks to do.
- Plan relaxing fun enjoyable activities which will help you to wind down and de-stress.
- Get a hobby, something you can do each week which you look forward to.
- Have fun with your partner. Build on your friendship and start enjoying each other’s company again.
- Open up and start talking to people in your life about how you are feeling and what you are going through. They are there to help and support you if you let them.
- If you are having difficulty changing your behaviours and reducing your anger then seek out the help of a professional therapist who can help you manager your anger and change for good.
- Take an online anger management course.
- Try complementary health therapies which will help you actively practice relaxating.
- Learn more about managing and regulate emotions by reading self-help books.
- Channel your anger into something more productive and creative like art, writing or music.
- Start connecting more with your family, community and neighbours around you. Anger can distance you from things that have real meaning in life. By connecting more with people, it helps you to develop empathy and compassion for others.
- Put others first. Anger can be a selfish and immature quality. Putting other people’s thoughts and feelings first by listening to them or helping them out develops emotional intelligence and connection with others.