These posts are based on my experience as someone trained in the field of psychology, my personal experiences, and working with clients, friends and family. I write posts based on what I’ve seen in the last week or two, and think might be helpful to reflect on. Take what fits, and leave what doesn’t.
Turning down the Kettle
Ever have difficulties getting your day back on track when something frustrating happens and your anger is just boiling? Let me tell you, that is a normal reaction and feeling. Some people might be able to get back on track quicker, and others take longer. The main part of it is the adrenaline rushing through your body, and the thoughts rushing through your head.
Anger is an emotional response to a real, felt, or imagined grievance or to a frustrating situation, typically related to a perceived threat. The adrenaline rushing through your body will make your heart rate increase, your muscles will tense ready to move and pounce, your breathing will increase. These are all normal reactions. The best thing to remember is to try to stay cool, calm collected and be professional- but my guess is you’ve heard others say this and get annoyed by it all the time because you ask yourself, how?
So in the moment your anger is 10 out of 10, or pretty close. In these instances, there is nothing wrong with taking your frustration out on s-o-m-e-t-h-i-n-g. Not someone. It is normal to want to throw a temper tantrum; the only thing is to mediate where it goes. Scream into a pillow, punch the bed, rip apart pieces of paper. Take it out on things that you won’t feel guilty about after, don’t take it out on people, breakable objects, etc. We often see this as wrong or socially inappropriate, but trying to shut our anger out or turn it inwards without allowing ourselves to express it in a healthy way can be more damaging than screaming into a pillow. Imagine, events keep happening that make you angry the whole week, bordering on 8+ out of 10, but you never express it. The end of the week comes by, and someone says a small thing to you and you SNAP. The person gets the brunt of a built up week of anger, and your guilt comes right afterward. This is the scenario you want to avoid. When we burst out at others, or are irate, we often feel depressed afterward because this outburst is atypical of how we wish to view ourselves. Continue reading “Turning Down the Kettle (On working with anger).”