Anger can be an incredibly destructive force, and since everyone experiences anger, it is crucial to have constructive approaches to manage it effectively. The following are some of the methods that can be employed to manage anger effectively.
Admit that you are angry
In order to deal with anger you need to admit that you are angry and not keep the anger inside. People often think that they are effectively dealing with anger by ignoring their feelings of anger. This is a defense mechanism and includes methods such as laughing-off an issue off, distracting one’s self from the problem and trivializing the impact of the feelings. You need to recognize that you are angry and give yourself permission to feel the anger. In order to control something successfully you first need to admit it exists. The process of admitting you are angry can be as simple as saying to yourself “I am angry”.
Calm yourself before you respond
Aggression, which can be verbal or physical, is never an acceptable way to express your anger. It is necessary to calm yourself before saying anything or responding to the situation. When we become angry, our body becomes engaged in a fight or flight response. At this stage, you need defer any reaction until you have returned to a more stable biological state. Count to ten or, if possible, remove yourself from the situation for a moment before responding.
Avoid becoming passive-aggressive
Passive-aggressive behavior usually results when a person keeps silent over a matter that is important to him/her. Passive-aggressiveness refers to indirect and underhanded means to get back at a person that made you angry. It includes behavior such as gossiping, tardiness and backbiting. If keeping silent results in physical and mental symptoms because it is so important to you, it is better to let it out. Speak to the person concerned or, if that is not possible, at least speak to a trusted friend or a mental health professional.
Take ownership and communicate your feelings constructively
Avoid the use of indirect attacks and unproductive statements such as blaming, labeling, preaching moralizing, ordering, warning, interrogating, ridiculing and lecturing. Get the anger within your control by taking ownership and responsibility for your feelings. You cannot control other people, you can only control yourself.
Use relaxation techniques to control your anger
An effective way to manage your anger is to intentionally induce yourself to a state of calm. This can help particularly in addressing the physical symptoms of anger. Relaxation techniques you can do include: breathing exercises, meditation, visualization, music, arts and craft.