Anger Management Techniques For You and Your Students
Anger is a normal, healthy emotion, but learning to control your anger is an important part of living a positive, happy life.
Uncontrolled anger does not only cause psychological issues. The long-term consequences of anger negatively impact physical health, too. Anger affects the cardiovascular system causing the heart to race and blood pressure to rise. Anger also sparks the fight or flight effects of the energy hormones, adrenaline and noradrenaline.
Personal Experience with Anger
I used to get angry extremely easily. Around forty years old, I physically collapsed. In time, I discovered I was allowing anger to mask my true emotions. To protect myself from being hurt, I had turned any personal feelings of pain, regret, hurt, disappointment, or frustration into anger.
After my physical collapse, I could no longer release my anger with physical activity. I discovered seeking the emotional catalyst of my anger helped me accept and feel my real emotion. I was able to process my real emotion and move through it without further hurting myself physically or lashing out at my children verbally.
I found a several techniques to help reduce my anger and increase my feelings of contentment. I hope these techniques help you and those you have stewardship over find a place of mental well-being and satisfaction. Remember the best way to teach children to appropriately deal with anger is to manage your own anger.
Anger Management Techniques
Breathing deeply resets your mind. In a review of fifteen studies, researchers found practicing slow breathing techniques had both psychological and behavioral benefits including reduced feelings of anger, depression, anxiety, and confusion. At the same time, slow breathing increased feelings of relaxation, comfort, pleasantness, and alertness. The next time you feel angry take a couple of deep breaths to settle yourself.
I now take time to practice yoga and meditation every morning. An integral part of yoga and meditation is paying attention to breathing patterns and practicing deep breathing. It is a great way to start my day with positive, relaxed feelings.
Express your anger in an assertive, not an aggressive way
You must express your feelings, or you’ll be a smoldering volcano on the edge of an untimely explosion. Bottling your emotions can cause numerous ill health issues.
It is better to determine why you are angry. Then make clear your needs and work to get your needs meet without hurting anyone. When you are assertive you are being respectful to others and yourself.
As the mother of six young children, I felt much of the home responsibilities including discipline fell on me with little help from my spouse. By having open, honest conversations with him, we could set responsibilities and time outs so both of our needs were met in positive and assertive ways.
Suppress Anger by Converting and Redirecting It.
Hold your anger in, stop thinking about what is making you angry, and then redirect yourself towards something positive. I am not suggesting to only suppress your anger, but that you redirect yourself.
Suppressing your anger is not healthy. It is like putting a lid on a simmering pot that will eventually overflow. Suppressing anger can result in negative biological consequences resulting in depression, high blood pressure, or hypertension. Suppressing anger can also lead to playing passive, aggressive games.
Instead, redirect your anger towards something positive. Take a deep breath. Take a moment to find something good about the moment. Listen to your senses and find something to enjoy.
Calming down is not just an outward behavior, but an internal response. Breathing deeply and counting to ten are simple ways to calm down in the moment. Take some time to predetermine calming methods to keep yourself in control.
My predetermined calming method is to close my eyes, breathe deeply, and picture the surf on a sandy beach while repeating a calming word or phrase like “peace” or “breathe out.” When I do this, it resets me and allows me to see alternate solutions to a frustrating situation.
How to Prevent Anger
For the first half of my life, I felt like I had to be 100 percent productive 100 percent of the time. Being on point all the time created a lot of frustration and anger. Part of my healing was realizing sitting and relaxing was productive for my mind and body. Practicing meditation daily helps me reset, prioritize, and let go.
Reconstruct Thought Patterns
Avoid ultimatums. Ultimatums box you into a corner. The dangers of thinking in terms of never or always are inaccurate and untrue. Instead of thinking this is the worst, train yourself to think this is pretty bad and frustrating, but it isn’t the end of the world.
Getting angry is not going to fix a problem. Calming down will help you see possible solutions.
Take care of your wellbeing
Being in a good place physically and mentally goes a long way to preventing anger from escalating. If you are tired or hungry, anger will escalate quickly. Regular exercise, good nutrition, and a good night’s sleep does wonders for your ability to move past anger into solution solving mode.
Anger Management Classes
If you are prone to severe anger, seek professional help. Meeting regularly with a counselor and/or taking anger management classes will help you discover self-compassion, gain understanding, and build tools to help you better manage your life. Your students and your loved ones will profoundly thank you for taking personal responsibility and becoming a more patient person.
I am a much better person than I was ten years ago when everything made me angry. These anger management techniques have made my life much more pleasant. Life is good.
Article by Miss Jae
This article has not been medically reviewed. If you deal with serious mental health problems including extreme anxiety, depression, or anger management issues, you should seek help from a qualified mental health professional.
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“Controlling Anger Before It Controls You.” American Psychological Association. https://www.apa.org/topics/anger/control
Zaccaro, Andrea et al. “How Breath-Control Can Change Your Life: A Systematic Review on Psyco-Physiological Correlates of Slow Breathing.” NCBI. 2018. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6137615/