Sunday, September 18, 2011

Trying to prevent anger ...

Stop Anger Before It Stops You - 7 Secrets
- jonathan lockwood huie
Being angry is as close as a human being can come to experiencing hell on earth.
- jonathan lockwood huie
Anger is something that each one of us has experienced - some of us only occasionally, some almost daily. Can we eliminate all anger? Probably not. We will always have expectations, and those expectations will often be unmet. Disappointment is the principle cause of anger. When we are disappointed, we look for someone to blame. Declaring someone to be at fault is the nature of anger. Anger is always directed at someone - possibly God or the non-specific they, but some animate entity.
You've told yourself a hundred times that you aren't going to get angry - really angry - ever again, but wham, you start to feel that telltale heat, locked shoulders, clenched jaw, shallow breathing. Someone has just done something really awful and you are angry at them. What now?
Here are my 7 Secrets to Stop Anger before It Stops You:

1. Recognize when you are angry: It may not immediately occur to you that you are angry. You know that you have been wronged, and you can see everyone around you take a step back, but especially if you are really angry, it may take a while to gain the clarity to acknowledge your anger. Anger clouds perception and thinking, so make a special effort to spot it early and put it into words, "I am angry."

2. Breathe deeply: Concentrate on taking slow deep breaths. Sometimes this is all it takes to break out of anger and gain clarity on the issue. At other times, breathing deeply is just a beginning, but it paves the way for the rest of the secrets.

3. Focus your anger: Get clear what you are angry about and who you are angry at. Talk to yourself, "I am angry at Joe because he ..." Don't let your anger expand onto innocent bystanders, especially those trying to help calm you down. Don't refocus your anger onto everything that Joe has ever done or failed to do.

4. Remember that you are in charge: Anger is an expression of frustration and helplessness. Remember that you always have options - you can design your own life. No one can steal your happiness - unless you let them.

5. Look for the silver lining: There is a silver lining to every disappointment. Your boss fired you and you are furious. Probably it was a blessing. Now you have the opportunity to get a better job that you really enjoy.

6. Consider forgiveness: Angry and happy don't mix. Flush out the angry, and the happy has a place to put down roots. Forgive everyone for everything in order to give anger and resentment a chance to fade. Forgive and you can become happy. Forgiving is not a gift to someone else - Forgiving is our gift to ourselves - a great gift - the gift of happiness.

7. Accept that Life is NOT "Supposed to be Fair": Know that there is no single way that life is "supposed" to be. Demanding that life meet our expectations is a sure fire recipe for a miserable existence. Life is a game with no rules. Life just happens to us regardless of our best intentions. To choose happiness, be open to receiving whatever life throws at you - with Gratitude. Have NO expectations of life.


Syd said...

I think of what the BB says: We pause when agitated. That really helps me. Good points here, Dave.

Mary Christine said...

Some old guy I used to call used to say to me "You can't be grateful and hateful at the same time."

He was so dumb! But so right!

Bwendo said...

Makes me cringe when kids go "but that isn't fair" I try to gently explain that life is indeed unfair, and we are all starting off staggered points. Nice work.

Phillip M said...

This was what I needed to read. Thank you for your attention to us alkies, I like the way you think. There is event at Rock Eagle,ga next month I'm going to, sounds like the Houston Roundup. It looks to be sweet. Sober life, sobeREALife. Thanks