The first step in anger management is to understanding that anger is justified but what may not be justifiable are your actions. This concept was explained in the anger management techniques post and it’s the first step in learning how to control your anger.
If you have been searching for anger management advice you have probably read some good tips on how to control anger, but there are a few anger management techniques that can backfire and make things worse when used improperly.
In this article I want tell you about the most common anger management pitfalls and how to avoid them. Here we go:
Keeping your Anger Inside of You
People that start an anger management course have a strong desire to fight their condition of excessive anger. This can lead you to bottle up your emotions and your anger. This makes these emotions gain strength just under your skin, making you a time bomb ready to explode. This applies to all kinds of emotions, but with anger there is the potential that it becomes a serious problem.
Imagine someone that lost a loved one and never felt grief, it is not uncommon for people to start crying uncontrollably when watching a sad movie or something else that triggers this response.
Men suffer the most from this because they have been taught that expressing emotions is a sign of weakness. Not being seen as a “real man” or being punished when you were a child because you were being a crybaby enforces this belief.
When you keep it in your stress levels will rise and make you prone to uncontrolled anger outbursts. You also get all the bad health consequences of stress like ulcers, nausea and it can lead to depression.
Our thoughts and feelings affect our body in a physical way and ignoring these emotions does not work and won’t make them disappear. Bottling up these emotions is not destroying them and they will come out at the worst possible time.
Letting All the Anger Out
Just because you should not keep your anger inside of you doesn’t mean you have to let it all out.
In anger management it is common to advice people to let it out by yelling and screaming in a private place or punching a pillow.
Keeping it inside of you is a mistake, but letting it out with no control is also a big mistake. This happens because when your body becomes used and addicted to release these feelings as soon as you feel anger. When this happens
you are not doing anger management because your rage goes out in an uncontrollable manner and you are not fixing the issue.
These explosions are damaging for your anger management efforts and are not good for your body. Your adrenaline levels will shoot through the roof and leave you pumped like crazy.
By training your body to and your emotions to be released in an uncontrollable way you will make it much harder to have a normal reaction in the future.
A good way to address anger is through regular exercise like jogging or bodybuilding.
Using Alcohol, Drugs or Medication to Dull Emotions
Alcohol, drugs and anti depressive medication will make you feel a little bit better in the short term bur it will make you worse in the long term. Then there is the problem of how you will act when you are drunk, high or on medication.
If you have anger management problems then alcohol and drugs will make you a time bomb ready to explode. I have seen some people give out anger management tips like these and it is wrong in so many ways!
Alcohol, drugs and medication are all a way of forgetting the problem and avoiding or postponing a real solution to your problem.
Spending all your money and money on these vices and legal troubles could be spent on fixing your problem. Jail is not the best place to learn how to control your anger!
These bad habits can be hard to overcome but if you want to fix your anger management problem permanently you will understand the importance of avoiding these mistakes. A few drinks are no problem but it makes it easy to lose control when you are angry.
Doing drugs is a total waste because you are damaging your body and breaking a bunch of laws. If you have these problems talk to your doctor on how to get help on this.
Ignoring Long-Term Anger Management
Assuming that long term therapy is a waste of time is common. If you have been struggling by yourself to get your anger under control but are not successful you have to ask a specialist for help.
Anger comes from feeling unappreciated, ignored and because other people don’t respect you or think that your opinions and problems are not important.
Reframing these issues may not be possible for you to do alone so a therapist is a crucial part of the puzzle if you want to control your anger.
Another advantage of long term therapy is that you will reach your goals quicker and your chances of success will be higher. Besides being guided by a professional you will also retain more knowledge and techniques for anger management.
After we learn we start forgetting things after some time. Let look at an example.
Imagine someone that wants to get in shape by losing weight. This person follows a specific diet for two months and starts going back to the unhealthy habits that lead to the weight gain in the first place. This will make them gain weight again and all that effort was useless.
When that person gets a long term weigh loss support group, he or she will have a higher chance of success and be able to keep the weight off for years and years.
This principle applies to anger management courses and therapy. Having someone to talk to and hear you out, someone to help you remember the important things will help you achieve better results. A therapist will help you with your personal sticking points and make sure that your anger management technique is applied correctly and suits your specific issues.
Anger is Not a Personal Problem
You may think that your anger is just your problem, but its more serious than that. Think about how people suffer with your anger outbursts. The people that suffer the most from your anger problem are innocent bystanders.
These people include your partner, children, coworkers and subordinates and other people that cross your path.
It is in fact you who suffers the least in this whole ordeal, until it become too late and you alienate everyone from your life. Your friends, spouse, children, parents and everyone else will suffer the consequences also.
When you have this kind of negative impact on other people’s lives it is obvious that anger outbursts are not just a personal problem.
If other people are affected by this it becomes their business. You have to accept the responsibility of your actions and its effect on other peoples physical and mental wellbeing. When you have an angry moment you are damaging your body because of all the stress and adrenalin and hormonal spikes… but remember that you shouldn’t cause emotional distress on other people.
When you are alone you should also work on not having these anger outbursts. Screaming at your computer or slamming the mouse against the table won’t make your troubles go away and it will just make you spend more money to buy a new mouse.
Thinking about other people is a good way to get the motivation to keep going to anger management therapy or get an anger management course. Look for the motivation to keep your efforts strong to solve this problem for you, your spouse, your children and strangers around you.
Don’t think that you are the only one who suffers with your anger outbursts. It is the people around you that suffer the most.
Downplaying or Ignoring the Problem
After concluding that you are not the only one who suffers with your anger problem it’s important to not ignore or make your anger issue look less serious. People with anger problems have outbursts and fits of rage when they reach a boiling point, but they ignore the problems that lead up to this moment and are the real cause of anger.
Some fits of rage lead to violence against people around you. This can be your boss, a work colleague or your spouse. Sometimes people in an anger outburst beat their spouse or children. Do those people understand the consequences of these actions? These actions can cause physical damage and lifelong mental and emotional problems to those people.
Minimizing the importance of these actions is very selfish and a key issue in your anger management efforts. Playing down and giving less importance to these outbursts is selfish and it just makes you postpone the important measures you need to take to solve your anger problem. This is just an excuse to procrastinate and not change.
Being selfish like this does only one thing: protect you and your ego.
Ignoring the Real Causes of your Anger Problems
Anger management techniques can teach you to cope with anger and minimize those outbursts. These techniques are mostly proactive and one of the most important things is to identify the real causes behind your anger and resentment. Solving or making these problems less serious is the best way to remove your anger and frustration.
Not all problems can be solved, but you can work on them and make them less serious. Looking an issue head on helps you gain perspective and determine the right path of action.
There are many things that can cause anger. These include child abuse, bullying, strict education, strict religious education, family problems, divorce, alcohol and drug abuse, loss of a loved one, surviving traumatic events (like crimes, accidents or natural disasters), financial issues, loss of a job, and many more.
Events like these are the root of your anger problem but it can be hard to talk about these things. Most people don’t want to admit it, let alone talk about them. You have to get familiar with these problems, research them so you understand. They say that the truth will set you free… and it’s true. When you analyze a problem or situation you become detached from it and look at it from another angle.
Losing your temper over and over will never help you solve these problems. Anger outbursts are irrational and they happen because your body has developed them as a reflex. As you know… they have no positive effects or purpose of their own.
To sum up: think about the real causes and admit you have a problem. Then you can start getting help.
These are the most important anger management techniques. This is the most important article on this entire website. It is the foundation of understanding your problems and this will enable you to start an effective anger management method.
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