Anger: How To Acknowledge It & Respond With Control
“You will not be punished FOR your anger, you will be punished BY your anger” – Buddha
In my childhood, I was taught that feeling anger was an absolute no-no. I watched my parents exchange emotional and physical violence through it often, which taught me to fear anger and loss of control. Whenever I expressed feeling that emotion, I was punished because it was considered unacceptable & disrespectful. That taught me that being angry was wrong & bad, which made me wrong & bad.
Yet I couldn’t stop myself from experiencing it. So if I’m not allowed to express it, where does it go?
Ignoring Your Anger
I stuffed it deep inside my core, hating myself for being too weak to stop it. The more I resisted & ignored it, the angrier I got. But anger eventually shut me down. Today, I no longer see anger as a good vs. bad scenario. Feelings are feelings. They happen! We have them. Anger is a feeling designed to show you something about yourself that wants attention, acknowledgement, and possibly change.
So how can you acknowledge & allow anger, without blowing up your life, either through saying and doing rash, unintentional, hurtful things in the heat of the moment, or suppressing yourself into someone unrecognizable?
How To Acknowledge And Respond To Anger:
It’s all about Reaction vs. Response. Choose to Respond to your anger.
Acknowledge to yourself-you are angry. Remove yourself physically from the situation triggering you by saying you need a minute. Go to a safe place to walk it off, or a safe person to vent. FEEL ANGRY!! Let it all out–shouting, spitting, crying, bulging eyes & all. Don’t stop a single bit of it. (If you are feeling the need to punch something, I recommend a pillow/couch cushion!)
Once you’ve released that initial burst, you’ll feel less explosive (or implosive for some), & you’ve made room for rational thought to surface. (You might even feel like laughing after the outburst!) Now you can step into a calmer version of yourself and get to the core of the reason for your anger. When you have that piece of the puzzle, you can more rationally see it for what it is, learn what it wants, or is trying to show you. Then you can truly address it, acknowledge it & heal it in a fashion that is conducive to achieving harmony. You have the power and the ability to consciously make the choice to RESPOND!
What will you choose?