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Anger – you know the feeling, that flushed face, clenched jaw, muscle tension, irritability and reactivity! Anger is one powerful emotion and can cause people to lose a sense of rational, clear thinking or even lose memory in a fit of rage.
We all experience anger in some form, but it is rarely, if ever, useful! So how can we tame this? Aside from an anger management class, read on to empower yourself with knowledge about what’s happening in the brain, and how to clear it up!
Anger is part of the mind’s primitive ‘fight flight or freeze’ response of our nervous system, preparing the body to actually ‘fight’. Most of the time when you’ve been angry, you aren’t trying to physically fight someone though!
That uncomfortable rush in the moment of anger is just that – your body’s attempt to protect you, in order that you SURVIVE! Your heart rate increased, your breathing changed, and your digestive tract halted, all to send more energy to the muscles for you to fight!
This extra strength is not useful in most scenarios of civilized society. Sometimes it is worse than useless because it can harm us and the people around us. Even though anger is a natural human response and is derived from the survival part of the mind, there are still things we can do to improve and manage anger and even eliminate it.
We all experience the emotion of anger. Implement awareness around triggers, destructive thought patterns or limiting beliefs, and consistently practice that pause to increase that sliver of time before responding, and you will notice a change within the first week!
Often people find it useful to seek support from a counsellor – anger management is an area many counsellors are trained in. Anger management provides accountability and expert advice, tailored to your unique situation. It can help you process any deeper-rooted cause that may be contributing.