What Is Anger?

Why Do I Feel So Angry?: Understanding Your Anger and What to Do About It

What Is Anger?

One in three people say they have a close friend or family member who has anger problems.

This finding, from a Mental Health Foundation survey, suggests that many of us will encounter work situations where emotions run high, and may spill over into anger. [1]

Not all feelings of anger are negative, though. For example, if you get animated on behalf of a colleague who's having an unnecessarily hard time, your response may help to bring a positive resolution. In a 2018 NPR-IBM Watson Health poll, 31 percent of respondents said that anger isn't wholly negative. [2]

But angry outbursts that intimidate or undermine co-workers are always unacceptable.

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In this article, we look at what anger is, explore the different ways it can manifest, and offer tips to better manage your emotions.

What Is Anger?

Psychologist T.W. Smith defines anger as «an unpleasant emotion ranging in intensity from irritation or annoyance to fury or rage.» [3]

But what makes people angry is different for everyone. Things that infuriate some of us don't bother others at all. Yet we all regularly experience events that could make us angry, such as:

  • Frustration and powerlessness.
  • Hurt.
  • Harassment and bullying.
  • Injustice, real or perceived.
  • Exhaustion and burnout from stress.
  • Demands or criticisms that we think are unfair.
  • Threats to the people, things, or ideas that we hold dear.

The information in this article can be useful in managing anger, but it is for guidance only. Seek the advice of qualified health professionals if you have concerns over persistent anger.

Recognizing Anger

Anger and aggression are not the same thing. Anger is an emotion, while aggression is a behavior. Not everyone who feels angry is aggressive, and vice versa. Sometimes we may be aggressive because we feel afraid or threatened.

You might not yell or confront others but still feel angry. In fact, passive-aggressive people can be as difficult to deal with as those who scream and shout. When someone is being passive-aggressive, they vent their anger in an indirect manner.

Sometimes it's tricky to spot the signs of passive-aggressiveness – for help, listen to our Book Insight reviewing 8 Keys to Eliminating Passive-Aggressiveness by psychotherapist and anger-management expert Andrea Brandt.

Also, some of us might show no angry outward signs whatsoever – however furious we are. But suppressing emotions can actually do more damage than showing your anger. [4]

The Dangers of Being Angry

An appropriate level of anger can spur us to take proper action, solve problems, and handle situations constructively.

However, uncontrolled anger in the workplace can have many negative consequences. It can cloud our ability to make good decisions, affect relationships with co-workers, and destroy trust between team members.

Effective team working is sharing ideas in a supportive environment. If people think their team leader will fly into a rage if they suggest something, they'll stop contributing and the team won't function at its best.

Unexpressed anger can be as harmful as outward rage. You may not express your anger but instead bear grudges or feel you're a victim, with damaging consequences for team cohesion.

Frequent anger, whether expressed or not, poses health risks, too. One study found that people who get angry regularly are more ly to suffer from heart disease. [5] Research also highlights a link between anger and premature death. [6] Further studies show it correlates to anxiety and depression. [7]

As well as anger, it's also important to be aware of the other HALT Risk States – which are hunger, anger, loneliness, tiredness – that can signal you're close to burnout.

Change What Makes You Angry

It's important to deal with anger in a healthy manner, so that it doesn't harm you or anyone else.

First, recognize that the problem exists. Sometimes, people don't understand that their anger is an issue. They may blame other things: people, processes, institutions, even inanimate objects computers. You probably know people this, or maybe recognize the trait in yourself.

You can tackle this by developing self-awareness to better understand how others see you. Do that and you'll be more effective at managing your emotions.

Also, it's important to be resilient. The ability to bounce back from disappointment and frustration is much healthier than becoming angry about it.

How you interpret and react to situations depends on many factors in your life, including your upbringing. Thinking about the reasons why you interpret and react to situations in a certain way can help you to learn how to cope with emotions better.

Controlling Anger

Once you recognize what's causing anger, you can start to manage the triggers. That way, you'll accomplish more, stress less, and avoid feeling overwhelmed or powerless.

Learn to recognize the onset of anger. When you become angry, your heart rate rises, and you breathe faster. It's the classic «fight-or-flight» response. Be vigilant, so that you can start dealing with your anger early.

Simple relaxation techniques can combat the onset of anger. Even just breathing more slowly will calm you down and allow you to think clearly.

And try giving yourself a «time-out» if you feel your anger rising. This will stop you from leaping in with an angry response that you might regret. Pause, and count to 10 before you act or speak.

Dealing With Long-Term Anger

If you feel angry often, you may need to take a more strategic approach to dealing with it. Here are six habits to develop in order to keep your anger in check:

  1. Exercise regularly. Exercise releases chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin into your body that can improve your state of mind and make you less prone to anger.
  2. Find some quiet time. Regularly practicing calming techniques such as Mindfulness or Centering is a great way to cope better with stress and frustration.
  3. Avoid alcohol. Alcohol lowers your inhibitions and can make angry outbursts more ly.
  4. Express emotion. Talk about your feelings with a close friend or loved one, and consider keeping a journal.
  5. Let go of angry thoughts. Try not to think that the world's unfair, or that everyone and everything is against you. They're not.
  6. Assert yourself. Assertiveness is not aggression. Learn to get what you want while taking account of others and respecting their feelings. But speak up for yourself and tell people when you think they're wrong.

Anger is an emotion we all feel, and one that many people find hard to deal with. It can manifest itself in aggressive, confrontational behavior, or in more passive but no less damaging ways.

Start to manage your anger by recognizing it. Then, take steps to address it by tackling the source of your anger. Use relaxation techniques to deal with outbursts. In the longer term, try to develop self-awareness, emotional intelligence, and resilience to cope better with angry feelings.

Источник: https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/what-is-anger.htm

Mental Health

What Is Anger?

Canadian Mental Health Association, BC Division

Anger is a normal feeling. We all feel angry sometimes. Different people feel and show anger in different ways.

Anger can mean:

  • We cannot get something we want.

  • We see something that is not fair.

  • We are upset about something.

  • We are hurt.

  • We are scared.

  • We are tired.

  • We are feeling too much stress.

Call the crisis line if you need help or need to talk to someone. Call 310-6789. Do not put 604, 778 or 250 before the number. You can talk to someone right away.


When is anger good?

Anger can help us when we are threatened. It makes our bodies ready to fight. It helps us move quickly or fight strongly when we are in danger. Anger can help us make a change. Anger can also help us speak up for ourselves.


When is anger a problem?

Anger is a normal feeling. Everyone feels angry sometimes. But feeling angry all the time can cause problems. Acting out in anger can also cause problems. We can hurt ourselves and we can hurt other people.

There are signs that show anger may be a problem

If you notice these signs, you may need help.

  • You often hold in your anger. This can make you feel badly about yourself and other people. You may also get sick if you do this a lot.

  • You often get into fights with other people your friends and family members. You may yell and say hurtful things.

  • You often threaten to hurt other people or damage other people’s things.

  • You start fights or hurt other people.

  • You feel you can’t control yourself when you get angry.

  • Your anger lasts a long time or scares you.

  • You have problems with the law.


How can I manage my anger?

Anger is a feeling we all have. It is never “wrong” but we can do things we regret when we are angry. We all have to learn how to cope with anger. These skills are also called “anger management.” Anger management helps you find new ways to deal with your anger.

You can learn a lot of anger management skills on your own. Here are three anger management skills to practice:

1. Learn how to solve problems

It is easy to get angry when something is not working. But acting out in anger usually makes things worse. Keeping anger inside is not healthy either. Solving problems means that you find helpful ways to deal with things that make you angry. Here is one way to solve problems:

  • Decide what the problem is.

  • Decide what the end goal should be.

  • Decide how you will reach your goal.

  • Follow your plan.

  • Look back to see if your plan worked.

Sometimes it is hard to fix a problem when you are in the middle of it. Maybe the bus was late and you are mad. Wait until you are calm to solve the problem. That is the best time to think of a plan in case the problem happens again.


2. Learn how to be assertive

Being assertive means that you directly talk about what you think and what you need. But you also think about the other person’s point of view. You are honest with people but you are not mean. This can be very hard to do. It helps if you practice what you will say before you say it.

Here is an example of assertiveness. Pretend your friend is always late. To be assertive, you might say: “I see that you are very busy, but it makes me angry when you are late. It makes me feel you do not respect my time. Next time, please call me and tell me if you are running late.”


3. Learn healthy thinking skills

Healthy thinking is balanced thinking. It means figuring out what really happened and not letting your feelings tell you what happened.

Pretend that you are upset because your friend canceled plans to see a movie. An angry thought might be, “My friend ruined my afternoon!” You might not want to talk to your friend after that. These thoughts might make you feel even worse. A more balanced thought would be, “I’m disappointed, but I should find out what happened before I get mad at my friend.”

Skills to try at home

You can practice these skills on your own.

  • Use words to describe how something made you feel. This helps other people understand how you feel. It is not very helpful to shout, “Why can’t you show up on time!” If you say, “I feel angry when you are late,” it tells the other person why you are angry. Putting your feelings into words also shows you what the problem is. Then you can use your problem-solving skills to make changes.

  • Learn ways to relax deep breathing or yoga. Take time to do things that help you feel relaxed. Good things to try are listening to music, walking or writing about your thoughts.

  • When you feel you are getting very angry, try doing something different. Try counting to ten or imagining a very peaceful place.

  • Try to get some exercise every day. Exercise is a good outlet for anger.

  • Try to get enough sleep. It is easy to feel upset when you are tired.

  • Put yourself in the other person’s place. This can help you see that someone was not trying to make you mad on purpose.

It is a good idea to practice these skills for a few minutes every day. Remember to reward yourself for your hard work!


When to find help

Talk to your doctor or community nurse if anger is causing a lot of problems in your life. Problems with depression, stress or anxiety can also make people feel angry more easily. It is good to make sure your doctor or nurse knows about other feelings you may be having.


How to find help

Talk to your doctor first. Not all doctors have special training for anger problems, but your doctor can help you find someone with special training.


Where do I go from here?

You can learn more about anger from these resources:

Wellness Modules on Here To Help
Visit www.heretohelp.bc.ca for the Wellness Modules. The Wellness Modules are short booklets that discuss different ways to build good health. You can learn more about anger management, problem-solving and healthy thinking. Here To Help is the website of the BC Partners for Mental Health and Addictions Information.

Canadian Mental Health Association’s BC Division
Visit www.cmha.bc.ca for information on the Bounce Back program. Bounce Back is for people dealing with low mood, stress or anxiety.

Part of the program teaches you skills that help with anger. You learn skills from a DVD or you can talk to someone on the phone. The program is free.

Talk to your doctor if you want to sign up for Bounce Back.

The Canadian Mental Health Association promotes the mental health of all and supports the resilience and recovery of people experiencing a mental illness through public education, community-based research, advocacy, and direct services. Visit www.cmha.bc.ca.

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Источник: https://www.heretohelp.bc.ca/infosheet/what-is-anger

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