We all get angry sometimes and this is totally normal, but if your anger is interfering with daily function, work life or affecting relationships, it’s time to question what is fuelling this feeling, and how to best manage the outburst.
Here are some alternative ways to manage anger:
1.Stop and think. Although this is counterintuitive to the feeling of anger, maintaining enough composure to ask yourself some important questions may help you in the long run. Questions like:
- What has happened here that I don’t like? Put it in terms of who did what without over analysing.
- Do I need to talk about it, or is it something that can be overlooked?
- Is it something that the other person can do something about?
- What do I actually want?
2. Negotiate with the other person. While you are negotiating, remember the following:
- Create a solution that everyone can accept and keep looking for a solution to the original problem.
- Take time out if necessary, but make sure you listen and understand what is being said before responding.
- Do not give in just to end the argument.
- Be sure you can do and will do what you agree on.
- Hold firmly to your values while remaining flexible on how you exemplify them.
3. Brainstorm with the other person some possible solutions and keep the discussion focused on the behaviour that will solve the problem.
4. Review your progress. And acknowledge behaviour changes to people making the effort, including your own.
Although it is important to manage angry behaviour, the underlying feeling that are bubbling below the surface must also be addressed to truly move forward in a positive direction. A psychologist can help you understand negative feelings that may be causing anger as well as any other problematic behaviour or associated illness, like depression.