We all get angry from time to time, it’s a natural feeling to have, whether you’re a child, adolescent, or adult. It’s what we do with it or don’t do with it that matters. When we get angry we want it to go away, so sometimes we pass it on to someone else, consciously or unconsciously, to our husband, wife, partner, children, friends. We might yell at someone or be impatient with them, punish a child, when what they really need is our understanding and our teachable moment to help them find an alternative solution or a constructive activity.
Some people are afraid to express their anger to another, they feel it might compromise the relationship. Anger doesn’t need to come out in a loud, angry way to be expressed, we can learn to feel the emotion of anger, and then put appropriate words to it. Maybe you didn’t learn how to do that while growing up, but you can learn now and you can channel your anger into a helpful behavior that can repair relationships and not be turned inward to hurt yourself or others.
When you become angry you don’t need to let it feel like you have to react to it, slow down, don’t act right away, talk to someone first, and then try not to dwell on it. Let yourself wait, and think about it at another time, and find options, and proactive solutions. Usually, if we do act out our anger, we feel regretful afterward and then feel bad about ourselves too. Anger is a feeling and we can use it to realize that something is bothering us and needs to be addressed, in a productive and appropriate way. It takes practice to change old ways but the good news is we can do it, step by step, until it feels more like a normal part of us.