I have been dealing with my anger issues for a long time now. I was an angry baby, angry toddler, angry kid, up till my adolescence I have managed to keep it under wraps, however there is no one stop solution and sometimes it still shows slightly. It often gets very tiring to be angry, it is like being at puberty through your life. Since some of the “methods” I have learnt over the years have worked for me, maybe it could help you or your loved ones, from a partner to a child, deal with their anger.
1) Ask yourself why you got angry.
More often than not, most people get angry due to minor and well, honestly, idiotic reasons. However, it is only much later after the anger episode that they realize that and by that time, apologizing looks silly and they escape with their ego(s) intact, without ever having to apologize. This then becomes a habit, one that is often poisoning to the relationships with people, whether colleagues, friends, family or even that special someone.
If you feel the anger boiling up from the depths of your stomach, in that instance, pull yourself out of the situation and ask yourself, “Why was I angry?” That would slow down the ‘combustion process’ so to speak. Then if you still have control, ask yourself, “Is it worth it?” most of the time, the answer is “NO”. Do this enough times and eventually the thoughts form new habits and eventually your entire character would change, but don’t expect yourself to change over night because that gives added frustration. When you get so used to interjecting your own thoughts, eventually you would not even have to ask the questions, immediately your mind would be conditioned to think that it is not worthwhile getting angry over little itty-bitty things.
2) Saying Sorry
As the saying goes, ‘sometimes the hardest thing to say is that you’re sorry’. Saying sorry is easy enough “oh sorry I’m late” but saying sorry when you really mean it; from deep down inside, takes a strong and sturdy character. Everyone has their flaws and everyone makes mistakes. When you do get angry especially when whoever you are angry with is also mutually angry, again in that instance, that little moment before you explode, ask yourself “Is it my fault?”. Of course this is even more difficult than asking yourself why you were angry and it is definitely not easy to do this when you are angry, but if you prepare yourself while you are calm by envisioning your actions and thoughts, It is possible to be objective even in that moment of anger. If you know you are wrong, admit it. Apologize only if you mean it, admitting that you are wrong even though you are angry is taking a big step for a person and sometimes there might not be room for an apology. Do however after admitting try to calm and steady yourself and try to apologize as soon as you can after admitting your mistakes.
3) Keep that Ego in check
It takes two hands to clap. Often anger is something that is mutually felt. Both parties would usually not want to admit they are wrong as they feel that the other person is in a sense “more in the wrong” than them. Well this is time to keep the ego in check. Before,again, I cannot emphasize enough, before you flare up, ask yourself “Are we both wrong?” If the answer is ‘YES’, no matter to what degree you feel you are right, apologize. Well you could think of it as being the “bigger man”, though that common phrase does not work for a lot of people. If that does not work for you, think of it as you trying to avoid getting into a fight, you trying not to invest your emotions into something that is not worth while. Also ask yourself, “What is stopping me from apologizing?”.
So remember, always pause, empathize and recall.