Life-Changing Anger Management Techniques To Use When You Feel Like You're About To Explode

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Life-Changing Anger Management Techniques To Use When You Feel Like You're About To Explode
Self, Health And Wellness

Despite the way society portrays things most of the time, female aggression is common.

For centuries, social conditioning has made it acceptable for men to express their anger and unacceptable for women to express theirs.

As a result of this, resources and support services for women with anger issues are comparatively scarce, despite the high numbers of women who are violent, aggressive, and in need of anger management techniques.

RELATED: How I Stopped Letting Anger Ruin My Life

As women, instead of being taught how to deal with anger, we're taught not to express it from a very young age.

So, the moment we see a woman kicking or punching a hole in something, swearing at the top of her lungs or hurling a coffee mug across the table at someone's head, we immediately think, "That girl's got serious problems. She needs to learn how to be happy."

It seems society is saying, "Ranting is perfectly fine, but an outward physical expression of anger is better left to the men."

What is anger, exactly?

Anger is a human emotion, which ranges in intensity from slight irritation to fury and heated rage.

When we feel anger, it results in a rise in our heart rate, our blood pressure begins to increase, and our body releases stress hormones, which results in physical reactions such as shaking, feeling physically hot and sweaty, and a sense of losing control.

When we feel anger, we tend to act out in angry ways like raising our voice, using a sarcastic and curt tone of voice, saying critical or nasty things, swearing, or yelling.

The thing about anger is that when it's not properly managed and controlled, it can very often escalate to violence.

When we act out in violent or abusive ways — whether physically or psychologically — we're trying to punish the other person to regain that sense of power and control we feel we've lost as a result of experiencing this intense anger.

But, why do we get angry?

Most commonly, anger is directly linked to frustration.

We feel frustrated when things aren't happening in exactly the way we want them to and that people in our lives that we come into contact with on some level — whether it be family, work, social events, or online — don't act in the way we believe they should be.

It's important to understand that anger is almost always attached to other negative feelings or is a response to negative feelings we are having.

You might be feeling emotions like fear, sadness, shame, disappointment, pain, worry, or annoyance. But, you actually express these emotions like anger.

And anger is also the result of poor interpersonal communication.

But, it can also be a good thing. When it's managed properly, anger is not problematic at all.

There's no shame in experiencing anger — it's how we use that anger and channel it that is the thing we need to look at.

Channeling our anger into creative expression, fitness, or work is highly productive and allows us to figuratively move mountains with that energy source.

In fact, a mild dose of anger will actually be able to help us express the powerful emotions we're feeling.

Men and women also express anger in different ways.

Men may experience it as a primary emotion because social conditioning has taught them that anger is appropriate to express in contexts. It's quite often more difficult for men to communicate their emotions that lie beneath their anger, such as sadness, hurt, loneliness, or fear.

Meanwhile, women experience the opposite and express anger by crying about something that has "upset" or "hurt" them, when what they are really feeling underneath all that soft and fluffy emotive expression is total rage and aggression.

It's important to learn how to deal with anger in healthy ways before it consumes you.

RELATED: 5 Ways To Handle Negative Emotions & Get Your Feelings Back Under Control — Fast

In fact, anger becomes a real problem when:

  • It involves being verbally/emotionally/physically/psychologically abusive.
  • Outbursts occur frequently and don't go away easily.
  • Those closest to you have concerns and or fears about your anger.
  • It's creating problems in your home/work/social life.
  • You believe you need to become angry (either passively or aggressively) in order to get your way.
  • Your temper is getting worse and you're done with acting this way.
  • You drink, do drugs, have sex or binge eat to try to escape or deal with your feelings of anger.
  • You find yourself taking your anger out on people you love the most and people you see as less powerful. (As opposed to managing your anger directly with the person or context that initially triggered your anger.)

So, what do you need to do to deal with your anger issues?

Here are 6 anger management techniques for when you're feeling more aggressive than ever.

1. Identify your triggers

Get to know exactly what situations trigger your anger and recognize all of the different ways your body gives you warning signals that you're angry.

Write it all down and make sure your list includes all of the little things, too.

If you know well beforehand what is going to make you feel anger, you are in a better position to either handle things or change your behavior when these situations arise in the future.

It's also important to recognize what happens to your body when start feeling angry: a pounding heart, flushed cheeks, tense jaw, chest tightened, teeth-gritting, sweating, etc.

The quicker you can identify these warning signs in your body, the better equipped you will be to make yourself feel calm and relaxed before your anger escalates out of control.

2. Control your thoughts

When we replace our irrational thoughts with positive and rational ones, we'll feel better.

Replace those negative thoughts with something like, "I'm completely furious with what's going on right now and it's totally reasonable for me to upset but what is happening, but it will all work out in the end."

Create a list of possible things that you will be able to say to yourself before, during and after possible situations that are likely to make you snap.

This will help you to focus on how you're dealing with what's making you angry, as opposed to what someone else should or shouldn't be doing.

3. Have a time out

When feeling angry beyond control, step away from that specific environment or setting where the argument is taking place — leave the room or go for a run or go and do something else.

Before exiting that situation, though, it's important to actually schedule a specific time afterward to discuss what has occurred, when all involved have settled down.

How are you going to remain calm when you do return and address the issues with the people who frustrated you?

4. Distract yourself

A brilliant way of managing your anger is to distract yourself from whatever it is that is making you feel anger.

The mind is a very powerful tool and when you control your thoughts and choose what thoughts you will (or will not) entertain. As a result, you can control how you feel.

When you notice negative or angry thoughts formulating, stop them before they continue by switching to a new thought or a completely different activity to distract your mind from the anger.

Some experts suggest counting to 10, 50, or 100. Others recommend playing relaxation music, calling a loved one, or investing your energy into work or study or exercise.

Choose what works for you.

5. Just relax

Do stretching, breathing, yoga, dancing, and body movement to allow your physical body to release all that muscle tension and get your breathing back to its natural and relaxed rhythm.

6. Make yourself laugh

Use laughter as a tool to counteract any anger you're feeling. Laughter is the best medicine.

It sends lovely chemicals into your body to counteract the bad stress hormones and will have you'll feel better in no time!

Dealing with anger is not a fun time but when you learn how to do it less destructive ways, you'll be able to keep your head and emotions together and be happier for it.

RELATED: 5 Best Ways To Deal With Your Anger (So You Can Find Peace Without Medication)

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Miya Yamanouchi is an empowerment counselor with specialist sex & relationship training who is committed to assisting all members of the community to embrace their inner strength and live an inspired and vibrant life, irrespective of their perceived limitations.

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