Our grateful thanks to the British Association of Anger Management for their contribution to our 'on-air' report and for the use of the information below. For further help and support, click on the blue hyperlinks to visit their website.
According to recent research, almost one in three of us have a close friend or family member who has trouble controlling their anger. More than one in four say that they worry about how angry they sometimes feel. One in five people has ended a relationship or friendship with someone because of how they behaved when they were angry. Fewer than one in seven of those people who say they have trouble controlling their anger have sought help for their anger problems and the majority of people questioned wouldn’t know where to seek help if they needed help with an anger problem.
There are usually two ways that most of us deal with our anger, either to implode or explode. It’s important to deal with anger in a healthy way that doesn’t harm you or anyone else. Anger management courses involve group discussions and counseling. If you feel you need help controlling your anger, see your GP.
ANGER MANAGEMENT - AN INTRODUCTION (courtesy of the British Association of Anger Management)
RULES OF ANGER MANAGEMENT
1. Stop, think and look at the bigger picture. This rule is about time management. Time management is about creating time to think about the consequences of the event and the reaction.
2. It's OK to have a different opinion. Opinions are not facts! They are only what you think.
3. Listen Carefully – L.O.V.E.
Learn – in order to learn, listen
Observe – observe the other person's body language
Verify – clarify information
Empathise – keep your heart open at all times
4. Use your support network. A support network is a group of people you can call on when you need to talk to someone so your anger doesn't get out of control.
5. Keep a Journal. This is a powerful way of not internalising your anger. Your journal can be used as and when you need to. Record how you feel about what happened, and your views on a problem. By using your journal it will bring clarity to the situation.
6. Don't take anything personally. Nothing others do or say is because of you. What others do and say is a projection of their own reality onto yourself. When you are immune to the opinions, projections, behaviours, and actions of others, you will not be a victim of needless suffering any longer!
• Breathe deeply, count to 7 on the in breath and 11 on the out breath.
• Remind yourself to "KEEP YOUR COOL".
• Remove yourself from the situation physically and emotionally if possible.
• Count backward from 20 to 1.
• Go for a walk, ideally in a park or open space.
• Visualise a calm tranquil place, e.g. sea or mountains, for about 2 minutes.
• Let go of any expectations you might have.
• Remember life is unfair!
• Yoga, meditation, swimming, and relaxation, good for de-stressing.
• Take up a relaxing hobby, e.g. gardening.
• Relax in a bath whilst listening to chilled music.
• Listen or dance to music.
• Inhale relaxing aromatherapy oils, e.g. lavender.
Clearing Process Every time you feel angry with another person, you can either express your feelings, which triggers a reaction in the other person, or not express your anger, which will then build up inside you until eventually, you explode. You are in conflict with that person (holding onto grudges) and will remain so until you can resolve matters with them.
If this is not done (i.e. resolution is not reached) it is likely that you will remain resentful or hostile towards them. This serves no-one and only keeps your anger alive. Often when it comes to expressing our anger to others, there is fear about how to express it in such a way that it is clean, healing and empowering for both ourselves and others.
Using a basic clearing process, you will find that even in the most difficult and challenging situations you can confront someone, without it developing into a serious drama. This approach is simple and powerful. Use it in an angry situation but remember: Practice makes perfect. You will become more comfortable with this approach the more you use it.
Before starting the clearing process with someone please make sure that you consider the following:
1. Be certain about the facts relating to the conflict. (NOT your opinions!)
2. Practice the clearing process with a good friend (your support person) first. This allows time to explore your own projections before doing a clearing with the other person.
3. Be aware that this clearing is more about you than about them. (It gives you the opportunity to open your heart to the other person.)
4. IMPORTANT - The other person does not need to justify their behaviour to you.
5. Tell the person that all you want them to do is just listen to you.
6. Offer them the opportunity to give you feedback at the end of the clearing process.
7. IMPORTANT - Give yourself enough time to do the clearing and ask the person how much time they have available to do this process.
8. Do not be attached to an outcome, sometimes the process will not go the way you want it to.
Always start your sentence by saying: "I feel angry with you..."
Then: ... because I have asked you 10 times to take out the garbage".
"What I want is when I ask you once to do something and you say yes, please do it".
"What I am willing to own about my behaviour is often I do not follow through on commitments that I make".
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