Nearly anyone and everyone – people of all ages worldwide – is prone to displays of anger. The degree of frequency and level of intensity of the emotion are what vary most and most often result in how well a person handles the anger and whether there are positive or negative results.
A key to those who successfully manage anger is gaining control. And in order to gain control over the emotion, it helps to first take a look at anger itself, what it is and how to deal with it effectively.
Anger is an emotion. It can be triggered by a variety of things, issues, people, places, etc. Some of the top triggers are jealousy, confrontations, failure, greed, fear, low self-esteem, assertiveness, feeling threatened and pain.
When a person gets angry, the negative emotion can actually harm the person’s physical and emotional well-being. The heart rate increases, stress levels rise, and often a fight or flight reaction is the immediate response, neither one always presenting a healthy alternative.
What counters anger best is to be prepared in advance to learn major triggers, how to tell when they are about to happen, when possible, so as to avoid them, plus a variety of coping skills in order to deal with what is necessary. To help, keep a private journal to note any anger triggers, ways to possibly avoid confrontations down the road and possible coping techniques to try. You can use the following triggers, coping techniques and helpful tips as a good starting point.
Trips Your Trigger
When you’re calm, make a list of things, people, places, events, etc. that tend to trip your trigger:
- Calling businesses and getting automated menus to choose form that run you in circles, accomplishing nothing productive.
- Handling angry customer service calls
- Going to visit in-laws
- Heavy traffic during rush hour
- Loosing with my Mutual Funds account in the stock market
List ways to deal with anger when you’re have a positive frame of mind and are in a good mood, to spark better creativity:
- Cool off with ice cream – As simplistic as this sounds, something cool and soothing can often help take the heat off the moment and begin cooling the entire body down.
- Take a hike or walk – Taking a step back, away from it all, can do wonders to give you a more world-view of the situation. Being in the center of issues can make them seem larger than they really are, making the proverbial mountains out of molehills.
- Dance – Let it all out via your own expression. Dance to the beat of the music of your choice.
- Write it out – Journal and create a column of ‘lemons’ along with another column alongside for solutions or ‘lemonade.’
- Avoid / alter path of destruction in advance – Take a different route during rush hour or alter your schedule.
By planning, you can prepare yourself in advance. Plan and conquer, and keep at the process on a regular basis.
The Top 7 Ways of Controlling Anger
Everyone gets angry at sometime in his or her life over something that happens. However, anger is a negative emotion that leads to feelings of sadness, guilt, frustration, unhappiness and helplessness. Anger is an emotion which we must recognize and be able to let go in order to be happy and successful in life, finding a resolution for the anger is essential in being able to let it go and move on. Knowing what you are actually angry with helps, do you feel angry at another’s actions or are you angry at your own reaction? Finding out what actually upsets you is an important factor in actually narrowing down what it is that is bothering you. The more you practice controlling your anger the easier it becomes to let it go and move on and by learning to control your anger you are effectively learning to take control over your life and happiness. Here are 7 top tips for gaining control over your anger.
- When you feel anger beginning to build up inside of you, let your whole body droop and relax to the best of your ability while beginning to breathe from the diaphragm, breathing in this way helps to calm both the body and mind which leads to letting go of the anger before it takes a hold.
- Ask yourself if being angry and working yourself up is going to make any difference to the situation, for example if someone cuts in front of you, is it really going to change anything if you curse and blow your horn. Is it worth stressing yourself?
- Visualize a stress free zone in your mind, this should be a place where you feel totally relaxed and calm and a place which only you knows about where you can quickly go too when you feel anger beginning to build up inside. It can be a totally imaginary place or one that you have visited in life where you feel totally relaxed and at ease.
- When you feel anger beginning to build up due to someone else’s actions think of yourself doing exactly the same thing as they did, would you be angry with yourself if you were the one doing it?
- Realize that it’s you and you alone that is allowing the anger to build up inside of you, while it may have been caused by someone else, you chose to let it bother you and to get angry.
- Counting to 10 really can help to diffuse anger, by concentrating on counting you are forgetting what happened and are consciously letting anger go.
- Repeat an affirmation or mantra to yourself whenever you feel anger beginning to build up inside, for example tell yourself to “take it easy”, “I feel calm and relaxed”, “anger isn’t going to get me anywhere” or “let it go”. Affirmations can help to diffuse your anger and get you back on the right track to thinking in a more positive and calming way.
Turning hate into good
How many times have we said to ourselves “I hate this or that” or even “ I hate him/her”, but where does hate get us, does it make us feel any better by declaring we hate something or somebody? Hate is a negative feeling and negative feelings only bring about bad. When we think of the word hate we start to have thoughts of coldness towards others or something, we automatically isolate ourselves from that person or situation and nothing good can come from feelings such as these. There are many types of hate such as racial, sexual, ethnicity or just plain disliking a situation or disliking a situation due to a phobia, here are some ways you can think about turning the hatred into a more positive and good approach.
People are people, we are all flesh and blood whatever the colour of our skin or our background in life, we all have the same color blood flowing through our veins; we have the same shape hearts and brains, we all have fingers, toes and the ability to communicate. Why then do so many people profess to hate someone else just because they have a different color skin or come from a different country? It is worthwhile remembering that underneath we are all basically the same and want the same out of life for ourselves and our families, there are good and bad people of all colors and nationalities in life. So instead of just hating someone because the look differently to you look deeper inside than the color of the skin and see the true person.
What difference does a person’s sexual preference make to the person that they are, many people hate others solely based on their sexual preference, but why? For example you could meet someone quite by chance enjoy being in their company, laugh, talk have a great time until you found out that they were gay. All of a sudden your feelings alter towards this person yet nothing has substantially changed from a few minutes ago, the person hasn’t changed, they are still the same person you were having fun with whom you liked being with, yet this simple point changes everything. Maybe its just a matter of ethics, how you were brought up, what you were brought up to believe in, but why cant you change your thoughts and feelings, why cant you just allow yourself to continue having fun and enjoying being with that person? If they were a good person before there admittance of their sexual preference then they still are now.
Hate due to a phobia
People can truly hate certain situations or objects in life due to an excessive phobia, this could be a hate of heights, spiders, snakes, the dentist or being enclosed in elevators. This type of hate is brought about by fear, a deep fear of something or situation that for those affected have hardly any or no control over, however since fear is all about feelings and thoughts, fear and hate of this type can be controlled with the mind with a little help and know how. An analyst can help to turn this type of hate and fear into a more positive outlook and help the person overcome the phobia and turn a fearful situation into a good one.
What does happiness mean?
Do you feel there is something missing from your life? That perhaps the world is against you or that other people seem to smile, laugh and be a lot more happy and contented in life than you are? Have you ever stopped to wonder why this might be? Moreover, what you can do about it? Have you even considered what happiness actually is?
Happiness and contentment in life differs for all of us, what makes one person happy doesn’t necessarily bring contentment to another. Very often we are happy in life but we just don’t realize it. Very often the hustle and bustle of life can completely overtake all else and leaves us little time to enjoy the things that make us smile and enjoy life to the fullest. If you stop and sit down and think about what actually makes you happy and feel contented, you might actually find you have those things already around you but you just didn’t realize it.
However there are times when we can get into a slump and haven’t yet come across the conditions that we regard as bringing happiness and contentment. If this is the case then you have to figure out what changes you need to make, to bring happiness into your life, in most cases it is the smallest of things which bring happiness and you have the power to gain them by working towards them.
Your happiness and contentment depends entirely on you, no one else can give it you, it is something inside you that you have to find and work towards. You can either decide to stop in the rut or to take positive action and make changes to your life or yourself in order to accomplish contentment.
In order to understand what happiness means to you, the first step you should take is looking at your emotions, ask yourself questions such as “if I could be enjoying something in my life, what would it be?” and “what makes me feel contented in my life right now?” Once you understand what your vision of happiness and contentment is you can build on what you have now or focus on changing your life to what you would like it to be.
The important thing to remember is to examine your feelings by way of the answers you give to your questions, examine them honestly and concentrate on the good or bad feelings that you get from your questions and answers.
There is no magic spell or potion that can bring you contentment and happiness, it is something that is already right there inside of you, you just have to realize what it is and develop and bring it out to start enjoying life. Happiness can be found in family life, work, relationships, nature or a pet, to name just a few, in fact it can be found in anything and any situation if you just know where to look and look in the right direction, the inner you.
Developing Relationships for Happiness
Learning to develop your relationship skills can have a huge affect on your life and happiness in life, we all have relationships whether they are marriage, living together, sons, daughters, friends and family and having a good relationship with them makes a big difference.
The biggest downfall in relationships is poor communication, communicating poorly in a relationship leads to problems such as misunderstandings, disagreements, and anger and eventually putting your relationship at a distance. Improving your communication in relationships can help you to develop a deeper, lasting, more meaningful relationship and so a much happier life. There are many tips and techniques which are quick and easy to learn to get more out of your relationships and develop them into more meaningful ones, here are just a few.
- When dealing with conflicts in relationships never bring up the past, try to stick to the issue at hand and working towards a solution, bringing up past issues will only confuse the situation more and is very unlikely to go towards resolving the problem.
- Try to see any conflict from the other person’s point of view, if you are both only focusing on your own point of view there will very likely be no give and take and ultimately no solution to the problem.
- Always listen to what the person is saying, while many of us think we do very few actually do listen whole-heartedly, most of the time we drift off to think about other things or think about what the person is going to say next.
- Don’t immediately get on the defensive when you are criticized, while this is hard to do, as no one like to hear criticism it is important to understand the others thoughts.
- Instead of being pig headed and always trying to win the argument, try looking for ways that you can come to some sort of compromise together, working together is more productive than working against each other.
- If tempers become frayed while discussing a difference of opinion, take a break; going at it all out will only lead to one or the other saying something which they will regret when cooled down.
- Don’t always put the blame on the other person, realize that you are not perfect and not always right all the time.
- If you feel your relationship is going downhill fast then don’t be afraid to get some help via counseling.
- Make time for your relationships; take long walks that give you the opportunity to talk instead of sitting down in front of the TV.
- Make a surprise and unexpected call to your loved one, family members or friends if for nothing else but just to say “Hi, I was just thinking about you”
- Make them feel special every now and again, give them a token of your appreciation to let them know you care or to say thank you.
- In loving relationships make sure the other knows how you feel, when talking hold hands or show some other sign of affection to them.
How to make everyday a great one
The key to enjoying life and making the most of everyday is to notice the little things in life that happen all around us, taking a moment at a time and slowing down, relaxing and just enjoying each and every precious minute throughout the day. Today’s world is filled with hustle and bustle, people rushing here there and everywhere without a minute to spare, we have more advancements in technology to help in our life yet we still don’t seem to have a minute to spare for ourselves. Perhaps it’s all these advancements in technology such as computers, video games, cable TV and the like that have made us forget all about enjoying the simple things in life such as just sitting and talking, sharing a family meal around the table or going for a walk. In order to fully enjoy every moment of everyday it is essential we slow down, learn to relax a little and think about ourselves, what we want out of life, what we enjoy doing, what makes us happy and puts a smile on our face.
In order to get the most out of everyday you have to start with yourself, it is essential that you look after yourself, eat a healthy diet, get plenty of exercise, make sure you get enough sleep and take care of yourself in general. Having a daily schedule is also a necessity, by planning a daily schedule you are to make sure you give yourself some “me” time, we all need time to our self to just enjoy doing what we like, be it listening to music, talking a walk, a long hot soak in the tub or a hobby. So what can we do to make sure we get the most out of everyday? Here are some tips to help you
- Forgive yourself
If at the end of your day you find you didn’t accomplish all that you set out to do then forgive yourself and say to yourself “I did the best I possibly could and made the most of today, tomorrow is a brand new day”. Don’t beat yourself up about some minor things didn’t accomplish and worry about it, there’s always tomorrow and as long as you made the most out of today that’s all that matters.
- Your daily to-do-list
We all have certain chores that must be taken of on a daily basis, do these chores in order of importance and don’t let them pile up, however sing along to the radio while you are doing the dishes, dance along with the vacuum as you push it around the house. Take pleasure in doing mundane chores and turn them into an enjoyable experience instead of moaning and grumbling about having to do them.
- Take regular breaks
Whether you are at home or work, give yourself a break every now and again, even if its only for 5 minutes, learn a quick relaxation technique and unwind if you are beginning to feel tense. If at work then get up and stretch your legs or grab a cup of coffee and say hello with a smile to everyone you pass on your way to the coffee machine.
- Do something you enjoy doing
Make it a point to set some time aside just for you, to do what you want to do, this could be reading, taking a bubble bath, meditating, going to the gym or basically anything which you really enjoy doing and which makes you feel good and puts a smile on your face.
- Positive thinking
Try to have a positive attitude towards to life even when things aren’t particularly going the way we want them too, look for the good in the situation and what you can learn from it, rather than looking at it in a totally negative way.
Stay Happy: Don’t Hold onto Grudges
By holding onto grudges, we are holding onto the past and this holds us back and stops us from growing and going onward with our lives. Grudges and not allowing ourselves to let go of the past is negative and negativity holds us back and stops us from achieving what we are capable of achieving out of life and encourages resentment, unhappiness and fear instead of being happy in life and finding peace within ourselves. Forgiveness is the key to happiness, true forgiveness is when you can release all your negative feelings towards another and let them go completely, you have to let the grudge go not only through words of acceptance but also feel it in your heart and soul.
Why is forgiving so difficult to do?
It is our negative ego that causes us to hold a grudge and tells us not to let it go, like all things that block success and happiness in our life, negativity again plays a huge part, only this time it affects our ego. By letting negativity affect our lives this way we are opening up the door and welcoming bitterness and deep resentment and these manifest deep within us and show themselves in our health. Holding onto a grudge causes ulcers, stress and general overall poor health so it is essential that we learn to let go of our resentment and move on with life by letting go of our grudges. As with every other problem relating to negativity in our lives it is all about how we think, forgiveness is all about letting go of harmful train of thought patterns and developing new ones.
Developing the ability to let go
Developing the ability to let go takes time, if you allow yourself to look at your feelings honestly and calmly then you will realize that negative feelings evaporate and you begin to feel peace of mind through letting go of deep resentment. The key to truly forgiving is first being able to release your hurt and anger that person has caused you, without letting go of these feelings; true forgiveness is next to impossible. If you try to forgive without releasing these feelings then the hurt and anger you feel will only continue to build and will manifest as resentment further down the road and resentment will eventually rear its ugly head, have no doubt about that.
A great way of releasing your feelings is to look directly at them and in great detail, admitting what it is that has hurt you and why it hurt you and realizing why you have to let it go, look at your feelings in a different light and gradually allow yourself to forgive and let go. Forgiveness has to come from deep within you, there is no outside force which keeps a grudge building up, the feelings of forgiveness can only be generated from within yourself, only you can take responsibility and forgive and let go and move on in a more peaceful and contented life.
Success and Happiness is not Always Material
When most people think of happiness and being successful they think of owning big houses, fast cars, expensive designer clothes and how big of a bank balance you have, however, how successful and happy you are does not necessarily depend on the material things you have in life.
If you are happy in life with what you have got regardless of the material possessions that you own or don’t own, then you are a very wealthy and successful person indeed. It is very often the smallest things in life which are priceless but are not of any great value other than the particular person who cherishes them for one reason or another, these can be photographs, cards, a song or even memories can be precious to an individual.
In a society where we have been brought up believing material possessions are what is important it can be hard to believe that owning material possessions isn’t what makes us happy and brings success, how common it is to hear someone say “if only I had this or that, I would be the happiest person on earth”, however should we get what it is we wish for we are never satisfied and only begin to dream and wish we had something better. The newness of having a material possession soon wears off, and this pattern is continued throughout life in the majority of people. This is perhaps easier to realize if you think back to when you were a child, your parents would spend hundreds of dollars on birthdays and Christmas presents because you had to have that “special” toy, but how quickly they were discarded when something new came onto the scene.
The same applies to wealth, it doesn’t matter how much money you had, would you really think that you had enough? Would having a bank account with thousands of dollars make such a difference to your life, would it bring you anymore happiness or success than you have now?
We all want to live a comfortable life, without struggling each month to pay bills, that’s only natural, but apart from that money doesn’t bring true happiness and success, you can have thousands in the bank but if you’re alone in life, without real friends and family, without love, then you can never find true happiness and success.
What is success and happiness?
In order to determine actually what success and happiness means you should first ask yourself this
- What is the meaning of success and happiness?
- What would being truly successful and happy mean?
- What do I want out of life?
These are the core questions behind understanding what happiness and success really would mean to you as an individual, for happiness and success means different things to each of us. You can be rich and successful in many more ways than having material possessions and money, think about some of the things you have in your life now, are you one of the richest and most successful people on the earth?
- True friends – if you can count on one hand five true friends who are always there for you through thick and thin then your are rich indeed
- Health – if you have good health through taking care of what you eat, exercising regularly then this is far more valuable than any amount of money in the bank
- A family – if you have a family around you who loves you then you will have a successful, rewarding and very happy life
- A good character – if you are an honest, kind and truthful person in all situations then you have success beyond your wildest dreams.