Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Anger

I have a problem with anger. All too often I let anger get the best of me. I allow those around me to trigger my anger rather than learn to "unplug". Anger renders me irrational, loud, and curt. My blood pressure boils over and I fume. I do not like feeling this way and I want to change.
Anger has a place in our lives. When we are wronged, ignored, misunderstood, or crossed maliciously anger is the proper response. What I object to is how anger takes over my sensible brain for far too long a sojourn. I need to learn how to express my feelings in a more precise, rational format so as to use my anger constructively and not harmfully.
When I try to dig deeper and look what causes the anger, I typically find there is more going on in me. Usually I am scared and feeling helpless or overwhelmed in my situation. When I feel powerless I turn to the powerful blast of anger that seems to clear a path, but actually just leaves a wake of hurt and sadness. I'm learning that to break this unhealthy response, I need to empower myself.
Usually I hang on to guilt and "fault". "I'm sorry" is my mantra and "it's all my fault" is constantly falling out of my mouth. This "martyr syndrome" is self prescribed and so very counter-productive. Those around me whom I care for and about are individuals capable of leading their own lives and taking responsibility for their own actions. When I surrender to the fact that I cannot change others, I can only change my reactions to them, I will be in a healthier place. The only person I can change is me. I need to do the work needed to make my own happiness, live healthfully, and allow others to succeed or fail without attaching their victories and defeats to my self-esteem.
I'm not foolish enough to think that anger should be eradicated. I do feel anger can be a positive in certain situations. That anger can be a catalyst to communication and ultimately to change. But I know the anger I am expressing is often misplaced, wholly too intense, and frightfully raw. As I am a parent and thus a teacher to the younger generation, I need to learn how to reign in my anger, express it more appropriately, and model ways to communicate effectively the reasons for my displeasure. Tall orders when I'm "seeing red", but vastly important to providing a healthy environment for my family.
With a shaky economy, long-term marriage, three children, a home always needing repair, and the stresses those elements bring, I've taken to the shortcut anger provides rather than take the time to examine why my life seems spiraling out of control at times. When I take a few minutes to decompress and explore my emotions I find that these stressors are real, but they are manageable.
Most who see me would not imagine I have an "issue" with anger. To that I simply reply, I am human. What I have going for me is the willingness to change and the notion that things are out of kilter. I'm finding outlets to work on this "character flaw" and am making huge inroads. Anger will always have a place in my life, but I will not let it define me nor will I allow it to dictate. I am working toward embracing the power within to live a more contented and healthy life. Care to join me?

8 comments:

  1. Anger is a fight or flight response, good luck learning to use it :-)

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  2. God used you in a powerful way this morning my friend.

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  3. I always tell my children it is ok to get angry and it is expected that sometimes you get mad but it is not ok to take it out on anyone or anything. We have them do constructive things like draw or write or ways to decompress like going upstairs to cool there jets or a nice warm bath. To decompress for me I need a nap always and not to followed around the house for explanations. Those can come later.

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  4. Learning you can't change others and changing how you react to others is a great start. Another thing is to not stress over things you can't change. wish you the best of luck in your personal journey.

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  5. Well Chief, the only things that come with an owners manual are cars, electronics and appliances. Life is not one of them. Most of us learn on the fly what to do concerning our children and families. Some times you have split seconds to evaluate the situation and choose a course of action. Some times you can ponder on it. Your reactions to life are based on knowledge from past experience, the resources you have (money, support from friends relatives and services etc) to work with and role models.

    You and your husband have a major plateful of life. When I was a single parent trying to work, take care of my home, raise my son right , keep said son in school and try to have a relationship, I can tell you I know exactly where your head is right now. This is why I encouraged you to blog. YOU NEED THIS OUTLET TO STAY SANE. Unfortunately for me, I wasn't superwoman. Thought I was but no.

    You and your husband took the time to lay a strong foundation for your relationship and children. Some thing I couldn't seem to get accomplished with the men I got involved with. Trust in that foundation. Trust your instincts. Trust your knowledge. Trust that everything will work out. My son is now 28 and I wished I'd known all this stuff back when I was pulling my hair out stressing over all those decisions. I promise to check back and listen like every one else. =)

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  6. I can relate! We seem similar.. bubbly generally but anger CAN get the best of us! Feel free to part II on this one, I'm listening for those tips! :)

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