Anger is a natural human emotion and can be effective when we need to defend ourselves or fight for our survival. Problems occur, however, when bouts of anger are frequent and intense. These can range from personal health issues to social isolation and beyond. If you find it hard to control your temper, here are some ways that can help.
Practice Being Assertive
Don’t hold it in! You should be able to express your feelings without bottling them up. When you disagree with someone, respectfully speak to them but make sure that you are honestly expressing the way you feel at the same time. Those who hold in their feelings are more likely to experience depression, exhibit passive-aggressive behavior and develop high blood pressure. Worse yet, bottling things up may lead to trouble with the court. If it goes that far, you may need to take online anger management courses Alaska to help you return to a normal, productive life.
Pay attention to the way you feel when your anger starts to rise. Pay attention to your surroundings and try to identify what it is that makes you angry in the first place. If you tend to get angry while sitting in traffic, try to get on the road outside of heavy traffic hours. If you tend to get angry at your spouse during arguments in the morning, make sure you’ve had some coffee first. There’s no way for you to prevent every single trigger, of course, but you can pay attention to your mood and adjust your environment accordingly.
Practice Relaxation Techniques
Practice breathing exercises. Those who get angry often breathe in short, shallow breaths. To counter this, the next time you feel angry take a deep breath in through the nose and hold your breath for a few seconds before exhaling through the mouth. While you do this, picture a relaxing place in your mind. This may seem weird at first, but with practice, you will get used to it and it will become second nature.
Keep in mind that your emotions are not the problem. It’s the actions you take when you experience those emotions that really matter. If you feel none of the advice above is working, then you may have an underlying medical condition that you need to get professional help for. Diseases like post-traumatic stress disorder, Alzheimer’s or other illnesses may be the source of your anger issue. Talk to your doctor about this possibility or get a referral to a therapist, who will help you develop better ways of coping with your anger.