Although it’s the butt of many jokes and the basis for a comedy movie with Jack Nicholson and a recent TV series with Charlie Sheen, anger management has become one of the most socially-dysfunctional, yet preventable issues in our culture. Have you given any thought to the causes of this anger management epidemic?
Why do we have road rage, and restraining orders, and anger management classes in elementary schools?!
Anger is avoided like a disease, until it explodes.
There are 3 reasons why western cultures can’t manage anger…
- No one taught us how to be with anger. If you grew up in some European families, you’d hear yelling and arguing on a daily basis, without hard feelings, and always ending in hugs. In North America, we weren’t taught how to be angry because anger wasn’t acceptable. Period.
- We have limiting beliefs about anger. Most of us we’re raised to ignore or suppress our natural anger because we were told that “Good girls don’t get angry.” And “Angry boys are mean.” You may also hold a limiting belief that ‘anger is dangerous’ because you experienced violence with anger growing up. The possible beliefs about anger that are no longer serving you are endless.
- Old, residual anger from the past has not been managed so it comes rushing forward in the moment we feel the slightest bit of anger, and amplifies our emotion and our reaction. Usually it’s uncontrollable. And usually we regret it afterwards.
What most of us never learned is that…
Anger is a natural and useful emotion that tells us when something has been violated or a boundary has been crossed.
Anger tells us to take action by protecting something or setting a boundary, and can provide fuel in the form of motivation.
The good news is that it’s never too late to learn new tricks! You can learn my 5-Step Healthy Emotional Strategy in the Resilient Mindset eCourse. You can release the old, residual anger from the past, and, change your limiting beliefs into positive ones, in the Personal Mastery Alchemy programs.
It IS possible to change your anger management into anger engagement, so that life is easier and relationships are more peaceful.
Until next time,