Life has unpleasant incidents, and naturally, the pressures and pain felt from the troublesome problems or offensive behaviours often manifest through anger. An emotion that ramps up high blood pressure, stress and anxieties to evoking hard feelings in relationships. The reasons behind this emotion depend on different situations, whether it is from being helpless to have been treated unjustly or overwhelmed and fearful. One form or another anger is a response to pain. Still, pain is not the only reason, our thoughts, assumptions or interpretations intensifies the emotion. As humans we tend to have unrealistic and hopeful expectations such as being understood by everyone or everything will go as planned. Possibly our hopes shattered, and we are in for a rude awakening. This is when anger creeps in.
Anger can also happen consciously or unconsciously to distract attention from the root cause of the pain and redirecting the focus to external factors. In this situation, the ease of the pain is temporary and leave the person vulnerable to chronic emotional distress.
Anger complicates situations. It gives the furious a sense of righteousness and power a feeling of superiority without taking into consideration other perspectives. Regrettably, this perverse gratification of anger to stamp oneself as a torchbearer of moral supremacy league will use up the credibility of the individual. An uncomfortable situation commands assertiveness in response than aggressive behaviour.
Nevertheless, anger can be used constructively once you gain insight into the reasons. In many ways, it can serve to be truly in control of our reactions. To manage our anger in a difficult or unforeseen situation, practice three steps:
- Shift your thoughts to a neutral state. Do no associate negative motive to the person or their action.
- Observe and listen, do not lash out; it will make you look irrational.
- Be assertive and specific in expressing your feelings and expectations without offending or undermining other people rights to think or act differently.
In a foggy situation, when we are at most vulnerable, a little anger is the antidote. Use it wisely. If we throw a tantrum, our emotions can cloud our judgement, and we can come across as unqualified or a pain to deal with. Assertively, communicate what is at stake. Just like a campaigner who believes in its cause, and passionately points to the injustice, take command to tell your story with conviction and rally support.
Clearly, dealing with anger or angry people is not an easy task, as long as we know that arguments, displeasures and sadness exist and we compassionately realise that there is a reason for them, solutions appear. Knowing that everyone has vulnerabilities and it takes sound judgement to look beyond unwarranted anger. The famous story about Alexander taming Bucephalus by noticing that the famous horse was afraid of his own shadow, is an illustration of practising good sense. He pointed Bucephalus nose towards the sun and calmed the beast.