“Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die”
How many of you have seen this year’s Pixar & Disney movie, Inside out? It focuses on the life of a young girl, through the perspective of her emotions. They’ve made all the feelings- joy, sadness, fear, disgust and anger as animated characters and made the story line interesting. Well, the movie has a part where joy and sadness gets lost, and the remaining feelings headed by anger has to deal with the girl. Anger messes up badly, making the girl lonely. This throws an insight on what anger does to people. Anger can make relationships suffer, destroy personal and family lives and push one to the brinks of depression. Lets take a look at this so called ‘lethal’ emotion and see what we can do.
Setting boundaries in life is one of the most important life skill everyone possesses. There is always a limit for everything and most often we come across a situation where this limit gets violated. That is when something intense comes into action. Some choose to stay away until it cools down, while some decides to fight it out. Either way, it takes away all the lovely things in life. Let me share a story I read a long time ago.
Once upon a time, there lived a man, who was very short tempered. One day, he brought a new car and displayed it proudly to all his neighbors. Everyday he would clean it properly and would enjoy the gleam off its neat body. One day, after cleaning the car, he went in to have a nap. After some time, the man, jumped from his sleep upon hearing a loud noise coming from outside. He rushed out, and was shocked to find his son banging the car with a stone, thinking it as a toy. Out of his anger, he grabbed the stone from his son, and began to pound him on the leg. The boy cried out in pain and the man stopped. Knowing he had gone too far, he carried the boy to the hospital. Sadly, his son was wounded for rest of his life. After a few days, the boy saw that the car was as good as new. His father told him, that he had repaired it as soon as he could. The boy told, ” You could repair your car, but I can never walk properly for the rest of my life, right?”. The man was overcome by grief, thinking that if had controlled his anger, he would have saved his son.
Many of us might have had similar situations in life. When overcome by anger, we fail to understand what we see and think. By the time, it cools off, we would have lost something precious. An anger- management writer, William De-Foore, has mentioned anger as a pressure cooker! So, why can’t we let off some steam and reduce the pressure? Bad as it may sound, anger is not exactly lethal. Precisely speaking, its uncontrollable anger that is dangerous. So we do have its counter part- the controllable anger. This is what we should focus on. Let us break it down into steps, for saving space and time!
- First is awareness. You should be aware that anger can be controlled. Holding on to anger and shouting is pointless as you are isolating yourself. On the other hand, staying away until it cools off, is pure escapism. Anger can be controlled. Accept it in your mind and you’ll feel better already.
- Second comes distractions. People say that you should start counting whenever you feel like exploding. All it means is that you should delay the explosion by shifting your focus. Keep practicing this and soon the volcano will become dormant.
- Third is meditation. This is perhaps the most powerful tool against anger. It is one of the most important mental exercise. Meditation, in theory is a practice of relaxation which in turn helps us control our mind. Once we have the reins, its easy to stop the stampede.
- Next comes hobbies. So how does your hobbies, help control your anger? Simple. Hobbies are like meditation. Its something, which makes us happy, which in turn gives us peace. So the moment, you open your stamp collection, the anger vanishes into thin air! If you don’t have a hobby, make sure to get one!
- Last but not the least, is effective communication. Its most often a simple misunderstanding, that leads to big fights. Be clear when you communicate. We all have special people in our lives, people from which we can’t keep our secrets away. They are our family, they are our friends. We may fight with our best friend or with our parents. Make sure you don’t wait for them to apologize. You are not going to be rewarded for keeping silent for a long time! Even big countries have negotiations that can stop a world war. So, its certainly not a big deal, to have a truce and laugh your anger away over a cup of coffee, with lots of sugar!
Channel your anger for a better purpose. The next time you feel angry, make sure you finish reading that book, you’ve been keeping off for days! Studying, playing games are all effective ways to control your anger. But then again, don’t overdo everything. There is no ultimate way of controlling anger. Its a mixture of all these practices that is more effective.
So, stay away from anger, and live happily, but keep in mind, have a little controlled heat with you to have more energy in life!