How to control your Anger

Anger is unpredictable and often triggered by something or someone

Anger is a part of our set of emotions yet how anger looks and feels is unique to each individual. For some, it can be easily accessible - it comes and goes without too much of a problem managing it. For others, it can be difficult to predict and quite difficult to control.

Often, anger gets triggered as a result of a personal reaction to something. This can be something said or done by someone, or by an event, or a stressful circumstance. It can also result from physical factors like tiredness or irritability - leading to a low tolerance for frustration.

Once anger presents itself, it is up to you to decide what to do with it; how to express it; and how best to deal with it. In some instances, you may be able to suppress or hide your reactions, leading to ongoing frustration that may come out later. But sometimes, your reaction will be sudden, and the result will be a loss of control.

Even if learning to control your anger is important, getting to the source of your anger is key, if you are ever going to learn to manage it.

Where does Anger come from?

Finding the source of your anger includes understanding what can trigger a reaction, and then identifying the unique conditions or situations that cause those reactions. Understanding the reason why certain events, behaviours of others, or situations can trigger anger in you is an important and complex question to explore. For example, one person may not react much to a particular experience i.e. they can have something happen to them or be spoken to or treated a certain way and they tolerate it. But a different person will find the same experience intolerable and their response will lead to anger, and possibly loss of control.

Discovering where anger comes from is an important task to complete if you are hoping to manage your emotions in the long term. Through counselling and psychotherapy, different factors can be explored that may lead to a better understanding of your triggers and reactions. This exploration can include examining the impact of your parents and significant others, and how their approach to anger or strong emotions during your early life and childhood experience affected you. Is it possible that their modelling could have set you on a path to losing control in certain situations, or in forming deep set beliefs that no longer fit with your current life and circumstances?

Other factors to examine could be traumatic events or abuse or mistreatment you experienced earlier in life. This could have impacted you in a way that causes you to lash out as a form of self-protection, or defense when you feel threatened in social situations.

Learning to recognise anger and manage it appropriately

Looking at all these factors can help you get more in touch with your emotions and hopefully manage them better - including managing your anger. Identifying triggers and deep-set impulses that are connected to your life experiences can help you control or defuse angry reactions, and put things in perspective. This will allow you to learn new ways of relating to others when under stressful or challenging conditions.

If you would like to learn more about your anger and its origins, contact Dirk Hansen for Anger Management/Counselling.