Anger management is sometimes considered like a taboo. Some people feel apprehensive about attending counselling and therapy. There’s no need to be worried. In fact, it is very simple. If you have a car that seriously breaks down, you will generally go to get it fixed by a skilled qualified mechanic, in a garage – you don’t try to fix it yourself. In the same way, if your house is seriously on fire, it’s generally a good idea to call the fire services, not just reach for a bucket.
Below you can find 7 tips for anger management.
Anger management: Safety First
It is really important to think of a safety plan for others around you and yourself. When you notice the anger rising what are you going to do to keep yourself and others safe? Yes, it might feel out of control BUT you need to keep yourself and others safe.
Rating your anger from 0-10
A lot of people say they go from ‘0 to 10’ in no time. This might be the case but it can be really helpful to describe what a 10 looks like. To do this think about the worst situation where your anger was too much.
What happened? What happened in your body? How would you describe yourself at this 10? Then let’s describe what a 0 looks like for you. Then what does a 5 look like? So the anger is there but you can still talk calmly and work through the issue.
As anger is normal it is ok to be within the 0-5 range but anything more than that you need to move away, take some time and work through strategies.
What helps at level 10?
When describing this anger at 10 many clients say its like ‘talking to a brick wall’ as you shut off and there is no point talking. So talking needs to stop and you need to give yourself space and time to cool it before working through the anger. Our main aim is to prevent the 10 level to happen and by doing this the anger is more manageable.
So what does help at this level? Think about it and put this in place.
Noticing when it gets more than level 5
We really need to stop anybody from getting to that level 10 as it prevents you from engaging with others and working through things properly. So you need to recognise when you have hit the level 5 mark and what you need at this point too.
Talking it out in a calm way
Many people dealing with anger feel that so many things are unresolved in their life. Usually, this is because you go 10 straight away and there is no point in discussing things when you are ‘seeing red’. Once you have practised slowing your anger down you can start to talk things through. Again check in with yourself, notice your emotions and focus on what you need at that moment.
Understanding what is under the anger
Anger for a lot of people (especially men) is a quick response as it can be seen as a more acceptable response than say being sad or afraid. By slowing things down we can start to unpack what is really going on and deal with this. This can be helped on by an experienced counsellor and can sit with the current feelings.
Being honest and getting support
Are you feeling alone in this? Getting help and having a professional on your side can be a great way to move away from always being angry. It takes courage to first acknowledge things aren’t good and to seek help for it. On top of this being truly honest with what is going on can be scary. There is that old saying ‘A PROBLEM HALVED IS A PROBLEM SHARED’. Take the time to think about what support you need and reach out for it.