How To Do Anger the Right Way

I was on a bus yesterday on my way to market (which I despise!). The bus driver (let’s call him Kene) stopped at the bus stop, and a passenger got off. Kene then wanted to move, but a tricycle was in his way.

In Nigeria, the majority of tricycle and bus riders are insane and domineering. So much so that I recommend you cross your heart and pray before entering one.

Kene asked the tricycle driver (I’ll call him Kamsi) to move the vehicle because it was incorrectly parked. Kamsi declined. Kamsi, yelling back at Kene in Igbo (a Western African tribal language), was ready to fight.

I was completely perplexed at that point.

“Why is Kamsi so angry?” I wondered, like any normal observer or passenger on that bus. “Why won’t he just move his tricycle?”

After a brief exchange of words between the two drivers, Kamsi reluctantly moved his vehicle. I was confused as to why he reacted in anger rather than remorse for breaking road rules.

After careful consideration, I concluded that Kamsi’s relapse into rage was simply self-defense. He was obviously wrong.

But he did not want to be the loser or accept responsibility for his actions.So he relied on the most heinous emotion–anger.

I believe that one of the best aspects of being human is having a jungle of emotions and the ability to control them.

One of these emotions is anger, which is the subject of this article. Unfortunately, willpower, the three-plaited cord that holds everything together, occasionally snaps, releasing a dam of colorless rage.

We’ve all struggled with anger. Nobody is perfect, after all. Some handled it well, while others did not. Anger, as a human emotion, is not always wrong.

It is perfectly normal to be angry. Anger can be directed at oneself, the world, or anything else, but the issue with this antagonistic emotion is how it is projected.

Anger that has been refined can lead to positive outcomes.

Anger helped build a unicorn.

For example, in my home country of Nigeria, youths in anger staged a massive protest last year in response to bloodshed and impunity. Even more, most worldwide movements that brought about change like feminism was formed in anger. If people like these could use such a volatile emotion for change and productivity, then you can too.

Positive ways to deal with Anger

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.”

Buddha.

Anger is a powerful emotion, and if it is not managed properly, it can be harmful to you and those around you. Arguments, physical fights, physical abuse, assault, and self-harm can all result from uncontrolled anger.

So here are my tips on doing anger right —

  • Don’t react

I understand that we can be reactive at times, defending ourselves. Other times, we may be putting on a show to hide our fear. However, hasty reactions will simply leave you in regret.

When I want to react negatively, one trick I use is to pause and remind myself of the golden rule — “Do unto others as you want them to unto you”.

I could ask myself questions like this: “How will this person feel if I say it to them in the tone and manner that I want them to hear it?” “Would I feel the same way if someone said the same thing to me?”

If this doesn’t work, I’ll think of something that makes me happy. That internal spark of joy can immediately suffocate the lethal reaction.

  • Identify your triggers

Because we all deal with anger differently, knowing what makes you angry in the first place is an important step toward controlling anger.

It could be any kind of injustice, negative news, self-defensive fear, or snarky comments that irritate you.

Once you’ve identified your trigger, your best bet is to redirect your rage.

  • Alter the channel

Anger does not exist in a vacuum. There is always a source of your rage and a recipient of that emotion. And, because anger, like any other emotion, is illogical, it can cause you to have an outburst on the receiver.

It is critical to change the channel of your anger in order to avoid this.

As you may have noticed, anger causes bursts of energy and dopamine in the brain.

Instead of using that energy and sending it to the recipient, incorporate the emotion into tasks.

This takes your mind off the source of your rage, allowing you to eventually calm down and re-examine why you’re angry.

  • React

I know I said in point 1 not to react, but hear me out. Failure to respond to this secondary and intense emotion may result in the development of a psycho-sociopath.

Why? You’re repressing your feelings, and they’re strong ones.

If you do not react, your personality may begin to change over time. After all, people who mask and deny their inner feelings or vent their emotions outwardly are more likely to suffer.

The good thing about reacting is that you already know how to do so from the preceding points without causing harm to yourself or others.

Since you cannot eliminate anger, despite your best efforts, things will happen that will make you angry, and sometimes that anger will be justified.

Life is filled with frustration, pain, loss, and uncertainty. You can’t change that, but you can change how you react to such events.

Controlling your reactions can help you avoid becoming even more unhappy in the long run.

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Thank you for reading!

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