Ever felt so angry that you did not know how to handle it? Anger is a typical emotion and it is okay to feel angry. However, when anger is so overwhelming that it is difficult to control, it may be time to see a psychologist about it. Here are some coping ideas regarding how to control anger before it controls you.
Breathe. Take a 3-second breath in and fill your lungs fully. Slowly exhale for 6 seconds. Count the seconds as you inhale and exhale and ensure that your breath is even and paced. Repeat this as many times as you need. Breathing tends to evoke a state of relaxation in the body.
Preoccupy your mind. Count to 50 by counting by 3’s (3, 6, 9, 12, etc.) or 4’s (4, 8, 12, etc.). Repeat if necessary and count to a higher number. Alternatively you can name all the colours you know or name all the vehicle models that you know.
Remove yourself, if possible, from the source of the stress and/or anger.
Exercise. Moderate physical activity can be a productive outlet for your emotions. It releases pent-up energy and your body releases endorphins, which make us feel good. Avoid emotionally charged and strenuous workouts, they can feed the anger.
Imagine a calm relaxing scene.
• Remember a time when you felt peace and calm.
• Close your eyes, and imagine being there.
• Allow yourself to be there for a while and feel yourself relax.
• If you do not have a calm place or cannot think if one, go find one.
Stop Ruminating. Negative thoughts and feelings can lead to destructive behaviours.
Share your feelings with a close friend or family member (provided that the individuals gives you a balanced view and does not further fuel you anger).
• What am I angry about?
• What is hurting me?
• What is going on that I am not okay with?
Write in a journal. By identifying your particular sources of anger, you can learn to anticipate and respond to anger situations before it feels unmanageable.
• What did I get angry about? Describe the situation.
• How did I feel physically (body reactions)?
• What thoughts did I have in my head?
• How did I feel emotionally?
• What did I do or say in response?