Sometimes anger and frustration can overwhelm us and we may react to these emotions in a way that is out of character.
Anger management refers to the skills that help people recognise when and why their anger occurs and how to deal with their feelings in a calm, collected and constructive way.
Counselling is highly recommended for anger management, but there are also self-management techniques which can help individuals to feel more in control of their anger and alleviate associated problems and frustrations.
Take regular exercise and keep fit
The hormones produced when we are angry – primarily cortisol and adrenaline – are similar to those produced when we get stressed. Exercising regularly can help your body to better regulate your adrenaline and cortisol levels. The feel-good chemicals (endorphins) released during exercise will also help to reduce negative feelings.
Be prepared for ‘difficult’ situations
If there is a particular situation or conversation that you are worried may make you angry, take notes beforehand and plan what you want to say in an assertive but calm manner. This will help you to feel more in control and you are less likely to get sidetracked.
Internalising your anger is very unhealthy, so if you feel you need to express your feelings, make sure you do so after your initial rage has passed. You need to be assertive without being aggressive and this is the perfect time to be so – when your mind is clear and you have control over your reactions.
Don’t hold grudges
There are going to be occasions where you will feel resentful towards others, but it is important to remember that everyone is different and we all have varying beliefs, feelings and behaviours. Accepting this and letting go of grudges will reduce your anger and will essentially help you to feel more at ease in certain situations.
Breathe slowly and relax
If you start to feel tense and angry, take action by removing yourself from the situation that is triggering these feelings and focus instead on your breathing. Inhale and exhale deeply three or four times in a row, and take notice of the air moving in and out of your lungs. This will help to distract your mind and make you feel more relaxed.