In an episode of Seinfeld, George accidentally finds himself in group therapy for anger issues. When Jerry agrees that George has a little rage in him, George replies, “I know! And now they want me to keep it all bottled up. It makes me so mad!” It’s hilarious, but I can relate. Once, while I wrote an article about a sensitive subject, my blood boiled and I stepped away from the computer. When I came back, I discovered that the monitor had stopped working. I fiddled with it a bit but it stayed completely blank. My anger level rose.
When I write, I pace a lot in thought and while I paced that day, I carried a golf putter. In my anger, when I saw an empty plastic container, I slammed that putter against it. It felt good. However, at the same time, my wife rounded the corner into the room and what she witnessed scared her so much she went pale. Though she knows I’d never harm a hair on her head, I had frightened her. Anger issues have ramifications. But anger issues also have solutions. Do you know what they are?
The Causes of Anger
The most common root causes of male anger are fear, pain, and frustration. My anger usually spawns from frustration. I’m not a very patient man, so I easily get riled up when annoyances arise, like computer problems. My deeper anger, which rarely surfaces, comes from previous pain that remains a part of me. And sometimes it rises to the surface.
The Effects of AngerLosing control of our anger, even if just for a moment, sends shock waves throughout the entire home.
Although anger is a natural human emotion and acts much like a steam valve does by releasing pressure, there is nothing pleasant about being around it in action. Our anger startles, frightens, stresses out, and worries other people. It also leaves negative feelings behind in us. I’ll often feel guilty after I lose my temper around my family. Losing control of our anger, even if just for a moment, sends shock waves throughout the entire home.
Lasting Ramifications of Anger
The danger in not controlling our tempers is ramifications that remain long after we’ve cooled off. Blowing up around our wives or children sows confusion, erodes trust, creates fear, and damages their sense of security. It takes a lot of time to repair those effects.
Solutions for Anger Management
If your anger is beyond your ability to control, see a licensed mental health counselor. Professional help is available in many forms, both secular and faith-based, and your favorite search engine will offer many suggestions. For most of us, however, we can practice techniques on our own, such as taking a deep breath and counting to 10 or walking away until cooler heads prevail. But the key is to be aware whenever you feel that anger starting to boil. Be extremely careful in those moments. Think hard before speaking or acting. We know we need to release that energy, but there are other productive ways to accomplish that.
Sound off: How do you deal with your anger?
Huddle Up Question
Huddle up with your kids and ask, “Have I ever gotten so angry that you felt frightened?”