Anger management

One of my goals this year is to have better state control.

Normally I'm pretty calm but when I reach the end of my tether, I tend to get really angry really fast.

Sometimes it's a useful thing as it helps to get things done in certain situations but I'd be interested to know what/if people here have done to be more calm.

I wrote down yoga, feng shut, mindfulness and seeing a psychologist as things to explore but there must be other options, I'd appreciate your input.
 

heavy

Hummingbird
Gold Member
State control comes from putting yourself in really uncomfortable situations. Your brain will do the rest. It'll get "used to" these uncomfortable situations and you will hold state in more comfortable situations.

I believe, for men, that's step one.

If you want to do further steps like meditation type stuff, that's fine, but I think that's for women and people who have real anxiety from things like a rough childhood or warfare (things like that). That's a judgment call whether you have that.
 

Jetset

Ostrich
I'll second weightlifting.

I'm a pretty calm person, but during a serious and protracted family crisis, full-body circuit training was all that kept me from putting somebody through a wall. At a bare minimum, find the right size kettlebell for yourself and keep it in your den/office to do swings until you're sweating when you sense you're starting to stress.

Some of us have a strong impulse to "do something" when there's a problem and if you can't solve the problem, at least you can simulate doing something to calm yourself down.
 

PainPositive

Kingfisher
Orthodox
Gold Member
I've been the same way this past year. I seem to have lost all my peace. I have been reading and working on state control and mindfulness as well but I'm still getting angry over trivial shit. I'm almost combative and also argumentive.

I'm sometimes overwhelmed by it so this past year I've gone from an extremely social person to a hermit. I don't want to be a dick to my friends so I just stay away. I'm not sure what I should do because I already work out and train my mind as well.

I've always been a guy who puts in the work and reaps the rewards but now I feel like I'm working and getting no return. I watched some feel good Tony Robbins stuff today and did a little gratitude exercise for 3 min and felt better than I have in months. I used to go to counseling when I got back from Afghan in 09 for PTSD but I don't think that shit helped at all.

I'm considering getting back into some hippie bullshit like some nature retreats because I need to try something. Since I believe in work over feel good stuff I usually stay away from "motivation" stuff.

I've always been a hot head but I really felt like I had most of that behind me. I don't know if I should try counseling or what but at this point I'm just wishing I could chill out a bit. I used to be really solid but not I feel like I have little control over my anger and harsh words.

Sorry to make this post all me, me, me but if you guys have any advice I'd really appreciate it and would gladly try anything to get myself back on track. Thanks.
 
Ski pro said:
One of my goals this year is to have better state control.

Normally I'm pretty calm but when I reach the end of my tether, I tend to get really angry really fast.

Sometimes it's a useful thing as it helps to get things done in certain situations but I'd be interested to know what/if people here have done to be more calm.

I wrote down yoga, feng shut, mindfulness and seeing a psychologist as things to explore but there must be other options, I'd appreciate your input.

My suggestion would be to shift the focus from "how to be more calm" to "how do I control expressions of my anger so that it serves me well". If you keep on avoiding the full intensity of your anger and refuse to learn proper calibration, the problem will stay with you forever - possibly in slightly different repressed manifestations

I've punched many a walls instead of the head of the person in front of me I was angry with and it has served me well for today I can experience intense anger and feel free to choose my response from a smirk, to a scream, to breaking the wall purposefully to send the message
 
When I get into confrontational situations, I have the opposite problem. Where is it proper to draw the line on anger, and where is it necessary to let it flow? The mental wounds that come from backing down from a fight are almost as bad as just going for it.

OP, have you recognised that your anger is unjustified, and if so, why? I will admit that sometimes it looks better to just be cool in these situations., suavely defuse it, and let the other person be angry. If necessary, then strike hard unexpectedly. Is anger truly ever beneficial?
 
churros said:
have you recognised that your anger is unjustified

Is there even such a thing as "unjustified anger"? I've noticed that all of my anger has been "justified" - just not necessarily directed to the right source of [original] offense
 
I bought a couple kindle books off Amazon that help me control my temper! I use to be a very anger person where when I hit 30 I learnt to control it but I still had burst of anger/rage at times! I got myself into trouble with the law some years ago where I bought some books below which has really help me control my anger!

Anger: Wisdom for Cooling the Flames by Thich Nhat Hanh
https://www.amazon.com/Anger-Coolin...&keywords=anger+wisdom+for+cooling+the+flames

Rage: A Step-by-Step Guide to Overcoming Explosive Anger by Ronald Potter-Efron
https://www.amazon.com/Rage-Step-St...ie=UTF8&qid=1499352772&sr=1-10&keywords=anger
 

Zep

Pelican
PainPositive said:
I used to go to counseling when I got back from Afghan in 09 for PTSD but I don't think that shit helped at all.

I'm considering getting back into some hippie bullshit like some nature retreats

I don't doubt counseling didn't help. I went to shrinks for about 25 years, not just a waste of time, but a waste of the best years of my life. It's maintenance, not resolution...

So you go one hour per week to deal with an issue, an hour is no-where near enough time to dig down into the psyche. There's resistance to get through, your ego will protect itself by not opening up enough to let a healer get near the wound.

Go off to a proper retreat. You are away from familiar anchors. You can be safe, then make sure whoever's there, digs down into you to resolve the wound that's tormenting you. An hour a week ain't gonna cut it.

I totally agree with Neil Strauss here: he's even written about some centers that do deep work: http://www.neilstrauss.com/neil/healing-trauma/
 
Zep said:
I don't doubt counseling didn't help. I went to shrinks for about 25 years, not just a waste of time, but a waste of the best years of my life. It's maintenance, not resolution...

So you go one hour per week to deal with an issue, an hour is no-where near enough time to dig down into the psyche. There's resistance to get through, your ego will protect itself by not opening up enough to let a healer get near the wound.

I've worked with some excellent healers - no shrinks tho - that impact a profound change in just a few sessions - from one to three in my experience

But the regular therapy model is indeed deeply flawed/broken. Simply maintenance and moving problems around without ever addressing the core issues because homeostasis is of ultimate value

Go off to a proper retreat. You are away from familiar anchors. You can be safe, then make sure whoever's there, digs down into you to resolve the wound that's tormenting you.

True, yet the danger is that when you come back, you won't be able to integrate the experience - especially if psychodelic drugs were involved - because of the huge mismatch between the two environments
 
Thank you for this. Normally after skiing every day in the ski season for 5 months or so, I lay off exercise for a month or two to give my body a chance to recover and to lose bulk. I'm calmer in the ski season.

I see now why this anger has come back more frequently, I need to get back to the gym, channel my energy. I've been sidelined by a back injury which will take a few weeks to heal but I'll report back once I'm back lifting and check results.
 

realologist

Ostrich
Gold Member
Anger is like a flame. If you control it, it can be used to build and create. If you let it go without constraints it will become a blaze and burn everything. If you hold it in it will slowly burn you with resentment.

A big key to anger especially with men is controlling the initial reaction. Whether you do that with deep breathing, positive self talk, etc doesn't matter. Use a way to express anger in a calm way if that makes sense.
I
Afterinitial control you have to repurpose the after effects into something positive. That's why physical activity is so effective for anger but it can anything that takes physical and mental focus.
 

PainPositive

Kingfisher
Orthodox
Gold Member
Do you guys ever feel like the deep breathing and self talk is also just moving around the anger? I feel like sometimes these techniques help in the short term but just make me blow up worse later on.

I definitely feel like I should have a better handle on this after this long. I look at this guy I know who's in his 50s and has been listening to Tony Robbins for 25 years and hasn't changed much. I don't want to seek out temp. fixes.

I want to become a person who just doesn't allow trivial things to bother him. Maybe I should also accept the man I am. Worrying about fixing this problem causes me even more grief than getting mad once in awhile does.
 
PainPositive said:
I want to become a person who just doesn't allow trivial things to bother him. Maybe I should also accept the man I am. Worrying about fixing this problem causes me even more grief than getting mad once in awhile does.

Everything is just a temporary fix until it becomes habitual, and even then it's not a fix but a countermeasure. Rather than seeing them as fixes, look at them as tools. Be it self-talk, meditation, exercise, etc., they are all just tools to help manage negative feelings and emotions. If you look at the most successful, even-tempered people in your life, chances are the most common denominator is not that they have eliminated those feelings and emotions, but that they have a "toolbox" of things they use to manage or counter them.

Extreme emotions are inevitable, and occasionally completely justified. Fill your toolbox with the tools that can help you manage them so that you don't cross any moral or ethical lines, but still maintain your frame and voice when they are justifiable and righteous. Likewise, learn to recognize your triggers so that you don't lose your footing and allow ignorance to drag you down to its level.
 

birthday cat

Kingfisher
Gold Member
4 things that help me...

1. Meditation. I usually have to do it in the morning or I'll get distracted by other things.

2. Getting all the bad stuff out of my body - sugar, caffeine, alcohol, etc.
-avoid sugary and processed foods, caffeine, drugs & alcohol
-drink a lot of water
-do workouts that will make you sweat a lot, i.e. do 20 minutes of light cardio before lifting weight and/or use a sauna after lifting

3. Taking 15 to 30 minutes to prepare for sleep
-stop staring at a computer, phone, or tv
-take a hot shower to relax
-do mindfulness, gratitude, or meditation exercises

I think the last item in #3 might be the missing link for a lot of people. Your brain doesn't turn off when you sleep. Your prefrontal cortex shuts down but there are parts of the brain that actually work more when you are at rest than when you are focused on doing something. Your subconscious brain is active while you sleep so it can make a huge difference in your life if you program your brain to be happy, grateful, positive, etc. I had some big problems with negative thinking and anger that improved drastically from a combination of this and avoiding negative family members.

4. Consistently sleeping 7 to 8 hours in a cool, dark, quiet environment.

Quality sleep seems to consistently be the most overlooked aspect of both physical and mental health. I highly recommend blackout curtains and these Mack's earplugs.


PainPositive said:
...
I'm sometimes overwhelmed by it so this past year I've gone from an extremely social person to a hermit. I don't want to be a dick to my friends so I just stay away. I'm not sure what I should do because I already work out and train my mind as well.
...
Unfortunately, this is probably making the problem worse instead of better. Social connection is an important aspect of happiness and mental health.


agskor said:
churros said:
have you recognised that your anger is unjustified

Is there even such a thing as "unjustified anger"? I've noticed that all of my anger has been "justified" - just not necessarily directed to the right source of [original] offense
I try to view this from a different perspective. A little anger that you can control can be a good thing but usually anger is a bad thing. Anger is a negative emotion that reduces your ability to think logically. Your IQ essentially drops by a significant amount when you are angry so it is something you want to avoid. It doesn't really matter if it is justified or not.
 

Giovonny

Crow
Gold Member
easternwomenrule said:
I bought a couple kindle books off Amazon that help me control my temper! I use to be a very anger person where when I hit 30 I learnt to control it but I still had burst of anger/rage at times! I got myself into trouble with the law some years ago where I bought some books below which has really help me control my anger!

Anger: Wisdom for Cooling the Flames by Thich Nhat Hanh
https://www.amazon.com/Anger-Coolin...&keywords=anger+wisdom+for+cooling+the+flames

Rage: A Step-by-Step Guide to Overcoming Explosive Anger by Ronald Potter-Efron
https://www.amazon.com/Rage-Step-St...ie=UTF8&qid=1499352772&sr=1-10&keywords=anger
 
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