Anger is a natural emotion. But if not managed, anger can affect your health, career, and relationships. Here are some steps to help you deal with anger in a healthy way.
Coping With Anger
Learn Ways to Relax
Relaxation techniques can help ease tension and anger. Use them on a daily basis. Examples are meditation, yoga, and deep breathing.
When angry, it is common to think the situation is worse than it is. This can make you angrier. Instead, ask yourself what you hope to achieve. For example, is your goal to arrive at your destination safely? If so, focus on steps to make that happen. Find out if you can get on the next flight. Also, think through the situation. For example, no one is trying to ruin your trip. Delays and cancellations happen to everyone. They have many causes like weather or mechanical problems.
Work Hard to Solve the Problem
Work toward finding a solution. Try this approach:
- Find out exactly what the problem is
- Think of a range of possible solutions
- Think about the outcome of each solution
- Decide on the best approach
Set Aside Time to Talk
Are you having a conflict with someone you are close to? If so, think about what might happen if you lash out. For example, you could really hurt this person and damage the relationship. Is this really what you want? Instead of letting your anger flare up, wait until you are calmer. Schedule a time to discuss the situation in a peaceful place.
Work to get your message across without attacking the other person. Try to use "I-statements." For example, "I feel neglected when you don't ask about my job." The goal is to express how you feel but not hurt the other person.
Discussing an issue is not just about expressing yourself. Listen carefully. What is the other person saying? Do they have a valid point? Instead of anger, look for what you have in common. Try to be patient.
It is possible to learn new ways to deal with anger. Anger does not have to take over your life and hurt others. If you are struggling, find a therapist. Look for one who helps with anger management. A therapist can also help with other mental health problems, if needed.
American Psychological Association
Mental Health America
Canadian Mental Health Association
Canadian Psychiatric Association
Anger management. Helpguide website. Available at: http://www.helpguide.org/articles/emotional-health/anger-management.htm. Accessed June 8, 2021.
Anger management 2: counselors strategies and skills. Eric Digests website. Available at: http://www.ericdigests.org/2004-3/anger-2.html. Accessed June 8, 2021.
Dealing with anger in marriage. The Ohio State University website. Available at: http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/5000/pdf/5191.pdf. Accessed June 8, 2021.
Strategies for controlling your anger. American Psychological Association website. Available at: http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/controlling-anger.aspx. Accessed June 8, 2021.
Last reviewed June 2021 by EBSCO Medical Review Board