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Anger Management Counselling

Anger is one of our most basic, primal emotions and it is often linked to survival. When humans feel threatened by situations we often respond with anger. This is why anger is often linked with what is known as the “Fight or Flight” response and it can be an essential survival tool. Anger can also be triggered by physical and emotional pain.

Why Does Anger Happen?

All too often we feel angry and we may not even know where that anger came from. Anger happens because we have had an experience that left us feeling afraid, disrespected, attacked, pressured, trapped, or offended. While we may not necessarily be aware of these initial feelings, if they are intense enough and perceived to be real threats, they may trigger the feeling of anger. Before we know it, we have labelled the entire emotional experience simply as “Anger” when in fact there was a feeling present before anger.

    What Can I Do About Anger?

    Understanding more about what anger is and where anger comes from can be a great first step in gaining some control and mastery over this challenging emotion. While it may not feel like it, there is actually a space between the initial feeling of threat and the response of anger. As you get more aware of what triggers your anger, you can get better at noticing the initial feeling or emotion and not just the anger. If you simply allow anger to run its typical route through your brain and your body, you will eventually see anger causing problems in your life and in your relationships.

    Once you begin to practice watching for the initial emotion underlying the response of anger you can begin to use some techniques that will assist you to manage your anger more effectively. Some of the questions you may ask yourself as you notice that anger is present can include thoughts like:

    • What am I afraid of?
    • Am I trying to control something?
    • What do I have control of in this situation?
    • Why is this bothering me so much?
    • Are there other situations that feel like this for me?

    As you ask these questions you will notice that you are better able to stay in the more helpful part of your brain, rather than moving into the survival part of your brain where constructive solutions are less likely to be found.