The effective management of anger is one of the most important skills in daily living. Both its expression and the receiving of it.
Anger is a very legitimate emotion that signals that your boundaries or values have been compromised or violated. Someone has done something to offend you or hasn’t done something that you had expected or felt deserving of. The arousal of emotion in reaction to this offense, takes the form of a demand for an apology or some form of restorative action.
Anger isn’t problematic in and of itself, but often its intensity is not proportional to the “violation” perceived. With appropriate anger, you express your protests in a firm but respectful manner that maximizes a positive response in return. But when its intensity is excessive and often infused with loud blame and hostility, the response will either be hostile or suppressive, neither of which are satisfying.
When working with clients who are too angry, I work first to modulate the excessive energy of the anger. By encouraging neither the suppression or the expression of it I help the client learn to experience its Energy directly as it is felt in his or her body. By focusing on the pure bodily sensations and refraining from emphasizing the thought-story of why they are angry, which only incites blame and negativity, the intensity of the anger can subside on its own. Then the appropriate expression of it can occur.
I introduce clients to certain communication skills that maximize the healthy expression of anger and the non-defensive hearing of it. It is quite amazing how just changing certain words and phrases of language can result in open collaborative dialogue rather than unproductive arguing and power struggles
I also explore the historical roots of your anger that has contributed to your particular reactivity. For instance, how did your parents deal with their anger towards each other? How did they express their anger to you? How did you treat your parents and your siblings?
These and other constitutional factors such as your size, temperament, ability to tolerate frustration are also examined with solutions offered for problematic areas.
All aspects of unproductive anger or explored and worked with until you have acquired significant coping mechanisms to manage your anger or perhaps even resolved it’s most troubling aspects so that is barely a problem anymore.