Feeling angry is a normal part of life. Usually anger is a result of feeling frustrated, insulted, deceived or even under attack. For many, it is a natural reaction that passes quickly. In some instances however, it can become a difficult emotion to control.
Failing to manage anger effectively can lead to mental and physical health problems. You may find your anger management issues are affecting your relationships, your work or even your self-esteem.
When does anger become a problem?
Anger can be a useful emotion that triggers a physical reaction in the body. This reaction is called ‘fight or flight’ and it normally happens when we are stressed or threatened. Adrenaline is pumped around the body, making you feel tense and ready to ‘fight’ the threat, or flee.
The problem here is that fighting or running away isn’t usually an appropriate option. This can make it difficult for us to express anger, and this is where some people develop a problem.
When you aren’t able to express your anger, you may bottle it up. This can cause angry outbursts at inappropriate times. It may also make you feel more angry in general, leading you to react more aggressively in other situations.
Why am I so angry?
Everyone is different and will have their own triggers. It could be that you feel you are being treated unfairly, or you may simply be frustrated. For many people a sense of powerlessness can lead to frustration and anger.
To understand why you are angry, it can be helpful to look at your past experiences. Some people’s backgrounds and upbringing can influence how they cope with anger. It may be that your parents were overly angry and violent when you were younger, so you were brought up to believe this behaviour is normal.
Do I need help with anger management?
Recognising that you have a problem with anger management can be difficult. You may think being angry is just the way you are, or you may not recognise your symptoms as anger related.
If the following has happened, you may benefit from professional anger management help:
- Your behaviour has led you to break the law.
- You are violent towards your partner, family or other people.
- You deliberately break things or damage property.
- You regularly argue with those close to you.
- You feel angry constantly but feel unable to express yourself.
- You feel out of control when you are angry and are worried about what you might do.
In terms of getting help, there are various approaches you could try including dedicated programmes, talking therapies and anger management hypnotherapy.
Anger management courses often help groups of people at a time. The aim of these courses is to offer alternative ways of dealing with anger. They often teach self-help techniques and relaxation exercises.
Talking therapies like counselling and cognitive behavioural therapy normally take place one on one. These approaches will try to help you understand the cause of your anger. The ultimate goal is to help you change your behaviour.
Hypnotherapy is an increasingly popular therapy option for those looking to change their behaviour. Anger management hypnotherapy in particular can help establish the underlying source of anger before changing unhelpful thought patterns. To do so, your hypnotherapist will work on a conscious and unconscious level to help change your negative thought processes. Doing this may involve relaxation techniques and suggestions from your hypnotherapist to help control your anger.
The hope is that this will change your reaction to anger triggers. Instead of feeling overwhelmed and angry, you should feel calmer and more relaxed. Feeling calmer in stressful situations helps you to think more clearly so you can react in a more appropriate way.
The number of hypnotherapy sessions you’ll need will depend on your individual circumstances. It is likely that your hypnotherapist will teach you some self-hypnosis techniques and relaxation tips. You can use these at home when you feel angry or stressed to help you control your anger in the long-term.