Manage Anger to Live Better - dummies

Manage Anger to Live Better

Part of Anger Management For Dummies Cheat Sheet (UK Edition)

Anger management can help you to build a happier, healthier and more productive life. To manage your anger, all you have to do is follow these steps:

  • Decide how you want to feel after you express your anger. Do you want to feel ashamed or frustrated later? Or do you want to have a better understanding of how to deal with the person you were angry at?

  • Acknowledge your anger. Nothing’s wrong with saying, ‘I am angry.’ Focus your anger on the problem, not the person. Try not to personalise your anger (say ‘You dropped my coffee mug’ rather than ‘You idiot’!) Stick to the issue that triggered the emotion: ‘I don’t feel you take care of my things’.

  • Identify the source of your anger. This is the most important step of all. The source of your anger is always you. It has to do with the way you think, how stressed you are, how much sleep you’ve had, an inability to forgive, and so on.

  • Accept that most problems can be solved. Most people use anger to try to control life or other people. Try controlling problems instead and life will be a lot less emotional.

  • Try to see things from the other person’s perspective. Like all emotions, anger is personal to you. Maybe if you looked at things from the other person’s viewpoint, you wouldn’t get so angry.

  • Cooperate with the person you’re angry at. Ask the other person, ‘What can we do about solving this problem so I don’t feel angry?’

  • Stay polite throughout. Nobody likes to be shouted at and, besides, the message gets lost when the volume goes up.

  • Be respectful. No rolling of your eyes, finger pointing, swearing, lecturing or sighing.

  • Make anger a two-way conversation. Don’t just be angry at someone – be angry with them. That means letting them have a say as well. Ask them how they feel about your anger – can they see your point too?