Monday, 29 August 2011


Anger can't always be prevented, nor should it be. Anger is an inevitable emotion, even a protective one when it helps us recognize a problem that we need to try to solve. ~Brazelton and Sparrow

I don't agree with the whole of the above statement. Anger can't always be prevented and with that I agree. I also agree that it can be a protective emotion, in small doses. However, I do not believe it needs to be solved.

Have you ever been so angry you felt you could hurt someone?
Ever yelled so much that your head hurt whilst you were yelling?
Have you ever been so angry that the words coming out of your mouth were not really something you wanted to say, but you had lost control?

Many people feel angry. Anger is a normal emotion, what is not normal is how we let it control our lives. 

What is anger?
Is it just an emotion? 
Is it physical? 
Is it a sensation? 
Is is it an object?

What makes us angry? Who makes us angry?

These are some of the questions we may ask. More important than any of those answers though is why do we let ourselves get angry?

It is not pleasant to feel angry. Our blood pressure rises, our heart rate rises and we make our heart work harder. We send our endocrine system into overdrive producing stress hormones and when this is an ongoing habit that we form, we begin to see it manifest physically. We develop ulcers, frown lines, high blood pressure, a shorter temper, agitated, we worry more and we then get on a circle of being angry little victims in life. Anger very much feels physical and produces unpleasant sensations in our minds and our bodies. So what you may say? Over time and that can be a lifetime or a few months, it takes time from our lives. It is minutes, hours, weeks or days that we can not claim back once we feel happy again. Anger robs us time.

No one has the power to make us angry. No thing has the power to make us angry. There is nothing in the world that wields more power than our own minds can and it is only our state of mind that can reset the balance of power. 

If you look at the Buddhist belief anger is just a state of mind. Anger is not an object. It is not an actual being and it is not something that is actively in control. The buddhists call it a delusion. They do not mean this in the true psychiatric sense of the word, but more that it is a state of mind which is out of balance.

Think of an example of a time when you have been angry. It doesn't matter how angry you were, but what was it that got up your goat so to speak?

Was it the moron in the four wheel drive that cut you off whilst they were talking on their mobile phone?
The boss who gave you a job at the last minute that they need first thing in the morning?
Is is a co-worker who continuously runs late, takes long breaks and never pulls their weight yet always seem to get rewarded?
Are the kids fighting continuously, being demanding, not helping?

What was it that made you angry?

Now that you have recognised the anger trigger what do you do with it?

Let it go.

Seriously, let it go.

What do you gain from being angry about this particular thing or at a person? Will the world end? No it won't.
Sure your house may not get cleaned; the kids may trash it and themselves; you may be late for work; your co-worker will always be an inconsiderate twit and your boss well perhaps you could give them some tips on being organised and delegating responsibly.

I spent a great deal of my life being angry. Angry at and about everything, but really about nothing. There were a few things I could change or control, but the biggest change had to come from me. It is an amazing feeling to let go. It is not easy, it will come in time. The next time that moron cuts you off in traffic you will smile to yourself and arrive to work maybe a few minutes late but at least you will be alive!

As for the rest let it go, in doing so you will save yourself time. 
You won't lose any more time being angry about something you may or may not have any control over. 

If you can make change, that is great we will look at that in time to come. So stay on board with me and I hope you will see things you haven't seen before. This is the gratitude-train and it is great to be alive.


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