What is Anger Made Of?
What is anger made of, made of? What is anger made of?
Disappointment, blame, frustration, stress, guilt, embarrassment, criticism, lack of control, hurt, discouragement, contention, discontentment, lack of time or resources, fault-finding, personal weakness, inability to express thoughts, and being overwhelmed.
That is what anger is made of.
Anger is a strong emotion. It occurs when you are faced with situations or behaviors you do not like or agree with. The automatic reaction to these situations is a strong negative feeling that permeates you. Anger is both psychological and physiological, therefore is affects you totally: i.e. your physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and intellectual well being. Anger can result from a combination of two or more emotions that become jumbled or stacked on top of one another. These emotions, left unresolved, fester and grow.
- For Your Emotional Health
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Disappointment is the let down that occurs when you expect something to happen and it does not. Examples are: a phone call from a friend, a paycheck that is late, a spouse or child not doing a household chore. The event that was expected brings high hopes and anticipation, then when it does not take place, the resulting feelings are of low self-worth and dislike for the person or party that did not follow through.
Unclear expectations breed disappointment. A parent who expects his or her child to do well in school, but does not let the child know of the expectation is bound to be disappointed. A child who expects his or her parent to give a ride after a school activity but does not make the proper arrangements may become disillusioned with the parent when the ride is not there.
Expectations clearly stated in the beginning do not guarantee that the job will be done to your satisfaction. Disappointment will happen because the world is not perfect. Allowing feelings of disappointment to fester gives rise to anger. Instead of becoming angry, recognize disappointment for what it is. Accept it as a part of life. Teach others what you want them to do. Work with them in setting realistic expectations. As a result, your feelings of anger and frustration will be minimized.
There are two types of guilt, productive and unproductive. Productive guilt leads to a change of actions and increased compliance with natural law. It is the first step in the repentance process. Self-searching and analysis follow, recognition of the broken law and remorse for the pain and suffering caused. Eventually, you desire to restore that which was lost, seek forgiveness and resolve to change for the better.
Unproductive guilt turns you inward, attacking yourself and destroying rather than changing. Conflicting circumstances often bring unproductive guilt. One example is the mother with young children. She feels a desire to assist with the family income through meaningful employment, yet has small children in her care. If she decides to work, she feels guilty about not being at home with her children. If she decides to stay home, she feels guilty for not contributing to the family income.
Unproductive guilt results from questioning a natural law. Looking at the long-term implications of the problem will help you identify the law. Ten or twenty years later in your life, what decision will have the most positive consequences? Find out what others have done and how they felt afterward helps. Project yourself into the future and ask, “What will I wish I had done?” In this way, unproductive guilt changes to positive action, and peace of mind follows.
The Desire for Control
Control comes from two different sources, inside or outside. Inward control is control of yourself by you. Be careful that your desire for self-control does not lead to perfectionism. The perfectionist desires control to the point that ideals become a sword with which to cut him or her self down. Self-criticism and self-condemnation lead to a chronically angry disposition and the adoption of self-destructive habits.
Outward control is control by others, or your own desire to control others. When you try to control others by anger and manipulation, or use larger size or higher authority to make them do what you want, your relationship with the other person is damaged. They may decide to avoid you because of the continual confrontation.
The desire for power and control increases greatly if the individual does not have control of their own appetites and passions. For example, the alcoholic spouse often becomes abusive. People in co-dependent relationships become controlling when they realize that their actions deeply affect the other party. Greed leads to control for the sake of gaining more money and power.
Check your motives to discover whether control is an issue. Both inner and outer control can be checked by seeking to understand and persuade rather than to manipulate and control.
You become frustrated when you are dissatisfied with the process or outcome you experience. When relationships do not go the direction you expect them to, it is easy to become frustrated. Working at a job where you do not have the knowledge or proper tools to complete it in an acceptable manner will bring automatic frustration. A person lacking in skills will not always understand the reason for the frustration, but if it continues to occur, anger follows.
Continually experiencing a negative outcome, no matter the area of life, will likely bring frustration. A coach, teacher, or parent, may sense frustration in others. Teach the skills that are lacking, thus building a relationship of trust with the person being taught. The same is true with an employer or supervisor who is sensitive to the needs of his or her employees.
Teach others to ask for help when it is needed, rather than allowing frustration to become anger. Asking for help takes humility or a lack of pride. It may seem difficult, but it is a refining process. There are certain times in life when skills are more easily taught. Take advantage of the time when people are in a skill-receptive state. Allow them to ask questions and learn, rather than brushing them off. You may have to put off your own desires for a time, but you will find that the desired knowledge and understanding is preparation for that which follows.
Stress is seeing more than you can do in the amount of time you are given. You feel an intense pressure to either perform or abandon, to fight or flee. The adrenal glands are pumping adrenalin into the blood system and the nerves are on edge. Stress is the opposite of relaxation. Unresolved stress leads to anger.
It is not always possible to remove the stressor. Stop and try to identify the stressor. In most situations, there are one or maybe two things that bring a climax to the stress. Identify these and deal with them immediately. The stressful feelings will be and minimized.
Your personal stress will increase when your energy levels are low. Lack of sleep, poor nutritional habits, and lack of exercise will create stress in your life whereas the opposite will help deal with it. Personal resiliency to stress increases with good decision-making and conflict resolution skills.
Spiritual well-being assists in dealing with stress. Quiet mediation on spiritual things brings emotional resiliency and knowledge in dealing with the ills of life. Good music provides a spiritual atmosphere that keeps the environment relatively stress-free.
Lack of Time and Resources
Lack of time and resources cause a pre-occupation of the mind to the point that personal or family needs become oblivious and unattended. Blaming is a natural tendency if there are circumstances out of your control that contribute to your lack of resources. Anger may be directed toward society, the workplace, and even the government.
Unfortunately, the situation is often worsened by the abuse of chemicals that increase the inability to cope. Turn around this type of situation by getting needed assistance. Let go of the blame. Give it to God and let him deal with it. Ask for his help in improving the situation. He will guide and direct you to the resources you need. Once you let go of the blame, you will find additional time for learning.
Unresolved Negative Emotions
Anger is one or more negative emotions that are left unresolved over a period of time. Much like an allergic reaction, the body can tolerate a certain level of the allergen or substance. The reaction happens only when the level is past the point of tolerance. People who are very sensitive reach the toleration point sooner than others. Watch for the following emotions as well.
- Feeling overwhelmed
- Blaming others
- Making assumptions
- Unresolved past hurt
Everyone is different. Understanding your own sensitivities and your reactions to others will help you understand and deal with your anger. The key is recognizing what the emotion is and resolving it rather than allowing it to fester. Once anger builds up, it must be released, and the result can be devastating. Allowing it to turn inward is just as harmful. Far better is the ability to recognize that negativity is a part of life and must be dealt with, just as the cold and snow of winter. As Jim Rohn says, we cannot make January go away by tearing it off of the calendar, rather we become stronger, wiser, and better, in our ability to handle the negative.
- Totally Change Distorted Thinking Patterns
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- The Physiology of Emotion
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