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How to control anger: Ways to control anger, temper and rage problems

Updated on May 1, 2013
You may not realize this but when you get angry and lose your temper, you are actually fighting a battle with yourself in which you will scar no one else but your own mental well being.
You may not realize this but when you get angry and lose your temper, you are actually fighting a battle with yourself in which you will scar no one else but your own mental well being. | Source

How to control anger? How to stop throwing temper tantrums? How to calm down during rage? This post identifies practical ways to control anger problems and anger management issues unlike glossy self-help websites which talk about complicated solutions that ignore the human side of anger, a volatile and unpredictable emotion.


1) Keep your distance from a volatile situation

The easiest way to avoid getting angry at someone or something is to distance yourself from the situation. Before you even try to control you anger and temper, walk away from a situation that has the potential to turn volatile.


Distancing yourself from a situation that attracts your anger will steal away your chance of getting angry. Just ignore everything and walk away. It does not matter whether you walk away in arrogance or you walk away in humility because the important thing is that you avoided a temper flare out.


2) Close your eyes, breathe deeply and consciously ten times

Most anger management techniques talk about counting to ten as a basic exercise to calm your rage down. Go one step further and breathe deeply ten times. Consciously feel the air filling your lungs as you inhale slowly and deeply. Contract your upper body and feel the air gushing out as you exhale slowly.


There is no need to talk to yourself or tell your mind anything. Just focus on your breathing and give your mind a clean canvas at the end of your 10 breaths. This will help in instantly dousing the flames of anger and putting your mind at ease.


3) Think objectively: Don't let emotions take control of your anger

People who are prone to anger find themselves throwing out fits of rage when they become too involved in a situation. This is when emotions take over logical thinking and wreak havoc in the mind of a person who may already be trying hard to hold back his or her anger.


Don't allow this to happen by reminding yourself to think objectively. Whenever you find yourself arguing with your partner, reprimanding your children or picking a battle with a colleague, think of how you would handle a situation as a third party who has no background of the situation.


4) Use humor to control anger: How business professionals rule the boardrooms

Use humor to make fun of someone and win an argument rather than resorting to rage. This is a trick that is commonly put in use by the best of professionals who know that a fit of rage could mean the end of their careers.


Business professionals are known to use humorous taunts and jibes to makes someone feel bad rather than lose their temper and risk their jobs. You too can control your anger by using humor to defeat someone when you are having an argument with them.


Ask a friend to watch your behavior and stop you when you get angry.
Ask a friend to watch your behavior and stop you when you get angry.

5) Ask your friend or loved one to help you

One of the benefits of having a friend, girlfriend, boyfriend, husband, wife or other close family members is that you can ask them to tap you back into senses when they see you losing your temper.


Choose a person who you trust the most and give them the job of helping you to control your anger. Give them the freedom to do anything they want to bring you back to your calm self every time they see you getting angry.


This may create an unnecessary scene for a few times but it will leave a lasting and ugly memory in your head, making you realize how bad it gets when you can't control your anger.


6) Look back at the times you controlled your anger effectively

Experience and hindsight are life's biggest teachers. Self-realization is your most powerful tool against anger, rage and temper outbursts. Think about a time when you controlled your anger, which brought a beneficial end to a situation.


For example, there may have been a time when you put your anger aside and helped an irritating colleague with a workplace issue, leading to better performance for the whole time. Think about moments like these when you have some time to introspect on your behavior.


Be proud of yourself for handling the situation maturely to yield a benefit. This will bring a long term solution to your anger problem.


7) Remove the trigger to your anger: Identify and neutralize the cause of your anger

The emotions of anger get an outlet when there is a person, event or situation that acts as a trigger. Classic triggers include someone making the same mistake again and again, someone mocking you about a sensitive issue or a long time tiff with a friend or a colleague.


You must identify the trigger of your anger and deal with it immediately. For example, if the annoying habits of a colleague are bothering you since many months, ask him or her to stop it immediately. Take your concern to your boss if your colleague refuses to work with you. The trick is to immediately neutralize the cause of your anger.


8) Think about the benefits of staying calm and avoiding anger

Fixate yourself into such a scenario and think of the biggest advantage of staying calm every time you feel that you can't control your anger. A visible and instant benefit will help you bring down your temper and motivate you to tackle any situation with a calm attitude.


Gaining the love of your wife or husband, impressing a girl or guy, making good decisions and earning the respect of your colleagues are just a few of the benefits of staying calm in typical home, school and workplace scenarios.


Taking out all your frustration in the gym will leave you mentally light and physically healthier.
Taking out all your frustration in the gym will leave you mentally light and physically healthier.

9) Take our your frustration in the gym to exhaust yourself

Anger can sometimes arise out of frustration in your own life being caused by unhappiness in love, fights with husband or wife, problems at work or any other personal issue. Getting angry at someone or something could be your way of channelizing the frustration of your life on someone else.


Go to the gym and tire yourself out to take out your frustration. Use your rage to push yourself on the treadmill, burn yourself out in aerobics or lift heavier. Look at your workout as a way to battle your anger problem and get fit while doing it. Motivation to build some serious muscle or losing some extra pounds will be the healthier side effect of letting your anger out.


10) Remember that real and cool heroes never get angry

How many times do you see Penny from the Big Bang Theory going into a rage because of Sheldon's quirky habits? How many times would you see Charlie Sheen losing his temper? How many times did you see Joey from the hit series Friends get angry and verbally abuse other characters?


Pick any movie, comic or TV show and you will notice that the cool guys and girls never get angry. They will laugh at others and mock someone's aggressiveness but they will never lose their cool. Remind yourself that you will never be cool if you lose your temper frequently.


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    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Anger can drive certain people into many violent actions and you have pointed out such valuable points here on how to control anger.

    • nurseleah profile image

      Leah Wells-Marshburn 

      5 years ago from West Virginia

      There are a lot of really useful tips in this article that can be used by most anyone with an anger problem. As a mental health professional, I would like to caution against overuse of #4: using humor to make fun of others. All the other tips are very constructive ways of dealing with anger, but making fun of someone to win an argument is not constructive. While business professionals may use tactics like that regularly, it doesn't address the underlying issues for people who have real anger management problems. Using sarcasm is a passive aggressive tactic to hurt someone else and is not healthy for either the angry person or the victim of the comment. Of course, it is better to use humor than to lose a job, but over the long term, the overuse of this coping style likely will not address any underlying anger problems.

      #7: Identifying triggers is an excellent tip. Too often, we react rather than purposefully act. If we know what our own triggers are in advance, we can plan ways to handle situations when we become angry. Feeling confident and assertive help a lot with this.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      5 years ago from The Caribbean

      "Cool guys and girls never get angry." I like that. You give very practical tips on controlling anger. If number one doesn't work, there's always something else we can do. Thanks and voted up.

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