Q. Everything seems to make me angry. It frightens me to be so out of control. What can I do?
A. Newsflash: Despite its bad press, anger can be a valuable force, helping you to identify unacceptable issues and then motivating you to do something about them. Think of anger as a barometer – by alerting you to changes in the ‘weather’ around you, it helps you to adapt and defend yourself. Anger only becomes dangerous when you don’t acknowledge or express it, and it simmers beneath the surface.
First, recognise that there is a specific reason for your anger, which is presently spilling over into all aspects of your life in a non-specific way. Next, work out exactly what it is. This can be tricky; for example, My boss makes me angry because she’s never satisfied with what I do may, on deeper reflection, actually be I’m frustrated in this job, but I’m not smart enough to do anything else. The more clearly you see the issue, the more effectively you can tackle it. Remember that, when you increase emotion, you decrease intelligence – that is, you think less rationally.
Practise detachment: Meditation will help you process your thoughts and identify the steps needed to change the situation. A final piece of advice? Let the anger out. Whether it’s drumming, running or vigorous house-cleaning, find a physical outlet that works for you.