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Tips for Managing Anger

Do you find that you are easily frustrated, quick to anger, or have a hot temper? Managing your anger may be an important skill for you! Through better managing and control of anger, you can feel calmer, less stressed, and let things go more easily. 

Letting anger continue to build can have a detrimental impact on your health. Anger increases stress and anxiety, which can increase blood pressure, sleep disturbance, headaches, and stomach discomfort as well as can have an effect on your cardiac health, impact your immune system, and increase your risk of stroke. 

Working to better control anger can have several positive benefits for your physical, emotional, and mental health. Decreased anger can also have a positive impact on your relationships and overall outlook on life! Below are some tips to help you to work on better managing anger.

Tips for Managing Anger:

Pause before speaking:

This initial step is one of the most obvious, but also one of the hardest. It may take going through the next few steps to actually be able to get your emotions more in control where you are able to think before speaking or reacting. The goal here is to put in a pause when you are feeling overly upset or angry. This pause will allow you to regain your composure before you just speak or react to the situation. 

Take a time-out:

This step is critical in helping you do task #1. When you take a quick time out, then it will allow you to do that pause before reacting. However, for some people, the time out may last for several days. The point is to take a break to allow yourself the space to get your emotions under control. 

Get physically active:

Getting physically active on a regular basis as well as during times of high frustration and anger can be key in calming down and keeping your temper at bay. Having a physical outlet can help to express and get rid of anger in your body. Exercising or taking a walk when you are at peak anger can also provide an immediate decrease in anger. 

Practice mindfulness:

Keeping yourself calm and relaxed is an important skill in managing anger. Mindfulness is a state of being fully in tune with how you are feeling, emotionally, mentally and physically. Being in this heightened state of awareness can be beneficial for many reasons, including having more insight and awareness about yourself as well as being calmer, more relaxed and lowering your anger levels. Try a brief mindfulness practice each day or several times a week to learn how to maintain a state of calm in your daily life. 

Stress management skills:

Anger is often tied to high stress and tension; therefore, it’s important to implement stress management skills. Stress can be completely unavoidable; therefore, developing good coping skills to handle stress is crucial. Be sure to come up with a regular routine in your daily or weekly schedule that can help to reduce the stress and anxiety in your life. Some examples include: meditation, mindfulness, walking, running, reading a book, listening to music, art, knitting, fishing, etc. For more examples, click here.

Let it go: 

An important piece to managing anger is practicing forgiveness. This is crucial because if you don’t let things go, they will only continue to build and actually accumulate. Therefore, expressing your anger (when you’re in a calmer state), letting it go and not holding grudges, is really key to moving forward and reducing anger. 

Look Underneath:

The final tip is to be sure and review what may be underlying your anger. Perhaps you are feeling more stressed than usual, under a large amount of tension or feeling anxious or depressed? It’s important to examine the underlying reasons for your quick to temper state. Taking a few moments to engage in self-reflection can help you to examine any personal issues that may be impacting your mood, which can lead to resolving anger in a better and more effective manner.

It is important to note that if you are finding that you are regularly practicing the above steps and feel that your anger remains out of control, then it may be time to seek professional help. There are often anger management programs in your local area or you can search on online directories to find psychologists or coaches who treat anger and work on self-improvement.

If you’d like to set an appointment with Dr. Sommerfeldt for online sessions, you can book by clicking here.


Blog written by: Dr. Shelley Sommerfeldt, Clinical Psychologist, Relationship Coach & Founder of the Loving Roots Project, an online wellness practice specializing in personal growth, mental wellness, & relationship betterment.

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