12 Universal Laws for Managing Anger
1. The Law of Everyone
It is not neccessarily wrong to get angry. You get angry, I get angry, all God's children get angry. It's what we do with our anger that makes the difference.
2. The Law of Stress
Although we don't often think of anger as a form of stress, it is by far one of the largest and most destructive forms of daily stress. Manage your anger, and you manage a large amount of your stress.
3. The Law of Choice
Anger is rarely if ever an automatic response. It's a choice. It's a choice because we have to think about something before we get angry.
4. The Law of Shoulds
We all have beliefs about how the world and the people around us should behave. When these beliefs are violated, anger is a natural, and sometimes reasonable response. The problem is that when we "should" on somebody, it can become a trigger for our anger. For example, if we run the sentence "that driver should not have cut in front of me" over and over in our heads, the response is not likely to be pretty. At best we'll raise our blood pressure, and at worst do something really stupid.
5. The Law of Blame
Another one of our thoughts that lead quickly to anger involves
blaming someone or something. The dance of blame is a deadly two step: 1) someone is at fault, and 2) they should be punished - anger can be very punishing.
6. The Law of Cause
This one is closely related to the law of blame. There is a myth in our culture that very few people ever question. The best example is the phrase "he made me angry." Well, bull! No one can make us angry without our cooperation.
7. The Law of Emflaming
Another myth is that if we are able to vent our anger it will
automatically decrease. That is not necessarily so. I once watched a neighbor stomp around the side of his house, grumbling and swearing as he went. Stomping by the air conditioning unit, he smashed his fist down on top of it. That move not only made him more angry, it looked to me like it hurt a lot too. Grumbling and swearing even louder, he stomps into his backyard and kicks a lounge chair. It didn't appear to calm him down, and it looked like that one hurt too. I found out later that he broke both his hand and his foot on his romp around the yard.
8. The Law of Source
In almost every case, anger is a secondary emotion. In other words, we experience some other strong emotion before we feel the anger. Follow the source and you usually come up with one of three strong emotions - fear, frustration or hurt, or some combination of the above. Deal with fear, frustration and hurt and you can cut anger off at the pass.
9. The Law of Battles
Learn to pick your battles. If you get angry at everything, then your anger means nothing. If that sounds confusing, here's an example: how much would gold be worth if we all had it in abundance? That's right, not much. Gold is valuable because it is so rare. If you are always getting angry, people stop taking you seriously and just want to avoid you.
10. The Law of Worth
Ask your self this question: " is this situation worth getting angry over?" Most time it just isn't.
11. The Law of Muscles
Learn to exercise your choice muscles.We can choose to be angry or we can choose another way of handling the situation.
12. The Law of Channeling
When you do get angry, channel it into something you can use to benefit you, such as motivating you into changing what can be changed.
Author Jeff Herring. www.secretsofgreatrelationships.com