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Managing Your Anger

Here are some do's and don'ts with anger management:

DO:

  • express how you feel clearly and concisely

  • recognize your early signs of anger to keep it from escalating

  • take a time-out for at least 20 minutes to calm down

  • find healthy outlets (vigorous exercise, free writing) to express your anger safely

  • do make amends by acknowledging abusive anger

DON'T:

  • blame others for how you feel. Own your feelings.

  • ignore your emotions -- they will turn into a stress response and unresolved hurt

  • leave. Instead, let them know you need a break

  • use swearing, threatening gestures, block exits or engage in physical contact

  • just say sorry. Find the tools to change.

Helpful tips to help manage your anger, especially when engaging with another person:

  • REMEMBER: Your thoughts cause your anger. The other person does not cause your anger.

  • ASK: Is my anger going to help me achieve my goals?

  • STOP: Being defensive. Listen to the other person and try to understand their perspective.

  • THINK: Where am I on the tension/stress scale? (A good practice is to rank your stress or tension from 1-10 with 10 being the most severe. After ranking, cope accordingly).

  • PRACTICE: Deep breathing and relaxation techniques

  • IF NECESSARY: Walk away and calm down

For more helpful tips on communication and conflict resolution, see my blog post "Conflict in Relationships"

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