My life changed when my perspective about anger changed. We all experience anger even the most “peaceful person” I learned that if managed in healthy ways, anger can be a positive thing, a red flag that something’s wrong. For me, it became a catalyst for change and humbleness to recognize my need for God.
The way we deal with anger today was modeled and built at home, maybe you didn’t have positive role models for anger management while growing up and today dealing with anger can be confusing or even scary; Just know, that there are healthy ways to deal with it and the first step is to humbly invite God into this process of accepting anger as another emotion but also examining the way you deal with anger to start making changes that from my personal experience It has the potential to impact your health, relationships and overall happiness.
What grounds you?
A playlist, a specific smell, breathing and counting, walking, writing? Have that in mind when you are dealing with anger.
Here is an example on how I personally deal with it: I don’t like to be late and when I wake up late (mind you, I chose to go to sleep late and I chose to hit snooze) naturally, I am rushing and rushing anyone that is with me (My husband and kids) my tone is not the same, my answers are short there is a lot of mumbling, checking the time back and forth and constantly saying: we are late, hurry up. Let’s go!… Can you relate?
YES! I know its annoying and I strongly dislike when people do it to me BUT if I allow myself to get to that point frustration is going to be build up and I will react in anger that will clearly reflect on my face, the way I walk, the way I drive and my perpetual silence. Instead, I have learned to ground myself; If I am late to a commitment, I text immediately to let them know I am late, explain the kids we are late and need their help and (flash power) to do everything fast and promise them a movie in the car lol and the most important thing that (when I actually do it) works!… is to intentionally ground myself. I put my headphones breathe in and out for a minute and listen to music or a podcast as I organize everything I need. Yes, I am silent but I am being mindful of my reactions, my facial expression changes and even my heart rate stabilizes.
What grounds you? Don’t just think about it, Write it down and share it with someone.
“Anger makes your mouth work faster than your heart” yup! no doubt about that, but if you express yourself immediately your words might hurt someone else and my mom has always said this to me: “Never say mean words out of anger, anger will pass but your words can scar a person for life” The truth is that our words have the potential to hurt the people we love the most.
One of the ways I express myself is writing. (If you could read my phone notes) Ha! no worries, I try to erase those awful, cringing notes after! But for real, Writing has helped me so much when I am angry!
I just write everything (roaches, scorpios and snakes) might come out in my writing but after I write everything I want to say and I read it, I laughed at myself lol I am able to regroup my thoughts and usually the lord allows me to see my fault or another perspective over the situation. If its something with someone else, I re-write my note and I make myself go, send the text or call the person and tell them.
It usually starts like this: I didn’t want to write, say, call…. BUT (deep breaths)… I have something to read to you… or I just end up showing up to a coffee date with a paper. It has helped me wonders because I am able to acknowledge the emotion, process it but also release in a healthy way.
Let it go.
If you already spoke about it, wrote about it or spoke to someone you trust about it… LET IT GO. Not letting go just shows a deeper issue that you need to deal with God and not hold the other person or situation hostage. Crying to God with the truth has helped me more than talking about an specific situation or person over and over again to someone else at that point it can become gossip!
If you haven’t been able to let it go is because you haven’t made amends with the person and yourself.EAH
If you can’t stop thinking about it: Ask God to mentor your mind. Let him be the leader and position yourself to follow. When God invites us to renew our minds is more than the ability to think is the ability to choose what to think.
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4:8”
Work intentionally in turning your anger into a learning opportunity.
Anger is like an alarm, that alerts us of something going on internally. If we’re willing to do a little bit of work, we can turn that anger into a learning experience. First, by asking ourselves what expectation has been unmet? or what caused me to feel that way? Second, by tracing that feeling down to its root, to the best of our ability. Third, by asking the question, “Will I allow this person or situation control me? or am I going to acknowledge this emotion and work through it so that I act upon it not react to it.
How does acting upon your emotions look like?
Allow me to use a personal example, I work against the desire to create distance and isolate myself from me, from God, from others. Why? because my default is to isolate and distract myself. but I intentionally choose to use all my energy to stay present in the emotion that sometimes causes pain. Personally, I see it as a form of strength to pay attention to what God pays attention (The state of my heart) because I have learned that God manifests in our lives exactly where we are, He meets us right in the need of our hearts.
So why waiting until you are not angry to look for him? He is not looking for a perfect performance, he is waiting for a real heart, yup!… and angry heart that it can be soften with his love.
God is manifesting, right here, right now in this moment. in your life, will you allow him to turn your anger into a learning experience?
I can remember his presence in the past, I can anticipate his presence in the future, but I can only be attentive to his presence right here, right now. Can you feel his presence?
He is with you right now.
If you read all the way through here, allow God to examine your heart and love on you as you discover for yourself healthy ways to deal with anger and keep on living your everyday like a holiday!