The Secret to Controlling Your Anger

It’s not “mental health.” It’s uncontrolled anger.

Since the general term “mental health” is being erroneously substituted in discussions lately for the specific problem of uncontrolled anger, I’ve decided to beat the drum of anger management.

As I’ve said before, violence is not the result of “mental health problems.” It is the result of uncontrolled anger. And yes, of course, uncontrolled anger is a mental health problem. But it’s ONE mental health problem. Not everyone with a mental health problem has an uncontrolled anger problem.

the secret to controlling your anger


So, what does it mean to control your anger?

Well, obviously, and quite simply, it means that you don’t perpetrate violence on anyone, or anything. But beyond that, it means that you have the ability to recognize angry feelings in your body and that you can control the words you say and the actions you take.

feel like a monster

What’s the secret to controlling your anger?

The first part of the secret is no secret at all. It’s the big “new” thing these days, actually. It’s mindfulness. Also known as paying intentional attention to the sensations and mental activities in your body.

Woman hiding her emotions

In order to control something, you first have to recognize that it’s there and get to know the varying intensities of it. Once you’re able to recognize what’s there, then you can control it.

Now for the secret to controlling your anger

Bioenergetic pounding with heavy bag

Controlling your anger means not only being able to keep from taking violent action when angry feelings are stoked up in your body by some outside influence. It also means being able to generate aggressive feelings and actions on command in a controlled environment. The purpose is to build and discharge angry energy that is currently locked up inside you. You create a private time and place to discharge from all the previous times you quelled the angry beast that wanted to burst forth in violent action.

Responsible Stress Relief - Illustration of man doing bioenergetic exercise

Let me say that again. Controlling your anger includes finding appropriate times and places to stoke the fire of your aggressive energy and discharging it. Even if at first it makes you feel stupid to do so.

That’s because you’re not really in control of something if you can’t make it come when you call it, now are you?

controlling your anger

Got a dog that won’t come when you call it? Who’s in charge there? It’s the same with anger.

The less you recognize it in yourself, and the more you “control” it by forcing it underground, the more likely it is going to come out in violent words and actions.

So, if you want to be someone who truly controls your anger rather than pretending it doesn’t exist and losing control when something triggers it, give me a call. We’ll talk.

Emotional Utopia, the book by Leah Benson, LMHC

Contact me now to set up your free 15-minute phone consultation.

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