When people have trouble controlling their anger, they will sometimes need anger management. However, anger management can be helpful for just about anyone. As humans, we have many emotions that dictate how we feel about events, people, and circumstances. However, some “negative” emotions are stigmatized heavily in society. It's not uncommon for someone to be taught that anger is bad. However, this is not true.
Anger, like any other emotion, is an important part of being human. Completely ignoring one's anger can cause several problems, one of which is bottling emotions to the point that they explode. This is not healthy, nor is it a productive way to utilize your emotions. Sometimes, a person has trouble controlling their anger because they were never taught the tools needed to regulate emotions. Often, people have trouble controlling anger as a response to stress and trauma.
Without the skills needed to cope with anger, it sometimes can spill over to harm both yourself and those around you. This includes attempting to self-medicate to control anger, which can lead to substance abuse disorder (SUD). It can mean isolating yourself from loved ones to prevent harming them. Regardless, none of these are the right way to deal with and control anger.
Anger management often has a negative stigma attached to it. This is because, many times, abusive people are ordered to take anger management as part of a sentencing or other legal requirement. However, anger management is useful to anyone in need of help. Pathways Wellness Center believes strongly that everyone is entitled to quality and compassionate mental health care. It doesn't matter who a person is. If they ask for help, they will receive it.
To understand why anger management is so useful, we must first understand what anger is, and why it isn't necessarily bad.
Anger is one of the many natural emotions that a human being has. It's a direct and adaptive response to a threat that we feel can harm us. This can be from a physical threat (such as someone attacking you) or an injustice (such as someone mistreating you and your feelings). Regardless of its source, anger causes an emotional and physical response that increases heart rate, releases hormones, and causes feelings of aggressiveness.
A person can become angry from internal or external circumstances, known as events. For example, getting angry at being stuck in traffic or a specific person is an external event. Becoming angry because you are struggling with traumatic memories or insecurities is an internal event.
Anger is a survival trait that protects someone from physical harm and injustice. It inspires people to fight for civil rights and right societal wrongs. When channeled properly, people can use anger to fuel works of art, music, and other forms of media. Anger is an emotion that helps people defend their loved ones in times of danger. It's not, at its core, an evil emotion. It simply is what it is: an emotion. Learning to channel and cope with anger properly is an important life skill that, sadly, many do not get to learn. This is mostly due to the stigmatization of anger and the lack of education about anger and healthy coping skills.
Lack of anger control, however, does not give someone the excuse to take their anger out on other people who do not deserve it. As people, we must follow a set of laws and a general social code that prevents unnecessary conflict. If someone cannot control their anger, it can spill out and harm those around them.
When someone finds themselves losing their temper at minor inconveniences or cannot go through a day without a major anger event, it's time to find help through anger management.
Anger management is a program specifically tailored to those with difficulty controlling their temper. It's a type of therapy that has several goals. These goals are to:
These goals are often accomplished through the use of individual and group therapy. The main type of therapy used to help someone identify the underlying source of their anger is psychotherapy. Then, they can work with their client to accept why they feel angry. Afterward comes the teaching of vital life skills to help someone healthily regulate their emotions.
The other important aspect of anger management is identifying what exactly makes them angry. This allows someone to learn how to work around these triggers. For example, if someone becomes irrationally angry at the sound of someone chewing food (part of misophonia), they may learn to cope with it by wearing noise-canceling headphones when eating in public.
Anger management programs will also make use of peer networks and support groups. These allow clients to discuss their experiences with others with similar problems. This type of support helps people understand that they are not allowed and find the support and understanding they need to succeed.
Anger management programs can be found at most mental health care facilities. Some specialized treatment centers, like Pathways Wellness Center, will offer anger management as part of addiction treatment. If you are interested in participating in anger management, contact your local mental health care facility. They will help you find the programs you need to help you, and your loved ones, manage anger.
Contrary to popular belief, not all anger is bad. Anger, like any other negative emotion, is there as a tool to keep us from harm. However, when someone cannot control their anger or expresses anger in harmful ways, it's time to seek help. Here at Pathways Wellness Center in Glendora, California, we help our clients learn how to express themselves in productive and healthy ways. Anger is a normal human emotion, and a person is not bad because they feel it. Our goal is for everyone to learn how to embrace themselves and find the healing they need to recover. If you or someone you love is struggling, don't delay. Call us today at (888) 771-0966.