Anger Management Techniques

One of the greatest detriments of anger is that it makes us feel helpless and out of control. Anger management techniques aren't meant to eliminate your anger. Anger management techniques put you in charge of the situation and teach you how to make your anger work for you.

When we take the attitude that "there's no time like the present" to vent our anger and "let it rip", anger often tears huge holes in the fabric of our lives, dropping us down the rabbit hole with no way up! Anger management techniques help you learn to express your anger in constructive ways and sew up your problems before you find yourself trying to mend fences instead.

Silly mental pictures can help diffuse anger in many situations.

Anger Management Technique #1: Accentuate the positive.
Your partner or spouse is late again and it's making you mad as a hatter. Picture yourself at the "Mad Hatter's tea party", the White Rabbit making his entrance "I'm late - I'm always late". Surely, the Cheshire cat's smile is growing in the background as the angry dormouse shrinks back into the teapot! Why? Because your partner's tardiness just bought you some extra time!

  • Use the time to file your nails, read that magazine article you don't have time to read, file your nails, check your e-mail...

Anger Management Technique #2: Put your anger on hold.
Your partner arrives an hour late and full of excuses. You've managed to stay reasonably calm, but you can see your anger rearing its head. Say, "I know White Rabbit. Let's talk about it later and smile! You are still in control of your emotions and the situation; that's what's important. Timing is often critical to keeping anger at bay. Don't discuss issues when you're tired, or the situation has already made you irritable. Do choose a time to find solutions to problems; just make it when you can talk rationally and comfortably - when you can stay in control.

Anger Management Technique #3: Let humor calm you down.

  • Ex: Another driver "cuts you off" in traffic. Break it down to the ridiculous. Lean back in your seat and take a deep breath. Breathe a sigh of relief that you at least still have your legs! Picture how silly you must look to other drivers, tooling down the road in your "cut off" vehicle. Parallel parking will sure be a breeze now, won't it?

Anger Management Technique #4: Don't react to anger - respond.
A major anger management technique is in changing the way you think and learning to respond to anger instead of reacting to it. Reacting to anger is a learned, impulsive behavior that becomes instinctive. Responding to anger allows you to examine various solutions and gives you the opportunity to choose the one that works the best for you.

Anger Management Technique #5: Take care of you.

  • Make personal time each day to reflect on issues and consider solutions to problems.
  • Work for balance in your life. Try to leave work problems at work and personal problems at home.
  • Although we tend to often separate mind and body, they work together to make each of us into one unique being. Regular exercise, healthy eating, and adequate sleep are as essential to your emotional health as they are to your physical well-being.

Anger Management Technique #6: Don't look back, move forward.
Yelling, "This blasted machine never works!" doesn't make the machine work. "You're always late!" doesn't change what happened in the past and makes no plans for change in the future, except maybe for a destroyed friendship. When you put the lid on past problems, you free up time now to find solutions for current and future problems - anger management techniques to secure the lid on that grumpy dormouse!

Anger Management Exercises ►

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