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How to Rid Yourself of Anger and Live Happily Ever After

We expend a great deal of energy feeling angry. Many of us carry anger around like a heavy weight on our backs, around the middle and in our heads. No wonder we suffer from these specific aches and pains. Physiologically, our heart beats faster, our blood pressure rises, our stomachs tense up and secrete more acid and we toss and turn at night to awaken with blood shot eyes. We look unattractive and feel tired. Ironically, the person at whom this rage is directed does not even know that we are angry, or that we harbor a grudge.

However, who are we really angry at? We are upset that we did not tell the other person what was in our heart and mind: “I should have said…” We are enraged that we did not take precautions; instead we let it happen again. We are resentful that we allowed ourselves to be trivialized. All of this means that we are most angry with ourselves!

In order to overcome anger we have to address the source. Instead of expending energy trying to change and correct some aspect of the other person, why don’t we correct that same trait in ourselves? We can work on ourselves to be better, more patient and less tolerant of perceived indiscretions. We can start loving and respecting ourselves. We don’t need external validation.

Venting our feelings and projecting them to others prevents us from working on our inner self. It is much easier to blame someone else or a situation than to take responsibility. Anger gets to us when we do not have a developed sense of self, or self-esteem. If we have a good self-concept, then we cannot feel trivialized and do not act accommodatingly against our will. For example, if we feel angry that a friend or family member does not show us empathy for what we are going through, we can try to give ourselves that empathy. We do not really need it from outside sources; we need to discover that compassion from within.

We also need to learn how to let things go. A new argument with a friend or relative is layered with old ammunition. “But I apologized for that already!” A husband will tell his angry wife who associates the conflict of the moment with a past event which she cannot let go. Anger management implies self-management.

Here are some suggestions:
Debbie Mandel, MA is the author of Turn On Your Inner Light: Fitness for Body, Mind and Soul, a stress-reduction specialist, motivational speaker, and a personal trainer. She is the host of the weekly Turn On Your Inner Light Show on WHLI 1100AM in New York City , produces a weekly wellness newsletter, and has been featured on radio/ TV and print media. To learn more visit: www.turnonyourinnerlight.com

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