How To Deal With Stress And Anger Step #1 Breathe Deeply
Deep breathing has a very calming effect on the body.
I count slowly to 8 as I breath in and count to 8 as I breathe out.
When youre angry, the body breathes more rapidly but in a shallow manner.
This deprives your body of oxygen which further exacerbates the situation.
This way, you wont react hastily in a way that might be embarrassing or unnecessary.
Give Yourself A Scented Environment
Its time for a me-time! You might have experienced the movie scenes lately but its time to repeat with self. Yes, put on some scented candles in the room like lavender, rose, sandalwood, orange, etc. and massage your head with essential oils. Aromatherapy never goes wrong!
If a hot water shower is possible, take it. And no matter what, this me-time is a great deal to free yourself from stress.
Anger Leads To Stress
Before we get into our tips for how to reduce anger and stress, lets look at the relationship between the two. Anger is an emotion. Its an emotion that many people find uncomfortable. Moreover, its an emotion that we havent been taught well how to deal with in the United States.
Therefore, people tend to have one of two extreme approaches:
- Some people try to stuff down their anger. It bottles up inside.
- Other people let their anger loose, through verbal and or physical outbursts.
Both methods lead to stress. This happens at a physical level. Anger ignites your fight-or-flight response. Your body releases adrenaline and cortisol. These are stress hormones.
You literally feel stress in your body when you are angry. This manifests as physical symptoms such as increased heart rate, higher blood pressure, and changes in breathing.
People with unhealthy anger over a long term period of time can experience numerous health problems including headaches, digestion problems, heart attack, and stroke. Excess anger is also correlated with mental health issues including anxiety and insomnia.
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Why Are Some People More Angry Than Others
According to Jerry Deffenbacher, PhD, a psychologist who specializes in anger management, some people really are more “hotheaded” than others are; they get angry more easily and more intensely than the average person does. There are also those who don’t show their anger in loud spectacular ways but are chronically irritable and grumpy. Easily angered people don’t always curse and throw things; sometimes they withdraw socially, sulk, or get physically ill.
People who are easily angered generally have what some psychologists call a low tolerance for frustration, meaning simply that they feel that they should not have to be subjected to frustration, inconvenience, or annoyance. They can’t take things in stride, and they’re particularly infuriated if the situation seems somehow unjust: for example, being corrected for a minor mistake.
What makes these people this way? A number of things. One cause may be genetic or physiological: There is evidence that , and that these signs are present from a very early age. Another may be sociocultural. Anger is often regarded as negative; we’re taught that it’s all right to express , , or other emotions but not to express anger. As a result, we don’t learn how to handle it or channel it constructively.
Research has also found that family background plays a role. Typically, people who are easily angered come from families that are disruptive, chaotic, and not skilled at emotional communications.
Anger Management Therapy Supports You
Anger management stress relief is something that you can learn to do on your own. However, it helps a lot to get support from a mental health professional.
Anger management counseling can help you identify your anger triggers, separate out reasonable anger from irrational or unhelpful anger, learn how to reduce anger in your day-to-day life, and teach you skills to express your anger in healthy, helpful ways. Reach out to us today to speak with one of our anger management therapists.
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Aerobic Activity: Skipping Rope
Havent skipped rope since you were in elementary school? Well, pick up that rope again because it can help you keep your mind at ease when youre angry! The aerobic exercise gets your heart pumping, reduces anxiety and blood pressure. If youre not a fan of skipping rope try another aerobic activity like running on a treadmill, cycling or jogging in the park
Triggering The Opposite Reaction
In order to tell our biological systems that the situations were facing dont require a fight or flight response, we must trigger the parasympathetic nervous system.
The parasympathetic nervous system produces the opposite response to the FFF, causing a relaxation response instead.
One other important aspect of the Fight or Flight Response is the way that it diverts your blood flow.
To prepare you to fight or to get ready to run from a perceived threat, blood is diverted away from the brain to the extremities in the body, such as the arms, legs, hands, and feet.
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Natural Stress Relievers To Try Now
1. Exercise and Yoga
One of the best stress relievers available to us is exercise, a natural remedy for anxiety because it releases powerful endorphin chemicals in the brain, which act like the bodys built-in painkillers and mood-lifters.
Research suggests the negative effects of stress on the body seem to be;exaggerated in people who are inactive, a phenomenon calledstress-induced/exercise deficient phenotype. Because we react to stress by experiencing changes in our neuro-endocrine systems, regular exercise is protective because it regulates various metabolic and psychological processes in the body, including reinforcing our natural circadian rhythms, sleep/wake cycles, moods and blood sugar levels.
Exercises improves insulin sensitivity, can help someone become more aware of their hunger levels, improves confidence/self-esteem, and leads to better mental processing and a lower risk for depression. Cant sleep? Well, exercise can help with that too, which is very important considering quality sleep is needed to regulate hormones and help the body recover.
Yoga has been shown to have similar benefits, reinforcing the mind-body connection, improving how people feel about their bodies, helping with sleep and controlling anxiety. A review of over 35 clinical trials that tested the effects of regular yoga on stress levels and health found that, overall, yoga offers significant improvements in various physical and psychological health markers for the majority of people.
Unhelpful Ways To Deal With Anger
Many people express their anger in inappropriate and harmful ways, including:
- anger explosions some people have very little control over their anger and tend to explode in rages. Raging anger may lead to physical abuse or violence. A person who doesnt control their temper can isolate themselves from family and friends. Some people who fly into rages have low self-esteem, and use their anger as a way to manipulate others and feel powerful. For more information, see What is violence against women? on the White Ribbon Australia website
- anger repression some people consider that anger is an inappropriate or bad emotion and choose to suppress it. However, bottled anger often turns into depression and anxiety. Some people vent their bottled anger at innocent parties, such as children or pets.;
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Is It Good To Let It All Hang Out
Psychologists now say that this is a dangerous myth. Some people use this theory as a license to hurt others. Research has found that “letting it rip” with anger actually escalates anger and aggression and does nothing to help you resolve the situation.
It’s best to find out what it is that triggers your anger, and then to develop strategies to keep those triggers from tipping you over the edge.
Repeat A Positive Word Or Phrase
Come up with a word or phrase that you can use as a mantra when you notice that you are acting angry. For example, remind yourself, everything is okay in this moment or I can let this go for now. You might even just remind yourself relax or chill out or take it easy.
You might even share the phrase with your closest friends and family members, so that they can remind you of it when they experience your anger. This isnt a way to ignore that you are angry. Instead, its a way to calm down in the moment and gain perspective so that you can deal with your anger from a healthy place.
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How To Control Your Anger
Anger management classes can be immensely beneficial, but let’s look at other ways to control your anger from anxiety. You’ll want to focus on learning how to react to your anxiety in a way that isn’t anger related. Consider the following:
- Anger Thoughts Journaling Often anger builds up, and leads to thoughts that are hard to control. Journaling gives you a place to express all of those angry thoughts before they become bottled up, so your mind stops focusing on them as often.
- Close Eyes/Slow Breathing When the anger comes from irritation, or because you feel like you’re losing control, you need to find a quick way to take a step back. Start by closing your eyes , because this reduces the visual stimulation around you. Then, start slow breathing to calm your heart rate and reduce your strong negative emotions.
- Be Mindful It may also help to teach yourself mindfulness, which is the ability to stay present in the moment and be aware of your emotions and thoughts. By learning mindfulness, you give yourself an opportunity to analyze how you feel and potentially challenge those thoughts so that you can calm yourself down.
These are only temporary solutions because you’ll still need to control the anxiety itself. But they’ll at least get you started in learning to respond to issues without anger.
What About Assertiveness Training
It’s true that angry people need to learn to become assertive , but most books and courses on developing assertiveness are aimed at people who don’t feel enough anger. These people are more passive and acquiescent than the average person; they tend to let others walk all over them. That isn’t something that most angry people do. Still, these books can contain some useful tactics to use in frustrating situations.
Remember, you can’t eliminate angerand it wouldn’t be a good idea if you could. In spite of all your efforts, things will happen that will cause you anger; and sometimes it will be justifiable anger. Life will be filled with frustration, pain, loss, and the unpredictable actions of others. You can’t change that; but you can change the way you let such events affect you. Controlling your angry responses can keep them from making you even more unhappy in the long run.;
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Deep Breathing Exercises For Overcoming Stress & Anger
Deep breathing techniques are often cited as an important tool that can help you to immediately alleviate stress, anxiety, frustration, and anger.
Yet, many people have difficulty practicing deep breathing exercises because they either dont believe that itll help or they try once and then dont try again.
The same is true for breathing exercises, however, as is true for many other things: practice makes perfect.
The more you get into a routine of practicing breathing exercises, the better youll become at doing so, which will give you the ability to reduce stress, anger, and frustration easier than before.
Why do breathing exercises work to relax our bodies and minds?
The body has two systems within the nervous system: the parasympathetic and the sympathetic nervous system. Both of these systems contribute to the reasons why deep breathing exercises can calm us down.
Discover how the nature of our physiological systems contributes to the positive effects.
Know The Difference Between Anger And Aggression
Anger is a feeling, an emotional reaction to particular stimuli, whereas aggression is a course of action brought about by that feeling.
Being angry once in a while is a normal and unavoidable part of the human condition. Aggression, on the other hand, is a decision.
Although aggression can take many forms, it is most often a conscious course of action taken as a result of anger. The most extreme form of;reactive aggression;is violence.
So if a person insults you, the;feeling of anger;that arises from it is more or less automatic, but the decision to retaliate in some way is an act of aggression, get it?
This is where the term anger management comes into play, because if you know how to adequately deal with your feelings of anger, then you are far less likely to respond aggressively to people or situations that make you angry.
Your feelings of anger are most likely normal and probably reasonable enough, but this does not necessarily validate a decision to react aggressively towards others.
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How To Reduce Anger
If you are troubled by the way your anger controls you rather than the other way around, theres help at hand. Among its multiple benefits, one of the major benefits of meditation is that it helps to reduce anger. But before we understand more me about meditation for anger, lets understand the problem and its effects.
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- The long-term physical effects of uncontrolled anger include increased anxiety, high blood pressure and headache.
- Anger can be a positive and useful emotion, if it is expressed appropriately.
- Long-term strategies for anger management include regular exercise, learning relaxation techniques and counselling.
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Activate The Relaxation Response
The way to counteract these feelings is to engage our parasympathetic nervous system by deep breathing. Basically, deep breathing and adrenaline cant co-exist in the same body.
Deep breathing triggers the stimulation of the vagus nervea nerve running from the base of the brain to the abdomen, that emits a neurotransmitter that dampens our nervous system, lowering heart rate, relaxes muscles and most importantly, stops your thoughts from racing so you can think straight.In effect, the relaxation response is the anti-fight or flight response!
Remember, the purpose of calm breathing is not to avoid anxiety or conflict at all costs.
It is a really useful technique to take the edge off your anxiety or anger and it can help you ride out the negative feelings.
That way, when you feel calmer, you can use strategies to challenge the thoughts and behaviors you have that are unhelpful to you.
Anger Rooms: A Smashing New Way To Relieve Stress
When she was a teenager on the South Side of Chicago in the late 1990s, Donna Alexander fantasized about setting up a space where stressed-out people could relieve their tension in a safe, nonviolent way by smashing mannequins, televisions, furniture and other objects. She was confident in her idea, but she wasnt sure how to turn it into a business.
Finally, in the fall of 2008, and by then living in Dallas, Ms. Alexander began an experiment. She invited current and past co-workers to her garage to pulverize items she had collected from the curbs in her neighborhood. I would play music on my laptop and just let them have at it, she says. She charged $5. Soon, word of the stress-relief sessions spread throughout Dallas.
I started getting strangers at my door asking if my house was the place to break stuff, Ms. Alexander said. When that happened, I knew I had a business.
Over the next few years while she looked for a suitable location for the company, Ms. Alexander accrued a four-month waiting list. In December 2011, she quit her job as a marketing manager for a steakhouse to officially start the Anger Room in a 1,000-square-foot space in downtown Dallas.
The Anger Room charges $25 for five minutes of crushing printers, alarm clocks, glass cups, vases and the like. Prices rise to about $500 for custom room setups. The most expensive setup so far has been a faux retail store, replete with racks of clothing.
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What You May Be Experiencing
These days you may feel frustrated,;stressed;or overwhelmed.; You may have a shorter fuse than usual.;Thatâs;okay.;;
Anger and irritability are common emotions in response to stress.;Loss of control and predictability or worries about meeting basic needs can all contribute to feelings of anger. Sometimes feelings of sadness and anxiety come out as anger.;;
You may get easily irritated or angry at your partner, children, friends,;co-workers;or neighbors in ways that are not typical for you.;;
Anger & Stress Problems
What is Stress?Stress is a normal reaction to change or a challenge we may be facing. Everyone feels stressed at times. Some people cope with stress more effectively or recover from stressful events quicker than others. Unfortunately, stress that continues for longer than a few weeks can affect your health.1
There are two main types of stress:2
Acute stress: A short-term stress that goes away quickly. You might experience this when you have to slam on the brakes while driving, or have a fight with your partner, ski down a steep slope, or when you do something new and exciting.Chronic stress: A stress that lasts for a longer period of time due to longer lasting causes of stress like money problems, unhappy marriage, or trouble at work. Chronic stress that lasts for weeks or months.
What are symptoms?Minor symptoms of stress can be early warning signs that your stress levels may be getting out of hand and that you may need help finding ways to reduce stress in your life.3,4
- Delaying doing the things that need to be done
- Trying to do too many things at once
Factors that can help to prevent stress:7
- Proper diet
- Avoiding excess caffeine and other stimulants
- Taking time to relax
- Talking with friends and family
What is Stress Management?
Typically this includes:
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