How to Effectively Deal With Anger
By Sophie Watson
Hi, my name is Sophie Watson and I help corporate and entrepreneurial women to get back in control of stress and anxiety. I have a few tips for you today because there's lots of different elements that go into stress and cause anxiety. So one of the elements I want to look at today is about anger. Now whether or not it's you that gets angry or somebody else that you're around that tends to get quite angry, it has an impact on all of us. Sometimes it can be really good because anger actually helps us to understand what we don't want so then we can actually figure out what it is that we do want. So I'm going to show you some techniques today that you can start using straightaway in order to either help yourself or somebody else.
So when we get angry, it's normally because our opinion might not be heard and things that we want to change aren't changing quick enough, maybe people just aren't actually listening to what it is or understanding us at all. So when you find that you are getting into a situation where you're starting to get really angry, you're actually in the middle of having an argument with somebody or you feel that it starts to develop into an argument, the best thing you can do is to actually remove yourself from that situation. Now by removing yourself, you actually give yourself the opportunity to start calming down, to be able to start thinking a bit clearer and to not escalate that issue into something really big when it doesn't actually need to be that big. There's much better ways of getting your information across in a more positive way.
So the things you want to actually avoid are yelling, screaming at the person, hitting out, throwing stuff. You don't want to be getting to that point, you want to remove yourself from there. So the things not to do once you've removed yourself from that situation: don't go gossiping about it, don't go blaming the other person, drinking, criticizing, overeating unhealthy foods. You want to stay away from all of that because that's the stuff you are going to end up regretting. Now the really good things to start doing once you've removed yourself from that situation is to go and do something you know will actually get that anger and that frustration out. So that could be going for a walk, going for a run. You could take yourself somewhere, off to actually go and scream and shout, but be on your own, don't have that person there. And that will actually help release that tension.
Now the things to start doing afterwards are maybe start breathing properly. So one of the techniques I teach my clients is to breathe into the count of four and breathe out to the count of four. Now if you start doing that right now, what you will find is your body will immediately start to relax. So once you've actually managed to relax your body, you are actually in a better position to think clearer. Your thoughts will be a lot clearer, you'll have more understanding of the whole situation of what's going on. So by doing that breathing, that's a really, really quick way to actually calm yourself down. The other thing you can do, and not everybody is into this, but meditation. That's a great way of just calming your mind and removing yourself from the whole situation. Listening to music, now that's a great way to calm us down. Some music will actually get your riled up a bit more so I mean that's quite good in effect because you're getting that tension out. But you really want to start, once you've got that tension out, is to start calming yourself down again. So listening to calming music will help you to start thinking clearer.
Once you've managed to calm yourself down, the things you need to start thinking about now in order to rectify the situation and to help you move forward, are thinking now, is this situation what I'm getting mad about, is that actually going to matter in a year's time. More often than not, I'm guessing that's not going to matter in a year's time. So is it really worth you getting so worked up about it? Is it worth compromising your piece of happiness by getting that angry? The other thing is if it is going to matter in a year's time, is it actually worth you making such a big a deal of it? Does it need to go to the extreme that you're likely to go to when you get angry?
Now what we need to do is to actually get really clear about what is it you're trying to achieve, what do you want to get across, what points do you need to get across to that other person in order for them to understand how you're feeling. So what you can do is you can either sit down and make a list of all the points that you want to get across, you could write like a letter if you wanted to, but you're getting really clear in your head as to what it is that you want to achieve from this. The other thing you can do is to actually have a conversation in your head, you can sit there and you can practice that conversation in your head. So that you're, again you're getting really, really clear about what the points are that you need to get across.
I'll give you an example of how I used this in the past. So in my previous job, I was actually a pharmacy technician, and I knew at a particular meeting that something was going to be brought up in the meeting and it wasn't going to be a good thing. So what I did in my head, was I had the conversation in my head, I was practicing getting all the points across that I needed to get across. And the whole time I was doing that, I was also doing the breathing technique so I was also breathing into the count of four and breathing out to the count of four. So this made sure that my mind was staying clear. Now when I actually went into that meeting, I was actually able to get all my points across in a calm manner. I was able to--people were actually able to understand what it was that I was saying. Now my boss at the time actually got very frustrated because he wasn't actually able to argue anything that I had said because I had managed to deliver my points in a clear, concise manner.
So that's just an example of how doing those exercises can actually help you. The real things that you need to remember are to think before you speak because when we actually just blurt stuff out, that's the time when you're going to start upsetting people, that's the time when people are going to switch off and not listen to you because you're not getting those important--that important information across to them. You need to be clear and concise as to what it is that you want to achieve as I said earlier. The other thing you need to think and remember is, is basically be willing to compromise. Okay, we don't like being wrong, but sometimes we are and we need to be willing to actually compromise. And by compromising, more often than not, we actually get to the situation in which we actually wanted in the first place. So be willing to be a bit more flexible, be willing to compromise with the other person. And you may find that it actually benefits you in a much better way than you ever thought it could.
Now if the anger is actually coming from somebody else, there's a slightly different way in which you need to deal with it. So remember whenever anybody is getting angry, it's only because they don't feel as though they're being heard, they're being misunderstood, their points are not being acknowledged. And that's all anybody wants, is to have that acknowledgement, to know that their opinion actually counts. So the best thing you could do for that person is to actually stay calm and actually listen to what they're saying, acknowledge what they're saying. And when you reply, you need to do it in a calm and relaxed manner. It's no good you getting all pent up by what the other person is saying, you just need to stay calm because otherwise that situation, like I said earlier, is just going to escalate, and you don't want that, you want to get to a resolution as soon as possible. So by listening to them, acknowledging their points, acknowledging their opinion, you are actually showing that person that you do actually care; you care about their opinion, you care about what they're saying, you care about how they're feeling and that is all that anybody wants at the end of the day.
If you get a text message, you get an email or you're responding to something in social media, you need to think about it before you actually reply. So sometimes what can happen is you get a message and you read it the wrong way, so the best thing you can do, if you feel as though you're actually getting worked up by that message, is to actually take a step away from it for five minutes and then go back and re-read it, see if it actually means the same thing that you thought that it originally meant, half the time it doesn't. So by you actually taking yourself away from it and then replying, you're actually going to save yourself a lot of embarrassment because you may have replied with something that you really didn't want to and you have got to then backtrack later on. By you actually re-reading it, you can get the actual sense of what that person is really trying to say and you can respond in the correct manner.
I hope you find those tips helpful. If you are a woman working in the corporate or entrepreneurial world and you would like a bit of help to get back in control of stress and anxiety, then why not register for a free 1hr "Get Back in control of Stress & Anxiety" session with myself, just Click the Button Below.