Anger! Oh, the rush that the word brings. I am sure that the memories that you have associated with the word are not very positive. What are the thoughts that cross your mind?
Shouting at the other person, throwing your phone in rage or tearing up your books. Moreover, what was the effect of this anger on your mental health? How did your body react to this outburst? These are some important questions that need to be addressed.
One needs to understand that anger is a very powerful emotion which originates from hurt, frustration, annoyance etc. But it is also important to understand that it is like any other emotion and if expressed properly it can facilitate better communication and positive change. Now I understand that one cannot control what they are feeling but it is up to us to either express the emotions that we feel or suppress them. My experience of being short tempered has shown me that when I suppress my emotions, I feel start feeling very hot. My breathing pattern is disturbed and a choking feeling grasps my chest. All of this is further supplemented by crying. You would be surprised to know that this is just the beginning. If one suppresses anger for long, then just like a chemical reaction your everyday anger starts changing into chronic anger (better known as long term anger).
Chronic anger has been linked to health issues such as high blood pressure, heart problems, headaches, skin disorders, and digestive problems. In addition, anger can be linked to problems such as crime, emotional and physical abuse, and other violent behaviour .
Moreover, anger is not something encountered only by this generation. If one thinks that, then they are clearly mistaken because instances of anger can be traced way back in our Hindu Mythology. Then the question arises that if it is so common then why do we shame it? Why don’t we acknowledge it?
In the Hindu epic ‘Mahabharata’ Duryodhan was the eldest of the ‘Kauravas’ or the 100 sons of King Dhritrashta. The Kauravas were never fond of the ‘Pandavas’ or the sons of King Pandu. When Duryodhan went to attend the sacrifice being performed by the Pandavas at Indraprastha-the capital city of the Pandavas, he was humiliated by one of the maids of the queen . He misunderstood the situation and thought that it was Queen Draupadi who made fun of him. He was so angry at this that on reaching his kingdom he locked himself inside a room and set the room on fire. His anger had compelled him to kill himself. It was only after much persuasion and a promise of revenge that he agreed to come out. But this revenge ultimately led to the Mahabharata and the death of all the Kauravas including Duryodhan.
Such instances and incidents from our past remind us how detrimental anger can prove to be. But then the question arises that if it is so dangerous to express anger and so harmful to suppress it then what should one do?
Well, anger becomes uncontrollable and dangerous only because we refuse to address our past trauma and the neglect that we felt. We feel hurt because every day the bricks kept on our chest increase in number. The only solution to this is ‘Anger Management’. I have used certain techniques that have helped me and you never know, they might just help you too.
When you start feeling angry, you may try deep breathing from your diaphragm and positive self -talk. Words like ‘relax’ and ‘calm down’ might help. What works for me are the words ‘Boom Boom’. It’s like shooting your negative energy.
You may try talking to your friends and family members, they might help you in unexpected ways but express your anger in an appropriate way. Angry outbursts at them would lead to problems in your relationship with them.
And finally you may also try to find humour in difficult situations because when you do that things become much less complicated and easy to handle. It provides you a positive medium to state your disapproval. It’s almost like when you text your friend something serious but along with it you use emojis. It helps you in conveying your thoughts and feelings without hurting them.
I understand that life has given us a lot of hurdles and it is totally normal to be angry, but it has also given us a lot of wonderful things. If we slow down and start thinking about all the good things, joyous moments and happy memories that we have, then the chances of us ‘blowing up’ become much less.
– by Aarushi Gupta.