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Spot17
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10 Dec 2007, 12:33 pm

I've been dealing with a lot of anger lately - anger at my parents, ex-husband, ex-friends, co-workers, and generalized anger at the world. I feel sometimes that it's consuming me and I'm spending all my energy just trying to stay afloat. I usually go to the gym and a good 40 minute workout session helps get it out, but it just isn't helping as much lately.

This has been a recurring issue for me for the last six months; every time I feel I've gotten through it, it starts up again. I feel like an angsty teenager, but times 10. Anyone got any suggestions on how to get through this? I hate feeling this way and I feel exhausted trying to keep it hidden from people I have to be around everyday. I'm probably going to make an appointment with the doc to get on some meds this week, but I know that's not a permanent solution so I'm primarily looking for non-med techniques.



duncansbass
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10 Dec 2007, 12:56 pm

Meditation helps a lot with this same issue. A lot of meditation techniques are religious in nature, or at least seem that way, but they don't have to be taken as such.

Just be careful, if you choose to study into this, that you find a method that truly helps you, not just cosmetically, but in depth.

Other than this, I have not found much to help me cope.


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cosmiccat
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10 Dec 2007, 1:15 pm

I have more trouble being on the receiving end of anger. I don't deal with it effectively and it makes me physically ill when someone, especially someone I love, or someone I respect, suddenly becomes angry or displeased with me and I don't understand why. Passive-aggressive anger sends me over the edge. I have never been allowed to express anger, have been punished for expressing anger and have held it in and consequently, suppressed anger has turned against me. I am working on it, but it's difficult. I mostly become angry when I am accused of doing something innappropriate or wrong that I didn't do. Or if I am falsely accused of having malicious motives for making simple mistakes, especially if it's something stupid.

Anger as soon as fed is dead -
'Tis starving makes it fat.
~Emily Dickinson


This seems like a good article. Maybe it will be useful.
A good article on Anger by APA



kindofbluenote
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10 Dec 2007, 1:46 pm

I found a great way to deal with anger and confusion.

I ride a bike. A long ride through bike-friendly country roads (don't ride in a city! You'll get amgrier!) is a powerful tool. Here's whay I think why:

The exercise produces chemicals in the body that naturally calm you. You'll also get physically healthier which is a way to reduce stress.

OK, we all know that, but there's a better reason, as I found:

Riding at a constant speed produces steady, rhythmic breathing. And you can only go where your front tire is pointing, so you learn to focus on the immediate as opposed to anything else. This is the basic foundation of any meditation. While riding I find that my mind clears, and I'm able to focus and concentrate on issues that I couldn't otherwise. (It's hard to find enlightenment, or self-improvement when there's so many distractions surrounding you). The anger is released into the physical act of pedaling, and the causes of the anger are dealt with in your mind when meditating while riding.

This may not be your thing, but it basically saved my life. I was the maddest guy you'd ever know, I was in constant fights, in trouble with the police, nearly failed out of high school and would act in self-destructive ways as a means to vent my anger. Since I started riding, I've graduated college, and become a very peaceful, self-aware person. I'm better able to understand my anger and confusion through meditation, and now it's not something I don't understand anymore. Sure I still get angry, but I have learned A) How to recignize personal anger, and B) how to deal with it when it overcomes me.

Good luck!


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Tim_Tex
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10 Dec 2007, 1:53 pm

I usually exercise or make lists of various things (especially postal codes).

Tim


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SuperSteve
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10 Dec 2007, 1:56 pm

I've dealt with anger a good few times growing up, but when I was 17 I found boxing, and after two years I went from that to Kung Fu. Both are excellent ways to release anger, as well as building the
confidence and discipline to deal with anger as it comes again, both from inside and from others. There is something basic, almost primeval, in kicking and punching and training to fight, and yet there is a subtle sophisticated feeling knowing that these skills can be used with brutal effectiveness with potentially fatal outcome, which makes you feel a sort of duty, a responsibility to not only avoid fistfighting and the likes, but also to be a calm, collected and reasonable person, to show that you arent unworthy of the trust. ( man, that flew away a bit, sorry!)

Before that I was very much the same. I felt so hurt whenever someone was mad at me for any reason, justified or not, that I couldn't even put words to it. I just broke down. The feeling is still there, but I have a bit more confidence of my own worth now. I know that whatever I did wrong, IF I did something wrong, it wasn't my intention,and I should hope this person should be smart enough to see this. Sadly, that isn't always the case.


"Anyone can become angry - that is easy, but to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way - that is not easy."

Aristotle


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Last edited by SuperSteve on 10 Dec 2007, 1:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Fayed
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10 Dec 2007, 1:56 pm

mediation doesn't ahve to be religious.

There are 2 forms of meditation, open focus and focused.

Focused is where you sit down and stare at a object ( tile on the floor, spot on wall, candle flame, etc). Diaphragmatic Breathing is used. ( big breaths filling the lugs up from the bottem up, usually in for 3 out for 6) Tune out all outside distractions. Let thoughts come and agnolege them and let them go ( this is the hardest part but you'll get better).

Open focus is basicaly the same just that you aren't focusing on anything in particular, your eyes can be closed.

The main point is to let thought surface and acknowledge that they exist and move one.

Also, if you fall asleep, you went to far. The reason most meditation religions have stances ( lotis position, kneeling to pray, etc) is so you dont fall asleep.



Kurtz
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10 Dec 2007, 3:20 pm

Have you tried bashing the living Christ out of something?

It helps if it's something that breaks, but not too easily. If it's just a punching bag there's no release like you'd get if you kicked someone's ass or broke something, there's no evidence that your anger has an effect if there is no verifiable damage, and for me that's what is satisfying.

Remember that scene in "Office Space" where they kill the printer? That kind of thing. Hit a shooting range and fill a target full of holes. Get some plates from a thrift store and break them.

Helps a bunch. Then again, I don't think I'm quite right in the head...


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MomofTom
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10 Dec 2007, 3:21 pm

To help ease the momentary peaks of anger, try taking ten deep breaths, exhaling slowly after each one. As for burning off the long-term, pent-up version, is there any snow around you that needs shoveling?


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10 Dec 2007, 3:40 pm

Kurtz wrote:
Have you tried bashing the living Christ out of something?

It helps if it's something that breaks, but not too easily. If it's just a punching bag there's no release like you'd get if you kicked someone's ass or broke something, there's no evidence that your anger has an effect if there is no verifiable damage, and for me that's what is satisfying.

Remember that scene in "Office Space" where they kill the printer? That kind of thing. Hit a shooting range and fill a target full of holes. Get some plates from a thrift store and break them.

Helps a bunch. Then again, I don't think I'm quite right in the head...


I've tried that, but the break is always disappointing to me. Then I'm depressed AND angry. If I beat the crap out of something that won't break, I'll wear myself out and eventually just end up depressed. I'm not sure it's really better than anger, but I guess it's a step.

Instead of taking out your anger physically, try some kind of calming exercise. Count, breathe, go to your happy place, or whatever it takes for you. Remind yourself that your anger is reactionary and isn't helping the situation. Don't get upset with yourself over it -- just recognize that you're not at your best when you're angry. Remember that you can do a lot more if you calm yourself and think rationally. But don't go ahead and start trying to think too rationally on anything very important. Anger takes a while to really go away. Once you're calm, find something to distract yourself, and take care of things when you're in a better state of mind.


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Kurtz
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10 Dec 2007, 3:58 pm

WurdBendur wrote:
I've tried that, but the break is always disappointing to me. Then I'm depressed AND angry. If I beat the crap out of something that won't break, I'll wear myself out and eventually just end up depressed. I'm not sure it's really better than anger, but I guess it's a step.


Kurtz...no smash? Why you say?

Seriously though dude, why is it not satisfying when it breaks? I didn't articulate it well enough I guess, but it can't be unbreakable and it can't be easily broken either, sort of a happy medium.

Anger is okay, I don't think it's healthy to repress it or put a moral tag on it. Pain tells you that your body is damaged, it isn't "bad", it just feels very unpleasant. When you get angry there is a reason, and denying that is the same as keeping your hand on a hot stove.


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tmad40blue
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10 Dec 2007, 3:59 pm

One word helps me:

PILLOW. Do what you want with it.



Macallan
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10 Dec 2007, 4:38 pm

Fayed wrote:
mediation doesn't ahve to be religious.

There are 2 forms of meditation, open focus and focused.

Focused is where you sit down and stare at a object ( tile on the floor, spot on wall, candle flame, etc). Diaphragmatic Breathing is used. ( big breaths filling the lugs up from the bottem up, usually in for 3 out for 6) Tune out all outside distractions. Let thoughts come and agnolege them and let them go ( this is the hardest part but you'll get better).

Open focus is basicaly the same just that you aren't focusing on anything in particular, your eyes can be closed.

The main point is to let thought surface and acknowledge that they exist and move one.

Also, if you fall asleep, you went to far. The reason most meditation religions have stances ( lotis position, kneeling to pray, etc) is so you dont fall asleep.

*nods*
Regular meditation helps with a lot of problem stuff for me, although I'm not that good at it and tend to fall asleep.

You could also try tai chi.



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10 Dec 2007, 4:51 pm

Kurtz wrote:
Have you tried bashing the living Christ out of something?

It helps if it's something that breaks, but not too easily. If it's just a punching bag there's no release like you'd get if you kicked someone's ass or broke something, there's no evidence that your anger has an effect if there is no verifiable damage, and for me that's what is satisfying.

Remember that scene in "Office Space" where they kill the printer? That kind of thing. Hit a shooting range and fill a target full of holes. Get some plates from a thrift store and break them.

Helps a bunch. Then again, I don't think I'm quite right in the head...


Office Space was a very funny movie.

Tim


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samtoo
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10 Dec 2007, 5:18 pm

I'm sorry what I'm going to say isn't going to be very constructive but - I'm sorry you're feeling angry and a bit stuck. :( And I hope you get better soon.


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10 Dec 2007, 5:42 pm

I'd prescribe running. Once you're in decent shape (and it doesn't take long at all), a good run will bring you back home with the healthy perspective to know what's worth being (and staying!) mad about.

It also helps with the feeling of powerlessness that seems to pervade modern life (a maddening thing if ever there was one). Your run is something you have complete control over.

My two cents...