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Linda Ocejo, MA, CPRP, CLC
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Is the emotion of anger normal and/or healthy? How can anger be controlled, or properly dealt with on a daily basis?

It is very important that we all understand that the emotion of anger is perfectly normal and healthy. We all feel angry at times for a variety of reasons. We should not feel ashamed when we feel angry, or think less of ourselves. Many of us have been taught as children that �good boys and good girls� do not get angry, and that something is wrong with those of us that do get angry. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Anger is a natural emotion that all human beings feel throughout our lifetimes. We all express our emotions differently, and there is not one �set in stone� way to express our emotions that is better than all of the rest.

Nonetheless, if someone finds themselves angry much of the time, or many times during the course of a day, it would be beneficial for them to look into themselves to try to determine what the real reason is that they find themselves angry so often, since, many times, anger is used to hide our true feelings, or emotions. At times anger may be hiding feelings of shame, vulnerability, embarrassment, or even insecurity. Very often, if someone finds themselves to immediately become angry in a variety of situations, it is possible that automatically getting angry is actually a cover-up for one�s true needs and feelings. If it appears as if anger is covering up other feelings some of the following may be true: you feel challenged when others express different viewpoints and opinions then your own; you find it very difficult to compromise, and you find it very difficult to express other emotions.

If you find that you are too quick to get angry, and that you get angry too often, it would definitely be beneficial for you to get in touch with other feelings. After all, the key to success in life and self-understanding is emotional awareness. We should all have the ability to deal with all of our emotions which make us human, after first managing and recognizing such emotions. Without doing so, we may become isolated, enveloped with self-doubt, as well as begin to live in a state of confusion. Anger which is not controlled actually may harm not only one�s physical health, but also may harm your relationships, mental health, as well as various aspects of your career.

Anger management is extremely important for each and every one of us. We can all take some convenient steps to begin managing our anger appropriately, and in a very healthy way. We should all begin the process of anger management by looking at what is actually behind our angry feelings and expressions. Also, we should become fully aware of what triggers our anger, and what warning signs we may experience. Once we are aware of the signs and triggers of our anger, it enables us to take the necessary steps to control our anger prior to it getting to a point where it is uncontrollable. Another very important step to anger management is for us to learn how to calm down, as well as finding out ways which are healthier to show anger, if necessary.

If after utilizing the aforementioned anger management methodologies, you see that your anger continues to be out of control, or in the event that you are hurting other people, and/or animals, or you are in trouble legally, you undoubtedly should get additional help to control/manage your anger. Specific anger management programs, classes, counselors/therapists are available for those having problems managing their anger. It is a sign of strength to seek help to manage your anger, and not a sign that you are weak.

Anger, left unchecked, may have serious consequences on the overall health of an individual. Uncontrolled anger has actually destroyed individuals, families, careers, social relationships, in addition to negatively influencing the mental, physical, and emotional, and psychological well-being of many, many people. Uncontrolled anger has also caused individuals to enter the legal system, due to causing harm to persons, animals, or property. Anger is very controllable, and once we as human beings realize that we have the capacity/capability to control our anger in a very positive manner, we are on our way to alleviating unnecessary anger in our lives, and in the lives of those that we love.

In retrospect, much of the time when someone appears to be angry, and when they get angry �at the drop of a hat,� so to speak, anger is truly not the issue; the issue is generally something else that the individual has not been willing to address up to that point, or something that an individual may not even be aware of. Sometimes when things are too difficult for us to deal with, we may put them on the back burner out of sight. However, when we do this, the problem or situation does not go away, it usually just simmers, so to speak, and our discontent/sadness, etc. comes out in another way---the way of anger�.

We can all rest assured that we all can deal with our anger and angry feelings in very constructive and positive ways. Once we look into the source and genuine reasons for our anger, we can begin to work on changing our behaviors, and getting in touch with all of the different feelings that we have. We should not be ashamed of feeling anger, but we should know that there are very constructive ways to deal with anger.

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