Do you fly off the handle easily? Are you suffering from ‘angry bird syndrome’? If you discovered you were an ‘angry bird’ after answering our online questions yesterday, then you need to read on to find out how to manage your anger. Below are some ways you can live a more chilled out, anger-free way of life.
- Don’t take on too much
If you set yourself an unrealistic target you’ll never be able to reach, you’re more likely to start seething when you inevitably fail. Make sure you’re not taking on too much.
- Prioritise yourself
None of us want to be the rubbish friend, but it’s important not to put everyone else’s needs before your own. If you’re not feeling up to that night out with the girls, reschedule. Don’t turn up looking miserable because you’d rather be at home in your PJ’s.
- Avoid other angry birds
If you think that you struggle to manage your anger then it’s time to take a look at your group of friends. We all need a sympathetic ear, but is there someone in your social circle that brings out the worst in you? Do you find yourself having a wee moan about your other half only to leave the conversation even more furious than you were at the start? Remember, a good friend should calm you down – not encourage you to lose your cool.
- “I will get back to you”
Make this your go-to phrase. If someone is getting on your nerves and you’re about to see red, take a break and walk away to prevent over-reacting to a situation you might regret.
- Bin the negativity
Try to stop using words like ‘Don’t, no, not and can’t’. The language you use can subconsciously impact on your mood. Constantly using negative words can cause a downward spiral. In place of saying ‘I don’t want this to happen’, try to get into the habit of saying the phrase, ‘I’d really like this to happen’.
- Work it out
Exercise is one of the best ways to tackle stress issues. Choosing an aggressive sport, like boxing or karate, releases the feel-good hormones endorphins, and is a healthy way of discharging anger.
- Let go of angry thoughts
Whether it’s a disagreement with a work colleague, or resentment at how you’ve been treated by someone, it’s important to let go of angry thoughts. Negative thinking results in negative feelings, so try and replace angry thoughts with ones that make you happy – think about your kids doing something funny or a holiday you have coming up instead.
- Question yourself
It might be helpful to ask yourself what outcome you want. Write down exactly how you’d like the situation to be resolved, and see if that’s a realistic outcome. Don’t drag an argument out just because you want to be right. It’s important to be specific about the issue and totally honest and fair to all parties involved.
- Talk it out
It’s true that a problem shared is a problem halved. Talking about the things that are stressing you out and getting an objective opinion will make you realise that perhaps the problem that’s caused the knots in your stomach isn’t so bad after all. Even having a 10-minute rant to the cat will get rid of negativity so you won’t be carrying any pent up stress around with you.
- Remove triggers
Try to identify who, where, when and why you get angry and then eliminate the trigger from your daily life. It might be your job or a certain person that riles you up, either way it’s not healthy. You need to find a coping mechanism or remove the trigger altogether.
- Try to be mindful of the moment
Negative thoughts usually come from one of two directions. Dwelling on past mistakes or guilt will leave you feeling negative, as will worrying about the future – whether that’s finances or relationships. But those clichés about living each day and taking one day at a time are true. Concentrate on right now, try to stop the internal dialogue of negative thoughts when you’re alone. Whether you are walking to work or you’re at home, concentrate on the sounds, smells and sensations around you. It’s almost impossible to feel negative while you are living in the moment – try it today!
Meditation is a great way to train the mind to be focused and positive. If you are not sure where to begin, start with a free online tutorial or app. You should feel the benefit very quickly if you can dedicate just a few minutes a day.