Anger and Communication

CommunicationThe communication of anger improperly can cause real relationship problems.
We all know what anger is, and we have all felt it we must be aware of how it is communicated.  Anger is a natural response to threats.  It can inspire powerful, aggressive feelings and behaviors, which allow us to fight and to defend ourselves when we are attacked.  A certain amount of anger, therefore, is necessary to our survival.  Anger can be caused by both external and internal events.  You could be angry with a specific person, event, or personal problem but comes across as adverse communication to someone not involved.

Like other emotions not communicated correctly, it is accompanied by physiological and biological changes.  Your heart rate and blood pressure go up, as do the levels of your energy.  Anger is a completely normal, usually healthy, human emotion.  However, when it gets out of control and turns destructive, is when it can lead to danger.

 Communication Keys

People use a variety of both conscious and unconscious processes to deal with their angry feelings.  The correct commutation has three main approaches are expressing, suppressing, and calming.

  • Expressing your angry feelings in an assertive manner is the healthiest way to express anger.  Being assertive does not mean being pushy or demanding.  It means being respectful of yourself and others.  You are able to make clear what your needs are without hurting others.
  • Suppressing your anger is when you hold it, stop thinking about it, and focus on something positive.  The aim is to convert it into a constructive behavior.  The danger in this type of response is that if it isn’t allowed outward expression, your anger can turn inward, on yourself.  Anger turned inward may cause hypertension, high blood pressure, or depression.  Unexpressed anger can create other problems.  It can lead to passive-aggressive behavior (getting back at people indirectly, without telling them why), or a cynical and hostile personality.  Individuals who are constantly putting others down, criticizing everything, and making sarcastic remarks haven’t learned how to constructively express their anger.  They are likely to have trouble in their relationships.
  • With calming, the third method of dealing with anger, you can calm down your angry feelings.  This means not just controlling your outward behavior, but also your internal responses.  Deep breathing and relaxing imagery can lower your heart rate and allow you to calm yourself until the feelings subside.

Unfortunately, communication of these three techniques do not work, someone or something is probably going to get hurt.  The goal of anger management is to reduce both your emotional feelings and the physiological arousal that anger causes.  You cannot get rid of or avoid, things or people that enrage you, nor can you change them.  You therefore must learn to control your reactions to avoid danger

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