Anger Management
Psychotherapy for anxiety can really help one feel less alone.

Written by Hilary Dixon

Ten minutes into our therapy session she said, “I think I need some anger management.”

I asked “if the anger just magically dissolved, what other emotions do you think you’d feel?”  She looked confused for a few moments and then replied, “I think I’d be terribly sad.”

Insight often comes from “AHA” moments in therapy and this was one.  A realisation that there was a benefit in holding on to the anger. It meant that she didn’t have to feel her grief, in fact, she didn’t have to feel anything by keeping the fire alive.

The Ups & Downs of Anger

Anger has such a lively energy to it.  It can suck us in, meaning we don’t have to feel our hurt, grief, disappointment, vulnerability, insecurity or whatever else is underneath.  Once sucked in we keep it alive and let it live within us. 

“Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die”

-Buddha

On a positive note it can energise and motivate us to effect a change. For instance,  deleting an ex off social media or making a positive career change. In fact anger can help us move forward if channelled healthily.

The down side of anger though is that it may get displaced in some way.  For instance, passive aggressiveness, anxiety and sometimes freudian slips often towards the ones we love the most.

Anger Can Be A Wise Messenger

Tara Brach, world renowned meditation teacher and psychologist refers to anger as being a wise messenger. I love this because you can often gain insight by looking deeper into a situation that has triggered you. In fact, exploring what your unmet needs are can be truly transformative. 

I’ll give you an example.  I used to get very irritated when my partner asked me to be tidier around our house.  In fact my reaction was way out of proportion with the situation. With deeper thought I realised the source of my anger was my unmet need.  I have a need to be messy, untidy and creative, something I was not allowed to do at home as a child. I was responding to my partner based on old feelings from childhood and now that I am aware I choose to respond differently. 

It may not always be obvious why we are angry or irritated but I encourage you to be curious and explore the feelings beneath. Pause and ask yourself, what am I feeling apart from anger, irritation or annoyance?

Let’s Summarise

If you feel scared it’s likely you likely have a need to feel safe.

If you feel threatened, you likely have a need to feel protected.

If you feel emasculated, you likely have a need to feel equal and maybe feel like you are contributing.

If you feel misunderstood, your likely need is to be listened to and understood. 

If you feel put down, you likely have a need to be respected. 

Take some time to consider your feelings, then try and identify your unmet need. Hopefully you will gain greater insight so that transformation can follow. 

One of my specialisms is anger management and so if you are considering some therapy in 2024 then please get in touch.

Alternatively if you’d like to book a 6 session course with me (takes place via ZOOM) please get in touch. Feedback from the course is shown below.

TTFN, Hilary x

 

 

"Understanding and Controlling Your Anger"

6 week course with HILARY DIXON, Psychotherapist. 

 

This helped me understand some of the reasons for the unresolved anger I have with my spouse.

Kayla

Excellent tips/suggestions to manage anger. This course helped me to pinpoint the core issue of my anger. Thank you!! Namaste 🙏💗🦋

Ginny

I believe this course gave me the tools I need to be in more control of my anger. Thank You!

Teodoro

Simple tools that I hope will help

Brianna

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