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Let It All Out (Continuation of Righteous Anger) -Under Construction

There is a time when you should not hold it all in and you should let it out.  Finding a safe place is important.  Go where you can’t be heard or seen.  Get a pillow.  Get a weapon of mass destruction (just kidding) a rubber hose or a rolled up newspaper.  Find something safe to hit (we used to use old phone books)  Scream and yell and let it all hang out.  There are times when people rely on the fact that you won’t say anything and will acquise to almost anything so as not to cause a disturbance.  You can have a lot bottled up if you have let people walk all over you.  “Give me a ride to the docotor’s and wait there and bring me home.  We’ll use your gas and your car and might even get you to buy us something to eat if it runs past lunch time or you have t o pretend you’re not hungry and go ahead and drive them home and not eat’

Righteous Anger?

English: Angry woman.

English: Angry woman. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Is anger righteous?  Many people believe so. You feel that somebody or something has done you wrong.  Is it okay then to get mad?  What about considering the following religious sayings: Vengeance is mine saith the Lord or  turn the other cheek.  Or is it more important to know (especially if you are not religious) that anger, if indulged in, can continue to eat at your guts when the person you may be angry with is no longer in the picture.  Also what you say and do when you are angry can get you into trouble and have long term consequences.  How many people who have gone to jail got into trouble with the law when they were angry?

We most often get angry about things we can’t control and we often make the mistake of thinking if we are angry at or about something that it is something we can control when it is something we can’t control.  There are things we can control, even if it is difficult to do so sometimes,  like our thoughts and what we say and do.  When it comes to other people, we usually can’t control what they do, say, or think unless we use negative behaviors like force or emotional manipulation.  What happens when people are forced or manipulated into doing something they don’t want to do, they get angry and now we have come full circle.  Now we’re not angry, but someone else is, and nothing can be done  to stop them from retaliating when they get a chance and as a result, we get angry again.

When we indirectly express our aggression, we call it passive aggression.  Passive aggression involves behaviors that often appear to be kind and helpful, but aren’t.  Have you ever agreed to do something against your will and managed to mess it up somehow?  The other person can’t get mad at you, right?, because you did what they wanted even if it didn’t turn out right.  That is often a form of passive aggression.

People often say when they get mad that they can’t control their feelings.  When they have feelings,  they just happen and it is the other person’s fault for causing them to feel that way.  Actually it is important to own your own feelings.  The same thing can happen to two different people and they can feel differently about it.  If I am out shopping and I have no appointments to keep and someone ahead of me in a checkout line has a problem and causes the line to back up, I probably will not get upset and will wait for the problem to be resolved.  Another person who had the same thing happen to her last week and missed an appointment because of it gets mad and the feeling grows in intensity the longer she waits.

When it comes to feelings, especially angry ones, it is better to say,”I feel angry when you do this”, rather than, “When you do this, you make me feel angry”.  It is better to not assign blame to others.  These are called “I statements“.  Also often when you put some perspective on things, the feelings that you have about them change.  For example when a person bumps into you, you may be upset, until you notice that the person has a white cane and is blind.


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More on Anger

The world has seemed to explode with anger.  Almost everywhere you look around the world, people are angry and they are destroying property and killing and maiming people.  How do you get people to do this?  Threats can be made to people that the same will happen to them if they do not cooperate in doing this and that they will become the enemy  and be slaughtered too.  This is what has happened to children soldiers in Africa.

What is the origin of anger?  It always starts with the individual and his or her ability to control his or her own temper.  Some people consider anger a right.  They may even believe that they can not help how they feel.  They may think, “It is alright for me to do this if someone or something makes me angry.”  This might be labeled as righteous anger.  (See my post, Righteous Anger published previously on this website.)

After we are born, our emotional feelings separate into two kinds of feelings,  positive and negative.  Anger is one type of  negative feeling.  Frustration is one way that negative feelings are created.  We learn in childhood the appropriate ways to express these feelings and what type of behavior we are supposed to use to do this.


ANGER!! (Photo credit: Za3tOoOr!)

There is a difference between power and force as means of getting one’s way.  Force is fueled with anger and it is expressed as aggression.  If I want something, I take it.  Power is more subtle and complex.  An example of this would be Mahatma Gandhi in India and his nonviolence movement.  The more respect one has for one’s self and others and the the more peaceful one’s value system is, the more likely it is that when that person accomplishes something, it is will be through power and not force.   Dr. David Hawkins has a book about this called, Power vs. Force.


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