There is now a clear evidence from worldwide research that it is unhealthy to indulge in angry thoughts, words or actions. Anger contributes to blood pressure disorders, cancer and stress-related illnesses, as well as weakening the very fabric of our society, the family.
On one hand, an angry outburst can be a stress release, better for you than keeping seething feelings bottled up inside. But chronic anger can make you physically sick, researchers say.
Frequent angry episodes can raise your risk of heart attacks and strokes and weaken your immune system, reports the U.K. Daily Mail. Chewing over past mistakes and missed opportunities -- "looking back in anger" -- can make you more sensitive to pain, too, say researchers at the University of Granada in Spain.
It's well known that anger affects the body: The heart rate increases, blood pressure rises, and blood flow to muscles is reduced; glucose levels and adrenaline rise to give the muscles a shot of energy for the "fight or flight" response.
But never expressing anger when that's what you're feeling can be downright deadly. Swedish research shows that those who walked away from conflict without saying anything (though they had reason to be upset) had double the risk of a heart attack compared to men who challenged authority. Unexpressed anger is also linked to a lowered immune system.
Here’s what you do to break the anger cycle:
1. Keep a Diary - Write down every occasion when you feel angry in any way.
2. Cool Off - When you notice yourself getting caught up in an angry situation, apply one or more of these 5 cooling-off techniques:
- Move away from the situation, out of sight and hearing of the other person if possible.
- Drink a glass of ice-cold water to cool the blood.
- Lie down on your back until the anger passes.
- Count to 10 if slightly angry, to 100 if very angry, before saying another word.
- Do something very physical like furiously cleaning the house or garden, or a non-competitive exercise.
If none of these works, look at yourself in a mirror and see how ugly your face has become. This will shock you into banishing the anger.
3. Listen Well - When someone expresses irritation or anger towards you, try listening without interrupting, defending or attacking back. They will feel valued and understood, you don’t fuel their fire and there might be some useful tips in their complaint.
4. Accept More - A lot of anger rises up because we want people or situations to be different. Accepting things as they are is not necessarily a sign of weakness. When we choose to enjoy a rainy day even though it cancels our plans for a barbecue, that’s common sense not weakness.
5. Sympathize - A friend of mine handles customer complaints for a telephone company. When someone is angry, she sympathizes with them: "Your phone cuts out? That’s terrible! No wonder you’re upset." The caller feels grateful at being understood and anger dissolves. Look for the hurt underlying the person’s anger – then you’ll feel compassion instead of reacting with anger yourself.
6. Be Assertive - If you say "Yes" when you mean "No", and "No" when you mean "Yes", resentment festers and builds up into anger. Get angry at your fear of speaking the truth, instead of feeling hostile towards the person you fear.
7. Look for the Good - Seeing only the negatives in another person can fan a small spark of anger into an uncontrollable blaze. Look for the strengths and virtues in the person you feel angry towards. Insist on thinking that way, and speak well of them at all times. This smothers the blaze and the anger has nothing to feed on.
We hope you find these few words helpful. However, it is not always easy to deal with anger by our self. Sometime it helps to discuss the matter with a professional. Don’t let anger ruin your life.