Expressing anger on occasion is both natural and healthy. But when anger dominates your thoughts and actions, it can become a significant problem that impacts every aspect of your life. Anger issues can result in anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, and heart disease – so it goes far beyond a simple emotion.
It appears that, as a whole, society is growing angrier and more reactive to people and situations around them. Therefore, we must learn to identify and understand the underlying causes of these intense reactions.
Why Does Everyone Have So Much Anger?
While everyone is unique, typically, anger can be triggered by a broad spectrum of circumstances, which may include:
- Feeling disrespected
- Perception of unfair treatment
- Feeling personally attacked, threatened, or violated
- Being frightened
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Elevated stress or anxiety levels
- Sleep disorders resulting in lack of sleep
How Anxiety Makes Us Angry
Before the pandemic, the ADAA reported that nearly 20% of adults in the United States lived with anxiety. However, the stress and anxiety of the life-changing events of the health crisis, coupled with ongoing national and global instability, has undoubtedly driven that number uAnger Managementp significantly. Anxiety often manifests in our behavior as anger or rage because we feel helpless regarding the situation surrounding us.
Dealing with anxiety at its root will help to decrease anger levels. Some proactive strategies to help us deal with stress include reducing triggers, adopting a pet, engaging in activities we enjoy, exercising, getting outside in nature, turning off our screens, and seeking professional help.
How Grief and Trauma Affect Anger
A traumatic experience can have long-term effects on our mental health, even if our conscious mind convinces us we have moved on. Memories of past painful events can trigger confusion, frustration, anxiety, and violent outbursts, and people often don’t realize how past trauma influences our current actions. To effectively resolve past trauma, you may wish to seek counseling. A mental health professional can help navigate emotions, control rage, and develop a plan for coping with triggering scenarios.
Grief can be an all-consuming emotion and is another common cause of extreme anger. Grief can originate from the death of loved ones but may also result from hardship, including the loss of a job or even current world events. People experiencing grief often feel frustrated by cruelty and inequity or may feel upset that the outlook for their future has been significantly altered. Although anger and grief are commonly associated, the grief must be processed adequately in order to keep the bitterness in check.
When anger becomes overwhelming, it can be challenging to process – and finding an appropriate outlet for your negative emotions and frustration may seem impossible. If you’re uncertain about what can be done or how to process your anger in a safe way, a mental health counselor can help. Therapy can help individuals to understand themselves and their reactions better, giving them the ability to control emotions and improve mental wellness.
Denise Schonwald is a nationally certified mental health counselor with experience working in anger management. Although located in Sarasota, Denise has helped clientele nationwide with video appointments that accommodate your schedule. If you need help processing your emotions and are looking for a compassionate professional to talk with, call today to schedule a video call and get started on the road to emotional freedom.