Tag: feelings

10 Benefits from being Angry

It occurred to me that often people hold onto behavior because it is helpful for them. So I started to think of all the ways that people benefit from being Angry and it seems like I should share it. Hope you enjoy.

  1. It doesn’t require listening. When people are angry with you they don’t listen. I don’t think this is just a consequence of their anger, but also a reason for it. People feel justified in not listening when they are angry, but what if they are using anger in order to not listen?
  2. It provides an excuse for immature behavior. When people are angry they are not getting what they want. So rather than just accept that the world doesn’t give them what they want, they throw a temper tantrum and then say “I had a right to be angry.” Yes, everyone has a right to be angry, but often anger is not helpful when you are a mature adult.
  3. It is easier to be angry then to solve the issue. I think another benefit people have from being angry is that they don’t have to solve the issue. Many times people would rather get angry about something, than look at themselves and consider what role they have in contributing to the situation. With anger we can place the blame “in the world” rather than in ourself.
  4. It distracts us from unpleasant truths. When we get angry at someone or ourselves, it often is to protect us from unpleasant truths. Do we get angry that someone cut us off in traffic, or rather our feelings of feeling vulnerable and unsafe? Rather than acknowledge our feelings, we steamroll over them and look to assign blame to someone else. Many times our anger prevents us from experiencing the reality of what is going on inside ourselves.
  5. It makes us feel “right” and justified in our worldview. So many times I have been yelled at because I did not conform to some one else’s view of the world. I try as much as possible not to judge and treat people like I believe they should act. Much of our anger is directed at how we believe the world should be. It should be “fair” and “justice” and many things. It is nice if the world was that way, but when it isn’t, we can work to improve things instead of being angry.
  6. We feel good in feeling mad. We feel good in feeling mad. This is not a crazy statement, but rather feeling angry is a socially acceptable way of expressing our frustration in the world. When we “vent” we feel like we will be happier. Often however, when we dwell on our anger we feel more unhappy and venting does not always abate and give opportunity to forgive. I am not going to tell you how to live your life, but just consider that forgiveness is a very powerful antidote to anger.
  7. We feel hurt in ways we can’t verbalize so we take it out on the person in our hearing. Many times I have been hurt by whoever wanted to kick me like a puppy. I did not do anything to justify their anger, but they felt safe in expressing anger to me because they knew I would not retailate. Many times people who are kind and loving towards others receive anger that we don’t deserve. We all have someone get angry with us randomly, and too often we do this to others.
  8. We look to anger to make us feel powerful. Strange that many people feel anger makes them powerful. It makes people not trust you, and pushes them away if they are healthy. Many people in abusive situations say anger is “love” and plenty of parents say that too. They say crap like “I wouldn’t be upset if I didn’t love you.” Bulls*. You can love someone and be patient and calm with them and help them to understand their mistakes.
  9. We think anger gives us carte blanche to express ourselves. Too often people think that anger means you can say whatever you want. Sure you can always say whatever you want, but it will damage a relationship. You can be honest and tell the truth as you see it, but your feelings are not reality. You may feel someone is disrespecting you, but that is only your perception of it, and may not be the case. Many times we assume things based on other peoples behavior and jump to conclusions. Rather than approach them in a spirit of understanding and sincere questioning, we come at them in anger. This is never a good way to solve problems with someone you love.
  10. We think what happens in anger can be forgiven. Yes, there are some really super people who can truly forgive others. They don’t hold it against you and they realize you were under stress. I rarely have meet these people. Most people tend to hold onto what you said and did in anger, and even if they forgive you, they add that knowledge to their opinion of you. I do not want to be known as someone who is an asshole in anger. You can be respectful and honest with your feelings and still not threaten or use anger in dangerous ways.

How to handle anger

How to handle anger. I’m no expert but this is what I have learned.

We are not angry at the person but at our own expectations. We believe that we should be treated in a certain manner, and when we are not, then we feel frustrated. The thing is that we may have never communicated that to another person, so how could they be aware of those expectations?

We get angry because we interpret how others treat us through our own experience. If Bob doesn’t pick me up when he promises too, then we feel that Bob doesn’t care about us.

What I have learned is that often what angers us most in others is what we have in ourselves. So for example I have a friend who is sometimes forgetful. That is a problem for me because I remember most things very well. When they forget things then I feel frustrated because their forgetfulness affects me now. An example. I was tired one day and my friend forgot something in my car he needed. So I had to drive back to him to drop it off to him. However to be honest, I sometimes forget things as well. So not only am I angry at him, I’m angry and reminded when I forget things as well.

We get angry because we feel that we give more to the other person than they give to us. Which is interesting because our perception of what we give them is different than their perception of what they receive from us. We know what we give up to be with them. I could go with Bob and have a nice dinner, or stay home and play video games or something else I enjoy. Bob knows that I have a choice, and when I choose to spend time with him then he should feel special.

We get angry because we feel frustrated and we don’t always have a good way to direct those feelings. I get frustrated when I drive more than 2 hours a day. My back starts to hurt and that affects my generally happy mood. I don’t like that, and so when I am asked to drive more than 2 hours a day I try to minimize that. Its not easy, but it really helps in my happiness.

I think we mostly get angry because we are being challenged in what is comfortable to us. Sometimes relationships are the most difficult because they challenge us at a deep level. It takes maturity and wisdom to know how much we can grow, and how much we can deal with at once. Sometimes we get overwhelmed and we have to be patient and kind to ourselves as we are challenged and changing.

Being angry is ok as long as it isn’t the only way we deal with life.