“Have I not told you how anger is like electricity?... Anger can strike like lightning and split a living tree in two. …Or it can be channeled, transformed. A switch can be flipped and it can shed light like a lamp.”
ANGER is one of our most misunderstood emotions. It is often accompanied by a powerful ‘wave’ of energy so it can feel
According to GuruMeher Singh Khalsa, “Anger is a form of personal power, it's the fire in the belly that burns food into movement and gets things done. Anger isn't good or bad, it's how you use it.”
Learning to recognize, feel, and transform your angry emotions into wise actions takes a skillfulness that many of us were never taught.
Sometimes you may not even recognize your anger. If someone puts you down or takes advantage of your generosity, you may brush it away or push down any emotions that begin to rise as a result of the situation. “I shouldn’t feel this way”. “I know better” so I can’t let myself feel angry.
When you don’t allow yourself to feel your angry feelings, you miss important clues your body is sending you about a situation. In the short run it may seem like the problem goes away. Over time, you may feel helpless or a victim of what life throws at you. You may notice a crusty underbelly of resentment develops when someone continues to treat you poorly but you tamp down your angry emotions. You may feel depressed or weak and take actions that are self-defeating.
For others, the high energy of anger consumes you and becomes like a bonfire. When overwhelmed by such powerful emotion, you may discharge it in ways that are harmful to yourself and others. Actions of rage and violence taken in the high heat of anger cause destruction: of relationships, your property, your job, your self-respect.
Gandhi talks about transforming the powerful energy of anger into light. Feeling your anger doesn’t equal taking immediate, rash actions. You can learn breath techniques and meditations to help you ride the powerful wave of anger and calm your body. Exploring your angry feelings may help you transform your anger into light allowing you to see a situation with clarity. You may learn to recognize and ask for what you really need; heal old sore spots that may lie under your anger; set healthy limits that strengthen your relationships; and find opportunities to meet some of your own needs to address difficult situations.
If you’d like some help accessing and working with your anger, contact me.
Dianne Fish, LPC 512.636.7500 (text or voice)