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Tycoonism “Anyone can become angry – that is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way; this is not easy.”

May 11, 2009

What makes us angry? Why do we succumb to anger and frustration? How can we curb our need to or even feel it necessary to vent out? Do you know that we have control of our actions and we can actively control and choose how to react and deal of certain situations or events? How responsible are you of your actions?

The feeling anger can come from two different places within us. Anger that comes from an adult, rational place can be called outrage. Outrage is the feeling we have when confronted with injustice. Outrage mobilizes us to take appropriate action when harm is being done to ourselves, others, and the planet. Outrage is a positive emotion in that it moves us to action – to stop crime and violence, clean up the environment, and so on. Outrage comes from a principled place within, a place of integrity, caring and compassion.

One important thing that each one of us needs to learn how to manage that anger– a way to release anger, as well as to learn from the source of the anger.

Anger can also come from a fearful adolescent place within us – that part of of us that fears being wrong, rejected, abandoned, or controlled by others, and feels intensely frustrated in the face of these feelings. This part of us fears failure, embarrassment, humiliation, disrespect, and helplessness over others and outcomes. When these fearful feelings are activated, this adolescent part, not wanting to feel helpless, may move into attacking or blaming anger as a way to attempt to control a person or a situation. Blaming anger is always indicative of some way we are not taking care of ourselves, not taking responsibility for our own feelings and needs. Instead of taking care of ourselves, we blame another for our feelings in an attempt to intimidate another to change so that we will feel safe.

Blaming anger creates many problems in relationships. No one likes to be blamed for another’s feelings. No one wants to be intimidated into taking responsibility for another’s needs. Blaming anger may generate blaming anger or resistance in the other person, which results in a power struggle. Or, the person at the other end of blaming anger may give in, doing what the angry person wants, but there is always a consequence in the relationship. The compliant person may learn to dislike and fear the angry person and find ways to passively resist or to disengage from the relationship.

When blaming anger comes up, the healthy option is neither to dump it on another in an attempt to control them, nor to squash and repress it.  The healthy option is to learn from it.

Releasing your anger will work only when your intent in releasing it is to learn about what you are doing that is causing your angry feelings. If you just want to use your anger to blame, control and justify your position, you will stay stuck in your anger. It is important to catch this bad habit and veer away from the victim-mode attitude and into open-heartedness.

So, you ask me, “Mr Tycoon, but what should I do when the person who wronged me is in front of me and smiling away as if he got away with it?”

I never said it will be easy… imaging that person you are angry with sitting in front of you. Let the angry wounded child or adolescent in you yell at him or say whatever it is you wanted to say. Unleash that anger, pain and resentment until you have nothing left to say. Scream, cry, pound a pillow or beat the bed. The reason why this can be cathartic is that a no-holds-barred anger dump would be abusive to that person. Ask yourself who this person reminds you of in your past– it is your mother, father, grandparent or sibling? It may be the same person. That is, you may be mad at your father now, and he is acting just like he did when you were little. Now let your wounded self yell at the person from the past as thoroughly and energetically as in part one. Finally, come back into the present and let your angry wounded self do the same thing with you expressing your anger, pain and resentment toward your adult self for your part in the situation or for treating yourself the way the people in parts one and two treated you. This brings the problem home to personal responsibility, opening the door to exploring your own behavior.

By doing this process instead of trying to control others with your anger, you de-escalate your frustration while learning about the real issue – how you are not taking care of yourself in the face of whatever another is doing or in the face of a difficult situation.

Remember, whenever anger comes up, you always have the choice to control or to learn.

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