A man was late for work and, being in the state of general “pissed-off-i-ness”, (even though i am pretty sure it is not a word, most everybody knows and has experienced the very state in conjures up your mind!) his general attitude was becoming more unpleasant by the second.
The very act of rushing was adding to his general state of anger and in the process of trying to juggle papers, his cell phone and the breakfast sandwich he was gulping down as he drove, a man in another car entered the highway and proceeded to drive at the exact rate of speed indicated on the roadsigns. Imagine that!
The man in a hurry, (we will call him Joe) rushes upon the driver, who was simply obeying the rules of the road, and slams on his breaks so as not to hit the safe driver, sending the various items on the passenger side of Joe’s car onto the floor.
Joe is now extremely hacked off and passes the man, even more angry at the man and life, in general. Joe gets to work and immediately starts in on his assistant, which gets her day off poorly as well. She, then, reacts accordingly and is reactive to all she encounters for the rest of the day.
When she heads home, she yells at her son for his room being dirty, for him being dirty, and for whatever else she could harp on him for. The son then goes into his room and kicks the dog.
Oh, yes, the man in the other car went on joyfully and had a wonderful day.
While we can’t say as much for the poor dog, as he was simply at the receiving end of a day of anger being transferred, we do know one thing for sure; Anger, the general attitude of anger, is like yeast used in baking, there is but a small amount that is needed to affect the whole loaf of bread being baked.
In Sense One: Angry (vs. Un-angry), there is a general acceptance of this state of mind. I mean, we all get angry, right? We need to express our anger, to get it out, so to speak, or it will not be good for us. Even psychologists seem to parrot that in some cases.
But the truth be known, anger is a cascading snowball, that grows and affects all in its path. This general anger, the most acceptable anger of the three Senses of Anger, seems the most innocuous does it not? The general, little life annoyances, that everyone deals with and that everyone knows to expect are nothing more than “letting off steam”.
But to do not delude yourself here. Like drugs that seemingly lead to other drugs of a more powerful bent, anger seems to breed the same. The challenge is that as a society, we need to be less accepting of anger in any form, and more passionate about living a life anger-free.
3 Steps to Becoming Anger Free
In my Life Coaching pursuits, many times one of the first things i must deal with my clients is the very issue of anger. The thing about anger is that the ego often masks it so well in the guise of other emotions. But at the heart of many emotions is indeed anger and it must be dealt with to ensure a successful transition into a new realm of desire for the client.
Step 1: Acceptance
I have never been of the mindset that we are to gloss-over or just “be positive” and pretend that the emotions don’t exist.
Yes,at the heart of living victoriously in every Now Moment is the positive frame of mind that is joyful and real. Not a bunch of platitudes or sayings that are like butter on a pile of hot pancakes; as soon as it hits the heat of the luscious cakes of goodness, the butter melts away from the heat. Such are positive sayings. We must first deal with the heat (the anger) that will never allow the butter to have any affect and then the butter, when it does melt, will gently invade the soul.
So, we first list the emotions we are dealing with and don’t try to analyze them. We just list them down. We then just accept the emotions and feelings such as we do a sign on the road that indicates some piece of information we may need when traveling.
The sign only indicates where the gas station is; it is not the gas station. Such are the emotions. They merely indicate to what the emotion is, it is not us. Where the emotion leads us, in a sense, is the gas station.
This process is almost foreign to some; the acknowledgment of an emotion. But, may times, it is the flushing out of the ego, of anger, and the moving on from there to Step 2.
To continue on with the gas station analogy, we have come to the station. we have accepted the signs (the emotions) and have found our way to the heart of why we are angry.
Now here is where we come to understand how we got here. Yes, our emotions lead us here, but what are the circumstances; the people, places or events, that started our trip? Many times if you were to look at anger, it would be like a big mindmap. At the center is you and your trusty companion, anger, and stemming out are the tentacles of all that have affected your anger.
Now the important part here, as you look at the various parts, is not to assign “right” or “wrong” motives here, but just acknowledge and really release them into the wild.
Anger is always a past reflection on a current state of mind. Think about it. Anger always happens in the past and the ego uses that anger to hold you and bind you. By releasing the various moving parts, you can move forward.
Step 3: Fill the Tank and Go
This seems pretty straightforward, but many get caught in the trap of Step 2 by staying in Step 2. It is not that we dwell on it, but have a simple talk with ourselves to just let the past go. People hold on to the past only to the extent that it serves them and, yes, that is even if it was a tragedy of some kind. By staying perpetually at Step 2, we don’t allow our tanks to become full of the hopefulness of the road ahead. For our journey is ours alone.
Yes, we pick up passengers along the way and we live, love and laugh with reckless abandon as that is our mission, joy. But we start, and finish, alone and we are ultimately responsible for that journey within, that leads us without.
Observe the signs, release the anger, fill the tank and move on. This is the joy of living anger-free.
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DA Southern is a Strategic Life Coach, teaching the spirit of living in Now Moments with the principles he experienced during over 35 years as an actor and director in live theatre. DA coaches his clients to rid life of limiting beliefs that have kept them from achieving miracles in all areas of their life by embracing Mindfulness of the Present Moment with a renewed Vision for life. Contact DA Southern for coaching @ firstname.lastname@example.org