Anger: The Ego of it All – 3 Ways Out of the Ego’s Hold

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Being a genuine Trekkie from way back, there was something that always seemed to resonate with the hopefulness of Star Trek and Star Wars, as well.

Yes, it was always a classic battle between good and evil, which we seem to need from an egoic sense; always an opponent to vanquish. But inherent in the space battles and the fist-fights that Kirk, Spock and the gang, as well as Luke Skywalker often found themselves in, there was always a sense of hopefulness and a striving for peace that seemed to be the desired outcome.

Anger was never really part of the battle, but the fight usually seemed to be for a future that was bright for all. It was as if the very battle was for the sense of peace that one must find within to live without.

That is the thing about anger that has been the inflection of the last series of posts. Anger, in its base form, is always personal in nature and has dire consequences on the person who holds it within. Yes, it is always outward directed, but, at its core, it is a harmonic imbalance that keeps us forever dependent on the ego to keep us moving forward.

Anger, then is the symbiotic relationship between the ego and that past of the soul that has decided that love is no longer part of the equation. While this is a statement that often has many raising their eyebrows like Mr. Spock, the truth is simply that anger and love cannot coexist with one another.

When i was a kid, i, like many have been, was subjected to punishment “out of love.” I think a telling statement that really brought the significance of that home to me was when, at a conference i was attending, a child psychologist said that what is confusing for a young child is that the very arms that are outstretched to hug become the very arms that do punishment. That young children, then, become confused as to the significance of love vs. anger/hate. The child then becomes an adult and carries into adulthood confusing images of love.

The concept resonated with me. I looked within and determined that it was a serious condition of the heart and of the soul and that it was time to begin the healing of anger in souls desiring to become better than their conditions would indicate.

The more i understand the very nature of anger and how it seeming affects every part of who we are, the more i saw the dominance of the ego right in the middle of it all.

In the last posts where we talked of Anger, Stormy Anger and Unhealthy Anger, there was a common thread that ran through all; The ego.

Like anger, the ego has been built up to be the trait that makes it all happen for us. It is the part of us that makes us alive, so to speak, that gives us the impetus to succeed.

But i am not so sure.

In reading of autobiographies of many famous people, it would seem that they were very ego-driven, but here is where that concept erodes. In the leaders that have ended poorly, the Napoleons of the World, we see that their egos and their anger drove them mad. But the true leaders, the pioneers that changed the world, what often appeared as ego, was often mistaken as passion for what they believed, for the vision they were destined to become.

Even in politics, there are many politicians that enter our awareness, but few States(wo)men, essentially individuals who exhibit great wisdom and ability in directing the affairs of a government or in dealing with important public issues, emerge on the forefront of the public arena.

I am not so cynical as to believe that all politicians are “crooks”, as is the mindset of anger, but that most truly enter for reasons so as to serve. Just like any profession, however, there is an egoic tendency to be influenced by power that sets its course on anger as its base.

Look around for yourself. Notice the individuals who have made the most difference in your life and in the lives of others. Are they not people who had a sense of a Universal Way about them? Do they seem to come from a different place, from a place free of anger and of an ego? I know this to be truth for myself.

So in our discussion, we have subtly made the connection to the ego as we have dealt with the ways to take steps against the anger, but notice that in our various steps, it was that we always came from a place of love. Again, love and anger can not coexist with one another. The ego will shut off the pathways for love when engaged with anger. That is why hugging a child with loving arms and then using the same hands to strike them is a place no one should ever find themselves. The same sentiment undoubtedly goes for being an adult.

I go back to Star Trek and Star Wars. The very teaching of Yoda, the Jedi Master, is that anger, the emotions, the ego, clouds your way as a Jedi.

“Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.”  Jedi Master, Yoda

Yoda, in his infinite wisdom, was really saying a Universal Truth that resonates to our Galaxy as well. There is no progression of anger that can ever be beneficial to anyone, especially yourself.

3 Ways Out of the Ego’s Way to Anger

Step 1: Understand that Anger is a Personal Journey

As a director, there is a time in the production that you give notes to the actors about their performance to get them to become a cohesive unit for Opening Night. Usually, done in the last week or so of the rehearsal schedule, when the actors have learned their lines for the most part. the notes are the directors view at performances-as-a-whole and done with an eye on tweaking performances of the individual actors. The part of taking notes is that it is never personal for you see not the person, but the actor.

It is the same with anger. You must first take the personal out of it, You must take the egoic hold and detach from it. By doing so, you begin the process of beginning to detach from ego, from the reason that anger exist within you for what ever reason. The significance of this step cannot be denied in that as soon as the personal is detached, the ego, the anger can be dealt with. You are the director taking notes on the production and the anger is an actor. Granted a bad one that really needs to be relegated to backstage, but baby steps here.

Step 2: Once Detached Personally, Mindmap those Affected by the Anger

Again, to continue the analogy of a director taking notes, when you stop and visually graph a look at the insidious ways that the ego is using anger to keep you from progressing in your career or in a relationship, then you can begin to see the bigger picture, the production known as your life, as a whole. This is where you really begin to see the concept of Directing Your Own Life and preparing your Opening Night, your Season of Productions, your Life.

Step 3: Release the Ego on Each Step of The Anger Mindmap

Understand that the egoic tendency is like that of an octopus arms, its tentacles not only wrap you up in each seemingly autonomous appendage, but each has its own little suction cups that are designed to grab you and hold you until you can no longer struggle. This is why each component of the anger you have identified on your mindmap must be dealt with individually. Many times, people think that just looking at an anger trait is enough and fail to realize that the ego assigns different traits to all components in the map.

Dealing with the ego of anger is never an easy proposition, but remember that the first step is to detach personally. This should be the beginning of understanding for the way ego ties you up to truly advance in to be fully present in every Now Moment.

As we look into the ego in the subsequent posts, understand that the journey begins Now and that we are not creatures of guilt or regret here as we go through this process. We are simply releasing ourselves for the journey ahead that is always Now.

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Let me Know your Thoughts Below, Follow this Blog, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

directyourownlife@gmail.comDA 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 directyourownlife@gmail.com

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The Senses of Anger: Unhealthy Anger, 3 Ways to Turn it Around

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Sense Three: Unhealthy Anger (vs. Healthy)

In the old TV program, Lost in Space, the beleaguered robot always knew when Will Robinson was in danger and would sound the clarion call of “Danger, Will Robinson” that was, and is to this day still, a catch phrase that signals trouble ahead.

Like Will Robinson usually did, we, too, seem to ignore the danger signs of anger that is causing us to run aground on the sometimes rocky shores of life.

The thing about Unhealthy Anger is that it seldom just happens. As we have seen in the previous two senses of Anger and Stormy Anger, there seems to be definite traits that lead us to those places in anger and, in many ways, can be turned around with a thoughtful embrace of the principles that were talked of in a previous post.

But Unhealthy Anger is just that; Unhealthy.

Unhealthy Anger has many of the traits of Stormy Anger, but where they are different is really in the overall personalities that are from the Anger-givers. It has been my observation as a Life Coach that when clients come in a Stormy Anger state-of-mind that underneath, they are just happy people waiting to get out. As was stated in the last post, Stormy Anger seems to have at its base, conditions that seem to have caused an out-of-control state that the Stormy Anger is reacting to.

Many times Unhealthy Anger is more relationship based, it seems and exhibits many of the traits of Stormy Anger, but the Unhealthy Anger is more of a continual state of mind.

Now, i preface this discussion going froward as one coming from experience as a Life Coach and not as a trained psychologist. So if you know someone in the grips if Unhealthy Anger and they seem to be beyond a calm and loving approach, please take steps to get them the professional help needed.

It is been my experience that Unhealthy Anger has, at its core, a rage that sometimes makes no sense to those who are at the receiving end of it. Its one of those, “i did not even see that coming” kind of experiences because Unhealthy Anger is always looking for an excuse to be angry. The ego of those in an Unhealthy Anger state-of-mind will forever be there until that power is taken back from the ego-centric mind that inhabits the Unhealthy Anger.

Whereas Stormy Anger seems to have more conditions attached to it, Unhealthy Anger seems to have its roots in relationships to a greater degree. It is more of the “seething rage” that is based in the ego’s attempt to protect you from life but has become so convoluted that the actions no longer really have a sense of continuity to them.

The traits of screaming and yelling, physical expressions of anger, violence or threats of violence, sulking, manipulation, emotional blackmail, silent smoldering, and anger used to punish are proudly on display in Unhealthy Anger.

However, these traits are so deviously used by the ego, and sometimes with such joy, that the Unhealthy Anger doesn’t even seem like anger. This is why so many times, the person that is in the state of Unhealthy Anger, is so often discounted that when something so extreme happens, it seems it that it comes from far, far left field.

I had a client that i was once coaching, a more mature lady, who seemed so soft-spoken that one never would suspect that she was filled with Unhealthy Anger. Where her anger came from was that she had allowed others to decide most courses of action for her life.

She had given control over to others because she was so in the grips of “wanting to please” others that she was afraid to make a “wrong” decision and was concerned with what others thought of her every action; literally EVERY action.

The Unhealthy Anger subtly manifested with sulking, rage and a silent smoldering that was based in shame, but for what she did not know. “It seems,” she would tell me, “that i am out of control but don’t know why.” One thing she did know was that she was spiraling downward and had major life decisions to make but was angry and afraid to be “wrong.”

One trait of Unhealthy Anger i have noticed is that the person in the grips of this anger has seemingly lost a sense of self. The relationships that surround them have often become so toxic because of the anger, that it is difficult to see any light at the end of the tunnel.

Years spend as a director, i noticed that when people brought their frustrations and anger into the play rehearsal, it affected their overall performance. I would usually begin the rehearsal telling the actors and crew that life is a bubble and that here in the rehearsal hall, we are presenting a bubble unaffected by the outside. We are here to bring a creative interlude to the lives of our ultimate audience; an escape for a few hours. Isn’t that the very thrust of why we lose ourselves in TV and movies to begin with? To “tune out” for just a bit?

It is the same approach we are to take with Unhealthy Anger.

Create the bubble first.

3 Ways to Approach Unhealthy Anger

Step 1: Isolate

As a director, I had to detach to a degree from the individuals as friends who had the various roles and look at the total production. All of the moving parts were what mattered here and each played a role within it.

As with Unhealthy Anger, all of the elements that make the anger manifest are what is need to be dealt with. Sometimes, if you are close to the person, it is difficult to separate, but you need to isolate yourself and become a director, of sorts. Also, there is an isolation of the Unhealthy Anger as well. If you need a Life Coach at this point, the so be it, but at the heart of Unhealthy Anger is an egoic tendency that needs to be rooted out. So, at the very outset, the Unhealthy Anger is the target, not the person. The person is merely the vessel.

Like with my client who felt out of control, we isolated the root cause of her anger was that she had given over her life to having to be accepted by everyone. When i told her that it was none of her business what others thought of her, and she finally got it, she began to reclaim her life one Now Moment at a time.

Step 2: Direct

This is the crucial element of dealing with Unhealthy Anger; Direct it away.

After you have isolated the elements, the players of the anger, it is now time to see how the ego has affected each one. Many times Unhealthy Anger plays out on the surface but like the iceberg that sank the Titanic, the mass underneath is what is causing all of the damage. As a Director, you must get beneath in an impartial way knowing that the ego has been masking the anger very, very well. Once you have identified the anger sources, you must direct each part.

As a Director, yes you have actors who are the leads, but understand that all actors in the show get the same attention to detail as far as direction goes. The play, such as is life, is great to every level. As a coach i tell my clients that is not the details of life that matter, but the details of the details that make it all worth the ride.

Step 3: Close the Show and Start A New Production

In a sense here we are opening and closing on the same night. Doesn’t seem fair, but this is Unhealthy Anger here. It doesn’t deserve a long run. Quite frankly, it probably already has had its long run. What we are doing here is impressing upon the person where the Unhealthy Anger was residing that we are essentially ridding ourselves of all of the parts that were not working, we are doing away with the causes of the egoic mindset that was causing the Unhealthy Anger and closing the production down.

When you detach the anger in parts, it becomes a bit easier to do. Now, know that this may be a process but one that is worth the journey. What is important in this process is that we are making this as impersonal as possible for it is the anger, not the soul, that we wish to destroy.

Yes, Anger needs to be destroyed. it has no place in lives.

Trust me, i have heard it all before, “How can you not be angry, it is unhealthy.”

Really? Never heard a lot of news accounts of joyful people going off on others and committing inhumane acts of violence.

The ultimate journey is joy and anger is not to be a part of it. Isolate and Direct the Unhealthy Anger away and reopen in a Joyful State of Mind for here is where true living plays out.

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Let me Know your Thoughts Below, Follow this Blog, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

directyourownlife@gmail.comDA 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 directyourownlife@gmail.com

 

 

The 3 Senses of Anger: 3 Ways to Diffuse Stormy Anger

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Sense Two: Stormy (vs. calm) Anger

There is a proverb that talks of one living on the roof alone rather than being with a contentious soul in the home. I believe the key word here is “contentious” and its very meaning: Involving heated argument(s).

Of course, the definition is succinct in its meaning in that if it was a simple dialogue between two souls in a non-contentious manner, it would not be heated. Anything heated, from an argument perspective, involves an intensity of thought, mind and deed and seldom is the resolution peaceful to the extent that someone doesn’t go off hurt or even more angry than at the outset.

Stormy Anger is that place that makes us literally sick inside, does it not? Yet, until we come to terms with who we are as Universal Souls, we too, have undoubtedly have Storms within that have transferred outward.

What makes Stormy Anger the most challenging is that when we are often in the midst of it, it “seems” rational and we are even aware of it as it is happening. But it is as if we have committed ourselves to it and must follow it through to the end. It is almost as if the ego will not let you abandon Stormy Anger as it needs it to propel you in a direction that is never really you, but once you have gone there, it becomes you. Often Stormy Anger is a pattern unto itself.

Think of when you were/are around a parent or friend who “goes off” and becomes this “Incredible Hulk” of sorts in certain situations. Doesn’t that make you react differently as you try to ascertain what caused the Stormy Anger to begin with. The very term, “Walking on eggshells” is applied and the idea is to not provoke the Stormy Anger to begin with.

Perhaps the most insidious aspect of Stormy Anger is that the very things we react to and guard against, are not usually the conditions of the Stormy Anger at all. We then become reactive beings instead of loving creatures true to ourselves as individuals.

Understand that Stormy Anger is more often than not, a set of conditions, not the person. The person is just “under the influence” so to speak. That is what makes it so hard to gauge and instead of understanding the conditions that brought the Stormy Anger to the surface, we go out of our way to maintain peace.

But peace, based on the fear of something maybe happening, is never peace. And because of fear, we become reactive beings and not Present in the Moment as fear is always future based.

In the theatre, as a director, it is always funny when you direct a character that has to become angry on stage. Many times, the actors get to the part of “being really angry” and it is almost as if the concept is foreign to them. Often times, their anger is so contrived and comical, it is as if they had never been angry in their lives. It is as if anger is something that others do but certainly not them. I understand the concept, because at the heart of anger is the very understanding that you don’t desire to be in that place. It is as if you are, indeed, possessed by someone outside of yourself.

You are. It is called the ego.

Again look at all of the words that surround anger from the previous post, and it is easy to see why we become so confused with the word itself. It means so many things, elicits so many emotions, and yet it is a catch-all for acting a certain way.

So, what are some of the ways to begin to diffuse Stormy Anger within and in the situations that you are subjected to?

3 Steps to Begin to Diffuse Stormy Anger

Step 1: Embrace the Eye of the Storm

Now, this may seem counter-intuitive at first, but embrace the concept.

Now, i will preface this by saying that the very nature of Stormy Anger may be a danger aspect, so always be intuitive and non-reactive by extricating yourself from a situation that you may deem as such. But always do this in a state of calm, not in a reactive state of fear.

In Coaching clients, when i often encounter a Stormy Anger, or any anger, situation, i get to the Eye of the Storm. In a Hurricane, at the center, there is a calm that is uncanny. It is as if life is in a bubble and the storm will not touch it. Such is anger, especially Stormy Anger.

The fact of Stormy Anger is that, often, you are aware of it, but as i said, you feel committed to it. If you simply allow yourself to briefly rage, and then announce to yourself that you will find the eye of the storm, this may take you momentarily off of the storm itself, away from the ego, and then to the conditions that have caused the storm to begin with.

You see, it is the self-awareness that diffuses the anger many times. Embracing the Eye is allowing your ego to become unimportant and you becoming Present in the Moment.

When others become Stormy, become the calm and do not react. It is almost as if the ego of the Stormy Anger needs to feed on souls in fear. When others begin Stormy Anger, start first by non-reaction and then speaking almost in a whisper to them. It forces them to listen, to stop and to re-focus, often times out of the Stormy Anger.

Step 2: Don’t Allow Anger to Run its Course

Again, counter-intuitive, but the concept here is that you are not going to allow anger to influence or become the bases of any future reaction. It is never an honest emotion and is usually based in fear.

Instead, for yourself and for those you are dealing with in Stormy Anger, the Eye is where you announce that there is no more acceptance of the anger. That there is no conclusion where someone does not get hurt emotionally in some way. This is the place where self-awareness reigns supreme and you take back from the ego that which is yours; The peace of the Now Moment.

Step 3: Deal With the Conditions and Walk Away

We started by saying that it is the conditions of Stormy Anger that must be dealt with, so by taking the personal aspects of anger and dealing only with the conditions, the ego will be more apt to release the anger as it is not being attacked.

Well, maybe.

The ego always desires to be in charge, but the key here is to deal with the conditions and leave the personal out. This will give you a beginning, if nothing else.

The key concept here is, Embracing the Eye. From here all moments become yours. Ultimately you are responsible for yourself. Never allow “being angry” to be an excuse for acting in a contrary way.

It is your journey.

Live as if you have a purpose, for you do.

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Let me Know your Thoughts Below, Follow this Blog, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

directyourownlife@gmail.comDA 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 directyourownlife@gmail.com

The Three Senses of Anger

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Why is it that anger, when you are in the midst of it, seems like a rational expression of living naturally?

Why is it that anger seems to “make sense” but the reality is that when most come across a soul tormented by anger that, it seems anything but sensible.

The funny thing about it is that we are very adept at seeing it in others as it is manifest but, often, we find it difficult to see anger when we look into the mirror.

Here is the most troubling aspect of anger; Within anger, the capacity for love is non-existent. It is as if anger and all of its subsidiaries dam up the flow of love. They are truly opposite ends of the spectrum and cannot co-exist together in any form whatsoever.

The challenge then, is to understand how anger does indeed manifest in various ways and to understand that in any form, anger impedes the flow of love in your life. Oh, it is easy to say that you love someone or some situation, but the beleaguered word of love thrown about often is just that, a word to mask anger and its little henchmen.

Looking up anger in the dictionary and it strikes me immediately when the dictionary defines anger as “a part of speech”, it made me think that it should seldom actually be a part of life. Unfortunately, that is not the case.

The dictionary is pretty succinct it its definition stating that anger is that “state of being mad, annoyed” but what is the most interesting to look at are the synonyms that are listed as influenced by anger.

They are,  acrimony, animosity, annoyance, antagonism, blow up, cat fit, (although, i’ve not seen my cat really have to many fits!) chagrin, choler, conniption, dander, disapprobation, displeasure, distemper, enmity, exasperation, fury, gall, hatred, hissy fit, huff, ill humor, ill temper, impatience, indignation, infuriation, irascibility, ire, irritability, irritation, mad, miff, outrage, passion, peevishness, petulance, pique, rage, rankling, resentment, slow burn, soreness, stew, storm, tantrum, temper, tiff, umbrage, vexation, and violence, just to name a few.

What is even more fascinating about anger when you delve deeper into the word. It seems to have three distinct stages, the three senses of angry.

Sense One: Angry (vs. Unangry)

This is where a lot of words that seem to be brief flashes of anger seem to reside. The stranger that cuts you off, the person that says something that “rubs you the wrong way.” You know, depending on your mood, something affects you one way one day where you might not get too concerned and yet another way on a day when you are looking at life with not such a great outlook.

Sense Two: Stormy (vs. calm)

This is a very difficult stage, it seems, as it is two totally opposite ends of the spectrum. Think of the very word, Stormy, and what are the images that are conjured up in your mind?

As a writer, often the use of the word “Stormy” or “Stormed into” portrays a sense of fear, does it not in a novel? The very word seems to illicit images of loved ones who have “gone off” and the fear that has arisen because of that emotion. But the redeeming part of this sense of the word, if it can be stated that way, is that there seems to be not a continual state that leads into one bad experience after another, for the most part.

Of course, it then leads others to live their lives based on the “blow up” of the particular individual, or the avoidance of it the situation, if at all possible. This sense of the word then becomes toxic for all in the angry persons sphere as they alter their life so as to not cause the blow up.

Sense Three: Unhealthy (vs. Healthy)

This the “Danger, Will Robinson” of the senses of the word anger, in that it is the one that often leads to death to the person of anger and, many times, to the ones they are associated with. The unhealthy anger is often masked in depression and is the anger that strikes at times that most have no way of seeing.

Often, when coaching a client, i see anger played out in ways that almost seems as a positive as a career enhancer, but seldom is it sustainable.

Anger is really like that douse of charcoal fluid you put on a grill. A burst of a toxin that stokes the flame but burns off quickly. Yes, it does what is intended, gives the charcoal that needed burst of energy that is needed to cook the burgers, it intensifies the heat, but like anger, the coals eventually burn away and leave nothing but a smoldering and grey looking substance that is, at its core, unhealthy to even touch or breathe in.

Such are the senses of anger and in the next series of posts, we will look at ways to deal with each sense of anger and why it is never a positive way of living life.

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Let me know your thoughts below, get on the newsletter list HERE, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

directyourownlife@gmail.comDA 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 directyourownlife@gmail.com

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