Pause, before blowing off your lid

If someone can easily get you angry, and you stumble with your sanity for a while, then it shows that you were already off-balance. By choosing not to get angry, you choose freedom and growth for yourself, writes APARNA KAPOOR

First things first, let us get our facts straight. Let us start by knowing what anger is. Generally it would be understood as a natural human emotion. Well, that is right to an extent. It is surely an emotion, but a ‘substitute’ or ‘alternate’ emotion to another emotion called pain. Anger never comes alone; it is usually preceded by a feeling of pain. People prefer to change their feeling of pain to anger, because it feels better to get angry than being in pain.

It temporarily shifts one’s mind from feeling vulnerable and helpless to being in power and in control. It also shifts the attention from self-focus to another focus. Anger usually surfaces when there’s a feeling of insecurity or when things are not going the way you had planned.

Synonym of desire

Anger usually is the culmination of another emotion called desire. When one yearns or desires for something, anything which seems to hinder the way between you and the object of your desire becomes the triggering factor or the reason for your anger.

What is wrong with desire? You may wonder, and understandably so; because it is our desire which keeps the spark alive in us.

But the fact is that desire comes with many strings attached.  On one hand, a positive desire can keep you motivated and help you excel and achieve; on the other, a negative desire may trigger off anticipation, expectations, fear, pain, anxiety in you. A negative desire will make you restless. It is the latter which sparks off anger in our system. So in order to keep your temper tantrums in check, it is important to put a lid on your endless desires.

One must realise that desires never cease to build a vicious web around you. Even if one of your desires is fulfilled, it would immediately move on to become an even larger desire. It is an endless process, which only makes life miserable and you its timid slave. Remember that desires could be hurtful to you. If you are able to identify your baseless negative desires, you will be able to manage and curb your anger too.

Pause before you react

You may feel that it is the people or situations which make you angry. But anger is not because of people or situations; it is your own reaction towards them. That is precisely why one should pause before one reacts.

People and situations around you function independent of you and you have absolutely no control over them; but you can surely check and have full control of your response towards them. So before you hit the roof, stop and look for an alternative reaction. Keeping quiet and temporarily moving yourself out of the situation may be one of the suitable reactions. Take your time and let the moment of extreme reaction settle down and dilute on its own.

It may sound clichéd, but time is a great healer and it helps you in your moment of anger as well. Giving some time before you actually respond will go a long way in controlling your anger.

You must realise that every time you get angry, it is you and your system which is getting affected the most. Also, your anger can never help and resolve the problems which made you feel vulnerable or fearful; it can only make it worse by creating newer problems. Anger never addresses the problem; it only complicates it further, making you even more miserable. It can even damage your relationships beyond repair.

Not worth it

Nothing, absolutely nothing comes at the cost of your inner peace and tranquility; not even your own attachments to things and people. So why stress over something which you have absolutely no control over?

Your anger is like a burning piece of charcoal. More than harming the person on whom it is thrown at, it damages the person actually holding it. The most sensible people may turn insane and react in a manner which they regret later. Anger is the most destructive of all emotions. Not only does it harm you emotionally and mentally but also causes a lot of damage to your physical being. So next time if something triggers you off, think of the consequences of your anger and your reactions. Take a deep breath and remember to take your time out and move on. Everything passes on.

Remember, if you will be patient in your moments of anger, you will save yourself from many days of sorrow, guilt and despair.

Hence, master your reactions to be free and liberated from your own clutches of emotions and attachments.