Anger often goes unnoticed at a conscious level – e.g. we’re often not aware we’re shouting until someone else points it out.
Anger is an archaic, survival-level emotion present in all of us, which usually surfaces when some aspect of our basic needs, is not being met.
It could be borne out of frustration, contradiction, our values being challenged, an argument, our boundaries being broken, or perhaps we feel threatened in some way.
Anger can surface even as a survival response when we're afraid.
Regardless of the specifics, in some contexts, anger can be useful, but there are some signs and symptoms that make it clear anger is becoming a problem in your life, e.g.
Passive aggression is a more subtle version of openly displayed or expressed anger, which can in some ways be even more toxic than outward anger resulting in obvious conflict.
Passive aggression is usually anger expressed indirectly, such as sarcasm, refusal to co-operate explicitly, or indirect resistance such as saying or doing only the minimum required.
It can also often be expressed as duplicitous communication, e.g. saying one thing, and meaning another, or saying one thing, but in a tone that doesn’t match the content of the message.
As a means to achieve what you want, or have your needs met.
What we mean here is, if we react to something with anger (usually as a child), and discover that this gets us what we want…..it only takes this experience to repeat a few times, before a part of us begins to use this over and over, as a means to get what we want.
Later, once the pattern is ingrained, it becomes the *only* means we use to get what we want.
At this point, anger has become an addiction, of sorts, and can spiral out of control from here, in adult life.
In this way, anger becomes an established problem if it’s occurrence becomes habitual, or it’s being used in a dependent way, to help you achieve something which should be achieved through more appropriate or socially acceptable means.
If you’re *dependent* on anger (or any emotional reaction) to help you achieve any particular thing in life, you have a pattern of behaviour that likely needs to be addressed through counselling or other means.
Anger management is a slightly different approach to anger, and is a means to de-escalate more extreme or problematic anger before then engaging in (e.g.) counselling to explore the underlying causes.
This approach is typically used before the above, more therapeutic process, and can help where anger is severe, or having very significant consequences around you, such as others being at risk.
It’s not an approach we currently provide.
Despite your experiences with anger, it CAN be controlled, once understood, with professional help.
Anger could have developed from a number of causes such as previous trauma, our nature (genetics), or elements of our childhood.
It may simply be a conditioned response, or something that you learned through observational learning as a child – a behaviour that was demonstrated to you, over and over, to the extent that it became ‘normal’.
Anger counselling can help you to identify the patterns in your life, where anger has become an issue – and this will give greater insight as to why it exists, and the purpose it may be attempting to serve, in your life.
This will usually help define what triggers are causing you to feel angry, and we can then begin to work with those – in the real world.
To help with anger issues, we may work with you using a range of therapeutic aids, such as journalling, an anger diary, life event exercises, CBT, REBT, visualisation, and other tools and techniques as they apply to anger in your life personally.
Anger works mostly at an unconscious level in our lives and is something we’re generally not aware of, until we feel triggered.
Nevertheless, in our work over the years, we’ve seen anger issues inflict horrific consequences in people’s lives – everything from losing access to children, to accidents, assaults, and worse – but importantly – individuals simply don’t realise they’re doing all this, consciously, as all they *feel* is the anger itself. Is this you?
Be *free* from anger - we can help - 0191 580 3700
We can help you separate the anger in your life, from its positive intention for you, and achieve the positive outcome, in a much more acceptable way (and with less stress!)
Need anger help – Get help now (in confidence) – 0191 580 3700
Our counsellors adhere to the BACP code of ethics and practice.