The devil inside - Anger - How to overcome? Part I

22, Sept, 2013, by Seema Bhatnagar

This is a three part series, to make the best out of it, also check out part II & III here:
The devil inside - Anger - How to overcome? Part II
The devil inside - Anger - How to overcome? Part III

holding anger is dangerous quote by Buddha

Anger, rage, aggression are some words which makes us feel uncomfortable and uneasy. For that matter, we all have experienced anger at some point in life and we also know that in all those moments, we lost control over our sanity and things just happened. Our society presents a daily reflection where people do not think twice in expressing their anger. Wars, crime, corruption, road rage, shooting spree, racism or violence (verbal or physical) at home or at work, are some of the expressions of anger easily visible around us, almost every day. Fast life, crushing deadlines, job insecurity and competition are some of the reasons which we use conveniently to approve our angry behavior.

Do you know, a moment of anger can make or break your most important relationships or probably can bring the sharpest twist in your life?

Some common belief systems

Why it is that we lose our control in anger, why it is that we become violent and aggressive while expressing it? Why it is that anger makes us feel unconformable? These are some of the very important "whys" behind anger. There are certain belief systems which we have learnt since our childhood or may be from real life experience that makes us to approve our angry behavior.

Only Anger make people work:

We have been given this belief that if you get angry, shout or yell on others, people will listen to you. It works in most of the cases because when one gets angry it brings a temporary fear in others which make people work. The fear of losing job, fear of facing others, fear of some financial setbacks makes people work under the pressure of anger.

Controlling other will correct them:

Father is considered as an authority figure and he must show his anger to have a good control over family. Husband must control wife to show his authority at home. Teacher must be strict in class to have better control over students. These are some of the common controlling scenarios easily visible around us. The fundamental belief behind controlling others is to bring corrections in other's behavior.

Anger is our reaction to external situations. It is a self paralyzing emotion and is a temporary insanity.

In both the above scenarios, the work gets done and the desired control or goal is achieved but what happens to mutual respect which plays a very important role in every relationship. Person who makes others fearful, does not get respect from others and have very weak and bleak relationships with others. Well, mutual respect might not be so important for many, but the truth is, in absence of mutual respect the work is done half heartedly, that too in fear and there is a continuous friction in relationships. No wonder, the job dissatisfaction is rising and people are unhappy in personal relationships.

What is anger?

"The hot sun melts the snows; when anger comes, wisdom goes" ~ Hindi Proverb

Anger is our reaction to external situations. It is a self paralyzing emotion and is a temporary insanity. In all those angry moments an individual becomes irrational and illogical and lose control over self. It is a subtle form of control over others and a way to impose expectations on others.

In spiritual terms,

Our consciousness (chitta) is compared to a silent lake and anger is a kind of wave (vritti) which rises in this silent lake and disturbs mental serenity which further arrests our intellect to work normally.

In the human conscious levels, anger is calibrated at 150, which is a level of negativity and indicates less evolved human consciousness.

In medical terms, anger is a trigger for stress mechanism or fight-or-flight mechanism. It triggers sympathetic nervous system and release more than 300 chemicals in human body to fight against the threatening condition. Even when the threat is over, the sympathetic nervous (a part of human nervous system) takes days to come back to normal pace and during this period body remains with stress hormones. In case of animals, the sympathetic nervous system quickly returns to normal while in human body it takes time, sometimes days, depending upon the emotional makeup of an individual.

Our everyday external situations at work, home or sometimes, the streets, acts as stimulants to trigger our anger and nowadays such situations have become so frequent that most of our time is spent in acting on these and it has become our habit to get angry at slightest disturbance or deviation. When it becomes a habit, we simply react to situations without being aware of the fact that we are angry and our body starts releasing stress hormones. This also suggests that for most part of the day our body is struggling to control levels of released stress hormones.

Physiological effects of Anger

The released stress hormones have some physiological effects on our body; it affects almost all major systems of human body.

Effects on Brain

Effects on Heart

Effects on Muscular System

Effects on Immune system

Symptoms of angry person

Following are some symptoms and behavior of angry person.
  1. Due to continuous tension in muscles, such people do not feel at ease, and might feel twitching in fingers or in body.
  2. Headache or a heavy head.
  3. Complaints of sudden hair fall.
  4. Inability to concentrate on a task at hand.
  5. Frequent attack of viral infections.
  6. Redness in eyes.
  7. Heat generation from face and upper part of body.
  8. Premature visibility of wrinkles on face.
  9. A sudden urge to smoke. I have seen people smoking endlessly using it as a tool to pacify self during anger.
  10. Increased heart beat.
  11. Body hair stands up.
  12. Vengefulness.
  13. Complaints of high blood pressure.
  14. Ignoring other person's point of view.
  15. Quick at criticizing others.
  16. Habit of cutting off conversations.
These are some common symptoms and behavior of angry person, but, since each one of us is unique so our body might react differently.

Read part II
Read part III
Related Posts
The devil inside - Anger - How to overcome? Part II
The devil inside - Anger - How to overcome? Part III

Seema Bhatnagar
, Blogger, Writer, Life Coach and Founder of Abundance Thinkers, site for personal growth and development. Empowering people in achieving and living the best of personal potential.

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