Anger Decoded.

Anger Decoded.

Is anger okay? Should we suppress this emotion or express it? Is it right to be angry?

Anger is a secondary emotion, always preceded by another feeling like being rejected, cheated, offended, frustrated, insulted and so on. Often, feeling helpless and ill-equipped to handle such feelings, we embark upon this powerful and strong feeling of anger. For most of us, anger works as a defense mechanism. It helps us feel more powerful when we reel under these weak and powerless feelings; not wanting to face them.

Is there something wrong?  Is there something wrong with us or the other? Is there an unresolved issue or a pressing problem? Accepting and expressing rightly the fact that we have anger can help us figure out what is it that needs our attention. When we understand what makes us angry, we may be able to handle anger differently.

Is anger bad? Probably, but not always. Anger can sometimes help us protect ourselves/someone else or prevent someone from hurting us or others. Anger can be good if aimed at turning it into a meaningful force for the better. But on the other hand, do we react badly when in anger, take off on someone and get into a fit of rage? Then it doesn’t help.

A case in point: One evening at a small gathering of friends that a family walked into so joyfully, the wife casually came up with a funny story about her husband. He felt shamed and embarrassed about it. After dinner, the drive back home was unpleasant and the wife had to hear a mouthful… “Why did you have to narrate this to them? You don’t think before you speak, and you made me look like a fool.” he screamed. The children in the back seat were shouted down when they wanted their favourite music. He did not want to project the vulnerable feelings he was going through, and hence the outburst of anger.

Suppressing anger can settle down as unconscious anger, which over a period of time can result in pain, fatigue or even depression. It would do us a lot of good to simply acknowledge the anger emotion and encounter it skilfully.

So, being honest about our feelings and talking about it to someone might help. Accepting the fact that we struggle with anger, and dealing with it can work wonders in our lives. When addressed, unresolved issues can help us understand what kept us from choosing to walk away from the wrath of anger.

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