Definition:

Anger describes an emotional state that varies in intensity from mild irritation to intense fury and rage. Anger is a normal, even healthy emotion — but it's important to deal with it in a positive and healthy way. Uncontrolled anger can take a toll on both your health and your relationships.

Anger Is Also Referred to By the Following Terms:

  • Mad
  • Rage
  • Wrath
  • Fury

Key Things to Know About Anger 

  • Anger usually stems from other feelings (fear, stress, sadness, disappointment)
  • It’s important to validate your feelings of anger, but also to examine the root cause of them
  • Anger is a high-energy emotion stored in the body. It’s important to have coping skills to release that anger and return to a more balanced and/or neutral emotional state. 

Our Approach at Dakota Family Services

Anger is a legitimate emotion and can be helpful at times, while also hindering. The approach is to understand the individual, the situations that have caused them to have feelings of anger, and how this has historically been presented in different ways throughout their life. It is also important to understand how they are currently manifesting their feelings of anger and how this is impacting their life and relationships. The overall approach is to help them identify their feelings of anger, the situations from which they stem from, the underlying emotions surrounding the anger, and how to work through this effectively to not have a detrimental impact on themselves and those around them. 

Anger & Mental Health Wellness 

Having a better understanding towards a person’s individual emotions and a better understanding towards anger allows for a person to better acknowledge and cope with these feelings. People tend to get into patterns of behavior, some healthy and some not, for different emotions so being able to better understand their patterns and replace unhealthy patterns allows for increased mental health wellness. 

Common Misconceptions About Anger 

There are several misconceptions about anger, primarily that anger is wrong or bad. Most of the time, anger is manifested in the form of swearing, aggression, or verbal attacks which often has detrimental and hurtful results. Anger is often a default emotion that gives people the illusion of being in control in situations where they feel like they have lost control. In reality, anger is the loss of control and causes people to do and say things they don’t mean to try and take some power back. When we look at anger as being the result of other unresolved emotions, it is easier to find empathy for the behavior. Another misconception is that you shouldn’t talk about your anger or express the emotions that have led up to the feelings of anger. Normalizing talking about emotions, especially tough ones, will help people to express what they are feeling in a more effective way that will be less likely to end in words or behavior that have the potential to damage a relationship. Therapy helps people put words to their difficult and intense feelings to help them make sense of them and be able to communicate them to others. 

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