Anger can show itself in a variety of different ways.
Anger can be destructive, verbally or physically, both to the person expressing it
and those on the receiving end of it. It can change a valid opinion or point of view
into an abusive tirade or physical assault which can never be acceptable.
Anger can also show itself in more subtle, self-deceiving ways – tears, bitterness,
cynicism, sullen defiance for example - so well-disguised that it may not ever have
been recognised for what it really is.
But that isn’t the whole story – because there is also such a thing as healthy
or positive anger that can be used constructively.
Before anyone can manage their anger, it’s necessary to own it, recognise it and, if
possible (and it often is possible) understand its true origin. Then, once recognised
and understood, the foundation has been laid to explore a different way.
Angry people may have very good reasons for being the way they are – but no
reasonable excuses for expressing it destructively or directing it at those who have
had nothing to do with causing it in the first place.
There is nothing wrong with being or feeling anger. Making a commitment to find
new ways of understanding or expressing it is one of the bravest decisions any
individual can make – because it is a commitment to change. And nobody should
underestimate how frightening that can be.
Nobody should pretend it will be easy but the benefits of changing destructive or
negative patterns of behaviour must be worth a try.