This month’s look a the Art of Extreme Self Care is a look at how we tend to stuff our anger. Women especially have turned this into an art form as they try to avoid conflict and protect the feelings of other people instead of their own feelings. This month we look anger in the face so you can learn how to use your voice when you’re angry.
We’ve all been in those situations. A rude sales rep pushes you to make a decision, someone makes a negative comment about your appearance, or your marriage, or how your children are raised. There may be a lot of occasions where you felt yourself stuffing your anger down so you could move the situation along.
In her book, Cheryl Richardson gives four steps to use when learning how to express your anger appropriately. Remember, the goal is to express your anger in a calm manner, the goal isn’t to have the other person walk away with your anger.
- Close your eyes and breathe. Don’t let yourself get caught off guard and blurt out something you’ll regret. Step away if you must and then breathe.
- Find a safe person to vent to. By safe she doesn’t mean the person who is going to fan the flames of your anger. Find someone who will listen to your concerns and who will help to put you on the right path.
- Get more information. Ask questions for more clarity about the situation. Perhaps it’s not what you thought.
- Have a calm conversation with the other person. When you are ready, tell the other person how you felt. This is not a blame game, it’s not about them. Just say things like, “This is how I felt when you said…or did…”
During this month’s calendar, we’re going to pay attention to the triggers that cause us to easily flair into anger, how our body is reacting, and how we feel as we’re stuffing our anger down. Then we’ll think about the things that are quick to anger us and craft some go-to responses to use when needed.
Below are links to some things I refer to in the calendar:
The Dance of Anger
The Ant Bully
6 Way to Express Anger Effectively
The Way Emotionally Intelligent People Handle Anger
The best way to use the calendar is to read all of the items first. Find out where you might need to plan in advance like scheduling tests or making appointments. Below is the calendar and here is a link to the Don’t Stuff Your Anger October Calendar