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Angry African American couple arguing in the living room.

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As a therapist I work with a lot of people who have a hard time managing their anger. When they are angry they often become irrational, violent, aggressive or defiant and end up suffering consequences that are sometimes dire. Since people often make poor decisions that are fueled by anger, it’s seen as this unfavorable feeling when it actually has some positive aspects to it.

It’s completely normal and healthy to get mad. Frankly, if you don’t get angry then that would be strange. Anger isn’t the issue. It’s what you do when you are angry that can cause concern. Anger can actually help you to make decisions that are beneficial. Whether it comes to decisions regarding your professional or personal life, anger can be the driving force behind you making a necessary change in your life, and that’s a good thing. Being angry may motivate you to look for that new job because you are fed up with your current one. Anger may help you start implementing boundaries in your relationships because you’re tired of the way people are treating you. Becoming angry can lead to you severing ties with people who have been quite toxic in your life. Anger can also help someone learn to assert themselves. Anger can be more helpful than you think.

For my clients, I work with them on using their anger as a catalyst to make necessary changes. When dissecting the role anger plays in their lives, it gives them a better understanding of what is triggering them and helps them realize that the anger doesn’t control them, they can control the anger. Experiencing anger can lead to you gaining more insight about your experiences. The key is to use anger to increase your awareness about yourself and your triggers, not to lash out and hurt others or yourself for a temporary relief.

Basically, anger is not the evil stepsister of emotions.

 

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