Using Your Anger
There’s a couple of stages we go through when we’re angered by a particular situation we’re faced with.
First, we lose our cool and debate and question our predicament. We turn the situation over and over in our heads, incredulous, bemused and upset that this is happening to us. We wallow in the ‘why me’s’. This is sometimes inevitable but always unproductive.
Then, we move towards action. We assess our situation, evaluate our options and possible next steps and, then, begin to take action. We try and move ourselves beyond/out of the hole we’re in. This is always necessary and always productive.
But how long we’re in stage one and how objectively we undertake stage two determines how quickly we restore sanity and get back to productive business.
How long we decide to spend in stage one is a choice. Not necessarily an easy one, depending upon the gravity of the situation, but a choice nevertheless. There’s a temptation to mire ourselves in the present, to, as I said earlier, wallow in the “why-me’s’. And I accept that there is a period of time in which that’s needed. But quickly thereafter, it’s time to move on. Sure, it’ll make us feel better stay there, to point the finger at someone else. But beyond that?
When we do decide to move on, how objectively we think through our actions will determine how effective those actions will be. If we’re too emotional, we’ll lose sight of the forest for the trees, and become mired in activities that don’t resolve our fundamental problems, those that likely put us in the situation in the first place. But if we’re objective, we’ll see what needs to actually get done, no matter how daunting, no matter how difficult.
Of course, none of this is easy. None of this just happens. It takes practice. Consistent and continued effort. Improvement isn’t sequential either, and not equally applicable across all of the types of situations we’ll find ourselves in.
But it is necessary.
As the quote says, “anger is a weapon”. How we use it determines whether we use it negatively - against ourselves - or positively - to attack our problems.