Dear Elsie,

There is an Arab proverb that says, “the beginning of anger is madness and its end is regret”. And I have seen and heard of people become downright mad and reduce themselves to beasts when they become angry. And like beasts, they savagely devour any and everything they are in contention with, only to realise later that what they destroyed in that moment of uncontrolled behaviour is marred forever. And that is probably the saddest result of anger; when you are unable to fix that which you destroyed during that fit because they are irreparably damaged.

Anger, left uncontrolled can be very damaging. Many have lost innumerable blessings because of anger; from losing out on multimillion business deals to losing vital social relationships. Uncontrolled anger can be very damaging.

However, anger is not all bad. In as much as it is destructive, it can also be a fixer. Psychologists tell us it is very okay to get angry. What is not okay is allowing it to transcend your thinking and taking control of every part of your being. So yes, getting angry is a normal human reaction.

Human Emotions can be a very delicate thing to handle sometimes. Even the sweetest of all (love) can be equally complex. That is why dealing with them require a lot of tact and mind work.

Here are some tips I sampled from the internet to help you deal with anger. I hope you find them helpful.

  1. Think before you speak. In the heat of the moment, you might say something you will regret later. And sometimes, when we are angry, words fail us. We can hardly find the right thing to say. So, we end up saying all the wrong things that either exacerbate the problem or leave us more bruised than we were.
  2. Once you are calm, express your anger. It is good to vent your anger but venting it the wrong way might lead to another cause for anger. This is not to suggest in any way that you pent up your anger. Bottling it may result in a dangerous explosion someday. Knowing the terror such explosions can cause, it is best to express your frustration in an assertive and non-confrontational way when you start thinking clearly. State your concerns and needs directly, without hurting others or trying to control them. Winding or dilly-dallying around the issue may leave it unresolved, thereby leaving a higher probability for it recurrence.
  3. Get some exercise. Exercise prevents and cures a lot of mishaps. It is an elixir for many for many destructive ailments. Exercise reduces stress that can cause you to become angry. If you feel your anger escalating, go for a brisk walk, run or spend some time doing other enjoyable physical activities. You can even decide to count from 1 to infinity- sounds a bit puerile but it works.
  4. Try taking some timeout; it is extremely helpful. Timeouts provides a change of environment and fills your mind with new thoughts. Moving away from the scene that caused you to become angry is a step towards healing. A sight of new things calms you and helps you to collect thoughts on a better way of dealing with the cause or agent of your anger.
  5. Instead of focusing on what made you mad, identify possible solutions to resolve the problem. There are so many ways of solving a problem. Many of the problems we leave unresolved have solutions. However, when you are angry, every problem looks like it has no solution. That is why you would want to raze your house down, kick, slap or even beat the agent of anger. Anger blinds you to possible solutions, it muddies your thoughts. Which is why you must calm down first as stated earlier and then you can think about possible solutions to solve the problem.
  6. Do not hold a grudge. Forgiveness has always been the best option. Learn to forgive people for their wrong. Holding a grudge makes you bitter. It feels you with so much hate for the offender and the only thing you want to do in such moments is to react squarely to what the person has done. Forgiveness on the hand gives you a better feel. When you sincerely forgive, all the heavy emotions within assumes a lighter weight and gets you being your happy self again.
  7. Use humour to release tension. Lighten up your mood with humour. Find yourself activities you find very cheerful. You can watch funny movies or read funny stories to feel better.
  8. Practice relaxation skills. We all have a peculiar relaxation skill that works magic for us in times like this. Discover which suits you best and apply it in such times. It could be watching a movie, reading a book, listening to music, playing video games or even a good sleep. Know yourself and find out what relaxes you best and reach for it during these times.
  9. Know when to seek help. If or when your anger terrifies you and everyone else around you, then you probably time to seek help. If you find yourself strangulating people, throwing your television to the ground, kicking and slapping whoever or whatever is in sight, inflicting unimaginable physical harm to yourself and other people around you, then it is time to call in on some professional help.
Always keep your anger in check.

Anger is very difficult to control. That is why the strongest person is the one who can control his or her anger. So, my dear Elsie, be the strongest by controlling your ANGER.

Until I write to you again…

I remain…
Yours sincerely,