How do you deal with your anger? Do you let it all out or do you hold it in? Some people are totally expressive with their anger. If you are around them, you know in no uncertain terms that they are angry. Others hesitate. They may have anger but repress it because they don’t think they should have it or they are afraid of expressing it. Others may explode at times but other times let it simmer. What is the best thing to do?
First of all, let yourself have your anger. Part of the healing process from an offense, betrayal or hurtful action of another is to deal with the emotions that go with it. Anger is like a warning light on a your car dashboard. It tells you something is wrong. However, this doesn’t mean it’s okay to lash out at someone or dump your anger on the nearest target. There are healthy ways to deal with your anger but the first step is to admit it.
Sometimes you may think that if you are going to forgive, you shouldn’t be angry. Your choice to forgive does not mean you deny the pain caused by the hurtful actions of another. In fact you cannot truly let go and heal until you acknowledge the wrong that was done to you. Often it’s helpful to share with another trusted friend or counselor who can help you get in touch with why you feel angry and assist you in gaining understanding and perspective.
You can also vent through writing. When you express your thoughts and feelings in writing, it helps you to get rid of all the pent up emotions. This can be a way to discover what the underlying issues are for you and to obtain understanding of yourself, the situation and the other person.
If you are still stumped, ask God to reveal to you the reasons for your anger. Usually under the anger, there is hurt, frustration, fear or sadness or some other emotion. Anger is considered a secondary emotion and if you can get to the underlying feeling you will find it’s easier to process and discover what the real issues are for you.
Do be careful not to be hurtful in how you express your anger and at the same time don’t deny it. If you do hurt someone then go and apologize. For tips on how to handle your anger in constructive ways, read this post on 7 Tips on what to do when you are angry.
“In your anger do not sin” Ephesians 4:26 (NIV)
What has been your experience? What questions do you have? How can I support you in resolving your relationship issues?