We talked about Sadness taking over. Today, Anger get’s the spotlight. Who loved this guy in the Inside Out Movie?
I wanted to stay as far away from him as possible. His head was always on fire and he turned bad situations into terrible situations that usually spun right out of control.
Anger isn’t fun or easy to talk about.
But it’s real. And for some of us (ahem) it’s something that needs to be addressed.
Anger is a great signal that there’s something going on that needs our attention.
In fact, it’s the something I’m really working on in my life. I’m learning about anger, how I use it and how it backfires. So, I thought I’d share a little about that with you today.
I’m learning that I use anger to cover up other emotions that don’t feel strong to me, like sadness, hurt, fear or confusion. But like we talked about last time, each of those emotions play an important role for us.
I don’t like to feel weak or needy (which is a whole other issue, I know). So when I feel those things, I fire up the anger reaction and suddenly I feel strong again. Not only that, it temporarily lets me off the hook for dealing with the real emotion that started the whole thing, because usually I’ve started a fight that’s not about the core issue that’s so hurtful.
It’s like taking a detour through the woods, as soon as the course that gets me where I really want to go, starts heading uphill.
What’s interesting is, once I’ve finished the detour of an angry reaction, I’m still standing at the bottom of the same hill. Looking up. Only now, there’s been a landslide and there’s a rocky ledge at the first step.
So I’m investigating the emotions that trigger my anger response and trying to figure out where they’re coming from inside of me.
It’s hard work , but it’s going to be worth it. I don’t want to be a mean old lady, full of anger and resentments, all because I was too afraid to hurt.
So today, I thought you might need to be encouraged to investigate your anger too.
And then again, you may not. This one might not be for you.
But on the chance it is, I want you to know you’re not alone. Figuring out your anger is one fight that’s worth it. The feelings your anger is protecting you from, aren’t going to go away until you take them head on.
It’s a tough one. I’m right there with you. But if we’re ever going to really love ourselves and others well, we don’t have a choice.
Grab a shovel sister. Let’s start digging.
To more love,
P.S. There’s a wonderful book on Women and Anger I highly recommend, called The Dance of Anger, by Harriet Lerner.