Suggestions to help you get a handle on your anger.
1. Ask yourself questions
When you feel yourself on the verge of anger ask: Is this really what I want to do?Do I want to have this conversation or explosion now? Maybe I should wait until I feel better. Answering “no” could buy you a few precious seconds to consider your next move,” says Roy Perlis, MD, MSc, medical director of the Bipolar Clinical and Research Program at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.
2. Pause before you hit SEND
Email and text can be as dangerous as the spoken word, if not more so. Don’t let loose too soon. Print is forever.
3. Watch for the signs
If you’re prone to anger outbursts you know it by now. “For some people, this feels like a panic attack, a rush of adrenalin, heart pounding, skin flushed,” says Perlis. Have a plan in place about how you intend to respond—and keep to it.
4. Cuddle a pet … or someone else’s
Animals can ease stress and creates a sense of calm. Having a dog’s head on your lap or hugging a cat can even stimulate the release of oxytocin—a powerful hormone responsible for relaxation and stress-reduction.
5. Remove yourself immediately from the situation
This is especially important if you’re a parent with a child or even a pet owner. And at work, excuse yourself and go to the restroom or step outside.
6. Explore relaxation techniques
Look for things that help you managing anxiety, like visualization, listening to music, or maybe doing a task that just helps distracts you. Keep a list of things you’ve tried that worked and didn’t work and a list of things you can try in the future.
7. Exercise daily
Period. Walk, swim, bike, weight-lift, dance, row—just do it!
8. Communicate with your doctor
If nothing else is working, ask for help.
9. Get creative …
For instance, Jeff M. from “Stuck on the Rage Road,” shouts the odd-sounding Finnish name of the hockey goalie for the Boston Bruins, “Tuukka Rask!” Why? “It makes me laugh,” he says.
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