Anger is a normal human emotion. Even the Roman god Mars displays anger in his red glow at night. The problem with anger lies when people vent their anger in a violent or perpetually abusive manner that injures others with nothing constructive gained from it.
Because I have felt the destructive side of anger while harboring homicidal thoughts and imaginations of violence, I thought others would like to hear my advice.
The Difference Between Anger and Righteous Indignation
There are different types of anger. If someone is angry because they have been gravely wronged by evil people who have no conscience, the anger might motivate them to make a healthy change. If they can stop these evil people from injuring others, then they have done an excellent service to humanity.
“Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. But anger is like fire. It burns it all clean.” – Maya Angelou
However, when there is no easy way to stop evil people who abuse their power, the righteous indignation can build and build into a burden. This is why we should not harbor anger and should face the reality that some things are beyond our control. The imperfections and adversity of life are part of the human experience.
Being grateful that we are alive, healthy, and considering any other benefits reminds us that life is too short to be angry. Although anger may be a healthy emotional defense to burn up all the injustices in life, life is ultimately what you make of it and how you perceive it.
A person can be suicidal with all the money in the world and everything that others covet. Another person can be perfectly happy living in a garbage can and slowly dying from cirrhosis of the liver. Another person may be apathetic about shooting heroin in their eyeball because the only joy in life is heroin.
And even sober people can be content living a life plagued with tragedies by considering the extreme character of their life and how strong they’ve become to manage it. Such is the irony of life that we all suffer to some degree in this random life.
If you start becoming hypercritical of all the grievous wrongs in the world, you won’t have time to slow down and smell the roses. This type of hypercritical thinking is common in people who are withdrawing from drugs or who are in high-stress businesses. It is not uncommon for such people to murder someone over any form of perceived disrespect.
Misery loves company. Therefore, when people are feeling angry, it is usually because they are only focusing on the most negative trains of thought, which causes them to feel overwhelmed with hopeless emotional distress and misery. In extreme cases, this may be from drug-induced psychosis or the delusional thinking created by severe depression or schizophrenia.
How Anger Affects Us at a Subconscious Level
Because anger is an emotion, it is something that we feel at a subconscious level. Even though our subconscious mind may recycle negative trains of thoughts to help us reflect on the reasons for our anger, this is a very mechanical process.
It is a lot like when you dream. Your mind is processing and recycling thoughts. Whether you know it or not, your subconscious mind is extremely powerful. It can make you feel paranoid for unknown reasons because it recognizes visual patterns that you don’t consciously reflect upon.
Say that you had a close call coming over a hill where a cop had a speed trap set up. Your subconscious mind may burn in a signal to make you paranoid before you come to that speed trap location next time. It will make you imagine that a cop is already behind you and cause you to slow down.
The subconscious mind is like your cryptic friend who talks to you in a coded and amazing manner. He is watching out for your life at a profound and deep level to protect you from all those subtle snakes in the grass, the dangers in the world.
And when your subconscious mind gets overactive with a negative and obsessive focus on perceived threats and enemies, you can feel so overwhelmed that you cross the threshold of just thinking into acting. Whether you choose to assault someone or physically assault them verbally, you are trying to consciously read what your subconscious mind is telling you but not interpreting it correctly.
The subconscious mind speaks to you in that feeling of Deja Vu, for example. There is no way to logically explain it because you don’t consciously remember why a place would seem so familiar to you. However, your subconscious mind is making a connection that something here is very similar or sending you a signal of trust and relaxation disguised as the familiar Deja Vu.
This may be because your subconscious mind is perceiving at a hypersensitive and mechanical level that a place has all the hallmarks of other safe and wonderful places you’ve been before. And it is evoking this with a sense of wonder and fascination that puzzles your conscious brain.
Therefore, when people become angry, they have to understand that their thoughts are not being directed to them by a god of vengeance to carry out destructive commands. It is just a mechanical process that is raising all the insults and dirty laundry to the surface and helping you to strategize how to avoid future injuries.
People who take these incoherent and emotionally intense thoughts too seriously can wind up injuring themselves further. This often happens when people let the subconscious and irrational mind take over. They mostly let the flow of subconscious thoughts consume them.
When they are taking medications, alcohol, or other substances that drown out the conscious thoughts, they can feel overwhelmed. This is why there are so many vicious bar fights. People act from a base emotional level because alcohol dulls their thinking.
If you want to go through life like a rabid bull, then put your conscious self and higher intellect aside. Focus on the stream of negative subconscious thoughts coming to the surface and ride the tidal wave.
People can become so angry that they experience a physical breakdown. They can physically see their blood pressure jump by 80 points because they are so worked up from the sensational overload. The overload can be triggered by symbols and things that you associate with your foes in life, those who have done evil unto you.
Life is a String
When you look at life, there is no advantage over one thing or the other. You can pull the string in one direction, and it will inherently pull away from the other area. If you try to have the best of both worlds without any balance, the string can break apart.
What does it profit a man if he goes through more than a night being angry? He will simply find that he is hindered by the anger and injuring himself. He will be unable to experience the joys of life and will be hellbent on destruction as a defense.
In this manner, you have to maintain a moderate perspective throughout life. Being too extreme about one thing or another can lead to an unhealthy lifestyle. You have to experience a full range of emotions but should have the conscious willpower to hold yourself back from injuring others even if they unfairly hurt you.
A lot of anger stems from religious ideology. Why does an extremist strap a bomb to his chest? He does it for religious reasons because he feels that this will appease his creator and provide contentment in life.
For others, they may have a particular view of a book that makes them feel a need to condemn others, shun them, and punish them for not conforming to their belief system.
Although this view is not in line with religious teachings, all sects have highly debatable and subjective views of how religious books should be interpreted, which leads to a lot of base anger when others oppose them.
Yet, others may believe that the world is infringing on their rights to live like pagans. If they want to sacrifice virgins, engage in ritual sex, and worship a goat-headed god, it may seem to them that you are infringing on their liberties.
This can lead to tension and anger when people have any sort of liberal beliefs and must deal with the conservative views of the laws shared by a majority of society. Because our society does not respect individual liberties, anyone can feel disenfranchised and pressured to conform to an unhappy lifestyle.
Talk it Out
One of the best methods for controlling your anger is to seek therapy if you are having strange thoughts and experiencing extreme emotions. The objective views of another person can help you understand why you are experiencing anger and how to suppress this emotional state when it becomes unhealthy.
You can speak with a therapist, your spouse, a close friend, your mother, or even a complete stranger. People may not know what to say if it is something personal, and you give them a nutshell version of your anger issue.
However, if you talk it out and value the constructive criticism of a good listener who makes valid points, this can lead you to minimize the anger by reminding yourself of their logical points.
For example, it is often said that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. The same can be said about homicide. While it may be the ultimate power trip and catharsis to kill someone and take vengeance for all their perceived wrongs against you, this catharsis is then followed by an endless train of second-guessing and regrets.
Be More Charitable
If you are feeling angry at the world, you have to start asking yourself what you can do to improve it. The influence of your work can change the lives of others. All over the world, people are suffering from poverty in third world countries. They lack even basic medical care and would have great comfort throughout their lives with some assistance from you.
When you rebuff anger with kindness, you will feel good about yourself solving the troubles of others. However, charity should be done in a personal manner, in private. By simply donating money to a large corporation or bureaucracy that distances you from the results of what your money actually does to help people, you will not be pleased.
And when you consider that many charities recycle the money back into advertising and bloating their bureaucracies, it may even seem that you have unwisely donated your money to a cause that distracts from the real problem.
When you see the hardship of other people and how they are forced to live, this will also make you think lightly of any injustices that you have suffered in life. When you consider the quality of life in the United States, for example, it is hard to be angry when you count all your blessings.
Severe Anger Often Forms from Severe Chemical Imbalances
In many cases, anger is just the ups and downs of life. People can fall into a miserable state from a chemical imbalance after consuming excess protein, certain medications, and even vitamin supplements. We are all wired slightly differently.
They had linked an acne drug called Accutane to suicidal thinking and numerous suicides in people who had before felt tremendous and optimistic about life. If you have started taking a new medication or have stopped taking a drug, you can suffer some serious chemical imbalances.
Anger is an emotion that can easily be misunderstood by your conscious mind. Although anger can be beneficial in helping you to identify the chief adversaries in your life and problems that you are having, it can also lead to self-destruction if you don’t vent it peacefully. Using constructive methods to vent anger will save you from the negative aspects of it and allow you to benefit from this emotion.