Controlling your anger will certainly be the difference in ensuring a positive or negative outcome in any situation. Think back on a time when you have become angry, maybe you had some sort of outburst, or just reacted indifferently, and which resulted in a less than desirable consequence or result. How did you feel at the time, or better yet do you think things could have been different? Consequences often times have long lasting impacts and can seriously affect not only your relationships with those around you, but have lasting impacts upon your health.
Learning to control your anger will be a key point in ensuring that these negative outcomes can at the very least be minimized. This is not to say that anger is not an advantageous emotion in very specific circumstances, as research has provided that it can in fact be beneficial in specific negotiation situations (see “Not always cool to stay cool in negotiations, study finds” – Springer Science, via ScienceDaily.com), as well as working as a key factor in motivation within volunteering groups and individuals (see “Anger motivates volunteers as much as sympathy” – British Psychological Society). But on the flip-side of that, within the expression of anger, there have been numerous studies, and positively linked to a greater risk of heart attacks and strokes – as provided by the European Society of Cardiology.
Recognizing your emotions, feelings and overall state is key to taking control of a potential anger outburst, and the only way this can be done is getting to know these symptoms from the outset. There may also be specific instances or situations which may trigger your anger, and these need to be identified in order to deal with them effectively.
So what are some of the real effects of anger?
As mentioned above there may have been results or outcomes that you were perhaps less than desirable. But let us take a look at what the scientific community has to say on the effects of anger.
Anger Effects on those experiencing the emotion Anger has been linked to the primal “fight or flight” response in people.
- This can induce a variety of effects including anxiety, fear and excitement. The physiological impacts of this can result in health issues such as elevated blood pressure, depression, heart attacks and strokes (to name a few).
- The expression or suppression of anger can be equally detrimental to the person in question too.
- Interestingly, the gender of the person experiencing the anger, as well as the resulting reactions have also been found to be different due to biological and social cultural factors, between the genders (see Shapiro, Goldstein & Jamner 1995 – http://socialecology.uci.edu/depart/research/cihs/articles/1995_PsyPhys.pdf)
- Sexual function and desire has been shown to be negatively affected when the sample of the study was exposed to sources of anger and / or anxiety. (Bozman & Beck, 1991).
- Damage or degradation of relationships, within the home or work environment can be a common effect of anger outbursts, especially when one loses control and says or does something that may be hurtful to others.
- The physical expression of anger, when completely unchecked could possibly result in damage to physical property within extreme cases. This could even result in a financial loss in having to replace or repair any items, not to mention the possible legal implications that may follow.
The above are merely a few general examples of the effects of anger and learning to cope with your anger, or underlying triggers is key to ensuring that these effects are at the very least minimized. Getting to know your anger and emotions is required to take a proactive stance within your goal of anger management.
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