Do you find yourself angry much of the time? When you are driving down the road how often do you find yourself getting angry at the other drivers or the construction that is in your way? Are you sensitive to sound and find that you become more agitated and angry when there is a lot of noise and commotion around? Do you sometimes feel that you are ruled by anger and do you want to know how to stop being so angry? Today is the day you can start your road to conquering your addiction to anger.
The concept of anger being an addiction is not new but few people have heard of it. To fully understand how anger, a basic emotion can be addictive we need to look into the brain to see what exactly happens when we get angry. When a person becomes angry the nerve fibers in the body and the brain release chemicals that travel to receptors found in every organ of the body. Additionally, the stress hormones adrenaline and noradrenalin are released causing reactions in the respiratory and heart rhythms. Much of the chemical responses of anger are similar to the chemical reactions the body has to stimulant drugs. The muscles in the body tighten, the breathing quickens, the heart beats faster and the blood sugar drops; these reactions are found in both stimulant drug use and anger response.
Inside the brain other things are going on as reactions to anger. The connections in the brain are firing away along the familiar path creating additional releases of chemicals that travel to receptors throughout the body. These receptors offer a sense of familiarity and almost a sense of well being when filled. As long as the connections in the brain remain wired in the way that they are the person who suffers from an addiction to anger will find it difficult at best to be able to manage and control the anger. Anger becomes the first response, the core reaction to stress, anxiety, loud noises and fear saturating the receptors with chemicals and satiating the body.
The good news is that the connections in the brain, the way it is wired is not permanent; it can be changed. The process of changing the wiring in your brain requires diligent purposeful pause and redirection of reactions. When we are able to change our wiring we are able to manage and control the anger that plagues our bodies and creates the chemical changes to our bodies that can lead to depression, anxiety, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke and possible violence to others.
Some of the key ways of changing our wiring is to walk away when we find we are getting angry, allow the body to relax and approach the situation when you feel more controlled. A routine of stress reducing meditation allows the body to relax and the brain to release endorphins that fill the same receptors that lay in wait for the anger chemicals allowing the body to begin in a more peaceful and relaxed state. Finally, one successful method of re-wiring the brain is to continuously think in a different way. By thinking of other people before ourselves and placing ourselves in their shoes we are able to detach from ourselves and change our reactions.
Many natural health service providers as well as holistic health providers such as Holistically Alive offer classes, guided meditation and anger management sessions to help break the addiction to anger.