Is anger taking over your life? Why do men get so angry?
22 Jan 2016
Every few days a male client comes to me with anger issues and at times it’s the wife who brings in a husband citing he gets very angry too soon. This makes me wonder whether men are more prone to anger outbursts than women or is it merely a coincidence? According to Harvard research, males are more likely to express explosive anger.
That doesn’t mean women don’t get angry, they do but they handle the emotion differently.
Life these days provides us with endless reasons to be angry about. It could be a person driving too slowly in front of our car or someone in the metro who stepped on our feet. It could be a person who cut the line in front of you or a subordinate who forgot to turn in a major document. While it’s perfectly natural to get angry about one of these things, where should we draw the line? Should you raise your voice, scream, abuse, hit? Let us take a look at some of the reasons that makes men hit the roof.
1) The feeling of having failed as a protector, provider and sexual-lover. These vulnerabilities that may have been stimulated by the displeasure expressed by the wife results in his blaming himself and feeling inadequate and a failure. In order to provide himself with a temporary sense of self-righteousness, he gets a retaliation impulse and in turn, anger.
2) Fear of not being in control. If at work, he thinks things are getting out of hand, he resorts to anger to get things back under his control.
3) Fear of abandonment. Fear of being abandoned makes him skeptical of himself and in order to cope with that feeling of low self-esteem he resorts to anger.
4) Fear of rejection. Men aren’t built to take rejection easily. It hurts their ego and isn’t something they take lightly. Hence, they retaliate with anger.
5) Overloaded with responsibilities. With mounting financial pressures, he has too many responsibilities on his plate. This feeling of always being ahead of any trouble keeps him on the edge which leads to an explosion if even a little thing goes wrong.
6) Environmental Causes. People and environment around us give us countless reasons to get angry. It could be a coworker spreading rumors about you, wife who constantly nags or even extreme heat leads to anger outbursts.
Although the thought of anger brings to mind a distorted face and a loud scream, anger can be manifested in manifold ways. In order to keep the warning signs in check, we need to be aware of how anger may present itself-
a) Muscular tightening, especially around the jaw and arms
b) High paced breathing
d) High blood pressure
e) Dilated pupils
f) Sudden headaches
g) Sensations of heat and flushing in the face
h) Elevated heart rate
These physical signs are all indicators that you’re getting angry. Anger results in adverse impacts on so many aspects of a person’s life. It affects the physical health, career, and personal relationships. These include-
1) High risk of heart attack. Those prone to anger outbursts are three times more likely to have a heart attack than those who don’t.
2) Depression. Males who are frequently angry are less likely to take care of themselves. They’re more likely to indulge in smoking and drinking in excess as well as eating badly and not exercising. Also, anger may be an expression of depression.
3) Career downfall. Men who tend to get angry often are the ones who are denied promotion as they don’t receive a good recommendation. They also don’t get along with colleagues and thus do not receive their cooperation.
4) Hazardous to relationships. Their relationships are very fragile as their spouse is afraid of them and can only take so much before the divorce papers are filed.
5) Legal Troubles. Angry men often find themselves in legal battles as they either break the law or hit someone.
Anger, thus, effects all areas of a man’s life and is hence important to work upon.
Working on anger in therapy with men has a huge roadblock. It’s called acceptance. Men refuse to believe they have a problem that needs to be taken care of. Their ego usually prevents them for accepting the fact that their anger has gone out of hand and needs professional help. Once this major roadblock has been crossed, therapy progresses at a much faster pace. Here are some tips to deal with that explosive anger-
1) Do not suppress anger. Suppressing anger is a temporary solution that will result in a blast sometime later since it keeps accumulating over time.
2) Keep a check of the warning signs. Realizing when you’re feeling angry is the first step towards controlling it.
3) Find ways to express anger in a controlled manner. Learn how to be assertive to express your feelings, needs and preferences. Use assertiveness instead of anger.
4) Find ways to calm yourself down when angry. Learn deep breathing techniques, and positive self-talk.
5) Seek out support of others. Talk through your feelings, take help from friends who are dealing better with their anger.
6) Gain perspective by putting yourself in the other person’s shoes.
7) Practice patience. Learn to listen to others.
8) Use humor to diffuse the anger.
9) Utilise distraction.
10) Indulge in physical activity to work on the stress.
Anger management Therapy
We, at ePsyClinic, will take you through a step by step procedure towards anger management and getting the most out of your life.
Here’s a highlight of how the therapy will proceed-
1) Detailed history of your anger issues will be taken
2) Particular instances that make you angry will be noted by you in a daily anger log
3) Acceptance of anger – issues and repercussions
4) Exploration of how anger is taking over your life
5) Teaching how to keep a check on the warning signs
6) Teaching you to be assertive, working with examples
7) Teaching deep breathing technique and practicing with audio recordings
8) Teaching distraction technique and including humor
9) Teaching visualization and positive self-statements
10) Stress management and time management tips
The therapy will take place over 3-6 sessions depending on the frequency and intensity of the anger issues. The positive effect on your physical and psychological health, career and relationships is guaranteed as per the feedback I receive from the clients and especially their wives who say they can’t thank me enough for giving them back their husband from out of the clutches of anger.
If you or your family member is going through uncontrollable angry outbursts and this disabling yet treatable disorder, Please reach out to us here at ePsyClinic.com, India's most trusted and largest pnline mental wellness & health brand.
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