ANGER: Its exploration and challenges in work at The Blue Door
Anger may not be the terrible and fearful thing that some of us have turned it into. We may have allowed it to grow into a monster that now can control many aspects of our lives and affect ourselves and those who share our lives with us. Sometimes those who we share our lives with most closely and at the worst of times can be driven away by our inappropriate use of (anger). Or perhaps we easily fall into anger as our first, sometimes only, resort.
Anger is after all, simply one of the many human emotions. Without thought it can mask or come to replace other emotions such as fear, sadness, anxiety, uncertainty, self doubt, frustration etc. We may have either lost these emotions in their subtlety or never learnt them in our formative environments as anything but a manifestation of anger.
In a therapeutic approach to anger offered at the Blue Door we would aim to do a number of things, including:
- Take immediate steps to protect those around us at home or at work in order to offer them safety and security as opposed to staying in a place where they feel threatened by our anger.
- Explore the origins of our anger; where we may have learned it from and what may have been missing in our growing up which we can now learn which may be able to take the place of anger in our lives.
- Become more mindful of what is happening within us when anger arrives, learning to recognise the signs of our own body and mind and slowing down to identify the meaning of what is occurring during the onset of anger and choosing a number of other pathways we may follow as opposed to giving in or being overwhelmed by anger.
- This includes understanding that others may find our expression of anger scary, intimidating, toxic and alienating but also coming to understand that we ourselves may have exactly that same reaction to our own anger within ourselves and that this may contribute to a shameful part of our self image or identity which then leads us to thinking of ourselves as beings who are hard to like and love and feeling as though we may in fact be unlikeable and unlovable.
- We may explore what our relationship was with our parents, often our father, and go on to reflect on whether we want that to be the model of relationship we have with our own children or to think about what relationship we would like to have with our children and in what ways we would like that to be considerably different to our visions of our past.
- More holistically we might explore who we would like to be as future people and how we would like to be seen by others and by ourselves.