One of the most dangerous human forces is anger. Anger can overcome love, reason and good health. Much of what lies underneath the conflicts of the family and the world is this emotion.
Anger comes in many forms, including frustration, hatred, jealousy, fury and resentment. It can also be hidden as criticism, judgment, boredom, lateness and procrastination. Angry people hurt themselves and others. Like other emotions, it is complex and involves thoughts, feelings, actions and bodily changes.
The body reacts in a fight-or-flight response. This biochemical reaction is a holdover from earliest evolutionary times. Anger may also serve a useful purpose. It alerts us to wrongs and demands correction. It helps us to win in sports and fuels efforts to correct social injustice.
Most people experience anger a few times a week. Those who have anger problems have more frequent, intense and enduring anger that often leads to aggression. In general, their anger negatively affects their relationships, their health and their jobs. Anger internalized can cause depression.
There is hope, however. Anger can be treated, decreased and controlled. It takes time, practice and learning new coping skills. The basic strategies involve relaxation, cognitive therapy and skill development such as assertiveness training and appropriate communication.
Individual and group sessions are available in Douglaston. Call Fred Sacklow, CSW, at 917-747-3316 for further information about anger management.