Anger is something which many people have difficulty to deal with. Usually most of us develop a negative picture of anger in our childhood. Parents and teachers rarely welcome children who express their anger. Thus, over the years children learn that anger can lead to unpleasant consequences. This is why anger and expressing anger are often followed by feelings of guilt that may last for many years.
Many people carry a great deal of anger with them, even if they may not always be aware of this. It turns up again and again, often expressed in an indirect and destructive manner. Anger is very potent. If we do not have access to this power, the result is that we often experience a feeling of helplessness – we feel powerless in some situations and in relation to some people. By expressing our anger in a responsible way, it is possible to feel our power again and, in this way, to reduce the feeling of being helpless. Expressing ourselves is often necessary in order to regain dignity, which we may have lost in the past.
Suppressed anger can manifest itself in various forms: contempt (towards the opposite sex, other nationalities, beliefs etc.), physical diseases, depression, frustration and a feeling of being cut off. The aim is to find a way to express our anger without hurting ourselves or others, i.e. to deal with our anger in a responsible way.
Many people confuse anger with aggression. Due to this misunderstanding, for example women who were exposed to aggressive behaviour as a child, frequently avoid expressing their anger. Anger simply expresses our need to protect our boundaries. The primary goal of anger is not to hurt someone, whereas aggression always has the aim of hurting others, either psychologically or physically.
Initially, it might be difficult to find a way to express anger in a responsible way. This is why it is important to do this within a protected setting at first, in order to become familiar with the nature of our anger.
Suppressed anger prevents us from opening our heart. By expressing our anger in a responsible way, we are also able to experience more love in our life – both towards ourselves as well as towards others. Through expressing our anger, we are able to gradually let go of it. The less anger we carry inside us, the easier it is to be open to life. Expressing anger does not mean becoming an angry person. On the contrary, it helps us to learn to let go of anger. However, we can only succeed if we find a way to so in a responsible way.