I’m a LOT better than I used to be when it comes to dealing with ANGRY people.  Yet I still would rather go out of my way than to face/deal with hostile individuals.  Then again, who enjoys being around angry folks, especially those individuals who remain STUCK in angry mode most of the time?  Those people epecially wear me out!

My co-dependency recovery has taught me many important lessons about anger: my own and that of others. What I’ve learned includes:

1) I have a right to feel my anger — despite what one very brief passage in the Alcoholics Anonymous BIG BOOK says.
2) Feeling my anger is a whole lot healthier than “stuffing it down” with excess amounts of food.
3) Taking my cue from the A.A. BIG BOOK, I do believe that I have a CHOICE when it comes to what I do with my anger:  I can choose to hold onto my anger until it becomes a full-blown resentment (which is NOT  healthy, since resentment is believed to be the number one cause for relapse into active addiction) OR (the better choice, IMHO) I can pray and work the 12 Steps to release the anger I feel.  It may take a LOT of praying and Step work, but that sure beats a return to active addiction.
4) Myself and others can express our anger withOUT acting out with verbal rage and physical aggression.
5) NObody has to tolerate being screamed at or being physically abused or being threatened with physical abuse.
6) Allowing myself to be repeatedly abused is NOT sane and surely is NOT a sign that I’m some sort of spiritual giant because I keep going back for more.
7) Real Christians DO get angry. What was that New Testament passage about Jesus throwing the merchants out of the Temple?

One suggestion that I thought was both funny and clever in terms of “working through” anger can from a speaker at a 12 Step event I attended many years ago.  In response to anger caused by an abusive co-worker, the offended party took a piece of masking tape on which she wrote the name of the person she felt anger toward and then stuck the tape with the name written on it to the BOTTOM OF HER SHOE AND THEN…SHE TOOK A WALK!!!  😀

One word of caution: Just remember that it is probably NOT a good idea (before or after you go on your “anger walk”) to sit down next the person you are angry at and CROSS YOUR LEGS so they can see their name on the tape stuck to the bottom of  your shoe!  😀

Do you have any creative ways to deal with anger…ways that help you (eventually) RELEASE your anger?  Feel free to post them in the COMMENTS section!

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