Anger, as any other human emotion, is a completely normal emotion. Anger is characterized by hostility towards someone or something that you feel has done you wrong. We may also feel angry when we lose our patience or feel unappreciated. Every person may experience anger every now and then, but it can get problematic when anger starts getting misplaced or out of control. Anger can also cause problems related to increased blood pressure and other physical symptoms related to anger which may harm your physical and mental health. This may also influence one’s daily activities and relationship with others.
However, most people don’t recognise the intensity of the problem by failing to identify the long-term consequences of constant anger. Anger may only be expressed as just the tip of the iceberg. Beyond the surface, like the way an iceberg is submerged under water, there are underlying, hidden emotions like pain and fear that may be linked to our anger.
Our certified counselors and psychologists in Singapore are able to help deal with the root cause of your anger and effectively address your anger management issue. It can be tremendously helpful to take a holistic approach to dealing with anger.
Affordable Therapy For Your Anger Management
When we receive criticism or insult, it is normal that we experience negative emotions, such as anger.
Anger is an intense emotional response to a perceived threat, provocation, or hurt. The experience of anger is usually accompanied by strong physiological reactions, such as an increased heart rate, sweating, and tension in the body.
When experienced and expressed appropriately, anger can be a good source of motivation. Anger enables us to react instinctively when we are in danger, a powerful tool for human survival. The appropriate expression of anger may also be a healthy form of coping and motivates us to resolve situations that we are unhappy with.
However, because anger is such a powerful emotion, it becomes a problem when we experience it too frequently or find it difficult to control.
Recently, people across the globe are feeling frustrated, irritable, and angry. This “pandemic rage” may stem from stress, job insecurities, changes in routine, social isolation, the need for personal space, distress over uncertainty and a host of other reasons during the trying times of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The pressure of adapting to work from home, managing children and travel restrictions are also causing tempers to flare up. Recent reports have shown a 22 percent increase in family violence related offenses as compared to before the circuit breaker period.
It is crucial to note that sometimes anger may be associated with other mental health issues or psychiatric illnesses like attention and learning problems, mood problems especially bipolar illness, trauma related issues, and drugs and addiction problems. Suffering from any of these can magnify anger symptoms.
Some of the warning signs can be:
- Losing one’s temper on minor events
- Easily getting irritated.
- Tension and conflict among relationships
- Difficulty expressing oneself in an appropriate and calm way
- Inflexibility to adapting to other person’s ideas
- Expressing anger in an aggressive manner like violence or raising voice
Several research studies have explored the effectiveness of therapies for treating anger and managing them in a healthy way. Anger management seeks to help the person recognize his or her own triggers and understand them to cope with it better. By identifying these triggers, the goal is to reduce both the emotional arousal as well as physiological arousal associated with anger.
Type of Anger Management Problems
Chronic anger is often a pervasive and prolonged emotional state of anger. Individuals tend to get angry easily, which often do not subside with time. They tend to overreact frequently to situations and have difficulty controlling their negative emotions.
For example, an individual with chronic anger may easily lash out at others over something that was perceived as a threat. This may result in damaged relationships with the people around him or her as they have to be careful to avoid triggering the person’s heightened state of anger.
People with passive anger may have difficulty expressing their feelings of anger and instead subtly expresses these negative feelings through their behaviours instead of handling them directly. An individual may not even be aware that he or she is feeling angry. Instead, the anger gets misdirected as sarcasm, spite, or apathy towards the person or situation that they are angry about.
For example, a girlfriend may be feeling upset over something her boyfriend did earlier in the day. Instead of addressing the emotion, she may simply reply with “I’m fine” even though she feels quite the contrary. She may also become increasingly spiteful and act out in ways that sabotage the relationship such as ignoring his texts or not speaking to him.
Individuals who experience aggressive anger express anger in unhealthy or destructive ways. Some unhealthy or destructive ways of expressing anger include using aggression, violent tendencies, abusive language, passive-aggressive behaviour, and retaliatory actions. At times, individuals who exhibit aggressive anger may also experience ‘rage’, which is a full-on, uncontrollable expression of anger.
Individuals with aggressive anger may not experience anger easily, but when they do, it is usually an unpleasant experience for the people around them.
Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED)
Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED) is the most severe type of the anger management problem among all.
An individual is diagnosed with IED when he or she experiences sudden episodes of aggressive or violent behaviour that are marked by episodes of unwarranted threat or danger. Individuals with IED may experience verbal or physical aggression towards people or things, twice a week (on average) for a period of at least three months.
IED is a serious problem as it may result in harm to others or the destruction of property.
Impact And Consequences of Anger Management Problems
Anger management problems can have negative consequences on both the individual and the others around. Chronic anger may lead to health problems such as frequent headaches, digestive problems, fatigue, or increased risk of heart disease. It can also lead to other mental disorders such as depression and anxiety.
If not managed properly, anger management problems can exert detrimental impacts on relationships at home and at work. Thus, it is important for us to learn how to control our anger effectively.
Treatment and Therapy for Anger Management in Singapore
When you seek professional help for anger management in Singapore, your treatment is likely to consist of the following techniques and strategies. These strategies are likely to work hand in hand in forming a comprehensive treatment plan to help you experience and express your anger in healthier ways.
Cognitive-behavioural therapy is a structured therapy approach based on the idea that our thoughts, emotions, and behaviours are interconnected. The process of cognitive-behavioural therapy helps individuals identify their triggers towards anger, which are specific situations in which they frequently experience anger.
The therapist and client will then work together to explore and change the thoughts and emotions that are associated with these situations. Through the process, cognitive-behavioural therapy helps the client to identify inaccurate, negative thought patterns that drive their feelings of anger, and reinterpret them with more appropriate and healthy thoughts to manage their negative emotions.
Simple relaxation techniques such as breathing exercises and visual imagery can help individuals to calm themselves down when they are feeling angry. The practice and implementation of relaxation techniques complement cognitive-behavioural therapy in the treatment of anger management issues.
Stress Inoculation Training
Stress Inoculation Training is a form of psychotherapy method that helps individuals prepare themselves in advance to handle stressful events successfully. This structured form of therapy may include muscle relaxation, breathing exercises, cognitive restructuring, problem-solving, socialization skills, and guided self-dialogue that helps the individual cope better with the challenging events that they may face in their everyday lives.
Improving Communication Skills
Good communication is key to anger management as it reduces emotional hurt, misunderstandings, and conflict. Assertive communication skills help us to express ourselves better and clearly convey our wants, needs, and feelings to others without offending them or having to walk away with unmet expectations. Responding assertively with statements like “I” instead of aggressively with statements like “You”, may be more effective in getting your message across.
Get Help Now
Before it gets worst, let us help you process and validate your feelings, identify triggers, stressors, past grievances, and contributing factors that may have put you in distress leading to your anger. We will explore effective coping skills, and anger management skills or solutions that will help you excel better to meet your daily life demands and responsibilities effectively.
This article uses material from WebMD and other useful references for anger management. The article is for use of reference and information only, for specific diagnoses and treatment, please reach out to our licensed and/or certified professionals.