THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH FEELING RILED OCCASIONALLY, BUT CHRONIC ANGER LEFT TO FESTER IS TOXIC TO YOUR HEALTH AND LIFE
Have you ever stormed ip out of a shop enraged r at the service, or seethed after a snide remark?
If so, you’re not alone in your anger. If the statistics are accurate, we are a nation boiling with rage.
In an online poll of our sister magazine, Healthy, nearly 40 per cent of respondents said inconsiderate drivers wound them up the most, with bad restaurant service in second place. These figures mirror national bugbears; the British Association of Anger Management (BAAM) reveals that a massive 80 per cent of UK drivers have experienced road rage, 70 per cent of us swear at our computers, and 60 per cent of us have even admitted to decor rage — furious arguments over decorating. But why is it happening? Well, rocketing stress levels certainly don’t help. Government figures say up to five million people in the UK feel ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ stressed by their jobs.
Alternatively, the statistics could simply mean we’re becoming more open about our emotions — at least, that’s what Sue Weston, a life coach who runs anger management workshops, hopes.
`Dissatisfaction has always been part of our lives,’ she says. `Perhaps there’s just less stigma associated with admitting it these days. Admission is the first step.’
But as long as you don’t punch anyone, does anger matter? Yes!
`Anger is a very normal, usually healthy, emotion and it is the way we instinctively respond to threats,’ says clinical psychologist Dr Simone Fox. Historically, it has also driven social change, such as abolishing slavery or fighting for female equality. But if little things often drive you to breaking point, you may need to take action.
`While small to moderate amounts of anger can be channelled in a constructive way, frequent and intense bouts can be downright destructive,’ says Dr Fox.
But, say the experts, it’s the way anger is expressed, not the anger itself, that’s the problem. Not knowing how to handle anger means it’s never dealt with properly and you’ll get more wound up.
`Keeping your anger inside and quietly seething away is just as bad for you as reacting with verbal or physical aggression,’ says Weston. You can keeping your anger level down with natural treatments – learn more here.
If you suppress your anger, you can become hostile, miserable and resentful towards the person who’s making you angry. Aggression has obvious consequences. In both these cases, we can see an inappropriate way of dealing with anger and, if this becomes the norm, your health can really start to suffer.