I´ve been dealing with some major issues related to anger lately. Well, to be honest, I am always dealing with that kind of issues some way or another, even without noticing, so it would be more accurate to say that my anger has been out of control lately.
I know the reason why this happens. It is my main response to my own vulnerability, the first emotion that emerges when I have to face everyday problems (and even other emotions caused by them), so it´s hardly surprising that when those problems increase my ability to keep it under control seems to decrease.
Anger is an instinctive response to a stimulus that later on can be elaborated (unconsciously) as aggressivity, frustration, coolness, resentment or even apathy. This creates many different behaviors that sometimes cannot even been related to anger (from outside) but are caused by it. We are prone to think that anger would be expressed in a violent way but this is not always the case. I can also appear as complaints, distance, victimism or passiveness.
When we manage well this emotion it can be considered a call to action and we can promote behaviors related to change, justice, equity and balance. In short, anger (and every and each emotion we can feel) warns us when something is not working.
I have come to understand why anger is my main emotion. It has to do with my own story, my character and my mind frames and also with feeling it quicklier than other emotions. As a result, I have learnt a few things:
- My anger comes from an old source, and old wound that is not easy to heal but the more I am aware of it, the more I can contribute to do it.
- Feeling anger for such a long time has distorted my emotional response and the way I see life but the more I am aware of it, the more I can apply a safety factor -so to speak- in order to correct this.
- Anger is not good, nor bad. It is just an emotion. It is what I do with my anger what can be dangerous or insane. The more I am aware of it, the more I can use anger as a wake up call. It is what is causing it and what I do afterwards what counts.
- When something very stressful appears in my life, I am prone to forget what I have stated above. When pain hits me, when I feel not safe, when lose or sorrow are chasing me, I often forget all what I have learnt about this topic. I stop being prudent and -little by little- I immerse myself in anger as a way to bear what I am experiencing. The more I am aware of this, the more I can overcome this situation.
- When awareness is not enough and I find myself letting my thoughts be ruled by anger, I feel guilty. This -obviously- does not help at all. The more I am aware of it, the more I can forgive myself and start anew again.
Right now I am going through some circumstances that are testing me. I have talk here about the complicated situation at university, but I have not said that three of my work mates, that are also very close girl friends, are struggling against cancer at this moment. It all has happened along the last two years and I can hardly explain what going to work -knowing that they are not there anymore- has meant to me this September.
I´ve have shared more than twenty years of my working and personal life with them and the emptiness I feel is indescribable. It´s like a hole and it has been filled with anger as I was trying to accept the situation and not feeling so sad and scared.
I am not angry because they are ill. I am angry because I am stressed and anxious and disconsolate and I find no way to express it beautifully. Because this is the only way I have to say to myself how sorrowful and downhearted I am. Maybe, because I prefer to feel angry than heartbroken (hope this makes sense).
So at this moment I am precisely at the last points of my previous list. I am trying to forgive myself because I have let the anger be the way I connect with my feelings (even when after all this is good); to forgive myself for not been able to manage it adequately after a long period of balance.
I am trying to be benevolent with myself too, and step by step a fragile sense of calm is returning while I shed my tears, while I allow myself to feel deeply afflicted, to acknowledge that I´ve been haunted with fear.
While I opt for thankfulness and surrendering once more...