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          Escaping the Anger Prison

          July 13, 2005

          Do the smallest things set you off? If you’re experiencing uncontrollable rage, then in order to stop long term, you’ve got to get to the root of your anger.

          • Identify the emotion your anger covers.
            Anger is nothing more than a cover for hurt, frustration or fear ” or all three. Try talking about what you’re really feeling without using the word “anger.” Instead, try saying, “I am hurt/frustrated/afraid of …”
          • Identify the true source.
            What is the real source of your anger? Who is the real culprit? Chances are, it’s not the people or situations you are lashing out at.
          • Identify the unfulfilled need.
            If you are experiencing uncontrollable rage, you have unfulfilled needs that should be addressed. Maybe you need to forgive yourself for the way you’ve behaved while angry. Perhaps you need to forgive others for their actions. Whatever the case, you need to know what your needs are before you can fill them.
          • Identify the constructive alternative action.
            Instead of raging against people, figure out what you can do that is constructive. If you need to resolve an issue with a person you are really angry with, the constructive alternative behavior would be to resolve it. If you need to forgive yourself or someone else, the constructive action would be to forgive.
          • Take specific action.
            Once you have identified your constructive alternative action, it’s important that you take that specific action, as uncomfortable as it may be, and move on. Claim your right to resolve the source of your anger and reclaim your life.

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