Everyone knows what it’s like to get angry. Whether your feelings boil over while stuck in traffic or during a dispute with a friend or loved one, anger is a normal emotion. However, when your anger is misdirected or uncontrolled, it can cause problems.
Anger management therapy can be very beneficial in helping you understand and manage your anger. By working with a therapist, you learn to identify the triggers that set you off and find strategies for managing your anger in a healthy way, without letting it get out of control.
The team of licensed therapists at Wellness Road Psychology understands that anger can be a powerful emotion, and when you run into problems managing your anger on your own, we can help with talk therapy.
The purpose of anger
Anger can be a powerful tool to motivate you to take action and solve problems. It can also be a healthy way to express your feelings and open up dialogue with others. In a fight-or-flight scenario, anger can help you stay alive and protect yourself.
But anger can also be a defense mechanism for when you find it difficult to express other emotions. You may have been taught that certain emotions, such as fear or sadness, are unacceptable. Masking these emotions in the form of anger may work as a way to avoid feelings that could damage self-esteem or cause more stress. However, anger can also delay a resolution to the actual issue at hand.
Anger can be destructive or constructive, depending on how it’s handled. When it’s expressed in a constructive way, it can lead to positive outcomes. However, when it’s expressed in a destructive way, it can harm your relationships and cause distress.
Being assertive is one of the healthiest ways to deal with anger. It means communicating your needs in a clear and direct manner, and getting your needs met without harming yourself or anyone else. Assertiveness is the balance between being pushy and being a pushover.
When anger is a problem
Anger can have a significant impact on your thoughts and behaviors. It can also cause physical symptoms, such as headaches and chronic muscle tension.
If anger goes unchecked, it can lead to violence and aggression. Anger issues can cause you to find yourself yelling and screaming frequently. You may also have a hard time socializing without getting into arguments.
Anger can also be self-directed, such as when you engage in self-criticism. Over time, though, this may impact your self-esteem and even escalate into self-harm.
Signs of uncontrolled anger
There are some telltale signs that indicate you may need to consider anger management counseling. If you feel like you constantly have to "hold in" or repress your angry feelings, or frequently argue with family, friends, or co-workers, it may be time to seek help. Physical violence, threats of violence, and out-of-control behavior are also indicators that you could benefit from anger management.
Talk therapy for anger
When you visit a therapist for anger issues, you can expect to explore the triggers that set you off. You'll also look into how your experiences with anger have been helpful or harmful, both in the short-term and long-term.
Anger can damage relationships, so learning to resolve conflicts in a constructive way can help you build solid connections.
The providers at Wellness Road Psychology are highly trained mental health experts who tailor treatment plans to address the unique needs of each patient.
Talk therapy can help you understand where your anger comes from, develop healthy coping strategies, and channel your anger in healthier ways. If you’re struggling with anger, call our Dobbs Ferry or NYC office to schedule an appointment with one of our providers. You can also book your request online. We offer in-person, online, and phone coaching sessions.