In Part One we heard from a reader (actually, a compilation of readers’ questions) expressing doubt with regard to overcoming the very destructive character trait of anger. In today’s article, let’s begin discussing some steps to do just that.
#1 Truly desire to lose anger as a character trait. This is key. Without the desire to change and a commitment to see it through, utilizing these methods will be no more effective for the long-term than trying to cover an internal infection with a bandage.
#2 Imagine situations and scenarios that could happen (perhaps based on past experience) that would elicit anger and see yourself handling them in a calm, constructive and positive manner. This is like an astronaut running simulated missions so that, by the time he or she is actually in flight, the scenario is already familiar, thus easier to handle.
#3 Play the following mind-game with yourself. Pretend you are in the midst of an outburst of anger. Then imagine that a 7 foot tall, 450 pound, ferocious looking man wielding a machine gun enters the room, looks at you and says, “if you don’t stop your anger right now, you’re in trouble.” Now, would you be able to calm down and immediately end your angry outburst? I don’t know about you, but I sure would, and fast! 🙂
#3A. Here’s the great news: If you could do it in that example, then you’ve just proved to yourself that you are capable of not becoming angry whenever you are motivated not to be. And, if you can do it once, you can do it whenever you choose.
In Part Three, we’ll see how this would play out in “real life.” Meanwhile, what do you think? Can you see how this would work for you? (Err, I mean, your friend who has the anger issue) 🙂