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The Angry Spouse: How to Use the Anger to Increase the Intimacy

The Angry Spouse: How to Use the Anger to Increase the Intimacy

Who hasn’t gotten angry with their partner? No one, right? It’s all part of being in a relationship, but we’ve been conditioned to believe that anger is bad, and that we shouldn’t feel angry. So, we don’t know how to be an angry wife or angry husband. And yes, there’s actually a good way to be an angry spouse (or partner). What’s more, your anger can actually be a very good thing for your relationship. It might sound crazy, but being an angry wife or husband might not be such a bad thing. Here’s why.

Anger is Natural

Anger always comes as a reaction to what is happening in the present moment, but too often, we miss the opportunity to express our anger when it comes up. And it’s all because we’re afraid or ashamed of being angry. So, sensitive as we are, we hide it away. But if we don’t deal with this natural feeling responsibly, it will deal with us!

For example, latent anger can turn into rage – a dangerous and destructive emotion in any relationship, let alone an intimate one! Furthermore, unexpressed anger can lead to things like depression and heart problems, just to name a few. On the flipside, if we express anger irresponsibly, we might suffer from things like hypertension, headaches, gastrointestinal issues and much more.

I think it’s safe to say that when we suppress or abuse anger, we’re left with a whole new slew of problems.  But anger is a feeling that shows up when something needs to change.  It’s like a natural signal, alerting us to create something new or to fix the current problem.

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Anger isn’t the Bad Guy

So, now that we’ve established that anger isn’t just natural, but also good, you might be wondering how anger can send important signals to you.

Try this: the next time you feel angry about something, take a moment and ask yourself why it angers you. You’ll realize that your anger is triggered by something else – perhaps because you’re really feeling hurt, insecure, lonely, threatened, or guilty. Go ahead and dig deep, and ask why you’re feeling that way. Keep in mind that telling yourself that you are no angry anymore but keeping the other party still being unfair, will not help either you or your relationship.

If you know that your anger indicates a deeper problem, you can start to heal those core issues. You can allow yourself to feel upset without judging or shaming yourself, and this mindset will naturally spill over into how you express your anger with your partner.

Being mindful within anger can really help us to change our behavior, instead of resenting people for not changing theirs. Basically, you have the choice to create a conscious attitude toward anger, as opposed to letting it run the show and ruining your day.

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Anger is Creative

I’m sure that whenever you’ve been an angry wife (or girlfriend in my case), you didn’t think your anger could lead to something healthy and productive. But big magic happens whenever you use anger mindfully.

You see, it’s not a negative energy; it’s a creative energy. We just have to choose to use it that way. And when we do so, we can come up with plenty of original ideas to solve the problems at hand.

Now, if any of you are thinking to yourself, “Slow down, girl! How is any of this possible?” don’t worry. It probably seems strange at first, but once you look at some typical, real-life examples, you’ll see what I mean.

Let’s start with a common offender: bathroom etiquette.

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If you’re anything like me, you like the toilet seat down, the towels hung up (instead of left to dry on the floor), and most important of all, a roll of toilet paper instead of just an empty roll. To me, these things are no-brainers. To my beloved, they’re unnecessary procedures.

Now, I’ve gotten mad about this, and kept my anger in, and let it build up inside of me, but that didn’t solve anything. The toilet seed stayed up, the towels stayed down, and the toilet paper never, ever reproduced.

So, I took a good look at my anger, and saw that I was upset because it felt like he didn’t care about tidiness and cleanliness – two things that I really value. But once I realized that he wasn’t disrespecting my values, but just completely unaware of them, I figured that I just had to let him know that tidiness and cleanliness were important to me. And that if we both did certain things (ahem!), we’d be able to share a tidier house and better communication.

You might be thinking that that example was far too easy. But the thing is, we have to learn how to resolve small (even laughable) conflicts. That way, you’ll be better at dealing with stronger feelings of anger.

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If you can begin to use anger as a way to examine and focus on yourself, you’ll feel more empowered and in control.

How to Be an Angry Wife or Husband

Before expressing your anger, you might be held back by fear – fear of rejection and of misunderstanding, and all of these fears are legitimate and reasonable. But being able to show your angry side is a wonderful sign of trust. It shows that you believe that your relationship can withstand truth and honesty.

When it comes to communicating your anger, it’s all too easy to succumb to yelling, sarcasm, name calling, and criticizing. After all, we’ve been conditioned to think that anger always looks like that. But you don’t have to do any of these things.

First, you can separate yourself from your anger by saying things like, “I feel angry about this and here’s why.” Secondly, you can prepare by taking full responsibility for your emotions and going in with the intention to create positive change. Lastly, talk to your partner with clear and objective language, using as many “I” statements as possible. This helps to prevent blaming and encourages cooperative conversation.

Changing your mindset about anger and using it to your advantage, will create more peace, better communication and increased intimacy at home.

Featured photo credit: pulse.ng/ via static.pulse.ng

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Last Updated on April 14, 2021

How to Deal With Anger (The Ultimate Anger Management Guide)

How to Deal With Anger (The Ultimate Anger Management Guide)

We all lose our temper from time to time, and expressing anger is actually a healthy thing to do in our relationships with others. Expressing our differences in opinion allows us to have healthy conflict and many times come to an agreement or understanding that works for everyone. However, there are times when anger can become overwhelming or damaging, and during these times, it’s important to learn how to deal with anger.

Expressing anger inappropriately can be harmful to relationships, both personal and professional. You may express too much anger, too often, or at times that are only going to make things worse, not better. In this article we will look at anger management techniques that will help you better control your emotions.

Let’s take a deeper look at how to deal with anger.

Expressing Anger

Anger is a natural and normal part of almost any relationship. This includes relationships with your significant other, kids, boss, friends, family, etc. Anger provides us with valuable information if we are willing to listen to it. It clues us in to areas where we disagree with others and things that need to be changed or altered.

Unhealthy Ways to Express Anger

Here are some common yet unhealthy ways to express anger that you should avoid:

Being Passive-Aggressive

This is a term many of us are familiar with. Passive-aggressive behavior happens when someone is angry but uses indirect communication to express their anger.

Some of the more common passive-aggressive behaviors include the silent treatment, making comments about someone behind their back, being grumpy, moody, or pouting, or simply not doing tasks or assignments that they should.

This is a passive-aggressive person’s way of showing their anger. It’s not very productive but extremely common.

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Poorly-Timed

Some people get overwhelmed and express anger in a situation where it can’t really do any good.

An example would be getting angry at one person in front of a crowd of people. All that does is make people uncomfortable and shuts them down. It’s not a healthy way to express anger or disagreement with someone.

Ongoing Anger

Being angry all the time is most often a symptom of something else. It’s healthy and normal to express anger when you disagree with someone. However, if someone is angry most of the time and always seems to be expressing their anger to everyone around them, this won’t serve them well.

Over time, people will start to avoid this person and have as little contact as possible. The reason being is no one likes being around someone who is angry all the time; it’s a no-win situation.

Healthy Ways to Express Anger

What about the healthy ways[1] to adapt? When learning how to deal with anger, here are some healthy ways to get you started.

Being Honest

Express your anger or disagreement honestly. Be truthful about what it is that is making you angry. Sometimes this will entail walking away and thinking about it for a bit before you respond.

Don’t say you’re mad at something someone did or said when it’s really something else that upset you.

Being Direct

Similar to being honest, being direct is a healthy way to express anger.

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Don’t talk around something that is making you angry. Don’t say that one thing is making you angry when it’s really something else, and don’t stack items on top of each other so you can unload on someone about 10 different things 6 months from now.

Be direct and upfront about what is making you angry. Ensure you are expressing your anger to the person who upset you or you are angry at, not to someone else. This is very counterproductive.

Being Timely

When something makes you angry, it’s much better to express it in a timely manner. Don’t keep it bottled up inside of you, as that’s only going to do more harm than good.

Think of the marriages that seem to go up in flames out of nowhere when the reality is someone kept quiet for years until they hit their breaking point.

Expressing anger as it occurs is a much healthier way of using anger to help us guide our relationships in the moment.

How to Deal With Anger

If you feel angry, how should you deal with it right at that moment?

1. Slow Down

From time to time, I receive an email at work that makes me so angry that steam is probably pouring out of my ears.

In my less restrained moments, I have been known to fire off a quick response, and that typically has ended about as well as you might imagine.

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When I actually walk away from my computer and go do something else for a while, I am able to calm down and think more rationally. After that happens, I am able to respond in a more appropriate and productive manner. Doing things that helps you learn how to release anger can make an uncomfortable situation more manageable before it gets out of hand.

2. Focus on the “I”

Remember that you are the one that’s upset. Don’t accuse people of making you upset because, in the end, it’s your response to what someone did that really triggered your anger. You don’t want to place blame by saying something like “Why don’t you ever put away your dishes?” Say something more like “Having dirty dishes laying on the counter upsets me—can you work with me to come to a solution?”

When you are accusatory towards someone, all that does is increase the tension. This doesn’t usually do anything except make your anger rise higher.

3. Work out

When learning how to deal with anger, exercise is a great outlet. If something happens that angers you, see if you have the opportunity to burn off some of the anger.

Being able to hit the gym to get a hard workout in is great. If this isn’t an option, see if you can go for a run or a bike ride. If you are at work when you become angry and the weather permits, at least go outside for a brisk walk.

Besides working some of your anger out through exercise, this also helps to give your mind a chance to work through some ways to address what it is that upset you.

If you’re not sure where to start with an exercise routine, check out Lifehack’s free Simple Cardio Home Workout Plan.

4. Seek Help When Needed

There are times when we could all use some help. Life can be stressful and overwhelming. It’s perfectly fine to seek some help from a mental health professional if it will help you get back to a healthy balance.If you find that you are angry all the time, it might be a good idea to go talk to an expert about learning to control intense emotions. They can give you some sound advice and ideas on how to get your anger to a more manageable and healthy level.

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5. Practice Relaxation

We all seem to lead incredibly busy lives, and that’s a good thing if we are loving the life we are living. That being said, it is very beneficial to our physical and mental well-being to take time out for relaxation.

That can mean spending time doing things that help us calm down and relax, like being around people we enjoy, practicing deep breathing or listening to music. It could be making time for things that help bring us balance like a healthy diet and physical activity.

Many people incorporate techniques such as yoga and meditation to calm their minds and release tension when learning how to deal with anger. Whatever your choice is, ensure you take time out to relax when warning signs of anger start to bubble up.

6. Laugh

Incorporating humor and laughter on a regular basis will help keep anger in check and help you get over a bad mood and feelings of anger more quickly. This isn’t part of formal anger management techniques, but you’ll be surprised by how well it works. Remember, life is a journey that’s meant to be enjoyed fully along the way through healthy emotion. Make sure you take time to laugh and have fun.Surround yourself with people that like to laugh and enjoy life. Don’t work at a job that just causes you stress, which can lead to anger. Work at something you enjoy doing.

7. Be Grateful

It’s easy to focus on the bad in life and the things that cause us negative emotions. It’s vitally important to remind ourselves of all the wonderful things in life that bring us positive emotions, things that we easily forget because we get caught up in the whirlwind of day to day life.

Take time out each day to remind yourself of a few things you are grateful for in order to help you learn how to release anger and invite in more positive feelings.

Final Thoughts

Life can be overwhelming at times. We seem to have constant pressure to achieve more and to always be on the go. People we are around and situations we are in can cause stress, anger, and negative emotions. At times, it can seem to be too much, and we get angry and our emotions start to get out of control.

During these times, keep in mind that life is an incredible journey, full of wonder and things that bring you joy. When you find yourself angry more often than is healthy, take time out to remember the good things in life—the things that we seem to forget yet bring us so much positive energy and emotions.

Use some of the tips included here to help with how to deal with anger and better control your emotions.

More Resources on Anger Management

Featured photo credit: Andre Hunter via unsplash.com

Reference

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