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Three Reasons Why Anger is Your Friend

Three Reasons Why Anger is Your Friend

    Previously, we have discussed why Fear, Sadness and Shame are actually your friends. Today we are going to talk about Anger. Anger gets a lot of bad press. Executives are sent to Anger Management classes, we talk about Road Rage and Bullying. But Anger, expressed cleanly, can very much be your friend.

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    First, Anger gives you the energy to confront a threat. Angry people “aren’t going to take it anymore,” they are going to do something to right a wrong or put a stop to an injustice or defend against an attacker, and these people are fired up! That’s important because threats can be scary, and, you know, threatening, and it helps to have the energy that angers gives us to confront them. Without that anger and energy, you can sit there and think and think and think, and rationalize why you’re not doing anything, and nothing will change. Angry people don’t stay passive long.

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    Second, Anger helps you to set boundaries. When you find yourself feeling Angry, you know that someone or something just violated your sense of boundaries, your sense of what is right and wrong, and you feel compelled to do something about it. Now, Anger can be very consuming, in the moment, but it may well help you in the moment to ask yourself, before you actually run off half-cocked and do something you may regret, “what just happened to violate my boundaries? What do I need to do to address that?” Now you have a clearer idea of the problem, and the solution, and, as noted above, the energy to step forward and act, even when there is risk.

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    Lastly, Anger helps you to show others you are serious. Clean Anger, as opposed to blind rage (Anger’s very troublesome twin brother), demonstrates your willingness to confront that threat, to enter into conflict and to stay present, even as you get cut and bruised in the fray, and to do what it takes to prevail. Anger can be kinda scary, and when presented with Anger, many people will back down.

    The trick with Anger, of course, is for you to 1> Use your anger in pursuit of a worthwhile goal that serves a higher purpose for your values, your community, your family. Scaring people just to get what you want is just playground Bullying.  2> Stay in control of yourself so that you can keep your eye on the goal and move toward it purposefully, so that you don’t find yourself enjoying conflict for its own sake and causing unnecessary damage. Perhaps we can say it like this: Anger is a great Servant, but a really bad Master.

    So, Anger gives you the energy to confront a threat, helps you to set boundaries, and show others you are serious.  That is definitely a friend worth having, or maybe a trusted bodyguard. Either way, you want someone like that in your corner.

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    Dave Kaiser

    An Executive Coach who helps people make better use of their time, from productivity to living their life's mission.

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    Last Updated on March 13, 2019

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

    You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

    Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

    1. Work on the small tasks.

    When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

    Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

    2. Take a break from your work desk.

    Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

    Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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    3. Upgrade yourself

    Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

    The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

    4. Talk to a friend.

    Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

    Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

    5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

    If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

    Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

    Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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    6. Paint a vision to work towards.

    If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

    Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

    Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

    7. Read a book (or blog).

    The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

    Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

    Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

    8. Have a quick nap.

    If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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    9. Remember why you are doing this.

    Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

    What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

    10. Find some competition.

    Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

    Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

    11. Go exercise.

    Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

    Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

    As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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    Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

    12. Take a good break.

    Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

    Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

    Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

    Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

    More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

    Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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