Anger that stems from not letting go can manifest in many ways, as any other form of anger. The causes all have their differences as well. There may have been an event in the relationship earlier on that you find difficult to forgive, for instance.
This is the hardest issue to address, because it depends on your own heart and mind. Can you allow the other person to change? Can you forget what happened in the past?
That is something that may need some mulling over, some space, or some couples or family therapy. You can, however, begin to act on it now. Don’t bring up the past when you are discussing the present. Don’t automatically assume that your spouse will behave like your parent, or has the same motivations. And if you choose to keep working through these issues, then pinpoint what event you are holding onto, and work through that. This may take journaling, talking to a trusted friend, and other ways of venting your anger (which we will discuss in later blogs). But don’t let it fester unresolved, and similarly do not cling to the issue unforgivingly. Find the healthy balance between the two.
Sometimes pinpointing the one event that is making you angry will take some digging, and some acknowledging of hard truths. Often a seemingly unrelated event can affect our frustration levels daily, or effect a present day relationship or friendship, causing anger in our interactions with that person… even if, really, when we look at it, they haven’t done quite as much to harm us as our anger entails. Do their actions, or your frustrations, merit the anger?
This is where the sometimes painful digging comes in. There may have been an event in a war that started this anger, or perhaps a family dynamic. Occasionally there were cycles in the past that we accepted because we had to at the time, but have since then caused anger that flows into our present lives and relationships.
HH4Heroes Anger Management Strategy #6
Compassionate Self-Forgiveness. No, this is not a New Age concept. In the previous blog we talked about empathy and compassion as an anger management strategy. Now comes a deeper step towards healing anger that calls for the release of judgments and acts of forgiveness. Much of our anger comes from the position or opinion we have over feeling wronged in some way. In some cases the unspeakable did occur. The question that remains is, “Now what?” We can choose to hold onto the anger that holds us back from joy, peace, contentment, love, connection and a better life or we can choose to acknowledge the pain, grief, sorrow, sadness, disappointment and let it go. This move does not involve compartmentalizing or bypassing your emotions. Compassionate Self- Forgiveness means that you acknowledge the feelings and allow then release the judgment, the pain, the frustration, the injustice, the shame, the guilt and the fear not because you are letting anyone off the hook but because there is no hook except these emotions are keeping you from being happy.
We may not want to admit that these childhood traumas occurred, or that we are still dealing with events from the distant or recent past. But realizing it is stronger to admit this is going on, and finding a way to handle it, is the first step. Acknowledge weakness is not having a problem, pain, or vulnerability. Finding true strength is finding how to handle that pain and vulnerabilities, and how to become a healthier and stronger you.
Remember…happiness is an inside job!
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Independent filmmaker, author, happiness coach and speaker Lisa Cypers Kamen creates these blogs to entertain, enlighten and educate our service men and women along with their families as well as support our troops. To contact Lisa, email her directly at email@example.com and check out her websites at www.harvestinghappiness.com , www.hh4heroes.org & www.harvestinghappinesstalkradio.com.
Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio with Lisa Cypers Kamen brings a fresh approach to the airwaves promoting happiness, well-being and global human flourishing by presenting a diverse and proactive collection of the greatest thinkers and doers who have devoted their lives to creating a better world in which to live.
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Harvesting Happiness for Heroes is a pending 501(c)(3), non-profit corporation. Our mission objective is to offer support services to Warriors and Warrior families challenged by Combat Trauma, PTSD and post-deployment reintegration issues. HH4Heroes offers Battle Buddy workshops, family awareness training, online community support, one-on-one coaching services, as well as retreats for Warriors to decompress from battle and understand the tools available for them to adapt their military skills to civilian society.
Harvesting Happiness & Harvesting Happiness for Heroes provides positive psychology coaching tools to facilitate greater well-being. This communication is provided for education and inspiration. This communication does not constitute mental health treatment nor is it indicative of a private therapeutic relationship. Individuals desiring help for trauma, addiction and abuse related issues or other psychological concerns should seek out a mental health professional.
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