Aspects of Anger
Karen's earliest family memories were of fear when her dad (Jim) was in one
of his moods. Drinking didn't help and often it was the trigger; his rage was
mostly taken out on Mum (Mary) who ended up bruised and battered, "... but for
us kids, we had to hide and not get in the way." Mum swore she would leave him,
but never did. Why? "Because Dad loved Mum and us kids. He would buy us
presents, take us out, bring Mum flowers, cuddle Mum ... and then it would
happen all over again.
"Grandad (Geoff) dad's dad, was also like that and didn't often come around
... when he did, Dad seemed to be a different person - like a lamb, meek and
mild, especially when Grandad was raving at him."
Karen grew up and lived with Frank who was "just like Dad". She ran away to
another state and met and married Greg - who turned out to be worse than Frank.
Karen's story is not unique. We will examine some aspects of just how
debilitating anger can be, and will also come up with some solutions. Let me
start by saying that anger is a personal issue and must be resolved personally.
Nobody can do it for you. If you recognise it as an issue in your life and you
want to do something about it, then there is a way forward.
Comment About Anger
I'll say the obvious about Karen's story. It looks like she was born into a
family where some traits were inherited. Dad and Grandad were the same, but Dad
loved Mum. Anger and Love went together and were a possible combination in the
mind of young Karen. So much so that her men - Frank and Greg - were both like
Dad. Subconsciously Karen looked for men who expressed love through anger -
there was no love without anger! Is there an explanation for that?
I believe that we are all on earth in a physical body (housing a soul) to
gain experiences for our soul. In other words, we gain lessons we need to learn
whilst we are on Earth. So, one way to look at inherited traits, say anger, is
that perhaps we need to learn the lessons involved with dealing with and
overcoming anger. Having the attitude (or belief) about learning lessons from
inherited negative traits often avoids the frequently associated feelings of
guilt, blame or judgements of our parents, or those close to us. Indeed if we
take this attitude (or belief) to the nth degree, we can ultimately be grateful
to anyone who has taught us negative habits because we realise that we need to
get the lessons from handling or overcoming that particular negative habit.
So Karen too needed to learn lessons. She had four men in her life - Dad,
Grandad, Frank and Greg who were all there creating adversity for Karen, which
presented her with opportunities to learn and grow ... anger is not synonymous
with Love. Perhaps also there were lessons of self esteem, self worth and self
On a grander scale cast your mind to the age old Irish religious issues where
generations of kids have been born into families "full of hate". What about the
Jewish/Palestinian issues? One can only wonder "Is there any hope of moving
through the anger and hatred and revenge thoughts passed from one generation to
the next"? Is it just chance that we're not born into these families or are
these not our particular lessons to learn? One can wonder if it is perhaps some
part of a "Greater Plan". That age-old saying comes up for me "There but for
the grace of God go I."
My Personal Experience With Anger
Hatred, anger and revenge consumed me after the murder of my three
daughters. Naturally enough you may say, and probably appropriate, because it's
all part of the grief process. I was lucky I knew that we talk to ourselves
50,000 times a day and if we talk to ourselves negatively then that will
influence us to become negative. I would eventually cause my own demise and
become another victim.
Habits are a challenge to break and one of the reasons for this is that the
job of the subconscious mind is to keep you where you are now. In other words,
to keep you in your Comfort Zone, with all habits, both good and bad. The
subconscious mind wants what it's got and not what it hasn't got. Once the
habit is there, the subconscious mind wants it. It keeps you there with self
sabotage ... negative self talk ... and all this is natural. The key is
awareness. For me, it was important to have the awareness that I was having
negative self talk which would eventually drive me towards being another victim.
I was also lucky that I knew that the subconscious mind (88% of our mind,
containing all our habits, memory, self image and personality) doesn't know the
difference between imagination and reality. I worked deliberately with the
subconscious mind, changing hatred, anger and revenge thoughts into acceptance,
love and forgiveness. The two change agents that I used were goals and
meditation. With either of these methods we can work deliberately with our
subconscious mind, changing debilitating habits.
Avoid Self Anger
There are times when anger can be appropriate - it can be a natural action.
Notice that I did not use the work "reaction"! Often anger can be justifiable,
however if you lose control, who wins? Certainly not you! And then this can
lead to self recrimination and unhappiness. Thoughts can often be redirected at
self anger and this is not desirable ... do you remember crying when your
parents were angry with you when you were very young? Well, when you're angry
with yourself it's a similar thing ... you're hurting that young child inside of
you and that "young child" inside is crying. Recognise it and avoid redirecting
anger at yourself.
My Meditation CD of Letting Go Anger
I have a meditation CD, Peaceful Place #9 - Letting Go Anger, which will help
in changing any habit of anger. I have reproduced the words here just so
that you can see my approach to achieve change in memory - I have not included
Building Peaceful Place and then going down through the colours to get to the
meditation state - that dreamlike state where you have conscious control (you
may already know about this and if not, these are included in all my CDs).
Here are a few thoughts for you to consider, during the process of anger:
generally speaking there are aspects of resentment or blame or judgement or
guilt that are involved. These are all factors that may well contribute to the
anger itself. There is sometimes a belief and an expectation when other people
are involved. The starting point through the process of anger is to accept where
you are by realising what you've done or what has happened. No matter what
you've done up until now, know that you've probably done the best that you knew
how at the time. One way forward is you make whatever you've done okay for
yourself and in that way you can forgive other people that are involved and you
can forgive yourself. You can in fact increase your self esteem out of this
whole process. You see, even if bad thoughts come in, you can actually say "no"
to the bad thought and don't accept them. Likewise you can say "yes" to any good
thoughts and you accept them. Both actions help self esteem. When you've done
this tape for anger a few times, then you'll be able to use a shortened version,
whereby you'll just be able to count from ten to one and on each one of those
ten counts you'll be able to use the process to quickly clear the anger. You
could do this in say 30 seconds ... you'll practise at the end of this
The Guided Imagery Words
It's a good starting point to review an occasion when you showed anger,
see the scene or sense that you see it, hear what was said or hear any other
sounds and relive the feeling of how it was. Acknowledge and realise inside of
you whatever it was that went wrong, you see it as it is, and just now answer
these questions to yourself. Who do you resent in this situation? What
expectations in fact were violated with that resentment? Did you start to blame
either others or yourself? Do you have an expectation of what either you or
other people should do? If so, what are they? Do you find that you are really
beginning to judge either yourself or other people because of your expectations?
Are you feeling guilty about that and about what you did either in judging
yourself or in judging other people? So is there anything that you can do about
what other people do? Yes you can accept their behaviour and love them anyway,
or you could let them know that their behaviour bothers you. How can you resolve
the judgement of others? You can forgive them and realise that they are probably
doing the best that they know how and that your standards and their standards
may be different. You resolve the judgement of yourself by forgiving yourself
and you can realise that whatever you've done up until now is the best that you
knew how at the time. You can acknowledge yourself for who you are and know that
you are growing. You introduce loving into this situation. You can love the
other people for who they are, silently to yourself, and you can love and accept
yourself the way you are. So you say: "I love and accept myself", and know that
you basically have been able to change your expectation of self and others,
change your belief because you know that either you or other people are doing
the best they can. And as good thoughts come into you, you just acknowledge
those good thoughts and say "yes" to them and you feel better about yourself. If
there are any bad thoughts that come in just simply say "no" to the bad thoughts
and once again you feel good. When you feel good about yourself your self esteem
rises. Imagine and feel that rising. And now just once again picture and imagine
that situation, see it, or sense that you see it, feel it, and hear or sense you
hear yourself in that same situation and know that you are calm and smiling and
generating love and affection and that you are breathing calmly, knowing that
you are doing the best you can and that the other people in the same situation
are doing the best that they can. You can accept the situation for what it is.
Now as you get a sense of that, as you hear the sounds, as you get in touch with
your feelings, congratulate yourself for really handling a difficult situation
because you've handled it well, get that clarity in your mind. Yes, well done,
congratulations and you feel really good about yourself knowing that you can be
calm and relaxed about any situation. And now on t he count of five you will
open your eyes being relaxed, well, healthy and invigorated, knowing that you
can handle situations, quickly and resourcefully and always remain calm, relaxed
and know that you can easily let go anger. And now on the count of five you open
your eyes feeling relaxed, well, healthy and invigorated. No 1 you feel the
blood flowing to the end of your fingers and toes. No. 2 you move your fingers
and toes. No. 3 you stretch a little bit and No. 4 you roll your neck around
gently. No. 5 eyes open, wide awake, relaxed, well, healthy and invigorated,
having released any anger inside you.
The fast way
Now as I said at the beginning of this CD, here is a method that you'll be
able to use to quickly release anger. You need to practise getting into your
Peaceful Place fast so that you can get there in a few seconds and when you're
there you just say to yourself "Now I count from ten down to one and on the
count of one I am relaxed and have released all my anger." Here are some
suggestions as to the type of statement or question you can make on each number
as you count down:- No. 10: "Who am I resenting and who is it hurting? No. 9 Am
I blaming anybody, myself or others? No. 8 Is there any judgement involved in
this? No. 7 Do my belief systems get in the way? No. 6 Have I got any
expectations? No.5 Is there any guilt involved? No. 4 I accept the situation for
what it is. No. 3 All of us are doing the best we can with the tools that we
have. No. 2 I forgive myself and others. No. 1 I am relaxed and have released my
anger. Sense your positive emotion. And you take a deep breath and go on about
When Anger is Huge
Often anger is a huge issue in life and therefore we need to do more work in
both meditation and goals. A good goal is "I always calmly respond to any
situation". The 3 meditations which I suggest are Acceptance and Letting Go
(CD#16), Unconditional Love (CD#17) - Unconditional Love of self,
others you have hurt and the person that passed it on to you) and Forgiveness
(CD#6) - Forgiveness of self for being angry, forgiveness of the person that
passed it on to you, forgiveness of self for the people you have hurt.
In closing, know that there is no place for revenge ... not even thoughts of
revenge. Leave revenge to the Law and the legal system will exact social
responsibility ... and even if it doesn't, just let it go.
So, awareness is a great key in life and know that it is best to embrace
adversity, knowing that the purpose of it is to gain the lessons - the
experiences for our soul.
Are You Ready - Buy this simple step by step guided program - just $25, lets you build those
automatic responses to Manage Your Anger, that are rightfully yours but are eluding you now.
Buy CD $25
I urge you to read the testimonials below:-
Success Stories - Anger as a positive.
2:00am on 28th February 1994, Ken Marslew, was woken by a knock on the front
door of his quiet suburban house. He saw two young police officers, not too much
older than his 18 year old son Michael, standing there. Nothing could prepare
Ken for what was to come next. The police officers told Ken that Michael had
been shot dead at his place of employment - Pizza Hut Restaurant. Ken's first
reaction was shock, then disbelief.
The memory of those first few days after the murder is a haze. Ken was numb with
it all. Thoughts of rage, revenge and hate filled his mind. For the next four
months, Ken "completely lost the plot" to use his words. One of the things that
got to him was the realisation that the outrage in the newspapers and on
television was so short lived. He noticed this with other vicious crimes that
occurred at that time. The newspapers would be full of it for a little while and
there would be public outrage, but then the focus would change to something
else. No one seemed to be doing anything about maintaining the rage or taking
any action to stop savage acts of violence like this.
Finally Ken realised that he had to do something about the malaise that was
afflicting his life. He would do something ........ he would do something to
maintain the rage ......... he would do something to try and stop the cycle of
violence that occurs in our society.
Ken formed the "Enough is Enough" movement through which he would use his
personal experience to gather people around him who wanted to become a part of
the solution to violence in society.
In 1995 Ken attended one of my seminars. There must have been just a glimmer of
hope that maybe; just maybe, I knew what I was talking about.
It is now several years since Michael's murder. I spent some time with Ken just
recently and attended two schools with him where he talks to students about
violence in society. Several points that came out of the day, one in particular
being about anger.
Ken is angry. He is so angry at the idea that someone can just walk into a Pizza
Hut and shoot one of the young kids who are working there. But what is the
nature of Ken's anger? When I accompanied him to the school lectures I saw
something inspiring. His anger is not the bitter and hateful type of anger, not
sullen and waiting for an opportunity of revenge. He is angry, constantly
tormented, and by the fact that someone should decide that to go into a Pizza
Hut with a gun and threaten the staff was a normal thing to do. Ken's anger now
drives him each day to do something about violence in society. He says he has
transferred his anger into positive energy. "Sometimes it takes the anger about
the fact that people are still violent to get me out of bed in the morning."
Ken uses the Peaceful Place method of relaxation every day. Some people report
that after a bit of practise of Peaceful Place technique they can go straight to
the alpha state almost immediately. Ken finds that he needs several minutes by
himself to start the process and then some more time to go through the imagery
and get into his Peaceful Place. The point for Ken is that he finds the
discipline of using the technique valuable; Ken uses it every day and here are
some of his applications:
- Releasing the negative side of anger. - With emotion, reinforcing his positive
Sandy's Comment. Ken is one of the common heroes around us in our lives.
In turning his anger to positive energy he is doing wonderful work. You too can
help him by working against violence in our society.
against violence in our society.