Anger is a powerful and vital emotion, which is a natural and necessary human response to threat or harm. Far from being an entirely negative emotional response, anger can help people identify problems, initiate change and enable people to effectively defend themselves in threatening situations. Anger becomes a problem, however, when it leads to destructive or violent behaviour and it starts to cause harm to oneself or others. Anger expresses itself in manifold ways and can take on different forms including rage, annoyance, self-loathing, resentment, or permanent cynicism.
Anger issues can develop for a variety of reasons, however common patterns include:
- Unpleasant or damaging experiences in childhood leading to an internalisation and repression of angry feelings. These repressed emotions then begin to express themselves in the long term.
- Exposure to violent, intimidating or destructive anger in the past which can lead to the fear, repression and quelling of one’s own anger. This means that some people can struggle to safely express their anger because they have not accepted it or learnt how to tolerate it.
- Insufficiently addressed trauma, painful past experiences or underlying hurt, which can provoke angry, and seemingly uncontrollable, reactions to certain situations in the present.
- Present circumstantial difficulties such as stress or grief, and an attendant sense of struggling to cope with life’s challenges.
Anger issues can often occur at times of more general psychological discomfort or distress, and can be looked at in conjunction with other issues such as depression or anxiety. If your anger, or any other aspect of your mental health, is causing you problems in your life and relationships, then please do not hesitate to get in touch with the portland practice, and arrange a consultation with our mental health professionals here.
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