When anger strikes, it’s not just your mood that takes a hit. Your heart rate, blood pressure, and stress hormone levels can skyrocket. Although anger is a natural emotion, how you handle it can make a significant difference to your well-being and relationships. That’s why in this article, I’ll be talking about 15 ways to calm down when angry.
1. Deep Breathing
The first technique, deep breathing, might seem like a cliché, but it’s a cliché for a good reason. During moments of anger, your body tends to go into ‘fight or flight’ mode. If you can slow your breathing, you’re essentially signaling to your body that everything is okay. Start by taking a deep breath, hold it for a few seconds, and then exhale slowly. Repeat this until you start feeling calmer.
2. Count to Ten
This is a simple trick that can help you avoid reacting in a way you might regret later. When anger starts to bubble, instead of letting it explode, take a moment to pause. Count to ten, and allow yourself to get a better perspective on the situation.
3. Physical Activity
A productive way to manage your anger is to channel it into something physical. Not only does exercise release endorphins (those feel-good hormones), but it also helps distract your mind. Whether it’s going for a quick jog, practicing yoga, or hitting a punching bag, physical activity can provide a healthy outlet for your anger.
4. Write it Out
Try and write down what you’re feeling when you’re angry. Write down the reasons for your anger and how you’re feeling. Don’t censor yourself. After a few minutes, you might find that the act of writing helps to diffuse your feelings of anger.
5. Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness is focusing on the current moment without any judgment. During moments of anger, your mind might race with negative thoughts and what-if scenarios. But if you can center yourself and focus on the here and now, your anger might just start to fade away.
Further Reading: 5 Benefits of Practicing Mindfulness Meditation Every Day
6. Use Humor
While anger can feel overpowering, sometimes the best remedy is to lighten up. Of course, this doesn’t mean making light of the situation that caused your anger. Instead, try to find something funny in a different aspect of your life or recall a humorous memory.
7. Reach Out
Remember that you don’t have to handle your anger alone. Reach out to a friend or family member who you trust, and share your feelings with them. Sometimes, just talking about your anger can help to alleviate it.
8. Listen to Music
Music has a unique ability to impact our mood. Therefore, when you’re angry, try listening to calm or upbeat music. This can help shift your focus and ease your anger.
Visualize a calming scene or place when you’re angry. It could be a peaceful beach, a serene forest, or even your cozy bed. This mental escape can provide a soothing distraction from your anger.
10. Positive Affirmations
When anger takes hold, you may start to harbor negative thoughts about yourself or others. Instead, try to shift your focus to positive affirmations. Remind yourself that it’s okay to feel angry and that you’re capable of managing your emotions.
11. Practice Self-Compassion
Be kind to yourself when you’re angry. Instead of berating yourself for feeling this way, remind yourself that it’s a natural emotion that everyone experiences. Practice self-compassion and acknowledge your feelings without judgment.
12. Use a Mantra
A mantra is a phrase you repeat to yourself to help calm your mind. So, if you’re feeling angry, you might try repeating a calming mantra like, “I am at peace” or “I can handle this.”
13. Avoid Alcohol
When you’re angry, you might be tempted to have a drink to calm your nerves. But alcohol can actually increase aggressive behavior and make it harder for you to control your emotions. Instead, opt for a non-alcoholic beverage like herbal tea or water.
14. Get Some Fresh Air
Stepping outside and getting some fresh air can work wonders. The change in scenery can help to distract you from your anger, and the fresh air can have a calming effect.
15. Seek Professional Help
And eventually, if you find that your anger is frequently out of control or causing issues in your life, it might be beneficial to seek professional help. Therapists and psychologists are trained to help people manage their emotions and can provide you with strategies to handle your anger in a healthier way.
In fact, managing anger isn’t about suppressing your feelings. It’s about understanding them and dealing with them in a positive way. Each of these methods provides a constructive approach to calming your anger, and it can be helpful to try out different methods and see which ones work best for you. So next time anger strikes, remember these 15 ways to calm down and regain control.
Further Reading: 6 Things That Happen to Your Body When You’re Angry