“The best remedy for a short temper is a long walk.” ~ Jacqueline Schiff …
I have generally been able to manage my anger for the most part, although, there were periods in my childhood in which it was more difficult–stages in which I was in unfamiliar territory or when I felt that the best thing to do was to let others know how I felt. You see, in the past I used to believe that expressing my anger as soon as possible was a good thing—that letting it out right away was just being honest and allowed me not to have to carry anything with me. But as I grew older, I began to recognize that the anger I was letting out was being absorbed and carried by those around me–others got defensive, they became angry themselves and began to express it in their own ways. <!–more–>
The anger we put out into the world goes on to perpetuate more anger, and more energies that are negative, all around us. Even worse, it indiscriminately disrupts and pollutes the waters of our souls. Much of this can be solved, however, by finding healthy ways to deal with our anger, such as waiting to express it until we have had some time to cool down and to process it ourselves in our minds and in our hearts. Often times, as we wait on our anger, we find that it actually diminishes–that as time goes by, the heat from our emotions begins to evaporate, and we are simply left with the actual problem. At this point, we can have a chat with the individuals who made us angry and we can work on resolving the issues in healthy and productive ways.
When we are able to separate ourselves from the situations that are creating enmity, resentment, and hatred in our lives, we often find ourselves looking at things from all angles–including seeing things from the perspectives of those who have angered us. Often times, this will leave us feeling more interested in resolution than in being angry, as seeing things from all angles helps us to better understand the actions of others, as well as provide us with greater clarity of the situation as a whole.
Of course, when we work on waiting on expressing our anger, we have to be certain that we are not needlessly hiding it away within ourselves with the intent of someday dealing with it. In such cases, we are not really remedying the anger, only prolonging it, sustaining it, and perhaps even strengthening it with more fuel, all which will be let out at a future time.
The next time you feel yourself being overcome with anger, go for a walk. Take a break and separate yourself from those negative emotions you feel by spending some time alone in silence and reflection. This is a wonderful way for us to separate ourselves from the immediacy of the situation–without ignoring it or packing it away–while allowing our tempers to calm down so that we do not say or do things that we may come to regret.
Find and employ healthy ways of dealing with your anger throughout the day.
Questions to consider:
Why is it easier to express or anger than it is to go for a walk?
What kinds of things might we see more clearly if we take the time to go for a long walk instead of expressing our anger immediately?
What positive purposes do short tempers serve? How do they help to improve our relationships?
For further thought:
“The greatest remedy for anger is delay.” ~ Seneca