In addition, while group anger managment can be helpful, many issues that lead to anger are
personal and individual. Hence, an individual approach affords
the opportunity to reach deeper into the underlying issues that cause anger.
Sensible boundaries are essential to a calm state of mind. If someone does not feel comfortable
setting limits and boundaries with others,
resentments and anger will inevitably build. Such individuals will often describe themselves as a "door mat" or simply
acknowledge their difficulty with the word "no". While communication skills can help here, often times it is
negative childhood experiences that need to be addressed. For some, saying "no" was not allowed in
their family of origin. Now, as adults they continue to have difficulty saying "no". For others,
it was "don't speak unless you are spoken to." In the more tragic instances, setting boundaries
was met with physical violence or emotional abuse.
This connection may not be so obvious. What does self esteem have to do with anger? When
someone feels "not good enough" (the core belief that underlies low self esteem),
that very belief causes anxiety and depression. And anxiety and depression often
show up as irritability.
How you interpret the behavior and more importantly, the motivation of others is pivotal in your reaction an behavior towards them.
Take a simple example. Someone steps in front of you while you are waiting on a line.
If you believe their motivation was to "get in front" and that they didn't care about how you feel, what do you think your emotion will be?
If you believe they were absent minded or didn't notice you there, what do you think your emotion will be?
All anger is preceded by some thought that you have been wronged in some way.
Working with your thinking is an essential piece in the anger management puzzle.