Hello to all of you again. Today I would like to talk to you about a complaint that I hear very often in the sessions. In general, I have heard the following statement from almost many of my clients; “I can’t stand the events, I get angry immediately, how will I overcome this anger?” What is anger, how can I control it? Let’s look at the answers to questions such as whether it is good or not.
Anger, like all other emotions, is a constructive emotion that regulates interpersonal communication when expressed in a very natural, universal and healthy way.Our reactions to anger are learned reactions and are affected by parents, environment and culture. Although it has physical, behavioral and emotional dimensions, it is also directly related to the individual characteristics of the person. This emotion has both positive and negative consequences and if the person can control the existing anger, it is very beneficial, but the person can control the anger. In the process that he cannot do, he may exhibit destructive, aggressive and destructive behaviors.
Anger should never be used as a problem solving tool and it is not a tool for self-expression. At the same time, the way to be right is not to be angry. Anger is a very powerful source of energy. The important thing is how well we use this energy. This feeling also gives a person a sense of power and control, It also helps to alleviate the feeling of fear and inadequacy, protects the person, and provides motivation for change. In addition to all these advantages, when it cannot be controlled, it is a complete energy exploiter, affects our performance, has a serious impact on our decision-making mechanism, it seems to put a veil on our real emotions, uncontrollable anger is both While it causes us to get reactions from our environment, it can also affect our social life quite negatively.
So how does this anger occur in the brain?
The cerebral cortex is the place where logic and decision-making are located in our brain, it is the outer part of the brain and is divided into lobes. We can also think of the cortex as the “strategy center” of the brain.
The emotional center of our brain is the limbic system. Located in the lower parts of the brain, it is thought to be “more primitive”. In general, if the person gets angry and shouts, it means that he is acting with his limbic system instead of using the thinking part of his brain (cortex).
It is present in a part of our limbic system that scientists call the amygdala. This part of our brain is responsible for our “fight or flight” responses, which are our natural survival instincts. The data from the outside world comes to the amygdala and it is determined whether it will be sent to the limbic or cortex regions. If the incoming data triggers enough emotional charge, the amygdala can bypass the cortex, meaning that the data will be sent to our limbic system and we will react using the lower part of our brain.
The amygdala is also effective in forming our emotional memory and emotional responses. It processes information about our emotions and then triggers certain reactions in our body. To give an example of these reactions, when we get angry, it sends signals to our brain and our brain orders the production and release of certain neurotransmitters called catecholamines.
When we get angry, we release the hormones adrenaline and noreadrenaline, which give us strength and energy. Our bodies prepare us to attack or flee from someone. That’s why we feel ready to go to war.
Our thoughts are incredibly powerful when we are angry. In other words, the person starts to get angry thanks to his automatic thoughts. If the person does not get away from the triggers, the amygdala is triggered and the hormone release gradually increases.
HOW IS ANGER CONTROLLED?
Listening is a strong key for anger control. Defining the events instead of interpreting them will also be very useful in anger control. It is very important to lower the expectations from the person in front of us, to be able to focus on the present, to be able to say no, to be able to “set boundaries”, to decide on an agreement, and to empathize with the person. On the other hand, breathing exercises Regular relaxation exercises, walking, getting away from triggers, taking time to calm down for 10-15 minutes, trying to understand where the anger is feeling in the body are important exercises used in anger control.
While anger is quite healthy as long as it is in place and controllable, if it cannot be controlled, it can cause significant damage to the person.
Controlling emotions is a state of will of the person and anger begins in the brain with thought.
If anger control persists despite all these exercises, psychotherapy support is a must.
Happy reading to you all.