ATTITUDE RECONSTRUCTION: A BLUEPRINT FOR BUILDING A BETTER LIFE
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Posts Tagged ‘anger’

Getting a Grip on Your Anger

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Attitude Reconstruction is based on the fact that all of our problems, our bad habits and attitudes, stem back to unexpressed emotions – that is sadness, anger, and fear. To feel more of our other three emotions – joy, love, and peace — we need to acknowledge and express our sadness, anger, and fear naturally, physically, and constructively.

It’s important to realize that our emotions are just pure energy. Look at the word “emotion.” It’s made up of E + motion. Energy in motion. If we move the energy out of our bodies, it passes and calmness and clarity is restored.

Anger is the body’s natural reaction to injustices and violations. A violation could be feeling betrayed or slandered. It could be your house being robbed or someone taking credit for your project. An injustice could be witnessing discrimination, hearing about corruption, or being called out at home plate when you were safe. When we experience injustices and violations, we naturally feel angry. Our temperatures rise and we want to strike out and do some damage.

We also perpetuate our own anger by focusing on other people and situations, thinking the world and those in it “should” be different than they are, negatively judging what we don’t accept, and believing everyone should conform to our wishes because we know best. Wanting to strike out, saying or doing mean things, or viewing other people, things, and situations as enemies won’t bring you love. In fact, your anger-based actions can land you in jail or locked up in an emotional prison of feeling separate and isolated.

Dissolve anger by pounding, stomping, or yelling

Deep breathing or thinking your way thru flashes of anger is not realistic. Think about what children do when they feel anger. They have a temper tantrum and then it’s over and they resume their activities. We must deal with that hot, urge to lash out and inflict damage in a constructive way and express it safely, physically and naturally.

  • Express anger energy physically without damaging a person or anything of value. Find a safe place to push against a wall, stomp around the room, or pound the heck out of old phone books. Do it hard, fast, and with abandon. While expressing the anger don’t say negative things and swear. Just make sounds and move the physical energy out of your body.
  • Interrupt destructive thinking about how people and things “should” be different and accept what is. Repeat 100,000 times or until you truly get it, “People and things are the way they are, not the way I want them to be.”

 

When you get rid of anger’s emotional energy, you get back to yourself, your heart. You’ll feel more loving and assert yourself with honesty, kindness, and empathy. Barriers you’ve built with others will come crashing down and your connections will be real and healthy.

Each time you own and deal with your anger physically and constructively and accept what is, you create love. It’s hard at first. We’ve got our pride. Our ego is strong and we feel so justified. But it works. It’s effective. Natural. Fast.

The Three Bridges

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Seeing and hearing are natural gifts for us. Look at the way animals use their senses to their advantage. They can sense safety, danger, play, and even food! We can use our senses to determine if someone is swept up in sadness, anger, or fear. And then we can confidently know how to best offer help.

IDENTIFY THE EMOTION

With just a little practice, you’ll be able to recognize the emotions underneath other people’s demeanor, words, and actions. Rather than reacting to what they say or do, you can extend a communication “bridge” to help shift their emotional state by offering what they truly long to hear but don’t know how to ask for.                      

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To figure out what emotion is probably going on, ask yourself “Where is their attention focused?”

IF THEY’RE FEELING SAD…

  1. People feeling sadness (but often not crying) are most likely thinking or speaking poorly of themselves. Maybe they are being passive or clingy. They need genuine appreciations. In your interactions with them, convey the idea, “I love you. You’re great.” Remind them of their strengths and contributions.

 

IF THEY’RE FEELING ANGRY…

  1. Folks striking out in anger and spewing “you”s all over the place with blame, negativity, and criticism really just feel isolated and are in desperate need of understanding. They won’t respond well to debates, lectures, or reprimands. The chances they’ll hear what you have to say are slim to none unless you can genuinely connect with them first. You need to sincerely hear them out without taking what they say personally. Focus on what’s going on with them behind their angry words and let the rest go flying by, that is, their “you”s and accusations. Silently repeat or say, “I want to hear what you have to say” and just listen.

 

IF THEY’RE FEELING FEAR…

  1. If someone is overwhelmed, anxious, or freaked out chances are she’s got some unexpressed fear stocked up. She needs honest reassurances. Comfort, soothe, and repeatedly remind her that everything is and will be all right. Other reassuring comments are “We’ll make our way through this together,” “I’m here” or “I’ll take care of it.” Or offer reassurances by reminding her of the objective reality: “Your boss really likes the work you do,” or “You’ve done this successfully before.

 

If you’re unable or unwilling to offer a communication bridge, it’s probably because your own unexpressed emotions are getting in the way. It’s okay. You’re human. To quickly reignite your compassion, take a brief time-out and handle your own emotions or remind yourself of the objective reality. Then you will be able to look within your heart, and if appropriate, extend a bridge.

You’ll deepen your personal relationships when you become adept at recognizing other people’s emotions. You can use this knowledge to communicate in the ways most helpful to them. What an amazing talent you’ll be cultivating. For example, if you know that your husband is quick to anger, you can consciously listen silently and understand his position, especially at times when he is upset or under stress. If a workmate often seems glum or down, you can choose to validate her gifts and skills a little more often.

Expectations Lead to Heartache – Acceptance Brings More Love

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Recently Tom came into my office. He is a middle-aged athletic man living here in Santa Barbara with a lovely wife and 9-year old son, Jimmy. Tom was really frustrated because Jimmy would rather be on his computer than play sports. Every weekend was a battle to get Jimmy out of the house. It was getting old and there was growing unspoken tension whenever they were together.

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Four Ways to Stop Obsessing with Attitude Reconstruction

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Do you obsess? One minute it’s the survivors in the Philippines. The next, it’s what you’ll wear tomorrow. How much you weigh. When you can bust out that pressing project with an impending deadline. Why your child’s grades are slipping. What your boyfriend is doing right now.

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Take Charge of Your Anger Today

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Do other people tiptoe around you so you won’t get mad? Are your kids afraid of you? Have you been told to take an anger-management class?

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Free Communication Class

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UPCOMING FREE COMMUNICATION CLASS

Saturday October 19, 2019
Santa Barbara

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Jude Bijou, Author
Jude Bijou is a licensed marriage and family therapist, educator, author, and speaker.  Meet Jude

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Attitude Reconstruction
2012 Benjamin Franklin Award
Winner in Self-Help
2012 ForeWord Reviews
Winner in Psychology
2012 ForeWord Reviews
Winner in Self-Help
2012 International Book Award
Winner in Health: Psychology/Mental Health
2012 Nautilus Silver Award
Winner in Personal Growth/Self Help/Psychology
2012 LA Festival of Books
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