Ridding ourselves of problematic emotions is not the answer. Like a learner driver, we can learn to manage the powerful thrusts we experience.
Ridding ourselves of problematic emotions
Often people will think of their anxiety, fear and anger just as problematic, negative emotions. They are feelings that they’d prefer to get rid of. However, these strong emotions are needed by us in order to live each day. All three are engineered into our bodies.
It is possible to manage our emotions
What we need is to learn how to manage these emotions because if they do things in us that we can’t control they do cause big problems and harm. Like learning to drive a car we need time to learn how to engage these feelings, to find ways to stop them from making us jerk or stall so we can move more smoothly through life. Continue reading Learning to Manage Problematic Emotions
Knowing when to assert and when to yield
The first word breathed into our being was God’s, “BE”. Each of us was made with so much love and intentionality. God now looks at each of us with joy and says, “Be fully your unique self”, “Step by step become more yourself” and, “Be not afraid”. We need to take His word in for it to become flesh in us. So when God says, “Be angry, but sin not” He’s aware of the enormous potential we carry. We more often see anger as a slippery slope but God sees that our authentic anger can be transformative. Continue reading Good expressions of anger
Where do our angry responses originate? Our eruptions are an outflow of what we’re already carrying inside ourselves. We’ve each formed habits of trying to manage our reality when we’re pushed out of shape, and these patterns which we typically used formed around our early experiences. The feelings we had when there was a power imbalance when we were little are still with us, and are part of our identity. So when something comes up that doesn’t sit well with us, we will follow our usual tendency of either withdrawing or moving towards the situation. Continue reading Firming up the marshes, breaking down the rocks, on the road to life-giving anger
How did it start?
Our experiences under the age of three gave us emotions from which we made assumptions about our world. Around us were others that modelled what permissible behaviour was, but often what they said we must do was idealized and different from what they did themselves. We tested life out for ourselves reinforcing learnt patterns into the foundation of our being. So our practiced behaviour became our way of engaging with reality. Continue reading Our Journey of Anger
Most of us struggle with anger in one way or another. Anger is a force for enormous change and is meant to be a positive tool to help us live fully. We’re born into a world with conflict. Our well-learned patterns of how we respond when we’re angry are deeply rooted in us. It’s these internalized patterns that are the problem. So often, since we dislike these we try to change our behaviour, but find this very difficult to do. For our automatic, visceral reactions come from a place that is not easy to access.
Continue reading Engage with Your Anger
I am the engine inside of you. I am here to help you get through life, but you have never looked after me. You try to put me down and to get rid of me, but you can’t for I am integral to who you are. You neglect and ignore my warnings, but I break through your consciousness. I hide in your circumstances and I get you. I have to change things. I have to fix things. If you don’t manage me appropriately, you can’t blame me. You never engage with me, never befriend me. You sometimes use me so you can hurt others and frighten them. Continue reading I Am Your Anger