Excerpt From The Fix Your Anger Handbook

Living With Less Anger: Navigating Your New World
Since we only live once, we need to live right. Live without anger and learn to love.

By Faust Ruggiero, M.S.

Brutal Honesty, I Over E, Present/Understand/Fix, Slowing Down Life’s Pace, Internal Focus, Fact-Finding, Living in the Moment, Settling Past Issues, Risk-Taking, Life Inventory, Belief, Sustained Learning, Trust, Love

If you are living with anger, it may have been part of your life for a long time. You may have been physically predisposed to conditions like neurotransmitter imbalance, a thyroid issue, or some other hormonal imbalance. You may have been raised in a family environment where anger was routinely expressed. You may not have experienced a different way to live, and being raised in that setting provided you with a template for the angry way you would live your life.

If you never understood that there is a more productive way to live, the idea of living without anger can feel a bit threatening. Of more importance, you might have no idea what you might be working for when it comes to reducing or removing anger from your life. Sometimes, it is difficult to attempt to make changes in your life when you are not sure what that will look like. I will use a step-by-step life-changing example as I begin to define what a world with reduced anger might look like.
Before I do that, it is important to define the angry and anger-free ways of living. An “angry life” is one where your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are anger-based, aggressive, defensive, retaliatory, critical, and volatile. A life not controlled by anger is one where your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are warm, compassionate, communicative, understanding, peaceful, and loving (most of the time). Once again, no one is completely anger-free. That is why I included the words “most of the time” in the definition.

Comparison of an Angry Life Versus a Life With Reduced Anger

As you can see, the traits listed on the left side of the table represent a person who is dealing with anger in their life, and both displays and experiences the pain and unhappiness that is the product of an angry style of life. The right side of the table illustrates what it is like to have anger significantly reduced in one’s life. Here, we see a person who is happier with themselves and displays a more loving approach toward other people. To continue to illustrate what your life can look like when you reduce anger’s influence, I will provide you with that step-by-step life-changing example of a person living with anger and how by getting help for his problem, he begins to live a life that is more peaceful, happy, and loving.

You Can Do This
Anger has a way of masking so many other circumstances in your life. It can be difficult to understand what you are feeling and where those feelings are coming from. You didn’t realize how desperate you were for help because anger produced the arrogance I discussed in Chapter 21. This told you that you were more powerful than you realistically were, that no one was going to tell you what to do, and that whatever was happening in your life was your business, and you would take care of it your way.

Learning how to express your pain so others could understand you was so important. Even in your most social moments, anger had you locked up inside yourself, and there was a devastating aloneness. It devastated you, and everyone close to you. Throughout this book, I have shown you the various types of anger and what anger can do to you. Jacob’s story brings all that information to life. It should tell you that you are no different from anyone else. You are angry, and there are reasons for that anger.

You do not have to live as an angry person anymore. Jacob had to surrender his will, open himself up to one person, let that person help him, and change the way he was living his life. He was willing to do that. When he did, he began to remove anger from his world, and in the end, he didn’t lose that world.

Keep this thought in mind. As far back as Chapter 1, I discussed how anger is a product of fear and insecurity. Sometimes, the unwillingness to get the type of help Jacob got comes from those fears and insecurities. You are afraid, and you are insecure. You don’t know how to let someone in. Don’t let that stop you. This is nothing more than you sitting down with one person who is trained to help you get past the pain that has kept you unhappy for so long. It can keep you from losing what is so important to you. Your time with your counselor is confidential, and you will finally have that one safe place that is yours and yours alone. When you think about it, that’s exactly what’s been missing for most of your life.

So, think of yourself as a worthy and valuable person. Be willing to invest the time it takes to become the happy person you can be. Remember, anger may feel like power, but it is the absence of power. Open up. Face the demons. Let someone help. Be the person you can be. Let nothing stop you. You are worth it.

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