Anger can be so overwhelming. You may feel like you could smash something or someone. Everyone feels angry at times. That's natural. What matters is how you handle your anger.
Because anger is so intense, it can be pretty scary and confusing. Plus, you may have learned that being angry isn't "nice." We answer some common questions about this strong emotion:
- What are reasons to control anger?
- How can I deal with anger?
- What if I have a lot of anger inside?
- What if my anger starts to get out of control?
What are reasons to control anger? top
It's important to figure out how to handle anger for a lot of reasons.
If you don't find healthy ways to express your anger, your physical health can suffer. Strong anger or anger that lasts a long time can be stressful. Stress can lead to health problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, backaches, and stomach trouble.
If you don't handle your anger well, you run the risk of developing emotional problems, like depression or eating disorders. You also may get in trouble in school and have a hard time building strong, healthy relationships. And you may not feel as good about yourself as you'd like.
What if I have a lot of anger inside? top
It's great to have a plan for how to handle anger when it comes up. You can also work on ways to keep anger under control on a regular basis. Here are some suggestions:
- Talk to someone you trust. It can be a relief just to share how you're feeling. You can talk with a friend, a relative, a teacher, or anyone you trust. You also can work with a therapist to understand your feelings better and find ways to handle anger.
- Get moving. Physical activity can burn off extra energy and help you feel more relaxed.
- Write in a journal. Writing can be a great way to let your feelings out. It also may give you a chance to explore what is really going on. Often, other emotions, such as hurt or fear, are underneath the anger. Knowing what's really going on can help calm the anger.
- Let music soothe you. Listen to your favorite tunes, sing in the shower, play an instrument, or write a song about how you feel.
- Get creative. Drawing, painting, or creating something can be a great release.
- Get good sleep. It's easier to stay calm and think straight when you're well-rested.
What if my anger starts to get out of control? top
If you feel like your anger is boiling over, make sure to keep yourself and others around you safe. Here are some things you can do:
- Get out. Remove yourself from a tense situation. But don't drive — driving when angry can be dangerous. Take a walk, which is a great way to burn off extra energy.
- Choose safe ways to calm down. You might take deep breaths, repeat a calming word, or imagine a calm place. Don't drink or use drugs to handle anger.
- Get help. If you feel you are a danger to yourself or others, call 911 or go to the closest hospital emergency department. It's important to get help right away.
Content last reviewed January 07, 2015
Page last updated April 01, 2015