You won’t be punished for your anger, but by it – Buddha

Are you holding on to anger and resentment from the past? Do you lose your rag at the smallest of things, usually aimed at the person that the anger isn’t even really about?

When we collect a bunch of memories about stuff that’s happened to us in the past that led to hurt, betrayal, resentment and anger, this crappy energy gets stuck as trauma in our physical body and our energy field, and if not released in an appropriate way, over time this will lead to physical dis-ease.

Holding on to anger and resentment is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. The only person you are really hurting is yourself.

What’s actually going on inside your brain when you’re angry?

Imagine that you’re driving on a freeway and somebody cuts you off. We’ve all been there. You might get angry and toot your horn at them and drive off.

Inside the brain, the amygdala (which responds to outside stimuli) processes the car cutting you off and stimulates the release of neurotransmitters called catecholamines. These cause you to feel a burst of energy preparing you for physical action. The hormones epinephrine and norepinephrine are also released, increasing your blood pressure.

Your heart rate increases and your face may flush as the blood rushes to your extremities. Have you ever been so angry you’ve turned beetroot red? That’s why.

In order to keep the anger at bay, you need to call to action your pre-frontal cortex, the area of the brain that controls your judgement. Without using your pre-frontal cortex, your anger may cause you to lash out at others.

Constant, chronic anger can greatly increase your chance of getting heart disease, having a heart attack and high blood pressure.

Anger and the heart are extremely connected as the epinephrine and norepinephrine constrict blood vessels, making your heart pump harder. These two hormones also increase the amount of glucose and fatty acids in the blood which leads to a whole host of other issues.

If this sounds like you, would you like to start controlling your anger in a positive way?

Meditation, yoga, exercise, relaxation and doing something fun are all great ways to manage your anger.

In my mind, while anger isn’t a positive emotion, it is much more positive, and higher up the emotional scale than emotions like guilt, depression, grief and shame. There’s much more passion and energy in anger, it’s about using it in the right way. Go for a run, or punch the f*&k out of a boxing bag and express your anger in a positive way. Grab a journal and do a brain dump of what’s troubling you.

If you are storing a lot of resentment and anger about the past, I also really recommend doing some forgiveness work to lighten the load. This will start releasing a lot of that stuck energy and help you move forward. Do yourself a favour and free yourself from your past – it’s totally possible.

This is what I often focus on with my coaching clients and it’s so cool to see the results they have as they ditch the sh*t that’s holding them back. Their anger starts to fade and instead this is replaced by compassion and forgiveness towards others – and more importantly, towards themselves. This is possible for everyone – yes, even those who have been abused. I’ve seen survivors of child abuse use these tools and free themselves of the chains keeping them stuck in their past. It’s possible for you too.

If you want to know more about how you can free yourself from your past, check out my online coaching program, From Surviving To Thriving where I teach the exact tools I’ve used myself and teach my clients to help them move forward. If online coaching isn’t for you, then get in touch to chat with me about working 1:1.

Catcha on the flip side,

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