Coping With Anger And Managing Our Emotions

Updated May 4, 2023by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Learning to understand and cope with anger issues and emotions can be a significant challenge. Getting caught up in angry feelings might make it difficult to take productive actions or maintain healthy relationships. Many may not know how to deal with anger healthily or recognize warning signs when they feel angry. We also may not realize anger can be an underlying emotion when we experience frustration, irritability, or dissatisfaction with ourselves. Since excessive outbursts and uncontrolled anger can complicate relations with others, it is essential to know what you can do to express and manage your emotions to achieve a favorable outcome.

Here are a few things to consider when understanding why managing emotions is crucial for coping with anger productively.

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Avoiding Your Emotions May Lead To Suppression

It can help to speak up and let your feelings be known.

Repression of anger may lead to an explosive emotional response. Instead of reaching a solution, it may result in self-defeat by adding further complications to the situation. Holding onto your angry emotions could lead to physical, emotional, or spiritual harm within yourself. If you want support from someone and it is safe to do so, practice talking and tell them how they can help and why you may be experiencing these frustrating emotions.

Understanding Your Emotions Can Allow For Honest Personal Assessment

Venting that you’re feeling angry is a start, but understanding why you're upset can allow better direction for your response. Take a few deep breathing exercises to help stay calm when your temper is boiling. Getting caught up in emotions may prevent you from clearly seeing the situation, leading to false judgment, being unintentionally hurt, or misinterpreting another's feelings.

Determine what is causing your anger by assessing the situation and your emotions. Ask yourself why you're feeling angry, understand the problem logically, and consider how to improve your communication skills to express your feelings without hostility. Determine what you want to accomplish and take practical actions to achieve the goal. Employing relaxation techniques like a brisk walk or progressive muscle relaxation can help reduce stress and dissipate extra tension, especially in situations like a traffic jam.

Recognize And Prevent Triggers Leading To Hostile Behavior

Does your body send signals before you have an angry outburst? Take a time out from the situation when you feel your anger escalating to prevent the need for anger management. 

Recognize physical signs before anger strikes, such as muscle group tension, heavy breathing, headaches, trouble concentrating, and increased pulse. Being aware of how your body reacts to pending triggers can allow you to take steps to calm down, such as deep breathing, massaging tense areas, stretching, or stepping outside for fresh air.

Consider patterns that lead to anger, such as placing the blame elsewhere, jumping to conclusions, or being obsessive about the situation and how things should be. Understanding these patterns can help you address the different forms of anger and protect your mental health. Untreated anger issues may contribute to coronary heart disease and heart disease, making it even more important to recognize and prevent these triggers. If necessary, consult a mental health professional for guidance on managing your anger and maintaining your overall well-being.

Managing Emotions May Include Help From Others

When you lose grip of your temper, it might get difficult for others to understand your feelings. Dealing with anger may include allowing others to understand your position in the situation from an emotional standpoint. 

If you're used to keeping things bottled up, resolving the conflict may become difficult. Dealing with the situation alone may cause more emotional distress. Giving others a chance to assist may provide a new perspective on the situation that could open the door to forgiveness and a peaceful mindset.

Observe Viewpoints Of Others With An Open Mind

Stay focused on the present by avoiding dwelling on past tribulations. 

You don't have to accept the opinion of others, but try to be respectful. You don't have to come out on top after every argument, and you don't have to have the final say. Know when to let go by agreeing to disagree. Avoid offending others by acknowledging their feelings. Being open to understanding others can help you build skills to resolve conflicts by practicing practical ways to respond.

Accept How Your Emotions Affect You

Some forms of anger may not be "bad" or "problems." 

Anger doesn't always mean acting out or feeling bitter. Anger can also mean standing up for your feelings and accepting your unique voice. 

Again, the usefulness of anger may relate to how you express and manage your emotions during heated situations. Be responsible for your feelings and actions. Be fair by avoiding placing blame or threats on others. 

It could also be helpful to consider thought patterns leading to negative thinking. Factors such as insensitive acts by other people (teasing, bullying, gossip, etc.) may cause anger. A toxic work environment can cause anger. Perhaps your management of this emotion isn't necessarily the problem, but rather the anger could be merely a symptom of an external factor.

Control Emotions By Exploring New Concepts

Learn productive actions to eliminate energy related to anger. Engage in activities such as mindfulness exercises, meditation, and anger management. In fact, a recent study found that meditation is as effective as Lexapro in reducing anxiety

Talk to your mental health professional about strategies associated with controlling anger. Learn about online therapy options that explore ways to handle your emotions. Use what you learn to create a plan for handling future conflicts and how to control your emotions. Note actions you've done in the past and what changes are necessary for improvements. 

When A Professional Can Help You Manage

Anger management techniques from professionals provide personal solutions for anger issues. When anger gets out of control, it may be time to seek professional support. A counselor can offer tools, resources, understanding, and kindness in the face of difficulties with anger in a safe and peaceful environment.

How Your Emotions May Benefit From New Support Sources

Sometimes changing your circle of support may lead to emotional improvement. A friend may mean well, but if their advice creates friction, it may be time to seek new assistance. Learn about websites providing specific tools and resources for managing anger. Get involved with a local group that provides emotional support, or start your own.

Learn Constructive Anger Management Takes Patience

Making changes to how you handle your emotions might not happen overnight. Take things a day at a time and be willing to do the work. Practicing new methods over time can make things easier. Coping with depression and anger may include recognizing and changing your habits. It can take time to learn how to keep your temper under control so it doesn't get the best of you. 

Spend time analyzing your anger by understanding what causes it and how it affects your life. Allow yourself time to adjust to new habits and adopt new ways of thinking that encourage productive behaviors. After an event, assess how you handled the situation by keeping a journal of your actions.

What If Someone You Know Needs Help?

Maybe you've noticed someone you know having issues controlling their anger. You may not be able to control their outbursts, but you might be able to set boundaries to deal with the situation. Let them know what you will and will not tolerate. 

When you want to address the concern about their anger, do so when both of you are calm. If they don't calm down during their episode of anger, consider leaving the situation and getting some space. Stand up for yourself and seek counseling if you need additional support. Remove yourself if you feel uncomfortable, unsafe, or threatened. Encourage them to seek help for their anger and let them know you support the idea if you feel safe doing so.

Take The Right Actions To Gain Emotional Control

Are you having problems controlling your emotions? 

You have many options to help find solutions to emotional conflict. First, admit you want to improve how you cope with anger. Get comfortable with the idea of being open and honest about your feelings. If you're not ready to talk to someone in person, explore your options to reach out online. 

Consider asking a friend to support you or help you be accountable for following through with your plan for getting help. Seeking solutions to control your anger can be the first step to creating a significantly better quality of life and better relationships for yourself.

Want Personalized Steps For Managing Anger?


Anger is an emotion commonly experienced in life. Opening up about your feelings can be a productive way to handle your anger. Learning to manage your emotions may minimize the potential consequences of angry outbursts and encourage better relations with others to achieve a more positive outlook on life.

CBT, or cognitive behavioral therapy, for anger management also has proven efficacy. Multiple studies have shown that this form of therapy can help people better manage their anger and the actions that come as a result.

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