How Anger Leads to Anxiety and What to Do About It
How many times have you been frustrated, stressed, or just downright angry and found yourself in a state of angst. You have short of breath and blurred vision. It is no longer only anger; you are on pins and needles. You are on fire. You have broken into a sweat. Every thought is sprinting to the forefront of your mind and pounding at your temples all at once. Goosebumps have risen on your forearms and what was simply anger has now become a heightened sense of distress. You are at the mercy of your own emotional sandstorm.
It is inevitable that we come across situations we cannot control, or individuals we wish we could change. What causes anxiety is denial. The idea or belief that we can always be in control, that everything is subject to change when we want it to be or when we deem it is in our best interest to be changed. That tiny thread of frustration you feel at the slightest realization that ‘This is not happening the way I want it to’, can swiftly avalanche into anger. Anger and frustration at yourself, the situation, and the fact that there is uncertainty, there is fear, there is little to no control.
According to everydayhealth.com and an article written by Madeline Vann, MPH, and medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MPH, there is an unmistakable connection between your emotional and physical health. Because of this it is essential to nurture both,
“To be completely healthy, you must take care of not only your physical health, but your emotional health, too. If one is neglected, the other will suffer”.
You take the first steps in caring for your emotional health by being honest with yourself and becoming knowledgeable of what your anxiety triggers are.
What makes you angry? Is it as simple as being bombarded with too many questions at once? Are you a stressful test taker? Are you apprehensive about sudden change? Is your job unfulfilling or are you in a less than desirable work environment? Or are you an individual that constantly likes to be in control of every situation?
Anger comes from not knowing how to resolve or remedy your problem, and from that anger comes anxiety. Anxiety because you may not know the depths of how these issues affect you therefore they will create an even greater fear or uncertainty that is unwarranted. When you come to the realization of what your triggers are, it is time to deal with them head on. This could range from separating yourself from that trigger all together or depending on what it is, learning how to coexist with it.
What is your trigger? Is it self-inflicted? Is it someone or something you can learn to love or neutralize, improve upon over time, or remove from your life all together? Be honest! Honesty is a big part of any healthy relationship, and that includes with yourself. So now that you know you know what is causing you duress what are you going to do?
In the meantime while you brainstorm how to effectively deal with your anger and anxiety triggers, you should learn how to relieve the anxiety. What soothes or calms you? When you begin to feel the grips of anxiety closing in on you take deep breaths and envision what brings you the most happiness. If you have chronic anxiety attacks health.com compiled 19 Natural Remedies for Anxiety such as chamomile tea, holding your breath, or even giving yourself credit. Which you deserve!
Here are a few quick tips when dealing with anxiety:
Breathe: The very first action to take when the grips of anxiety are upon you is to simply breathe. It is a common misconception that breathing is too insignificant a task to combat anxiety. According to anxietyslayer.com, that is incorrect. A quote from breathing.com states, “The entire autonomic nervous system (and through it, our internal organs and glands) is largely driven by our breathing patterns. By changing our breathing we can influence millions of biochemical reactions in our body, producing more relaxing substances such as endorphins and fewer anxiety-producing ones like adrenaline and higher blood acidity. Mindfulness of the breath is so effective that it is common to all meditative and prayer traditions.” So, the next time you are feeling anxious remember to just breathe.
Face it head on: When you begin to feel the suffocating feeling of anxiety do not run from it! It is like conquering a fear, the more you run the greater it becomes. Acknowledge that you are becoming anxious, then you will be able to tell yourself that you will be okay.
Call a friend: Sometimes you need the company of a trusted confidant that can comfort you, be honest with you, and even help you with your master plan. If you feel yourself losing balance phone a friend. A good rant every now and then is healthy.
Exercise: It’s been scientifically proven that a good workout releases the chemical dopamine into the body which can improve your mood thus improve your perspective. So go for a jog, wrestle with your kid, go rollerblading. Anything that requires exertion, and if it’s fun well…all the better.
Think happy thoughts: No, this may not help you fly. That is if you don’t have your own Tinkerbell on call, however positive thoughts and reinforcement can negate the overbearing feeling of uncertainty.
The irate frustration is ebbing away. You are stronger, you have always been stronger. Your mind is clearing. What was once the sense of drums pounding in your ears is blissful silence. Your shallow breaths have become deep and filling. You can see crystal clear. You can see hope, you can see serenity, you can see logic, you can find a way. You have found your tranquil utopia filled with peace and promise.