Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Letting Go of Anger

For the past two weeks, I've come in contact with so many angry clients.  I actually had a woman bang my table (my glass table) repeatedly when I told her that the man she was in love with did not reciprocate her feelings.  Another client told me I was wrong when I suggested to him that fighting over money was not a good way to honor his parents on the other side.  I went blueberry picking this morning with my daughter and walked to our designated spot behind a woman and her daughter.  The woman kept reaching out to pick and eat blueberries as we walked.  One of the workers said, "Ma'am would you mind not picking those?  They're still maturing."  I had to spend the next twenty minutes listening to the woman complain bitterly to her daughter about the nerve of that employee.  Really?  What about the nerve of you to pick food you won't pay for? I felt like asking.  She seemed to represent a metaphor to me for many of the clients I come in contact with -- people who are angry at situations and circumstances they can't and shouldn't control.

If someone doesn't reciprocate your romantic feelings, don't get mad, get moving.  Why waste your energy on that?  When I was in the dating world, if a man I was interested in wasn't interested in me, my first emotion was never anger.  Disappointment, maybe, but then I'd shrug it off and move on.

If your family member is withholding money from you that you feel owed from a will, remember this: IT'S NOT YOUR MONEY.  It's money your parents earned and gifted to you and your siblings.  It's a gift.  It's nothing you worked for or earned.  It's a gift.  Don't spend time, karma or anger over the trivialities of money.  If your sibling steals or takes most of the money from an estate, fine.  It's done.  Get over it.  You can either 1) sue and spend all your money in litigation while earning bad karma, spewing negativity all around you and inviting lots of anger and hate into your life or you can 2) let it go.  It's their karma.  Let them deal with it.  Take what's gifted to you, be thankful for that, and MOVE ON.

If you're angry because a spouse left you/cheated on/hid  money from you, you need to recognize that you're doing no one any good by stewing in anger.  Does it suck that this happened to you? YES.  Is anything good or positive going to come out of all this anger?  NO.

Anger settles in our heart and stomach and causes all sorts of problems with heart, stomach, liver, colon and gall bladder issues.  It will manifest itself physically in nasty ways.  Emotionally, anger is like a cold virus.  It's easy to catch.  Think about that.  When you're angry, it makes the people around you angry.  Your kids, your friends, your co-workers.  Soon no one will want to be around you.

I have a client who's often angry.  His first response to most everything is to be pissed off.  I think he feels like he won't be a victim if he responds to everything with anger.  It's his blanket, his comforting way to protect himself. But he has very few friends.  His wife is leaving him and his kids are scared of him.  When I try to point this out to him, he gets angry (what a shock) and starts to angrily defend his right to be angry.

Ugh, it's exhausting.  I can't stand angry people.

Anger has a place in our life.  We need to experience anger because it does protect us and it can be a great motivating source.  St. Augustine said, "Hope has two beautiful daughters: their names are anger and courage. Anger that things are the way they are.  Courage to make them the way they ought to be." But here's the key: we need to learn to move quickly from anger to courage.  Holding on to anger serves no useful or healthy purpose.

Meditate today on letting go of anger.  See it like a black crow just flying out of your heart.  Just let it go.  It's really the only way.  Let it go.  And if you can't, pray for the courage to be strong enough to rise above the need to marinate in anger.  Staying in an angry state is the mark of a new soul.  You want to grow, to move beyond that.  The best way to do that is through surrender and acceptance.

Some practical suggestions for getting rid of anger in your life:

1) Start seeing a therapist so you can constructively get your anger out in a healthy situation
2) Exercise every day
3) Write in a journal to get your feelings out of your body
4) Practice forgiveness.  Send the person you're angry with pink light for love and forgiveness
5) Pray for peace, acceptance and the ability to let this go
6) Do something every day for someone else.  Get the focus off yourself.  I've always said the key to happiness is not focusing on you -- your needs, your wants, your anger -- but on service.  That is, after all, why we're here.


  1. Agree! Well said.

  2. PS :)

    I once read "Those that anger you, control you" I realized how true that was and it has has helped me a lot over the years. The last thing I want is to be controlled by my students, the customer service lady, etc. etc


  3. Thank you. I just put all my anger & hatred in a ball & threw it out of my heart and then the window. Inspirational were these words :)

  4. Anger creates a poisonous environment. I learned this lesson the week of 6/6-6/10 when I foolishly listened to some gossip (NOT FACTS!)about a co-worker. Normally I keep my cool and keep out of these situations, but I was so shocked and then became so ANGRY that I ended up firing off an e-mail to my boss about my co-worker. Hate draws a veil over our eyes and makes us think we are justified until we realize how dumb we really are. The next day, I realized I had made a HUGE mistake and admitted to my boss that I listened to the gossip and then I had to apologize to my co-worker. My co-worker was so hurt by what I had done and I felt and still feel like the biggest fool on Earth. Luckily, he forgave me, but he will never forget this and I may never have this person's trust again, which hurts me. I am actually grateful for the pain that has come from this because I feel I need to learn this lesson and never do this to someone again. The one thing that gives me hope in this situation is that I came forward and just admitted I was WRONG, but the initial gossip spreaders think nothing of what happened.