Iceberg

Feeling Angry? It’s just tip of the iceberg

Anger doesn’t solve anything, it builds nothing

but destroy everything.

It’s not the first time I worked with people who have problems to control their emotions. My boss is a very successful business woman and gained a lot of well-known government awards / honors, but still have lots of anger issues.

When she communicate with outsiders, her image is kind, supportive and smart, but we all in office see her different face.   She has short temper, explode emotions easily, sweat on small stuffs or react negatively on majority of things.  It’s so exhausting to deal with anyone who always open mouth to complain, judge or picking errors.  Staffs keep certain distance from her in avoiding unnecessary troubles as we never know how and when her unpredictable volcano will explode again.

This make me rethink about what I’ve learned from psychology class about anger, people think someone feel angry because she/he is angry, but the truth is sometimes angry is just a defense mechanism – there are more hidden agendas behind anger mask :

Self-confidence

When people feel insecure and lack of competence of certain tasks / knowledge, they may chose the easier way throwing temper around, judging others in humiliated or insult ways, in hiding their own incompetence.  I think this is the most stupidest way to show our ability, “The higher we are placed, the more humbly we should walk”. Whenever my boss make mistakes, her first reaction is put blame on others with anger.

Self-image / Self-esteem

We fear people judge, despise or look down upon us.  I’ts understandable.  But if our self-image and self-esteem are tied up closely to what others think about us most of the time, then there’s a problem.  The lower status of our self-image, the more tempted we hurt and degrade others to regain self-esteem back.

But if we have healthy self-esteem, we respect more the difference between individuals and don’t say or do things that we don’t like others say or treat us.  Individual have healthy self-image don’t need to make others feel miserable to make them feel better.

My boss lose temper easily just because someone forgot her names, titles or invitation in short notice.  In surface, it looks like it’s the problem of the parties, but deep down we all understand how she feel about her self-esteem.

Shame

I encountered with many so-called successful / powerful / smart people.  What I found their common traits are afraid to be seen as stupid or incapable.  Since these people used to be praised / flattered in public thus it’s difficult for them to realize or admit there are times they mess things up, or there are tasks they can’t mange, knowledge they don’t get.

When people feel shame, the fastest reaction is giving up by losing temper.  This “throw the towel” attitude is telling others that we don’t want to deal with the problems. The more angry we behave, more people scare to bring things up again. It’s the selfish way to handle problems.

Anxiety / Fear / Hurt

Many people don’t know how to talk about their problems / concerns, but sharing these anxiety, fear and hurt feelings in anger.

When fear of failure, it’s time to show anger, e.g, when a sales manager lose a deal, it’s difficult for him / her to deal with the failure, thus he / she put the blame on his/her sales team;

or when our self-esteem is hurt, e.g. a husband screamed at his wife the first minute he stepped into home because he had a bad day in office, the wife then hit her daughter because she feel disrespected by her husband;

or when we feel anxious, we are unable to calm down and think logically, instead we yell, blame and verbally abuse others to smooth our frustration, we see parents scold or hit their children brutally in public after they disappeared in shopping malls.

Final thoughts

I don’t mean never feel angry.  But the more mature I am, the more I realize it’s impossible to control others or environment but only my reactions to the situation.  I tend to swallow all emotions inside – it’s definitely not a good emotional management solution, but at least I don’t feel comfortable to throw all my rubbish to others, or expect other people babysit my emotions.

We respect people not because they are rich, successful but their behaviors, manners, how they treat others and react when things don’t go well.  In my opinion, I would say this is the critical moment to score someone, whether he/she is capable and the good leader that earn respect from others.

I believe there are times we have rights to get angry, but if we found such destructive emotions occupied most of our time, then it’s time to change our own behaviors and perspectives.  It’s always easy to focus on a small dark dot on a white paper, if we chose to.  But we also can chose to see the whole white space on paper.

How about you? how do you deal with your emotions? Have you ever deal with people who have anger issues? Do you act like me to absorb all internally or explode easily?

Photo credit : Pixabay

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