I consider myself calm and collected, but there was a time when I would always get mad, even over little things; and I began to question why… why am I always mad?
If you’ve ever asked yourself the same question, or if family and friends pick up on your pissy aura, know that it is NOT normal.
It’s not your personality type, you’re not going through a “phase” or have “issues”, you are not perma-pms’ing, you are not naturally a “bitch”, and it is definitely not who you are!
By feeling mad all the time, we become accustom to this attitude and/or behavior, that doesn’t only affect ourselves, but family and friends around us. If people around you, “accept” that you are this way, they (along with yourself), have become conditioned in to thinking that’s how you are – and it’s not.
The root of problem is within YOU.
As much as you want to, the blame is not on someone or something, and no, you are not to be blamed for feeling that way (that’s guilt).
By now, you may be rolling your eyes, but think about it…
YOU are in control of YOUR feelings, YOUR choices, YOUR decisions, so if you are feeling mad, you are CHOOSING to feel mad.
People have too many expectations of themselves (for themselves), and because of that, they create expectations of others.
You cannot let what others think, say or do affect you, and you definitely cannot let situations get in the way of your happiness; people will go on about their lives, and you can’t look to them as an external reason (or excuse) for your own insecurities and expectations.
By insinuating or imposing any sort of expectation, you are setting yourself up for unnecessary stress, failure and disappointment.
No matter how “perfect” you plan or coordinate, something (or someone) will ultimately cause a shift of change. You can’t control others and you definitely cannot control situations; so let things be as they are – without any sort of personal attachment.
The moment you become attached to a situation and negatively become affected by the outcome, you are living through ego (I’ll get more into this in another post).
In Kundalini Yoga, the practice is done with the eyes closed, to avoid comparing or judging yourself, or others;
this same principle should be applied to life… not that we should walk around with our eyes closed but just be mindful by not judging or comparing ourselves to others.
My point is, blaming someone (or something), is a way at looking for external reasons to be mad, and that’s why the root of the problem is within you.
So how do I find the root of my problem?
Whether you like it or not, it’s through self-reflection.
(now you must be rolling your eyes!)
By looking at yourself, you become aware of your thoughts, the way you think, the way you react. You need to ask yourself questions like:
why do I feel mad?;
who or what makes me mad?;
why does it make me mad?;
is it worth being mad about?
As you go down a rabbit-hole of questions and self-actualization, you may go as far back to your childhood, or something that happened a month, or last year, or maybe something that you are anticipating for the future.
You could be mad about one thing, but by questioning yourself, you may come to realize the source of your anger is rooted from something entirely different; being mad could also be layers to other negative emotional feelings, which you may (or may not) even realize you are covering up.
You want to find the trigger to your anger.
You want to be able to recognize the source of your anger, and chances are, you will realize they are from thinking about the past, or worrying about the future.
And for what?
The past already happened.
No point in thinking about stuff that’s already happened;
and the same for the future – you are probably creating too many expectations, or getting caught up in a bunch of who, what, where, when, why’s.
Imagine it like a pendulum swinging back and forth, between past and future.
How often are you ever still… in the middle… in the present?
It’s exhausting for one thing. Do you ever feel tired from thinking?
It’s that sense of feeling drained, because you have too much clutter in your mind, and your mind is constantly thinking, constantly asking questions, constantly trying to find answers, constantly wanting to know things.
We think think think too much!
Through self-reflection, I began to understand, that I am not my mind.
I’ll repeat that… I am not my mind.
Our minds are egoic, which will seek any sort of conflict, whether with ourselves, or others; which is why, when you are mad, it’s easy to blame someone else for feeling that way.
We identify ourselves as being “I”, “me”, “[your name]”, “wife”, “husband”, “mom”, “dad”, “friend”, etc.
Disconnect yourself from your identity, from life’s problems, stresses, illnesses – who are you?
When you disconnect from the person you think you are, you are left with your Self.
Your Self is your inner consciousness, it’s your Being.
Your Self is the true entity within that shell (your body).
Your Self is all loving and present – it doesn’t live in the past and it doesn’t look to the future.
If you are living in fear, or have pent up anger, you are in a constant state of resistance, and you need to let it go! Perhaps you were hurt, and rather than self-loath, you try to show your strength through anger. Feeling mad is the egos way of making you recognize some sort of self-importance, wanting attention, or some sort of reaction from those around you.
By eliminating those negative feelings, you open up the opportunity to feelings of love and acceptance.
Know that what you are feeling are emotional thought patterns (or habits) that you can change.
Feeling angry becomes a habit … as a matter of fact, any sort of reaction you have is a habit.
Think of how you’ve interacted and engaged all your life; you and everyone around you are conditioned to your personality, the way you speak, your mannerisms… it’s all been adapted into you from when you came into this life – how you were raised, habits or personality traits that you picked up on or mimic from those around you, or public figures you follow.
Quickly think about the past few times you’ve been angry – your reaction is probably the same.
With me, I get quiet at first.
I’ve never liked confrontation, and felt being quiet disconnected me from the problem, BUT it’s a dangerous path to take, as I’m in my own head… my own thoughts.
Naturally, we let our thoughts snowball, and begin to fester anger, resentment, sadness, fear… all things that keep us from our present moment, which is simply being.
And simply being is your all natural loving Self.
When you find your mind racing with thoughts, remember what you are doing at that present moment, and leave it at that. You may even laugh at the thought about your mind creating something to get mad over!
One time, I was vacuuming, and found myself thinking about a situation with my hubby 8 years ago !!!
That’s how egoic our minds are!
It’s this weird inner dialog that brings up irrelevant thoughts.
First of all, I wasted half a day being pissed off with him (of course he has no idea why), and not only did I waste half a day giving him the cold shoulder, but I chose to waste my energy feeling angry and being pissy.
It’s not a great feeling to be in.
Do you actually enjoy feeling mad? Of course you don’t, so why bother?!
If I’m washing the dishes, and my thoughts start building up, I stop my thoughts immediately.
I focus on washing the dishes – the feeling of the water, the smell of the soap, the sound of the dishes.
It’s a form of active meditation that keeps me in my present moment, and ultimately correcting my thought pattern.
Your ego will push you, test you, give you reasons to get mad over something so minuscule.
When you find thoughts racing with questions (cuz our minds love to create puzzles to solve!) and you are about to get upset over something, just stop and think “it doesn’t matter”.
You will literally stump yourself!
Your brain will go into derp mode for a minute, because it’s expecting you to rage out.
Think Before Reacting
Remember you want to break the habit of reacting.
When you feel yourself getting annoyed or angry, think if its worth getting upset over?
Put your ego aside and think if being angry is valid; does it make sense; have you considered others involved?
At the end of the day, whatever the situation is, be accountable for your choices, and know that being mad is only temporary.
I really like breathing exercises, as focusing on the breath helps keep you in a present moment.
Every time we inhale, we intake nutrient-rich oxygen; and every time we exhale, we exhale carbon dioxide; deep breathing is the most natural process to help purify and cleanse the body, and yet the act itself is so simple!
Next time you find yourself in a heated thought, stop, close your eyes, and do this 60 second breathing technique, mentioned in How to Meditate…
Breathe in for 5 seconds
Hold your breath for 5 seconds
Release for 5 seconds
Hold for 5 seconds
Continue this pattern 3 times, for a total of 60-seconds.
Smile (grin) on your inhale as you stay connected to your present moment; exhale the negative energy that no longer serves you or your happiness.
Let it Go
Write a letter about your situation.
Be raw in how you feel by being brutally honest of your feelings, swear, don’t make sense, free-flow your emotions as they come to you.
When you’re done, take a moment to forgive.
Forgive the person, forgive the situation, forgive the moment, forgive yourself.
Accept all that is, take a deep breath, and as you let it all go, set the paper on fire to release the negative feelings and the situation from your life.
Forgiveness is for giving. So give yourself this gift from time to time.
– “Forgive” by Trevor Hall
Forgiving is accepting that while you cannot control someone’s actions, or situations, you can control your own.
Learn to let go of your anger, because at the end of YOUR day, you deserve peace.
How do you deal with anger? Let me know in the comments below.
Photo credit: Minjae Lee - Gaze II