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How Can One Overcome Anger?

Hi Precious Betty,
I've read your first two books and am now beginning The Ripple Effect. Your story has deeply touched me. I resonate with your message whole heartedly. Do you have any insights or truth that might help someone dealing with anger?

“In this world of billions of people, many lead lives of loneliness and desperation. Because of pain produced by others, some protect themselves behind walls of anger or fear, lashing out at or retreating from others. God has shown me that the precious cure for their pain lies within each soul. The cure…is honest and pure love. God's love. Unconditional love. It resides within each of us naturally at our beginning.”—The Ripple Effect, page xvi

Anger is just an emotion and is a natural and instinctive state of mind derived from circumstances or relationships with others. It is distinguished from reasoning and knowledge because it is intuitive, in that, it is sent up from the subconscious mind. Our reaction to anger is based upon a whole array of factors—that are rooted in our past. Until the root of the anger is discovered, recognized and acknowledged, healing will not begin and anger will continue to surface when similar circumstances are triggered. One might look for the root of their anger by asking themselves: "When did this start?" "Why did this make me angry?" "How is this similar to something in my past?" "Were there environmental factors?" "Was I harmed or did I perceive misdeeds done toward me in some way?" "Was something left 'undone' leaving a lack of closure at an early age?"

Usually when one is challenged by anger the root is in their early childhood. Sometimes it can begin even in the womb where the fetus is aware of outside conflict and negative emotions. And as a child, we feel frustrated that we cannot stop the situation causing the fear and harm. We are angry at those causing us to fear and angry at ourselves for not being able to stop the harm we perceive—both must be forgiven. We must forgive those who we felt harmed us and forgive ourselves for not being able to change the situation in order to be able to move forward from the past and heal.

Fear is always a part of the root of anger. Fear leads to guilt and guilt leads to shame. All lead to frustration and frustration leads to anger. Frustration is the inability to handle a particular situation and can produce intense emotion buried for years but will eventually surface since feelings buried alive never die. Thus a cycle is started of intense emotion that builds until someone explodes, releasing the pent-up energy of frustration that has accumulated. We often attribute anger to having a "temper," when in reality, anger is pent-up emotions that build until they release, a pattern that often starts in early childhood.

Our reaction is what matters! We cannot help the feelings and thoughts that "pop" into our being when something "bad" happens to us—but we can help our reaction. We can be responsible for the choices we make and choose to come from a higher place of calm that is peaceful and loving.

We do this by not responding to the negative things that occur to us at first, rather, we let them come and go, pausing until calm starts to replace negativity and we are able to choose our actions rather than be driven by pent-up energy that wants to clobber instead of be loving. I remember times when I went through many reactions in my mind before I felt that calm begin to come. Thankfully I did not respond to those negative thoughts but waited until I had the ability to respond in a way that I could choose from a higher place of being, as opposed to coming from the negative thoughts generated at first.

And when anger does surface? The energy must be released in some way. What I like to do is give that negative energy a job, a useful thing to do, like house cleaning or work in the yard, which are physical ways to release pent-up energy while accomplishing something I can feel good about. And while working at whatever chore I have chosen, I start a mental gratitude list that helps what is in my head connect with my heart and spirit and with God. Gratitude is a powerful godly energy that can counteract many forms of negativity. There is magic in gratitude and as we seek our Heavenly Father's guidance, he will guide us to his will for us which is always to bless us in some way. As always, prayer is key and the following is a prayer from my Daily Devotional that can help one who is dealing with anger:

“Father, when the difficulties of life make me afraid or angry, remind me that the sure and divine remedy to pain is love. Help me to find love when I need it and to magnify love by sharing it freely with others. For I know that within all your children is the healing balm of love in pure expression for one another.”

—Embraced By The Light Prayers & Devotions for Daily Living, September 14

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