Why do we get Angry?

Over nothing? No.

Mostly, our anger is caused by – our thoughts, cognitive distortions, things not being in our control, excessive stress, unrealistic expectations and disappointments – both professionally and personally.

Anger can appear irrational but learning to look below the surface can reveal the cause. Identifying the cause is first step towards dealing with anger. Broadly the causes of anger can be categorized in two ways, (a) an irrational perception of reality (cognitive distortion) – where things must be done your way and (b) a low frustration point.

When angry a person experiences high physiological arousal. The pulse quickens, respiration increases, pupils of eyes constrict and adrenal glands pump out hormones. The negative effects of Anger however have more to do with the duration than frequency and intensity. Bearing resentment for a long time can cause more harm than a short burst of anger. Consistent long periods of anger greatly increase susceptibility to a host of diseases like ulcers, heart diseases and anxiety disorders.

Bottom line: We can all get frustrated and angry at times. The point is not to let it get the

Anger and your Heart

A study of 1300 men with average age 62 revealed that those with excessive anger are 3 times more likely to develop heart disease than the rest. Another research done at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine tracked 1,055 medical students for 36 years. The hotheads were found to be 6 times more likely to suffer heart attacks by age 55 than the cooler heads and 3 times more likely to develop any form of heart or blood vessel disease.

One study, published in 1995, found that, during two hours after an angry outburst, a individual’s risk of having a heart attack was more than twice that of someone who had not lost their cool. Out of 1,623 people in that study, 501 were women.

The above studies clearly demonstrate a correlation between excessive ire and susceptibility to heart disease.

What can you do to prevent this??

Well the good news is that there’s plenty you can do. Here is something to start with

1. Control your emotions.
2. Recognize things that irritate and anger you.
3. Practice stress management and anger management techniques.
4. Exercise. Eat well.

The best solution is to develop a longer fuse and not get angry in the first place. If that is not possible, recognize your anger and the situations that make you angry. Try to resolve them in a positive way. If things are not in your control, accept them and learn to take it in your stride.