Anger is an unpopular emotion, and frankly it gets quite a bad press. The caricature of an angry person is red faced, steam coming out of the ears, an unattractive figure that people feel comfortable judging and looking down on.
Anger is actually a very normal and important emotion. Anger is what we feel when we are wronged and when our boundaries are ignored or trampled over. It's the natural emotion we feel when we see injustice.
Anger energises. It mobilises us to defend the vulnerable, both socially, and within ourselves. Along with the compassion it evokes, anger fuels charitable work and many caring professions. It is an energy calling for better.
And yet, we so often shy away, ignore or squash down our own anger, just as we condemn the anger of others. It takes quite some energy to suppress and repress this powerful force, and it’s pretty futile. Anger will out, or it will turn inwards and wreak havoc on our psyche and our lives.
Having healthy outlets for your anger and frustration is essential. Being able to acknowledge how you feel, knowing you have ways of allowing it to safely flow through you and out, is important. Be it running, boxing, singing, screaming, journalling, dancing, writing poetry...it doesn't matter as long as it does it for you.
If you can release it for yourself you are at choice about whether, how and when to express your anger to others. It is so much more powerful to tell someone how you feel and hold them to account for their actions than to explode and give the power to others to shame you.
So, what angers you? And how are you going to honour and make space for that feeling?