We all feel angry from time to time. For some people, anger is chronic. For others, it’s situational. I have found that writing provides therapy, release, detachment, a coping mechanism and has helped my manage anger issues. Too frustrated to put yourself into the discipline of writing? I understand. I felt that way at first, too. But after I discovered how therapeutic writing is for coping with anger, it became easier to use writing as an anger management technique.
Some of us live with angry people who would zap our entire energy reserve if we let them. Their anger is corrosive and debilitating. And not just to them, but also to those around them. In fact, I’ll hazard a declaration that angry people who make no effort to control their rage, hurt loved ones far more than they hurt themselves. While the angry person vents the poison in his system, the loved ones, especially the spouse, attempts to diffuse and assuage the anger to protect her family from psychological harm. The innocent victims ‘suck up’ the anger and absorb it. They don’t get a chance to vent their anger because the ‘angry one’ is too busy airing his venom. When the dam breaks on their anger, there is so much pent up that it seems ungovernable. And the ‘non angry’ people end up feeling sick and guilty because anger is not their normal way of functioning.
So how does writing out your anger help? Several ways. Getting anger out of the body is cleansing. Repressed rage is destructive. Next, writing is a constructive rather than destructive force. Even if the words are angry, they don’t wound and scar like angry spoken words and actions. Words can be kept safe and private in a journal. Words can be saved, pondered and discarded if after some time, the writer feels as though his words were too harsh. For those who publish their writing, however, it’s advisable to ponder words written in anger before publishing.
Writing is a shared experience; it can build bridges and bonds. When I am angry, I write to others who may be experiencing what I’m feeling. Sometimes I write to give advice and sometimes I just write to access the feelings and neutralize them. I feel better after some emotional purging. I feel better knowing that my shared experience may encourage others to find healthy, creative ways to express their anger. I don’t write out my anger to dump on others, but to find solace for myself and others. ‘Sorrow shared is sorrow halved’. For more on writing, anger and emotional health, visit me at the blogs listed.