I have a confession to make: I’m really good at being angry.
I’m not proud of it, and what sucks is that anger can hit you out of nowhere. You end up taking your frustrations out on the wrong people and as you simultaneously know you’re letting it get the best of you, you allow it to get the best of you.
It could be the guy who’s texting at a red light that’s actually been green for seven seconds, or my coworker who keeps pawning her work off on me. Hell, it could even be my mother who somehow manages to piss me off just by asking how my day went. Small things, big things, rational or completely illogical things – they can all tick me off.
I learned over time that even though anger is an easy trap to fall into, I shouldn’t let it become a regular occurrence. What I mean by this is that it’s time to start chilling the f*ck out. Of course, I’m human and in no way a zen monk so some things are going to still upset me but I’ve decided to be more selective about what I let ruffle my feathers.
Here are some tips and tricks that help me filter out the noise and relax.
Write it out
Once you write something like, “my sister borrowed my new top and wore it without asking me,” you’re probably going to feel pretty ridiculous and your anger will subside. Now once you’ve written down why you’re upset, make another list. This time, I want you to write down all the possible solutions to your problem that you can think of. Being proactive and preventative will help you avoid a whole lot of stress in the future.
Work it out
Do something you actually like. For instance, don’t force yourself to hit the treadmill for an hour if the idea of running makes you want to hurl. Maybe boxing is better for when you’re on the verge of well … really punching someone. Getting your heart pumping and your body moving will help release all that tension in a safe, legal way!
Take a walk
Changing your surroundings really helps puts things into perspective. Sometimes, when you’re stuck staring at a screen for eight hours, little issues become huge in your mind simply out of boredom. Instead, throw on your headphones on, jam out to some new Frank Ocean, and take a stroll around the block to calm down.
Clear your mind
Sometimes, I get so rattled I play white noise to drown out my own thoughts, insecurities, and rage. It’s kind of like a clear slate for my brain. Another simple way to zen out is to hit the mat and do some yoga. That Shavasana pose at the end is like a mini-meditation sesh and I always feel so much better afterwards.
When all else fails, laugh
Humour may sound like an unhealthy coping mechanism but it’s really more about changing your point of view. How I see it, if you can joke and laugh about something, it’s really not important enough for you to hold a grudge about.