How Unexpressed Anger Impacts Your Mental Health

unexpressed anger impacts your mental health

We can wonder: What is it about that person’s inner life that is making them angry? When you get beyond the shouts and gesticulations, you find that angry people are frequently deeply frustrated over something that seems not so important in retrospect; having someone cut you off in traffic, or a person seeming rude and inconsiderate.

Perhaps, ironically, their own fear over the loss of something drove their emotions to detonate, causing them to lose the thing they wanted after all. Uncovering what is really making you or another person angry is key to figuring out how to defuse that anger.

When we understand the evolution of anger and the reasons this natural force remains a determinant of human behavior, we can learn to expose it and use it. Not only that, but like the martial arts master who uses the energy of the opponent to power his own moves, each of us has the ability to detect, harness, and train the force of anger in ourselves and others.

When we do this, we can apply it in ways that enhance our lives, achieve our goals, and, ultimately, influence other people’s behavior for the better as well.

Anger is just an emotion. It’s what you do with it that matters.  

How Unexpressed Anger Impacts Your Mental Health

The I-M Approach
Source: Joseph Shrand, MD

References 
Outsmarting Anger: 7 Strategies for Defusing our Most Dangerous Emotion.  Joseph Shrand, MD  Leigh Devine, MS 2021 Second Printing, Books Fluent paperback edition

Written By: Dr. Joseph Shrand
Drug Story Theater 
Podcast
Originally Appeared On Psychology Today
Republished With Permission 
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How Unexpressed Anger Impacts Your Mental Health
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How Unexpressed Anger Impacts Your Mental Health
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Joseph Shrand

Dr. Joseph Shrand is Chief Medical Officer of Riverside Community Care headquartered in Dedham MA. He is a Lecturer of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and triple board certified in adult psychiatry, child and adolescent psychiatry, and a diplomate of the American Board of Addiction Medicine. Dr. Shrand has developed a strength-based model called The I-M Approach that suggests a fundamental paradigm shift, moving away from pathology to viewing a patient at a current maximum potential. Dr. Shrand is the founder of Drug Story Theater, Inc., a non-profit organization that takes teenagers in the early stages of recovery from drugs and alcohol and teaches them improvisational theater techniques. The teenagers then create their own shows which they perform in middle and high schools, so the treatment of one becomes the prevention of many. Dr Shrand has a weekly radio show on WATD 95.9 FM, The Dr. Joe Show: Exploring who we are and why we do what we do. Invited experts discuss a range of topics in addiction, mental health, and the state of the world! The Dr. Joe Show is now available as a podcast. Dr. Shrand is the author of Manage Your Stress: Overcoming Stress in the Modern World, Outsmarting Anger: Seven Strategies to Defuse our most Dangerous Emotion, the winner of the 2013 Books for a Better Life Awards, 2013 Psychology self-help category, The Fear Reflex: Five Ways to Overcome it and Trust your Imperfect Self, and Do You Really Get me? Finding Value in Yourself through Empathy and connection published by Hazelden Press. Among colleagues and staff, he is affectionately called “Doctor Joe,” as he was “Joe” in the original children’s cast of the PBS series ZOOM.View Author posts