Healthy and Unhealthy Anger (This link is dead as of 10 Dec 14)
Showing the difference between healthy and unhealthy anger.
Introduction, anger is a natural and necessary emotion. Anger is anger, it is in itself neither right nor wrong, healthy nor unhealthy. It is the expression of anger that makes it healthy or unhealthy. When it is expressed appropriately within the context of a situation it is a necessary emotion. Feeling anger is different from expressing anger, and it is the inappropriate expression of anger that makes it unhealthy.
Not feeling any anger in a situation is just as unhealthy as expressing anger in a cageful, vengeful manner. e.g.: when we see a child being beaten cruelly, it is natural to feel anger, however this does NOT justify the inappropriate expression by yelling, screaming or beating the abuser. This is healthy anger.
Healthy anger is appropriate to the situation that evokes it. Healthy expression of anger involves facing what makes you angry and an effort to set boundaries for yourself by determining what you will do in response to what makes you angry.
e.g.: When you do ________, I feel ______ , and to protect myself I will _________.
Healthy anger is not used to punish, is not violent, and is not used to intimidate, control or manipulate the other person. It is expressed, discussed and moved through.
Healthy anger is not stuffed down and ignored. Stuffed anger creates resentment and a myriad of physical, mental and emotional problems. Healthy anger is not expressed in passive-aggressive and manipulative ways.
Unhealthy Anger is a component of abusive relationships. This kind of anger or rage is experienced with great intensity and expressed likewise by screaming and yelling, physical expressions of anger, violence or threats of violence, sulking, manipulation, emotional blackmail, silent smoldering, and anger used to punish.
Rage is a shame-based expression of anger.
Rage is by definition abuse. They react to strong emotions with rage, i.e. feelings of fear, sadness, shame, inadequacy, guilt or loss convert to rage.
They were typically shamed or punished by their caretakers for expressing emotion when they were young; i.e.: "Be a man and don't cry", "Nice girls don't get angry" or "I'll give you something to cry about".
Raging gives the angry person a feeling of power - offsetting their shame and feelings of inadequacy.
Unexpressed anger related to childhood abuses often results in addictive problems later in life. To stuff down the feelings of shame, anger, isolation, fear, sadness and loss the abuse creates.
By pushing feelings down it is impossible to work through feelings and move past them, keeping the person trapped in a downward spiral.
21 November 2018
12 February 2015
A post by Ray Comfort
Facebook entry 12 February 15
"Ray in your own opinion, why are people so angry?" Matty Branagh
The above question was asked in reference to the thousands of abusive comments on this and other Christian sites (most of which don't get by our moderators).
The Internet, Hollywood, TV, magazines, etc., have flooded this world with sexual perversion, violence, blasphemy, fornication, homosexuality, adultery, and a godless worldview. As each nation gives itself to what the Bible calls "gross" darkness, the more it hates the light. Or to put it another way, the greater the criminal, the more he despises the rule of law.
As Christians, we stand for the rule of Law among those whom the Bible says are desperately wicked criminals, of which we were once a part. We are the ultimate "wet blanket" for sin loving sinners. Every time we speak the truth, it is like light exposing darkness. We remind them the God requires an account, and such produces what we often call "conviction" (an unpleasant sense of guilt).
Take for example a man who argues with his wife and suddenly realizes that she is right. He is in the wrong. He has two avenues of action. He can either humble himself and apologize, or he can keep his pride by becoming angry, slamming the door and leaving.
So it is when proud sinners begin to see that we are speaking the truth, they have two avenues. They can either humble themselves before the God they have offended, or they can become angry and abuse those who represent Him.
What are we to do about our anger? What are the rules about anger for the Christian?
A1 What is anger?
B1 A response of displeasure
C1 Many understand anger to be a response to a threat.
C2 But in reality seems to be more a response to one's standard of life--their own personal rules, morality, and beliefs.
C3 May be calculated as a manipulation.
C4 May be suppressed, which can lead to other problems.
B2 Physical effects
C1 Usually documented are physical effects as increased heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing.
C2 The face shows a distinctive red color, narrowed eye brows, piecing stare,, clenched teeth, and straight lips (if not curled).
C3 Sometimes the only expression may be in the piercing eyes.
C4 There are postures and other body language signs as clenched fists, fighting stance, quick movements, etc.
C5 Sometimes there is physical aggression as fighting, verbal outburst, or destructive behavior as vandalism or destruction of property.
B3 Emotional effects
C1 An outpouring of epinephrine and norepinephrine.
C2 Depression, remorse, guilt, shame, and alienation
C1 Anger may be controlled and calculating.
C2 Anger may be a rage of self destructive behavior.
C3 Judgment and insight are usually suppressed.
C4 Anger may come from misconceptions, misunderstanding, and a response to past triggers.
B5 Types (1)
D1 Dispassion (showing little or no response as shrug, shutting the eyes as if asleep, or doodling, etc.)
D2 Evasiveness (walking away, turning the back, ignoring, etc.)
D3 Defeatism (setting up others for failure, passive aggression, etc.)
D4 Psychological manipulation
D5 Secretive behavior
D6 Self blame
D4 Hurtfulness (hurting others feelings)
D5 Manic behavior
D8 Unjust blaming
A2 What are the rules?
B1 Don't have anger leading to murder. (Exodus 21:14,
B2 Don't make God angry with you.
C1 Disbelief (Zechariah 7:12, Nehemiah 9:29-30, Mark 16:14)
C2 Disobedience (Deuteronomy 4:21, Psalms 7:11)
C3 Making a vow to God and not keeping it (I'm sorry I just made a mistake.) (Ecclesiastes 5:6)
C4 Stopping or "deprograming" children from believing in God, praying, or Bible reading/studying. (Mark 10:14)
C5 Being a hypocrite. (Luke 13:15)
B3 Don't make your spouse jealous (Proverbs 6:34)
B4 Don't give the wicked what they want. (Proverbs 11:23). They wicked want more evil.
B5 Don't make friends with people who have hot, violent tempers. (Don't make friends with people who have hot, violent tempers. You might learn their habits and not be able to change. (Proverbs 22:24-25, GNB92)
B6 When we are angry, we lose insight and judgment. We then make stupid decisions and do stupid things that we are later sorry for. (Proverbs 14:17)
B7 When we are angry, we make the situation worse. It will only escalate. (Proverbs 29:22).
B8 Anger leads to arguments. (Psalm 37:8, Proverbs 15:18, Proverbs 29:22)
A3 How to handle anger
B1 A gift to the angry person. Give this in private otherwise it may make the angry person angrier as if you are trying to show them up. Consider the gift from Abigail to David. 1 Samuel 2:2-28
B2 Keep calm with an angry person especially if they are a government official (police, etc.) or your boss. (Ecclesiastes 10:4)
B3 Do not go to bed angry. (Ephesians 4:26)
B4 Do not make your children angry. (Ephesians 6:4)
B5 Listen for a long time and be slow to get angry (take time to really understand someone and what they are saying before becoming angry). (Proverbs 29:8, James 1:19)
B6 Pray. (1 Timothy 2:8)
B7 Speak to the angry person in a calm, quiet way. (Proverbs 15:1)
Take some time to think deeply what you are doing, as in do not plot revenge (Romans 12:19). It is better to suffer than take revenge. (Proverbs 4:4)
B8 Forgive. (Matthew 6:14) Forgiveness is not that the offender gets away with something but rather it is placed in God's hands who will deal with it correctly. Hopefully the offender will repent and ask God (and you) for forgiveness.
B9 Love as in being nice to the angry person. You might not succeed in helping them or even calming them down, but you have gone the second mile. (Proverbs 10:12, Proverbs 27:9, James 4:1)
B10 Leave the area. (Proverbs 14:7)
B11 We need to express our anger, but it must be done with self-control and when the rush of adrenalin is gone. Sit down with someone and talk about it. We need to listen to the difficulties of others.
B12 Not take it personally. (Proverbs 19:11)
B13 Even worldly philosophy points out. (2)
A4 What can we be angry at?
B1 The things that make God angry.
C1 Returning evil for good. (Romans 2:4)
C2 Thinking that our anger is righteous. (James 1:19-20)
C3 Revenge. We are to treat our enemy nicely. (Romans 12:19-21)
C4 Bearing grudges instead of forgiving. (Leviticus 19:18)
C5 Not forgiving those who ask for forgiveness. (Matthew 18:32-34)
C6 Worshipping idols (basically an idol is anything we look to for ultimate authority). (Exodus 32:19)
C7 Leaving/denying God. (Hebrews 3:12)
B2 Dishonoring God (Exodus 20:7)
C1 Who He is.
C2 What He does.
C3 What He decides (His decisions/judgments).
C4 What He says (the Scriptures in their plain, normal sense).
C5 What He promises.
C6 What He labels evil or good. When we call evil good and good evil, we are dishonoring God.
C7 His name.
C8 His character traits.
B1 (1) ANGER, 12 February 2015, Wikipedia Authors, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anger, Accessed 12 February 2015
B2 (2) THE DOWNSIDE OF ANGER, 1 July 2003, Hara Estroff Marano, https://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200307/the-downside-anger, Accessed 12 February 2015
A6 Links and other opinions