Are You Considering Anger Management Psychotherapy?

Let's face it: life can be stressful. Deadlines at work; budget problems at home; inconsiderate drivers on the freeway; inattentive workers at the drive-through… on any given day, several different factors can conspire to make you feel like you're about to blow your top. But the fact is, some people are able to see everyday annoyances and inconveniences in perspective, and others aren't. Some people, by their own admission, are "hotheaded," "short-tempered," or otherwise prone to a high, often sudden rush of anger that they have difficulty controlling. For some people, anger management, through psychotherapy or by learning techniques for self-help, can improve quality of life and relationships. For others, new forms of anger management therapy can help them return to living productive lives after their anger has gotten them in trouble with the law.

Anger: It's Not All Bad!

It's important to understand that anger is a normal emotion. In fact, we need some amount of anger in order to function as responsible adults. Anger is a powerfully motivating emotion. It is designed to help us deal with danger, and it can also empower us to protect ourselves or others from real physical, emotional, or other threats. But sometimes, anger becomes counter productive. When sudden or uncontrollable anger begins to affect relationships, employment, or normal functioning in society, psychotherapy for anger management may be necessary.

What Is Anger Management Psychotherapy?

A qualified counselor can use anger management psychotherapy to teach clients how to deal constructively with anger. Usually through cognitive ("talk") therapy, a counselor can help the client understand the causes of anger and begin to develop strategies for channeling or controlling it to keep the emotion within more manageable boundaries. The counselor may direct the client to learn and use relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, mental imaging, meditation, or yoga, to soothe the physiological effects of anger and to "buy time" for more logical processes to come into play. Another tool for anger management is cognitive restructuring, in which the client is coached to replace emotional, irrational thought processes with logical, reasoned ones. By paying careful attention to his or her thinking during moments of anger, then replacing the anger-driven thoughts with more rational ones, the client can learn to better keep a rein on the emotional and physiological processes that can fuel anger to the point of being beyond control. Anger management psychotherapy can give the client the necessary tools to live a better life.