Anger is one of the emotions we seem to have a particularly tough time letting go of. We stay attached to our anger – sometimes for years, sometimes for our entire lives. We hold grudges. We feel like we can’t forgive, and we allow our anger to destroy relationships that were important to us. Our anger plays an important role in our mental health issues and addictions. It can be the driving force behind our addictive behavior. We use unhealthy substances and behaviors in order to avoid feeling our anger. Our anger can contribute to our depression and anxiety, both of which can compound our addictions.
Sometimes our anger is very hard to dismiss, and we stay attached to it, feeling old anger over and over again, replaying memories that retrigger us and make us feel enraged all over again. We aren’t able to create space around our anger in order to let it diffuse and dissipate naturally. Instead we hold onto it tightly, keep it very close to us, talk about it a lot, overthink it, worry about it. When we do this, it can have very destabilizing effects on us. We can feel increasingly anxious, even panicked. We can respond with reactivity and aggression. We can become volatile and hostile. All of these things harm not only our relationships with other people but also our own internal equilibrium. We feel imbalanced, ungrounded and uncentered. We have a hard time processing our emotions. Sometimes even functioning in daily life can be a challenge, because our anger can knock us off our center and wreak havoc on our emotions.
Holding onto our anger can cause our mental health to deteriorate. It can cause us to suffer from increased depression and anxiety. Suppressing our intense emotions and never expressing them can lead to anxiety disorders, neuroses and other complexes. Anger can be the emotion we’re most trying to avoid when we turn to our addictions. Many of us grew up in families and cultures that didn’t encourage us to find healthy ways of processing, expressing and communicating our anger. We were taught that it’s bad to be angry. We’re taught to stay silent and avoid confrontation rather than working to resolve conflict. We’re taught that we should keep our feelings to ourselves and not speak on anything negative.
Finding healthy ways to deal with anger is an important part of recovery and finding happiness.
We offer multiple kinds of therapy, holistic practices and mindfulness education to help you work through difficult emotions. Call (575) 613-4810 for more information on our treatment programs.