Let’s talk about anger. As tensions rise in the political arena, we are seeing how easily anger and frustration an be ignited into violence. I see this on a daily basis within families as well as my teenage clients.
Anger often stems from a feeling of powerlessness and a perceived lack of control. Much of my work revolves around helping people realize that we can only control our own thoughts and reactions. A sense of calm within the family starts with the parents setting the tone and being in control of their own emotions.
So how do we create a sense of calm when it feels like the entire world is blowing up around us? The first step is to try to find what I call “pockets of peace” within our hectic day. Simple rituals that help us clear our mind are a reprieve from the burdens and stresses that overwhelm us.
One pocket of peace can be starting your day, even before you get out of bed, with a positive affirmation. Name two things that you are grateful for this day.
Another pocket of peace can be found by shutting off the anger that permeates the media and television. Turn off the news; it is a source of tremendous anxiety. Don’t start your day with your head filled with someone else’s fears and tragedy.
A third pocket of peace is thinking outside of yourself. Envisioning contentment and calm for another individual can widen our compassion and help us really see those around us that are struggling just like we are. Too often we focus with envy on those we perceive to be more fortunate than ourselves and we compare and feel resentment.Anger can be contagious, but so can contentment. Let’s try to shift our individual focus towards our own pockets of peace. In this moment you can’t change the world, but you can change yourself. Shift out of an anger mode, that may lead to regret, and move toward a moment of calm.