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October 15, 2014

Starve Your Anger

Reading“If you do not wish to be prone to anger, do not feed the habit; give it nothing which may tend to its increase.” (Epictetus)

Being ScreamFree doesn’t mean being emotion-free. ScreamFree people still feel anger, fear, hurt, and frustration. However, instead of allowing their emotions to control them, they try to control their emotions. Many times, people who say that they have a problem with anger aren’t quite ready to give it up yet. They may not like how they act when they’re angry, but — for a good portion of their lives — that anger has served some meaningful purpose. It can be hard to let go of.

Today, when you’re with your children (or your ex or your in-laws) and you feel that familiar rise of anger — call a timeout. Remind yourself that just because you feel it, that doesn’t mean you have to feed it. Instead of replaying a scene of disrespect or looking for something to criticize, deal productively with the situation at hand and look for something positive instead. Remember: what you feed tends to grow. Choose carefully.

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