America seems to be addicted to Anger.
A public epidemic, promoted by media coverage of road rage, mass shootings, and war. Anger affects our personal lives in many ways, from workplace frustrations to family arguments. Some symptoms of anger addiction are- self-stimulation, compulsion, obsession, denial, withdrawal and craving syndrome, and unpredictable behavior. Like alcoholism or substance abuse, anger addiction meets many of the above criteria. Are you addicted to anger?
At the moment, anger feels good because it stimulates the limbic system, the brain center that directly relates to the fight or flight response system. When the limbic system is stimulated, it sends a rush of adrenaline which can become addictive. Anger addiction is the compulsive pursuit of a mood change by repeatedly engaging in episodes of rage despite adverse consequences. Compulsion or loss of control is the inability to stop expressing anger once it is begun.
Those addicted to anger are frequently obsessed with feelings of resentment and revenge. The irresistible rush of anger is often followed by acting out violently. Obsessing over the “wrongs” done by others often leads to anger or rage, whereby anger then controls our thoughts.
The psychological aspect of anger is often seen in narcissistic personalities where anger is triggered by the underlying feelings of weakness or insecurity. For the narcissistic personality, anger is a way of feeling powerful in a certain moment, creating a sense of control where control is not felt. Anger, as a coping mechanism, reinforces negative consequences and the continuation of insecurity.
People raised in the chaotic environments of uncertainty and volatility can become perversely comforted by the distraction of anger. Aside from traumatic family environments, also at risk are combat veterans, as they are in high-threat situations for long periods of time.
Denial, the conclusion that anger is not a problem, keeps anger addicts trapped. Both ignorance and the inability to self-examine oneself work together to keep anger addicts stuck in the addiction.
Some treatment options for anger addiction include:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Therapy for underlying interpersonal dynamics and past trauma
- Comorbid treatment of underlying conditions such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD
- Positive coping strategies like humor/exercise/yoga/meditation
- Behavioral replacement therapy
- Mindfulness training
The hardest and first step in the treatment of any addiction is admitting the problem exists. It takes maturity and guts to admit your anger has become a problem.
To that end, Healing Springs Ranch will tailor your treatment specifically for you. Our individualized treatment plans consider your uniqueness because we want to know what motivates you. Taking the time and making the effort to truly focus on your specific needs allows us to make sure you get the full benefits of treatment.
Call to start your new life today.