Mindfulness exercises for anger:
You’ve probably heard about mindfulness. You may even have a regular mindfulness practice that you follow. But did you know you can use mindfulness exercises for manage your anger? Mindfulness experts have identified several key steps you can take to control and manage your negative emotions.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 1 Observe your body’s signals
When you're angry, your body is sending out all sorts of messages from rapid heartbeat to clenched jaw, stomach, and hands muscles. Your breathing may become light and shallow. You’re ready to fight or fight.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 2 Use your breath
Breathe into your body’s anger reactions. Close your eyes, focus on the breath going right down into your belly and out again. Count as many breaths as you need to defuse your anger.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 3 Connect with your body
Stay aware of how your body is feeling. Scan your body to see how the anger reactions are manifesting and subsiding. What does your anger feel like? Don’t judge, just observe and be kind to yourself.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 4 Look at your mind monkeys
When your angry dozens of little mad monkey thoughts are running around your brain like naughty kids yelling things like “It’s not fair,” “It’s not my fault,” even curse words. Notice your angry self-talk and how it runs in circles. Try to detach from the thoughts if you can.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 5 Step away
Separate yourself from the thoughts, feelings, and bodily reactions of anger. They are reactions, they are not you.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 6 Reach out
Once you have detached from your reactions, you can communicate with the person you’re angry with. Keep the focus on how you feel, make “I” statements, and avoid blaming.
Stay calm and keep your voice low pitched. Keep your awareness on your reactions in case the anger rises up again.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 7 Mindful Thinking
It’s easy for the negative mind monkeys to start chattering away again. Look out for some of the more common thought patterns that feed anger and victim-hood. The words ‘never’ and ‘always’ are red flags for anger monkey activity as are blaming statements (it’s your fault, why don’t you listen) and gaslighting.
Mindfulness Exercises For Anger # 8 Acknowledge the Emotion
Don’t try to deny or squash down your anger. It’s a legitimate emotion and in some circumstances, can be a powerful tool against injustice and achieving change. But it is an emotion, it’s not you. Anger, like other feeling states, will come and go, and you can choose how you want to deal with it.
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