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5 Surprising Facts About Anger

5 Surprising Facts About Anger

What makes you angry? The injustices of the world? The jerk who stole your parking space? The spouse who won’t get off the couch? Whatever brings out the ire, it’s safe to say that you’re not the only one who gets a little angry from time to time. As common of an emotion as anger is, though, it is certainly very misunderstood. Read on for some of the most surprising facts about anger.

 

1. Your Anger Can Be Caused by the Strangest Things.

Many people like to describe their anger as something that happens to them; the tailgater and the line-cutters caused their outburst, not their reaction to other people’s rude behavior. But the truth is often way more complicated than that. Traumatic events can cause people to develop a short fuse. But even the most patient people in the world, when placed in uncomfortable circumstances, can be prone to angry outbursts. Hunger, hot weather, aches and pains, dehydration, and even being left-handed, can increase your chances of getting angry.

2. Anger Is Totally, Completely Normal — To a Point.

Anger is one of the most basic human emotions. Taken at face value, anger is merely a response to abnormal or dangerous situations, and there’s really nothing good or bad about it. What makes it good or bad, however, is how you respond to anger.


 

3. “Letting It Out” Isn’t Such a Great Strategy.

It’s obviously better to punch a pillow over another person, and will probably spare your loved ones’ feelings if you vent in the shower. But is it really doing you any good? Well, probably not. In fact, it can actually make your anger worse, because it can, “foster aggression by giving people permission to relax their self-control.”

4. Gender Plays a Huge Role.

It’s no stretch to say that, at least in Western culture, anger is a masculine emotion. And, as a result, boys and girls are are taught different things when it comes to managing their anger. Boys are socialized to be more aggressive, and girls, more passive. As adults, men are more likely to express their anger physically and impulsively; women, on the other hand, tend to have a harder time expressing their anger, and tend to be resentful and angrier for longer than men. In the end, though, neither of these coping mechanisms are healthy ways to deal with anger.

5. Anger Affects Your Health.

People with a short fuse, according to several scientific studies, can increase your likelihood of suffering from heart disease and strokes.

More reading on anger:
10 Steps to Managing Anger
7 Questions About Anger

Read more: Anxiety, Dating, Family, Friendship, Health, Healthy Aging, Love, Mental Wellness, Relationships, Spirit, Stress, ,

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Katie Waldeck

Katie is a freelance writer focused on pets, food and women’s issues. A Chicago native and longtime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Katie now lives in Oakland, California.

211 comments

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3:02PM PDT on Jul 22, 2014

Thanks for sharing.

12:42PM PDT on Jul 7, 2014

Chronic pain can amp up your anger response. I've had to learn how to diffuse it quickly by focusing on what's really bothering me. As the pain decreases as I heal somewhat, so does the frustration. But it can become a habitual response if you're not careful. I was recently taught a trick to side-step anger. As soon as you feel it rising, ask yourself what you're afraid of, since anger usually masks fear. It helps to get to the bottom of the problem.

10:39AM PDT on Jun 23, 2014

Thanks Katie

6:48AM PDT on Jun 21, 2014

Thanks for sharing. On the very rare occasions I get angry, it's usually because I'm upset or worried about something else in my life. But I don't get angry very often!

9:16PM PDT on Jun 8, 2014

I'm a mellow lefty who knows lots of spikey righties.

9:12PM PDT on Jun 8, 2014

Uh oh, I'm left handed, red haired, looks like I'm buggered.....

6:47AM PDT on May 18, 2014

Emelie H. good for you , sometimes anger and frustration make us strive for a change that is good ...

12:23AM PDT on May 11, 2014

Anger only gives the illusion of clarity even if it seems reasonable at the moment. Fear & paranoia create "enemies" & divide us from others. Aggression is another form of violence which fixates assigning blame, seperation. Aversion creates an even stronger bond w/the perceived source of "anger." A quicksand of self-importance, pain. That way lies madness (& the release of cortisol!)

11:34AM PDT on May 7, 2014

Anger made me create a petition that won over a fur selling shop! That's something!

2:36AM PDT on May 3, 2014

Being left handed? Do you just make this stuff up.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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