Natural Anger Management Techniques
One of the most popular article on the website, is How to Stop Negative Thinking. The author of that post is Yachna Tyagi, who is a passionate yogi and terrific spiritual blogger, and today I am happy to present another great article from her – 6 Effective Anger Management Techniques. If you enjoy Yachna’s articles, I strongly suggest checking out her blog at Yachna Yoga, which is a wonderful resource for Yoga, Meditation and Pranayama.
Yachna is also a graduate of the Mastery of Yoga Instructor Training Program and if you would like more information on that program you can find that on the following website Online Yoga Teacher Training.
If you would like to be a guest author on Mastery of Meditation and Yoga, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to Effortlessly Increase your Threshold for Anger and Stress
What if you could effortlessly increase your threshold for anger and stress without having to repress your emotions and feign complacence by seeking refuge in conventional anger management tools that just don’t seem to work for you?
Today’s article discusses some very simple and practical tips that will help detoxify your mind and body, grant you the ability to think clearly and rationally and help you retain your composure effortlessly, to make you feel simple, sweet, calm and collected.
What is Anger?
Anger is a strong negative emotion that we have all experienced at some time or another. It is often preceded by a bruised ego, impatience, or a sense of loss of control over a situation. Anger can range anywhere from simple annoyance to violent fury and can manifest as anywhere from splenetic behavior and speech to outright vile actions. Once vented, it almost always results in regret.
Occasional expression of anger in a reasonable manner is normal and necessary to prevent toxic build up inside our mind and body. Anger channeled in an unselfish direction becomes righteous indignation. But when one feels chronically angry even over trivial matters or feels the need to inflict injury on someone it should be regarded as a red flag that warrants attention and remediation.
Effects of Anger
Anger is really a destruction of the self, of one’s health, and peace of mind. It depletes the body of energy resulting in mental and physical fatigue. Chronic anger or cumulative build up of anger damages the nervous system. Anger activates the flight or fight response in the body which leads to a release of stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline into the blood stream. High levels of cortisol can lead to obesity, increase in blood sugar, a weakened immune system, heart disease, stroke, Cushing’s syndrome, loss of muscle tissue, high blood pressure, loss of bone density, etc. Anger impedes the flow of energy in the body and results in blockages and sickness.
6 Practical and Effective Anger Management Techniques and Tips
Implementing a few simple, but very powerful techniques listed below will guarantee you increased tranquility and fortitude. I would strongly recommend that these techniques be applied conscientiously for at least 10 days in order to notice a marked improvement.
1. PERFORM THESE PRANAYAM EXERCISES:
Chandrabhedi pranayam is a very powerful breathing technique that stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system. The parasympathetic nervous system is responsible for the non emergency or maintenance functions of the body like rest and digest in contrast to the sympathetic nervous system which prepares the body to operate under stress. Chandrabhedi pranayam pacifies the nerves, reduces anger, stress, blood pressure, bile and body heat and helps detoxify the blood.
Follow the steps below for Chandrabhedi Pranayam:
- Sit in a comfortable position with your spine erect and chin slightly tucked in.
- Rest your left palm down on your left knee.
- Press your right nostril with your right thumb and inhale deeply and slowly through your left nostril till you fill up your lungs completely. Your chest should expand when you do this, not your stomach.
- Now release the pressure of your thumb on your right nostril and simultaneously press your left nostril with your ring finger and middle finger and exhale through the right nostril in a slow controlled manner.
- This constitutes one round of chandrabhedi pranayam.
- Do about 10-20 rounds daily up to twice a day depending on your temperament, inhaling through the left and exhaling through the right nostril.
Sheetali Pranayam Perform 5-10 rounds or
Sheetkari Pranayam Perform 5-10 rounds (for those who cannot do sheetali pranayam)
The above pranayams help soothe and calm the nerves. They are quite cooling in nature and should be avoided in the cold winter months. But people who suffer from aggravated pitta or excess heat (which manifests as inflammation, boils, ulcers, heartburn, indigestion, premature graying, balding, IBS, constipation, skin diseases and who suffer from excessive or uncontrollable emotions of anger, irritability, rage, hatred, jealousy, hostility, impatience, pride etc) may continue to practice in the cold months adopting a common sense approach. For example, instead of doing 10-20 rounds of Chandrabhedi twice a day, you might want to do 5-10 once a day and see how if affects you.
Similarly in dry and cold climates, it is not advisable to practice Sheetali or Sheetkari. Each individual is advised to find their own comfort point. In a nutshell, listen to the signals your body sends you. Cut back or increase the practice accordingly to find your sweet spot. Another caution to keep in mind is to never perform suryabhedi pranayam immediately after chandrabhedi pranayam or even on the same day as they are contradictory in nature. Chandrabhedi should also be avoided when one is suffering form cold or cold related ailments like asthma and bronchitis.
2. DIET AND COOLING HERBS:
Eliminate foods from your diet that increase pitta/bile or the fire element in the body and rajasic quality of mind. Rajasic quality manifests as passion, cut throat ambition, restlessness, anger, lust, pride etc. Usually these foods are sour, bitter, fried, temperature hot and also inherently hot, for example: pickles, peppers, onions, garlic, ginger, alcohol, caffeine, meat, mustard, tomatoes, spinach, mustard greens, yogurt, buttermilk, sour fruits, fruit juice, honey etc. These foods increase heat/pitta in the body and cause mental agitation and increase aggression.
Instead consume foods that are cooling in nature like avocado, mangoes, melons, pears, coconut, cherries, melons, cucumbers, apples (no green ones) and most vegetable and beans cooked in mild spices, basmati rice, wheat, milk, ghee, cilantro, basil, parsley, fennel, cardamoms, almonds soaked overnight and peeled the next day, herbal teas, sunflower seeds, flaxseed. You can also purchase organic pitta balancing herbs/tablets. These tablets contain cooling herbs like Brahmi, Bhringaraj, Shatavari, Fennel etc that help pacify the fire element in the body and restore balance.
3. DO NOT OVEREAT:
Overeating and eating in between meals increases the tamas (ignorance and sloth) quality in an individual. It results in sluggish metabolism and poor assimilation of food which leads to an accumulation of toxins in tissues thereby resulting in disease. Hence it is advisable to wait at least 3 ½ hours between meals.
Massage your scalp and feet with organic coconut massage oil, sunflower oil, or pitta balancing massage oil at least once a week and leave it on for roughly 30-45 minutes before you shower. If time permits you may massage your entire body starting from the scalp and working your way down to your feet. Self massage improves blood circulation and helps eliminate toxins through perspiration. Limit the use of coconut oil to summer time only as it is very cooling in nature.
We are all aware of the wonderful benefits of peace and tranquility that meditation can bestow upon us. If you are new to meditation or find it hard to meditate, practicing guided meditations or mantra meditations that involve chanting mantras can be equally powerful. For example, the Aum Mantra Meditation practiced daily for 30 minutes would be ideal, but if time is an issue, spending even a minimum of 15 minutes can prove to be highly effective.
Meditation will help one feel centered and grounded. It is better to spend 15 minutes of energy and attention intensely focused on meditation than to spend 45 minutes on the mat checking the clock. According to Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras-“ When the agitations of the mind are under control, the mind becomes like a transparent crystal and has the power of comprehending the smallest as well as the greatest – as it is free from all limitations and conditionings.”
6. PRACTICE SELF AWARENESS:
Practice awareness in thought, word and deed. Eliminating negative thinking and encouraging positive thoughts helps strengthen and balance Ojas, Tejas and Prana. When these three are balanced, one enjoys perfect health in mind, body and spirit.
These are some simple yet powerful guidelines to get you started on your way to anger management and help you achieve significant results. Remember 50% of something (good) is better than 100% of nothing. You will be absolutely amazed with the results and might consider adopting the suggestions above and making them an integral part of your daily life. Once you have achieved some level of balance you may judiciously include some of the blacklisted foods above occasionally and in moderate quantities.
If you suffer from anger and stress, I do hope you will try out some of these excellent anger management techniques, and once again here is Yachna’s blog for you to enjoy and learn from – Yachna Yoga (http://yachnayoga.wordpress.com/)