I had an interesting session with my therapist this week.
Yes, I see a therapist monthly. I figure you might get your eyebrows waxed, your hair coloured… hells bells – you might even get your face injected with botox.
So why not get a monthly mind tune-up while you are at it?! It is your most vital feature after all.
My therapist is a formidable lady in her 60s. Let’s call her Denise, for indeed that is her name. Denise is unshakable. It is like going in for a mind purging sit-down with a non-judgmental Aunt.
I first started seeing her years ago. I remember arriving at her office, in tears of course, before pulling myself together and telling her that I was acutely aware that she charges by the hour, so let’s cut out all of the social niceties and get down to business.
Over the years our relationship has changed. Sometimes there are old problems to solve, new strategies to pull together, or sometimes we just have a good old chat.
This week, we chatted. About life and living and stuff.
Firstly, I asked her why I wait until the absolute last second to do anything.
Denise told me that I work best under pressure, with adrenaline kicking in to propel me along swiftly, with one eye on the clock and the other stirring my brain up fast. She told me that although I might work best that way, it is not ideal for my stress levels and the simplest thing to do is to bring all my deadlines forward by 24 hours.
Thank you Denise (and Lucy, the Hoopla Editor, thank you, too).
We chatted further about life, when I asked her…
“Why are people so angry?”
She asked me to elaborate.
I spoke about the anger of people in general. Of people walking purposefully down the street, pushing others out of the way. The sad epidemic of nasty separations and divorces that are happening all the time, in my circle of friends.
I outlined to her how it disturbs me to read the amount of hate vomited onto keyboards in the realm of social media.
Now that everyone actually does have a voice, how come it has become socially acceptable to behave like a twat when using it?
Denise looked me in the eye and told me:
“Anger is important.”
William DeFoore, an American Anger Management expert, concedes that out anger blueprint starts out when we are children.
“We know that the outcasts and misfits are the children most likely to become violent, so it only follows that we must pull them into the arms of love and/or acceptance, and find a place where they fit. If our system doesn’t have a place where a child fits, there’s something wrong with the system, not the child.”
Recently, I watched Tracey Grimshaw interview Kyle Sandilands, and I could see this pattern emerge. Here was a boy who was 15 years old when he was thrown out of home. Living on the streets. Gee, I would be a tad jaded and angry myself. I do believe there is a soft underbelly beneath the character he has created.
I asked Denise to explain why anger is important. She spoke about the different kinds of anger.
Cognitive Anger is where your brain gets all shirty, like when you are sitting in a traffic jam. You can then sift through all the shades of red until you get to Behaviourable Anger, where things get really ugly.
I pushed further. Why are so many women angry? In relationships, in work, in life?
And here is the kicker….
We tend to sulk.
Women tend to squash their anger deep down into the pit of our stomachs until, get this, it attacks our libido! There is no interest in sexy time. We are too busy stewing.
Then it seeps out our sides in the form of passive-aggressive behavior until we cannot function anymore. We explode.
Of course, the key to keeping ourselves level is communication. Honest, calm and regular communication allows us to live relatively peacefully. Theoretically speaking…
I am trying to become a new recruit to peaceful living. I am learning to let out my angst in the matter of a whoopee cushion, rather than taking a pin to a balloon.
Oh, don’t get me wrong! Sometimes I falter and fall, and when I do, it is not pretty. I once frisbeed Mr. Woog’s dinner across the backyard. For those wondering, it was soup. Messy stuff.
Living with anger is mind f**kery to the max. It clouds your brain and chokes the good stuff.
Talk it out, my friend. Even if you have to invest in a whiteboard and a laser pointer. Get your message across calmly, as it takes a long time to recover from truly losing your shit.
Are you pissed off? Why? Are you a whoopee cushion, or a balloon?
How do you deal with your anger?