How to Tame Your Anger
What Makes You Angry?
A lot of things can make you angry. Your brother messed up your bedroom. Or your friend won't talk to you.
You are mad. Your muscles feel all tight and your face is getting hot. Or you want to scream or punch something. You feel angry! It’s normal to feel angry sometimes. But you have the power to choose what to do about it so you can feel better.
Being active -- moving, playing, exercising -- is a great way to get rid of angry feelings. Go for a walk or a run. Try jumping rope. Shoot some baskets, or play a game of catch. Go for a bike ride. If you have a punching bag, hit it.
When you’re angry, moving can make you feel better and help you let go of what upset you.
Take a Deep Breath
When you start to feel yourself getting angry, take a deep breath. Breathe in, or inhale, while you count to eight in your head. Stop and then slowly breathe out, or exhale. See how long you can make your breath last. Can you count to 8 and not run out of breath?
Do this a few more times until you feel calm. When you are calmer, your heart will beat slower. Your muscles won’t feel as tight.
Talk About It
Sometimes, it helps to talk about feelings with someone. You could talk to your parents or a friend. You can even talk to your pet!
Talking can help you figure out why you are mad, what you can do about it, and how to feel better. You might find out you are not angry at all. Maybe you are nervous, sad, or scared. No matter what, talking can help.
Write It Down
Putting your angry thoughts and feelings on paper can sometimes help you let them go.
Try writing in a journal or making up a poem, story, or words to a song. You could pretend you’re writing a letter to the person who upset you but don’t send it.
It can also help to write down what you can do about the problem that is making you upset.
The next time you’re angry, try drawing a picture, making a painting, or creating something out of clay.
Expressing your feelings through art can help you feel better and let go of your anger.
Listen to Music
Pop on your headphones and turn on your favorite songs. It is hard to stay angry when you are listening to music you like.
Even better, try dancing along to the music. Moving around will help you feel even better.
When you move and exercise, your body makes chemicals that can relax you and put you in a better mood.
Change Your Thoughts
It’s easy to stay mad if you keep saying that your brother is "always" messy or that your friends are "never" nice. Chances are they aren't always bad.
Changing what you say or think about people can make what happened less upsetting. Think positive! The next time your brother makes a mess in your room, think of the time he helped you do the dishes.
Find a Distraction
If you find yourself thinking about something that made you mad, look for something fun to do instead. Read a book. Phone a friend. Play with your pet. Turn on some music and dance. Get outside.
Doing something fun will get your mind off whatever is upsetting you.