How to Control Anger Through Meditation

by Michael Hughes

how to control angerI remember some years ago I got into a disagreement with my boss which escalated into a full-blown argument.

Stupidly, I’d let my meditation practice slide and I hadn’t done it for weeks, perhaps months.

In fact, I got really angry.

Although, whilst angry, I felt I was in the right the next day I felt sick to my stomach.

My head hurt – I felt terrible.

And my uncontrolled anger affected me for weeks afterward.

If I’d been meditating regularly I wouldn’t have reacted so badly.

Yes, anger is a poison

And it will damage your mind and body and destroy your relationships if you don’t discover how to deal with it.

In fact, studies have shown that high levels of anger and unresolved anger can increase your risk of coronary artery disease and heart attack, lead to hardened arteries, cause liver and kidney damage and cause anxiety and depression.

But, you may be thinking, “I know someone who is angry all the time and it doesn’t seem to affect them badly.”

And that’s because they’ve become accustomed to using anger.  And they’ve built-up a tolerance to it.

For example, a drug addict can build up a tolerance to heroin over months and years.

But if a non-addict took the same dose, the shock to their system would be so great that it could kill them.

Although the drugs are still damaging the addict’s mind and body – and killing them slowly.

And anger will kill you also if you allow yourself to be consumed by it.

So, you must become aware of your anger and also the resentment that precedes it.

Because resentment is like a mini-anger which, if you allow it, builds and builds until your blood is boiling with anger.

So, when you practice the meditation technique regularly, you’ll become more aware of your emotional reactions.

And this awareness will carry-over to your daily life so that you’ll have the ability to “watch” yourself.

You’ll “see” resentment rising before it’s gotten hold of you.

Because, once you get angry it’s already too late.

Also you’ll become aware of the specific triggers that cause you to become resentful.

Although they may seem unimportant to someone else, for some reason they get under your skin.

To use a simple example; say you get up in the morning, go to the bathroom to brush your teeth and you see the toothpaste on the side with the cap off.

This could trigger resentment towards the person who left the cap off.

But you might not say anything until one day all that resentment builds up into an angry outburst.

And once you’ve reacted with anger one time, it’s easier to react with anger a second time.

But, if you’ve been meditating regularly and you see the toothpaste cap off, you’ll feel the initial surge of resentment and you’ll recognize it in the moment.

And simply by becoming aware and observing, it’ll immediately start to shrink.  

And you’ll have a smile on your face knowing that you’ve won a small victory.

But, you may be thinking, “If I’m not angry, people will take advantage of me.”

Now, if you’ve been used to responding with anger, you may feel a little vulnerable for a while – as if you’ve been disarmed.

But it’s because you’ve learned to get your energy from anger.

And you have to learn to speak up without resorting to anger and get your energy from a different source.

For example, in the 2004 TV reality show The Farm, rap artist Vanilla Ice got into an argument with the British magician Paul Daniels.

Now, it looked like Paul Daniels was really angry. But he was only pretending. And he was able to turn off the “anger” in a split second whilst Vanilla Ice was left not-knowing quite what happened.

You can see a YouTube clip of the argument below.

Now, I’m not saying that you should pretend to be angry.

But you have to discover a different energy – an energy that’s more powerful than anger.

But you’ll only be able to discover it when you stop using anger.

And, if it’s appropriate, you should be able to say the same thing whether you’re angry or not.

And it may even seem to some people that you’re angry.

The only difference is that you won’t be angry at all.

If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape 100 days of sorrow. Chinese proverb

{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah Costanzo

Very lovely Mike and informative anger is something that should be watched I hope that daliy meditation can help keep anger in check
I personally I’m not a very good meditator but, I’m sure it is a technque that can be learned with practice Thanks for your story
and stay in touch Sarah

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Sarah. Yes, meditation is a skill. And, as Brian Tracy says, “All skills are learn-able.” If you can learn to drive a car, you can learn to meditate.

Reply

Debbie

Yes, anger is a dangerous emotion. I have felt anger in the past, due to terrible injustices, but to me there are two kinds of anger. Destructive anger feeds all other negative emotions and is paralyzing, because you cannot change what happened. Constructive anger will channel the energy into positive action without dwelling on the source of the anger, so I can be pro-active and help bring about a positive outcome.

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Debbie. There’s a fine-line between anger and what you might call rightous anger.

If you “fall into” anger, you’ll lose yourself and cause the other person to become more angry – which then escalates out of control. And you’re like two mad dogs.

But, if someone does you an injustice, for example, and you feel the anger rising.

But you stay in the present and resist the temptation to “fall into” it, you can take action and you’ll have a completely different effect on yourself and the other person.

Reply

Debbie

Thank you, Mike. Yes, and your suggestion has worked for me.

Reply

Coach Bob Del Castillo

i use to like feeding off anger…it’s a real high and can be dominating…but found that it can’t be sustained and so it’s much better to not have been angry at all…but I learned this the hard way. Yes, as a practicing meditator…you see it and learn to let it go! I love the video…thanks!

Reply

Michael Hughes

You’re welcome Bob.

Reply

Lillian

Thanks so much for this! It will help me a lot

Reply

Michael Hughes

Glad to help Lillian.

Reply

Bob Hungerman

Thanks, Mike. You have reminded me of the practicality of regular meditation.

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Bob. Yes Regular meditation is the key.

Reply

Driya

What about someone like me who holds their anger and resentment inside suppressing it with a smile on my face? Does that make me a ticking time bomb because I rarely let it out?

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Driya. Yes, if you suppress resentment and anger you’ll damage your own health.

Make sure you meditate each day as I teach. Then, when you experience resentment you’ll be able to “watch” it without suppressing it. Keep watching it and the asocciated feeling in your body.

After some practice with this technique you’ll find yourself speaking-out spontaniously and you’ll surprise yourself.

Although you may experience some fear, you’ll be glad you did.

Reply

Driya

Will meditating help the anger I currently feel from my deep past go away?

Reply

Michael Hughes

Yes it can. But you must get into a routine and meditate 3 times per day.

If you can’t manage 3 times then you must at least meditate first thing in the morning & the last thing at night.

Reply

Driya

Thank you, Mike!

Diane

Meditation is a work in progress for me. Thanks for the encouragement.

Reply

Michael Hughes

You’re welcome Diane.

Reply

faria tariq

HI mike yes my teacher says anger is a poison which contaminates blood.it diminishes stored up spiritual energy within you so we should try to control our anger.

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Faria. Yes, your teacher is quite correct.

Reply

Keith Greenberg

Mike,
Awesome article!!! Thanks so much for posting!!!

Reply

Michael Hughes

You’re welcome Keith.

Reply

Japhet Simon

Mike

Not only meditation helps me to look at things in different ways, it helps me use that energy in more positive ways. I think medition has helped me to listen to my emotions, and gives me the choice to react in ways that are production and encouraging irrespective of the situation.

On days that I don’t meditate before going the office, I feel the difference on my behaviour towards others and my flow of thoughts.

It has made a difference to my work, social and home life.

Japhet Simon

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Japhet. Thanks for your comment.

Reply

T.D.S.SWAROOP

Mike,
article was really helpful.

Reply

Michael Hughes

Glad to help T.D.

Reply

Noppsy

I actually have an anger problem and l know that it is a bad spirit.I always try to avoid it all the time and thanks so much for this article has helped me a lot.

Reply

Michael Hughes

You’re welcome Noppsy.

Reply

dival

Mike — I went beyond anger to rage over the most insignificant things only to review the events in my mind and revisit the damaging emotion. Now if I notice I am mentally swearing it’s often that I am hungry/tired and the anger comes with these conditions. So I stop and eat something light, drink a cup of decaf tea and meditate 15-20 minutes. It’s amazing!

Diva

Reply

Michael Hughes

Thanks for the comment Diva.

Reply

plaintain1

Hi
A great and appropriate article for myself. Problem is that I’ve been meditating for some months now and the anger is still there. What do I do? I’m wondering if there is any point in continuing with the meditation.

Reply

Michael Hughes

What type of meditation have you been doing? Some are no more than relaxation techniques. Have you tried the meditation in my ebook and CD?

Reply

Amit

A nice article, which answers my need. thank you Mike for the the e-book which is also very informative and the technique has been explained simply yet beautifully. let me get started on meditation and would let you know how it helps me

Reply

Michael Hughes

You’re welcome Amit. And I’d be interested in your feedback.

Reply

Rita

Dear Mike- This is my first time checking about meditation. I don’t really know how to do it but now that i check your way to meditate I learn a lot and of course I know will help me to get my first meditation on the right direction. Thanks so much !!

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Rita,
Make sure you download the meditation ebook.

Apart from instructions on the particular technique I teach, there’s also important information about the experience during and after meditation.

Reply

dhruti

Hi Mike.. Can u pls help me on how to control anger?its killing me..pls help me out

Reply

Michael Hughes

Hi Dhruti,

Pracitce the meditation technique in my ebook as many times each day as you can practically do (but at least 3 times). Even if you can only do 5 minutes, it will help.

This will raise your awareness so that you’ll be able to see your anger rising and control it before it’s gotten hold of you. Because by then, it’s too late.
Also, you can get the audio meditation CD Here

Reply

Leave a Comment

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: