Releasing Anger from Lionheart’s Houses of Healing Program

23/08/17 0

Some people are afraid to face their anger because they fear if they did, they might lose control.  That’s what they saw other people do.  They may feel that they have so much anger inside that they could and would destroy the world if they let themselves really feel it.  So they keep the lid on tight.  There is a tremendous amount of energy in this anger.  And it really won’t go away by ignoring or pushing it all down, even though it may seem that way at first.  If you have a lot of anger, it is important to channel that energy in as many healthy ways as you can.

There are several ways to channel your anger constructively.  One is physical release.  Run. Lift weights. If there is a punching bag, let yourself get into punching it.  Play any kind of sport.  Games like racquetball or basketball that require a lot of energy are great outlets for releasing some steam.  If you are confined to your cell, do push-ups or sit-ups.  Even take a towel and twist it as hard as you can.

As you’re running, lifting weights, punching the bag, or twisting the towel, you could even say “I’m angry,  I’m angry” — over and over and over for three or four minutes.  Don’t get into a story about your anger.  Don’t say “I’m angry” at a particular person.  Just keep repeating, as intensely as you can get away with, “I’m angry”.  Acknowledge your anger.  Let the energy of anger out.

Write about your anger.  Give your anger a voice in writing.  Write everything you are angry about.  Keep writing until you feel you have gotten all your thoughts and feelings down on paper.

Talk your anger out with a trusted third party.  Talk it over with someone you can safely share your true feelings with — someone who will listen without judging.  (a relative, friend, counselor, clergy…)

You can let that energy out in a way that is safe and won’t hurt you or anyone else.

It may take days, weeks or months to work through some of your anger.  Be gentle with yourself and respect what you need as you take this important step.  It is also important to bring a great deal of awareness to the process of working with your anger so as not to get stuck there and let anger become a trap.  If anger is within you, you need to feel it in order to let it go.  If, however, you get stuck in always feeling angry or always needing anger in order to set boundaries, then the anger which is necessary at first to empower and heal you eventually disempowers you and inhibits your healing.

Excerpted from “Houses of Healing: A Prisoner’s Guide to Inner Power and Freedom”  Robin Casarjian