I’m an angry person – irritable – and too quick to becoming enraged.
I heard somewhere that anger in it’s variations underlies depression. Anger is my baseline emotion. From the time I get up in the morning till I lay my head down at night, I find myself having an attitude of suspicion and a sense of hostility towards the world.
It’s the color of the lens or the filter through which I look at people, circumstances and events surrounding me. Always on guard. I’ve been told this is a self-defense mechanism and that I’m describing one aspect of PTSD. I don’t know.
What I do know is that mindfulness, or paying attention to my thoughts and emotions is helping me to become aware of the extremes of my viewpoints. One morning I woke up and had a moment of clarity. I realized that anger is absurd. It’s a waste of time although I’m sure it serves some purpose.
Knowing nothing different for so long, this sudden vision gave me a sense of perspective. Without perspective – a thing might as well be invisible. You cannot see where you are if you don’t know there is also a there. I realized at that moment that there were alternate ways of being. Then I lost the feeling.
Anger is also helplessness. The inability to do something about a problem means someone must be to blame, right? Blame God, blame yourself, blame those you love – someone has to be at fault. That’s how I feel when I’m enraged and my threshold for irritability is very low. I don’t like it. I want to feel calm, but the smallest of incidents light my very short fuse.
I lose control and reason when I’m angry and I throw inanimate objects. I can’t tell you how many things I’ve broken or thrown into the brush never to be seen again. I don’t like that either. One of my counselors tried to teach me to recognize anger as it arose and short-circuit it but I go from zero to off-the-charts so quickly, it doesn’t work.
I hope I don’t sound like I’m simply spewing an endless series of complaints about myself. This stuff is real and it affects my life and my well being in addition to that of those around me. It involves a loss of control that scares me. How can you gain control of something that happens lightening fast?
I feel like a passenger on a crazy train at times. I’m certainly not the engineer. My guess is that the key to change is to begin by finding the root cause of all of this. How though?
What can one do to change; to undo decades of programming? How do I feel that feeling again – that knowing I felt that morning? Aside from videos I’m watching on YouTube about philosophy, and other healing topics, I remain at a loss as to the origins of and a means of controlling my rage.
I regret to say that for the time being, anger is my most comfortable and familiar emotion. I’ll cling to it until I can find a way to stop being afraid.