The story testifies to one key aspect about anger – it’s an alienating emotion which we can’t afford. Think about it… when we are angry we feel misunderstood and have a deep wish to be heard, but ironically, our tone of voice achieves the exact opposite. It’s a shame as we might be communicating a valid point but because we spit fire, our words close, instead of open, the situation to a solution.
It’s also quite evident that by shouting the person we hurt the most is us. It all boomerangs back in the form of elevated cortisol levels, increased heart rate, and planting of ugly seeds in our minds to ripen in the future.
Having said that, I realize shouting is a strong habit, a truly hard one to break. In reality, the lesson from the poetic parable is extremely difficult to apply as our hard-wired instinct is to simply get it all out – “tell them how it is!”
Having cultivated this attitude our entire lives it may seem like an impossible feat of brain acrobatics but change is possible. If anything, this should only remind us on the amount of effort one should exert himself in order to transform.
The key to anger management is to cultivate enlightened attitudes (as the one proposed by the Indian teacher) when we’re sober (not angry), and commit our minds to practice what we learned during the next onset of frustration. In order for the space between frustration and shouting to appear, one simply needs to take three or five deep breaths deeply into the abdomen to reset the physiological response and allow one’s pre-frontal cortex to kick in and process the situation with more emotional intelligence.
See if you can remember this: shouting creates a distance, crushes relationships, and has a devastating boomerang effect for both health and future happiness. When angry just BREATH, give it a moment then respond. If furious – get away, retreat and wait, then respond. A moment of patience is worth more than gold.
P.S. Got anger? Download my FREE report called “7 Secrets of Anger Management from Ancient Wisdom.” I’ve spend years gathering the advice that is presented in it. If you’re on a spiritual path this could be a life-changing e-book for you. (You’ll find it in the upper right corner.)