Anger: Friend or Foe

We humans are indeed the most evolved species around. However what comes with evolution is also variety. No two people are the same, emotionally or otherwise. There is diversity and uniqueness, which is essential for all-round functioning of the world. Some of us are rather calm and easy-going and the others, well, can be really short-tempered and angry.

Anger. Since childhood, we have been taught to perceive anger as a negative emotion, something to be shunned, considered as bad behaviour, and with good reason. Although, there are some of us out there who just cannot seem to control their temper. Does that make them bad or evil people? Of course not. At the same time, such behaviour is unseen and intolerable.

If we cannot get rid of anger, we should accept it as an important emotion that can be extremely useful. It can be used in positive ways as well. Remember that time Yuvraj Singh hit six sixes in a Stuart Broad over? He was visibly angry that time, but he still succeeded. Or the time in 2016, when India avenged the Uri attack by executing the surgical strike. Anger was a dominant emotion in the Indian Army at that time.

When harnessed and controlled, anger can be a really powerful trait. It creates focus. You are motivated to do the task that is in front of you and that’s causing frustration. That degree of focus can be really powerful. Also, haven’t we all felt that rush of adrenaline accompanying that feeling of anger? In small doses, anger is that spark that gets you started on something, be it in the world of sports or in the corporate world.

But there is one problem about getting angry. When you’re angry, it’s easy to do things you will later regret. You may end up hurting people you care about or just create a bad impression of yourself. This is why you should be mad at an action, not at the person. Maybe someone made a mistake or hurt you. Confront their action or behaviour, instead of yelling at that person. Or if you cannot seem to control yourself, just walk away for a while.

Yes, anger is not a completely bad emotion. Instead of unsuccessfully trying to get rid of it, accept it, control it and direct it at getting work done. After you do this, you will feel much better and productive. Anger does not have to be your foe; it can be your friend too.

-Himanshu Ashar