Many times in our culture, we are ashamed of our anger. We run away from our anger and suppress it. But that only leads to energy building up inside, and whatever you suppress will get expressed later in toxic ways. Listen to this episode to learn 4 keys to dealing with your anger, letting go of the past and reclaiming your power.
Some Questions I Ask:
- What comes up for you when you hear the word anger? What do you imagine?
- What is your relationship with anger in your life?
- How often do you allow yourself to feel your anger?
- Is there some part of you that doesn’t want to let go of the anger?
- How do you process your anger?
In This Episode You Will Learn:
- The key reasons we learn to disconnect from our anger.
- The dangers of suppressing your feelings.
- How anger can be a coping mechanism and the way to overcome it.
- How to get closure, regardless of your past.
- The surprising reasons you may have trouble getting over your anger and how to address them.
Have you ever seen rage in yourself? Generally, we don't want to see certain states within us because we've been conditioned to think of them as being morally "wrong" for us. We don't understand that these dark states are part of an interior world that can be changed when the light of awareness is shined upon them.
What happens when we see things about ourselves that we don't want to see?
In order to avoid looking at itself, the mind will seize on the rage it has seen, and it will try to explain it. It will take the initial darkness, the negative energy, and because it seems to be basically out of control, the mind will try to make of it something that it can deal with. When we live from a nature that does not want to see its "self," then there's no chance that this level of self, this nature, can ever change. When we hide from ourselves the way we feel, the only thing that we're accomplishing is the assurance that these feelings will return again... only more of them! It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy: we condemn and doom ourselves by being afraid of the darkness in us. We have one thing to do with our own states, and that is to see them as they are, to catch the part of us that's afraid of being what we've just seen, and to stop trying to hide anything anymore... because we're on this earth to learn.
We often hear people talk about why we should forgive but rarely do they explain the how. Forgiveness! I’ll be the first to admit that forgiveness is sometimes a struggle for me. I just completed seminary school and during my studies, every time we had to randomly pick a topic in class…I would pull forgiveness. But, I firmly believe that all things always work together for my highest good and greatest joy and this journey of forgiveness has taught me some things about life, myself, and allowing this Divine Energy and Essence that I call God access into the inner most parts of myself. The Rev. Johnnie Colemon, used to say…lessons are not taught they are caught. Which means experience is the greatest teacher.
So what is forgiveness…have you heard that it’s to give for…for example…give up hate for love...give up fear for faith. That’s a simple way of explaining forgiveness.
We are born whole, free and absolutely perfect. Yet oftentimes, during the course of our lives, we get shut down in that natural process.
Imagine when you were a toddler, expressing yourself with creativity and love while doing what comes naturally through curiosity and exploration, such as singing loudly or shrieking in pure joy. Then, because you happened to be in a place where behavior such as this is deemed inappropriate (such as a church service or public location), a parent or adult steps in and scolds you. Confused by this reaction, you begin to learn that being your authentic self will get you in trouble and so you begin to shut down that part of yourself. You shove that joyful part of yourself to the side, questioning:
“If I’m not supposed to be who I am naturally and authentically, then who am I supposed to be being? Who am I supposed to be, if I’m not supposed to be me?”
Is your house on fire? I agree with Greta Thunberg when she said,
"I want you to act as if your house is on fire, because it is."
Climate change is just one issue. How are we going to overcome all the epic challenges when it looks like everything is on fire!
James “Gus” Speth - Author of 7 books and a champion of fundamental systemic change with The Next System Project offers some insights,
“I used to think that top environmental problems were biodiversity loss, ecosystem collapse and climate change. I thought that thirty years of good science could address these problems. I was wrong. The top environmental problems are selfishness, greed and apathy, and to deal with these we need a cultural and spiritual transformation. And we scientists don’t know how to do that.”
I believe complicated problems do not require complicated solutions.
Every problem holds the answer to its solution.
Within scientific circles, high carbon dioxide levels are accepted as significantly contributing to climate change. While scientist struggle to develop carbon capture technology, a perfect technology already exists, it is called a TREE.
Planting a tree is a simple solution you can do today to improve our environment. The Nature Conservancy's Plant a Billion Trees campaign is one coordinated effort toward a global goal of planting a Trillion Trees.
In August 2017 I was back in the Amazon rain forest on a Pachamama Alliance trip, I was paddling a two-person kayak up the Capahuari River near the Kapawi Lodge with a woman who went simply by the name “Z”.
She broke the silence. “There’s something swimming in the river.”
“Probably that tapir some of the Achuar saw near here yesterday.”
Z turned to me. “No,” she whispered. “It’s a jaguar!”
I froze, my paddle suspended above the kayak. My heart raced. Slowly, cautiously, I lowered the paddle to rest on the kayak and leaned forward to peer around her.
A band of white water cut across the river, the wake of something swimming. I raised a hand to shade my eyes and followed the white water. Then I saw it: the black-spotted tawny-colored head and shoulders of a full-grown jaguar, just yards ahead of us, swimming to the river bank. Our momentum was taking us rapidly toward it. I grabbed the paddle and stopped the canoe’s forward motion.
Speechless, we sat there, still, quiet, watching.
Without breaking its rhythm, the jaguar turned and looked at us; then it continued to the shore, climbed out of the water, shook itself, gave us another glance, bounded up the embankment, and disappeared into the tangle of foliage.
Take a deep breath. Breathe in, breathe out. Just breathe. Those three phrases are ones we’ve all heard before throughout our lives, and with good reason. Breathing is not just the way take in oxygen to keep living, it is also one of the most powerful tools we have for dealing with negative energy. However, there’s a big difference between the negative energy we experience throughout our day and deep-seated emotional or psychological trauma.
How does a person get traumatized?
Trauma can occur from any number of things that we experience throughout our lives. According to teachtrauma.com, the most common types of trauma are the following:
- Child Maltreatment/Neglect
- Domestic Violence
- War Related Trauma
- Medical Trauma
- Traumatic Loss
- Natural Disasters
- Sexual Assault.
There are some basic symptoms of trauma that you may be able to notice. People who have experienced trauma may appear shaken or disoriented, and may not respond to conversation in a normal way. They may also appear withdrawn or not fully present in the moment, even when speaking.
It's painful and natural as human beings to want to get revenge to pay them back, to show them, to prove to them, to crush them.
But realize, when someone does something negative to you, when someone trespasses against you, to simply return the same energy is to simply bring yourself down to that level and nothing ever gets truly resolved by going down to that level.
Not only do you pull yourself down to that level, you keep yourself stuck.
It may sound strange and improbable, but this short article explains how it’s possible to actually change your past, and let go of any painful experience that wants to haunt you. The secret lies in awakening a little-known skill that every person is given at birth, but that few ever realize they have: the ability to start life over any time we choose.
It’s true: today is the first day of our life; but this truth is only of use to us if we know how to turn its power into something practical that can free us from the painful regrets and disappointments carried over from our past.
It may seem at first like starting life over every moment is a daunting and impossible task, but there is a simple method of bringing this power within our ready grasp. Here’s how we get started winning our new life: we must learn to allow every movement in our life – every unwanted memory, every emotion, every thought, and every relationship we have with whatever moves through us – to have its own life.
It’s time to crack your money codes.
Have you ever felt unworthy or unwanted, or experienced feelings of depression, sadness or anxiety?
These codes easily have us playing dangerous games that often result in things like unfulfilled relationships, depression and mindless addiction.
And when these ego mind codes or feelings occur, your confidence goes out the door, replaced by feelings of unworthiness and low self-esteem. The result is suffering on every level. The body, mind and soul shatter when you lose connection to the peace and trust codes that facilitate forgiveness.
No matter how badly you currently feel about yourself, you can heal your shame and feel excited about your life.
“I have no value.”
“I’m not good enough.”
“I don’t like myself.”
“If they really knew me, they wouldn’t like me.”
“I don’t deserve to be loved by God.”
“I’m not important.”
“My inner child doesn’t deserve to be loved by me.”
I hear this theme over and over from my clients. Shame is a major issue for many people.
Shame comes from two different places:
- Others shaming us
- Shaming ourselves.
Shame from Others
As a child, Torre was abused in many ways by her father. Her father used to tell her that she was ugly, that she shouldn’t have been born, that she was garbage. He would hit her with a belt with no provocation, and often touched her inappropriately. Of course, she grew up believing that she had no value.
Are you afraid of some condition in your life? Here’s a life-transforming secret: that seemingly scary condition, whatever it may be, is not the problem. It is your reaction that is fearful. This is why if you will become conscious of your condition instead of afraid of it, you will change forever your relationship with fear.
It is only within this special kind of inner-relationship that there is real safety, because now you are interacting with fear in an entirely new way. You are no longer letting it dictate to you how to act or what to do. Instead, you are aware of the fear. You are learning to quietly observe and study it. And, each day as you practice this, you discover something new about the strange and shaky nature of your own fearful reactions. They begin to lose their power over you.
Why? Because you are at last seeing these reactions for what they have always been: unintelligent mechanical forces. You are slowly becoming stronger than they are because by seeing them as they are—not as they would have you see them—you have helped yourself to climb above and outside of their influence. This self-insight is the difference between trembling through your life and being in command of it.
“Anthropologists and archeologists have confirmed what Mayan legends and prophecies have long told us.” The Mayan shaman stands near the Great Jaguar Pyramid in Tikal, Guatemala, and speaks to our group.
“The Maya had lived on these lands for nearly three millennia,” the shaman continues. “They excelled in agriculture, pottery-making, hieroglyph writing, and mathematics, and devised calendars that are considered more accurate than our modern-day ones. As you can see. . .” He spreads his arms to the pyramids and temples surrounding us, “they had amazing architects, artists, and engineers. And also, extremely hierarchical male societies, with kings who controlled about 50 huge city-states. The farmers and artisans who lived outside the cities were expected to provide large portions of their produce and products to the royal and priest classes inside the cities, while the latter, through their rituals and prayers, would bring rain and abundant crops. This type of colonialism reigned for hundreds of years. However, in the end, the proliferation of the cities created crises that now seem harbingers of what we today are experiencing globally. The draining of the swamps and the deforestation required to build the great plazas, pyramids, and temples caused a radical loss in rainfall. The climate change that resulted could no longer support the agriculture required to feed the large populations. Around 900 AD that once-great civilization ended. The people abandoned their homes and migrated to the highlands. Since the royalty and priests could no longer survive in their cities, they too fled. The cities eventually were taken over by nature. They lay hidden as tree-covered hills for centuries.”
Many people find it hard to move on when they lose a spouse or a partner. While some feel guilty, others think they’re cheating on the person who has passed. And then there are others who say they don’t deserve to be happy and choose to go through the rest of their life alone.
Those on the Other-Side don’t want us to linger in pain or be alone. They know that as humans, we need to touch and to be touched, to hold and be held, and above all that, we’re meant to love and to be loved. There’s never any judgment from them when it comes to affairs of the heart. When you feel you cannot get out of bed because of your sadness, it is them who gently push you forward.
To cope with the loss of your life partner, here’s the best advice I can give you: Your loved ones wouldn’t want you to suffer alone, so I recommend that you talk to someone about your feelings, be it a close friend or a professional therapist. It doesn’t help if you shut yourself off from those who were part of your life when you were a couple.
Lately I have been thinking a lot about the concept of entitlement -- that feeling so many of us have that we are owed something, that we have rights or deserve something to be the way we think it should be. Think of the times you have thought or had someone say to you:
- “I deserve to be treated a certain way, given certain things, or taken care of in a particular manner, because I am your child, parent, or friend.”
- “You owe me because I was there for you.”
- “The Universe should reward or repay me because I am a ‘good person.’”
Many years ago a family member offered one of my daughters a shiny new helium balloon. She was very excited. We were outside on an overcast and windy day. I attempted to help her hold on to it, thinking it might fly away. She was an independent three year old that wanted to do it alone. The balloon was loosely attached by a clip to her dress. Eventually the clip failed and the balloon slipped from her grasp. We all watched the balloon float farther and farther away. My little girl fell apart into a inconsolable storm of pain, loss and anger. I knew it wasn’t just the loss of the balloon. We had just moved to Alaska from the East coast with out her father. The balloon was another thing removed from her small world. I will never forget her pain. I will never forget feeling so lost and helpless as a parent. It seemed like I could not ease her heartbreak.
Most adults have experienced the same overwhelming emotions and sense of loss my child did at three; just for very different things. Often we experience our losses with extraordinary anger, pain and grief; because it is tied to something else. Regardless of our age, we can loose control in the surface wave of emotions, that pull us back into thick muddied waters holding past events.
The journey of healing our ego wounded self is a profound and deeply sacred journey.
“Does the wounded self ever get healed?”
“How does the wounded self get healed?”
“What happens to the wounded self as we heal?”
My ego wounded self, like everyone’s, came into being when I didn’t receive the love I needed and I decided that it was my fault – that I wasn’t good enough. I hid away my core self and went about trying to figure out how to be to get love, avoid pain, and feel safe. I developed many of false beliefs about myself and others, and learned to be very judgmental toward myself to have control over getting myself to do things “right”, so that others would like me and not get angry at me or reject me.
Do you remember when one of the big office supply stores developed the big red "Easy” button as a reminder to "keep things easy at work"? Years ago, one of my fellow staff members at The Ford Institute started bringing a big red "Easy" button to all of the in-person workshops and trainings we did. He would keep it out at the staff table at the back of the workshop room. It was actually a perfect reminder for all of us that an invitation for transformation exists in every moment and it can happen in an instant if we choose to open up and receive the invitation. Unfortunately, most people don't recognize the miracles that are always dancing right in front of them as well as their innate power and ability to shift what they are experiencing in each and every moment.
Your feelings are a signal giving you feedback.
They are communicating to you, showing you what you need to pay attention to.
We are conditioned to only feel what we think of as “positive” feelings. And we tend to do everything to avoid “negative “ feelings.
We must realize that the more we suppress our sadness, the more we limit our capacity to feel joy.
Consider this: Feelings are neither good or bad. These are just labels we place on them as a means of survival.
Feelings are feedback.
Feelings are energy.
Before we can learn to free ourselves from our own fearful reactions to unwanted events, we must realize just how worthless fear actually is -- especially when we turn to it to protect us from what are essentially bad dreams wrought from the darkened works of our own imagination! When it comes to these stormy moments in life, what we resist always persists. In truth, it is our not wanting to be in a psychological storm that produces the very storm of unwanted feelings that we don't want!
One of the things that make uncertain times so hard to bear is the flood of fearful feelings that seems to travel with them, like hard rains we are sure will soon fall from a distant, dark cloud on the horizon. But such fear is neither a natural nor necessary part of uncertainty, and this you can prove to yourself if you're willing to be a conscious storm watcher.