How to Deal With Anger

I heard this story from someone, but from whom I can't remember for the life of me. I can't remember the story fully either, but it was about a university Prof explaining why we shout when we are angry.

According to him, when two people are angry and temper flares, they scream at each other with such volcanic violence, faces distorted, that they look nothing like themselves. They scream at each other even though they are so close they can smell each other's breath and are being showered by each other’s spittle.

On the other hand, when two lovers are talking either in bed, across the table or over the phone, they whisper so much they can barely here themselves, giggling at thoughts they pass across without even uttering a word. His explanation is that when we are angry, we are so far away from each other psychologically that we feel the need to shout to be heard (I think the people that ignore each other are so far from one another, they can’t see each other at all), while when we are in love, we are so close psychologically that we believe anything above a whisper is too loud. Our emotions interpret how we feel as how we are because human beings basically connect psychologically and emotionally.

There are also different levels of anger and hurt, the worst ones are those between loved ones; siblings, spouses, lovers, close friends... The reason it hurts so much when you are angry with a friend is that emotionally, you are ripping a bond like two parts of a book glued together by ‘uhu glue’, there is no way you can avoid a tear. Whenever there is discord, it rips that fusion apart. Unfortunately, emotional or psychological wounds hurt some times worse than physical wounds, and it’s far more difficult to treat. Therefore when a loved one hurts you, it hurts like hell, when a stranger you have no bond with hurts you, there is no bleeding in the heart, you are annoyed but not hurt. It takes love to hurt.  

Have you ever considered some dumb things we do because we are angry or upset with a close friend? Our first thoughts are always to do something to hurt them back, and because we know the person loves us, we usually take vengeance by either hurting ourselves further, or keeping from them things concerning us; so we don't tell them we are ill, or that we got a raise at work, we ask someone else to help us do our shopping or give us the assistance we usually get from them, we refuse to call or speak to them, or we hang out with someone they don't like.

Unfortunately,  that is a lousy plan, because we enjoy their love and company as much as they do, so we don’t enjoy shopping because we rather shop with them, we stay alone when we are ill, because it is only their company that we can stand at that time. Because your hearts and emotions are fused together, anything that tries to pull you apart hurts you as much as much as the other person. Therefore any pain you try to inflict on a loved one is the same amount of pain you inflict on yourself.

The next time you have a shouting match with a spouse or you are on a cold war with a friend, ask yourself if you are really ready to hurt as much as you want the other person to hurt. Are you ready to take as much as you are willing to give?

Tips to resolving a quarrel fast

  • Don't respond emotionally; emotions tend to flare, even when there are no reasons for it.
  • Try and hear the other person out; most times all you need is a good ear, they may be saying something important, but when we shout or block our ears, we miss what the person is trying to say. Count to ten before replying a loved one, you’ll be amazed at the difference it will make. 
  • Realize that you will hurt too; when the other person hurts. Let the law of self preservation help you avoid a quarrel.
  • Realize that all you want is attention; both of you are seeking attention from each other, so be the bigger person and set your need aside for a moment. After you have appeased your loved one, the pay back in kind is usually worth it.  

Image courtsey of David Castillo Dominici/

Kanayo Aniegboka

Kani is a writer, entrepreneur, blogger, public speaker and an all-round knowledge junkie who likes to view life from different angles.


  1. That's the truth actually, but does the counting thing work? Cos I've done it a lot before now and I.still flared up.
    All the same I got a new one and henceforth I will be acting the big.fellow, by putting my needs aside.

  2. Lol! Yes the counting works, but you must have the right mindset. You can't be thinking "what I'll do to you once I finish counting eh" while you are counting and expect to be calm after. Nevertheless, acting the bigger fellow is still better.

  3. Thanks so much sir for the 10 count. Have seen the bigger picture.