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I Used To Get Angry

I used to get so frustrated over the most minor things. One moment I’d be fine, I’d feel like I was keeping it together and then all of a sudden woosh! This emotion would rush up inside of me and I’d find myself speaking harshly or fussing about something like stubbing my toe or missing the train as if it was the end of the world.

If you’re anything like I used to be, you might have experienced moments that were meant to be  the good times, but then they turned out differently. You were meant to be having fun. Maybe you were packing up to go on holidays or helping your child learn how to ride a bike for the first time. You could have been getting excited about a new project in your workplace and all of a sudden, what was meant to be a really happy, exciting and joyful moment, turns into a moment of upset, hurt, or anger.

I used to be that person. I would get so frustrated over things that other people didn’t even seem to notice. To me it was a big deal. I used to take it personally even if it wasn’t. I walked around feeling so angry, snapping at people and saying things that I later regretted. I knew that my reactions were over the top but I wasn’t doing it on purpose. I didn’t mean to get so fired up.

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I didn’t mean to get so frustrated. I tried to stop it but would end up feeling helpless afterwards and soon I started to notice that it was affecting my relationships, my work and my happiness. My friends stopped wanting to hang out with me as much. My work colleagues went quiet when I entered a room and I felt as though my partner felt like she was walking on eggshells when around me and we weren’t really connecting anymore. That’s when I realised that being so hard on myself wasn’t helping.

I knew I had to sort this out

Sound familiar? If this is happening to you as much as it was happening to me, I can let you know what I did to help me through it. I did eventually find a way out of frustration. Of course, this doesn’t mean I never get angry or frustrated anymore, it’s just that now I do it less and less often, and my response is much more appropriate to the situation.

I learned how to press pause

The very first thing I did, was that I started to pay more attention to those moments when I felt anger or frustration woosh up inside me. I would simply pause and stop whatever I was doing. This simple act gave me space. It allowed me to take a step back from the emotion and to decide how I wanted to respond, instead of just reacting straight away. I still do this whenever I want to feel more grounded and more in control. I just pause.

So next time you start to feel that whoosh, that feeling of negativity start to happen, Stop.
Stop everything. Realise that whatever you were doing before is no longer working for you so the very first step is to pause. When you do this, it gives you the space to decide on the next step, rather than react.

Do you want help with Sadness, Procrastination, Self-Sabotage, Confidence or Motivation?


Take a breath

In the beginning, it felt uncomfortable to pause. I felt so strongly that I wanted to react and fall back into my old pattern of flying off the handle. Instead, I took a deep breath. By focusing on that breath, I was able to relax the tension in my body and bring my awareness to the situation. It gave me a moment to observe what was actually happening, not just how I perceived it to be. I take myself back to before I felt the emotion. What happened right before the moment that I felt the negative emotion? What was I doing, saying or thinking about?

Give it a try right now! Just take a really deep breath in, and as you breathe out let your body relax into it. Close your eyes if you want to and notice how much easier it is to step back and notice what’s going on around you.

Choose your questions


The more that I took note of each time I felt a rush of negative emotion, the more I saw how my thoughts and the questions I asked myself, could direct how frustrated or angry I was getting.

I would catch myself thinking things like ‘Why does this always happen to me?’ or ‘Why is this happening again’,  ‘Why don’t I get it?’, ‘How come I have to repeat myself again and again?’, ‘Why am I so stupid?’ or ‘Why aren’t they listening to me? Can’t they see I’m right?.’

What people are saying about Emotion Academy:

"After many years of training, courses, and counselling in various forms I thought I had certain aspects of my life sorted. Yet completing Emotion Academy showed me that I had been running away from my emotions and not facing them. After Emotion Academy, now I have the tools to engage with myself and win the internal battles once and for all - Neil Welsh, Victoria

When I started to ask myself more useful questions and more empowering thoughts, I could really notice a difference in how I felt and how easy it was for me to respond to challenges in a more positive way. I began by asking myself what kind of thoughts would lead me to feel the emotions that I wanted to feel. For me it was things like ‘I’m OK. I’ve got this.’, ‘I’ll find a way.’ or “We can get through this.”

I also learned to ask better questions. Instead of wondering why something was happening to me, I changed my focus to asking things like ‘How can I do better next time?’ and ‘How much can I learn from what just went wrong?’ or ‘What’s another way I can do this?’. I also took more responsibility. For example, rather than thinking ‘Why aren’t they listening to me, can’t they see I’m right?’, or  ‘How come I have to repeat myself again and again?’, I would ask ‘How can I communicate what I’m trying to say better, so they understand the first time?’.

What are some questions you could ask yourself that might be more empowering next time?  Could you ask if the situation has happened before? What was the end result? Is everything OK now, and if so, aren’t the chances of this situation being OK in the end too? Think about it, have you missed a train before? Did you still get to where you were going eventually?

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Melisa Grigg - Head Coach & Trainer

Melisa was stuck in sadness for 15 years, hated her job, was overweight and her relationship had just ended. Melisa inspires people with her story and now teaches how she sorted her life out. She worked out how to be happy and how to lose over 30kg of body weight.  In simple steps she teaches how you can stop procrastinating, find confidence, stop being so sad and finally start to find true meaning and purpose in your life.

Will this matter in the future

One great question I now ask myself is will it really matter in a ten, twenty, fifty years? The power of this question is that it takes you to a totally different perspective. Because the truth is that the vast amount of things that happen to us most days, truly won’t matter in 10 years time. Is anyone really going to be looking back 10 years to what’s going on right now and be bothered?

Whatever it is that’s going on for you right now, that you’re getting so frustrated or angry about, will be long forgotten. In 10 years the influence that it’s had on the world really will be quite minimal. In fact, your emotional reaction itself, more so than whatever it is that’s bothering you, is likely to have a longer lasting impact on the world. The funny thing is, a lot of the time it doesn’t even matter 10 minutes from now. So there really is no point getting yourself all worked up and living a life experiencing negative emotions so often.

These days I spend so much more time enjoying life, focused on the things that matter to me the most. A fulfilling career, my wife, my son, my family and friends. Now they actually enjoy their time with me too. My colleagues actually smile and ask me how my day is going when I walk into a room now.  My wife and I enjoy even more quality connection time together and life is just so much more fun! Just remember: It only takes a moment to pause, breathe and ask yourself a better question.

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