Why So Much Anger? – Top Ten #6
Greg answers the question, "Why do I sometimes get angry so easily?" Watch now and discover how you can eliminate anger from your life.
Anger is Accepted as Almost Normal
Anger is a very common condition, so common that we've come to accept it as almost normal. We see anger everywhere we look— angry drivers on the road, frustrated people standing in line, irritated family members, angry spectators at sporting events, and on and on. A friend of mine once said to me, “I don't think people are as angry as you think.” And I said, “Really. Walk into any Walmart and cut in line.” He smiled.
If people are not actively angry, most of them are just about this far from it. Why so much anger around us? In our society, we almost universally believe that our anger is caused by other people. We prove that belief every day when we say things like, “HE makes me so mad.” or “YOU make me angry” and so on. But is that really true? Do other people MAKE us angry?
In questions one and two of the Top 10 I said that in order to be happy, what we all need most is Real Love and very few of us received enough of it. Without enough Real Love, we don't have what matters most. We’re empty and afraid, conditions as painful and serious to us emotionally and spiritually as deep physical wounds are to the body. When we truly understand what I just said, it becomes relatively easy to understand almost all human feelings and behavior including our own.
Understanding Anger with the Sunburn Metaphor
Let me illustrate with a metaphor. Imagine that as I walk by you one day, I lightly bump you from behind briefly, you turn to greet me, but then you go back to your business. Now imagine that a week has gone by. You've just awakened from a nap where you accidentally slept in the sun on the beach for several hours. As the evening progresses, the pain worsens and by morning you can hardly stand the touch of your own clothing on your skin. As I walk by again, I lightly bump you from behind. In order to escape the pain shooting through your body, you rapidly turn away from me. But in the process, you slam your back into the corner of a cabinet. Now there's an explosion of pain. You angrily turn toward me and demand to know how I could be so thoughtless. What's happening here? You're blaming me for your anger. Is that justified? Well, it seems to be. After all, you were just fine, sort of. Then I bumped you, which was immediately followed by pain and anger. So, it's got to be my fault, right?
No. If my behavior alone, bumping you, were responsible for your pain, your reaction would have been the same on both occasions. But your reaction was quite different the second time because you were already in pain and I had nothing to do with that. That doesn't mean I was blameless. I could have been more careful and not bumped you, but your reaction was mostly a result of YOUR past experience: the sunburn.
People are In Pain Almost All the Time
When people haven't had enough Real Love in their lives, it's like they walk around with a sunburn, a pretty bad one all the time. They're in pain and then it takes virtually nothing for you to push them over the edge. We've all had the experience of saying some innocent little thing to someone only to have them blow up right in front of us and then we wonder what happened. Well now, you know—sunburn.
Most people are in pain almost all the time. We don't have to do much metaphorically just bump them from behind to make their pain intolerable, and then they blame us. When we understand that, we've become a great deal more tolerant of others and of ourselves.
As you watch the material on RealLove.com, you'll learn much more about the origin of your anger and other behaviors. You'll learn how they get in the way of your happiness and healthy relationships: lying, withdrawal, acting like a victim, clinging, and more. More important, you'll learn how you can eliminate these behaviors and make a profound difference in your relationships.
Learn more about eliminating your anger.