Do you remember the Law of Conservation of Energy from 6th grade science class? Well, you should, because though it comes with some really confusing math equations, it's actually pretty practical! Think about this law of energy when as it relates to your anger.
Anger, like all other emotions, is expressed in a form of energy. Let's do a simple test. Sit comfortably, and close your eyes. Try and imagine something that makes you angry. This could be a person, or an event in your life. Now, put some details into that memory that make it more real for you.
How Anger Affects You
Keeping your eyes closed, begin to bring your awareness to the present moment and scan your body. Do you notice anything different? Are your shoulders tight? Teeth clenched? Eyebrows furrowed? Is your breathing restricted? Does your throat feel tight?
Anger is expressed because of some other deeply rooted emotion. This can be fear, shame, disappointment, or hatred. Think about what causes you to feel anger. We often say, "That person/thing makes me angry!" Well, is your co-worker MAKING you angry? Or are you allowing that person to trigger the underlying feelings of fear or insecurity, which cause anger to show its ugly face?
Anger As Potential Energy
It makes a little more sense if we can think about our anger in terms of energy. Energy is either stored (potential) or energy in motion (kinetic, heat, light). Since energy cannot be created or destroyed, think about anger like a form of energy in its potential form. Like a small seed inside of you that will grow if you feed it water and sunlight.
What do you do with your anger once it has started growing? Do you suppress it, and put it back into its little seed? Or maybe release it with an outburst; yelling, stomping, and clenching your muscles?
Anger can be toxic either way, by harming you deep inside, or affecting others around you. Anger completely disrupts the neurological system, causing the release of neurotransmitters and physical and emotional exhaustion.
Converting Anger Into Positive Creativity
What if I told you that anger can be converted into another form of energy? Like creativity, patience, and love? Well, believe it, because it's true! The next time you feel anger building up inside, pick up a pen and paper, or a paintbrush. Don't think about it, just begin to write, draw, or paint. You may be completely amazed at what emerges.
Children who were told to draw pictures of their feelings expressed more vivid, detailed, and remarkable images, than those told to draw pictures of what they saw. The energy expressed in their feelings was much more powerful.
Find an unusual or creative way to convert this energy into something beautiful next time you experience it. You just may surprise yourself!