How to Identify Anger Triggers Easily
For those dealing with anger issues, the first step towards anger management is to figure out what makes you angry in the first place. In most cases, anger is not like some emotional seat that defines your personality or wellbeing, but rather your reaction to something that happens outside, but which changes how you feel.
Perhaps the best definition of anger trigger is anything that elicits the emotions of anger within an individual. By learning how to know some of the things that “push the button” to make someone angry, it becomes easy to manage the anger since you can always tell when you are just about to be triggered.
Anger triggers are unique to individuals
Every anger therapist will confirm to you that just as every individual is different, the triggers responsible for initiating angry feelings are also different and vary widely. Most of the time, life experiences have a direct correlation with how anger triggers are ultimately experienced. For example, if someone made fun of your weight as a child, you are likely to react angrily whenever someone comments about your weight as an adult.
This is just an example of how an experience you had as a child created a trigger to which you will feel angry whenever someone makes a reference about it years later on in life. Some of the common anger triggers include:
- Feeling wronged or mistreated
- Believing that nobody is listening to you
- Getting blamed for things you are not responsible for
- Feeling insecure or unsafe
- Receiving threats
- Getting insulted
- Being falsely accused
- Being ignored
- Being interrupted or talked over
- Being lied to
How to know when you are getting triggered
In any anger management therapy, one of the major goals is to learn how to know if you are getting triggered. If you can tell that you are getting triggered, then you will know what is about to happen, and as such, you will have a stronger grip on your emotions and stop a potential explosion.
Typically, when the trigger is on, you are likely to experience both an emotional and physiological response. The emotional response comes with the primal sectors of the brain that is responsible for controlling reasoning gives way to the prefrontal cortex. At that point, your desire is that whatever could be happening should just stop. One of the reasons why you get angry is when you feel that you are no longer in control.
The physiological response, on the other hand, comes about when your respiratory rate and heart rate increases rapidly. This might make you feel anxious, panic or just feel that you are on the very edge. The muscles will become tense, and you may also have tunnel vision. These are the same responses you will normally have whenever you are feeling unsafe or threatened.
When you combine the physiological and the emotional responses, it becomes to make a clear decision, and you could feel as if the anger is getting out of control.