Ilissa’s Family Tip # 5- Are You Irritated or Angry?

Angry man

Are You Angry or Irritated?

There’s a big difference between feeling irritated and feeling angry. Irritation is milder; something you can cope with. Anger that is acted on is stronger and usually out of control. It crosses boundaries, hurts other people and can be abusive. If you can learn to say “I am irritated not angry”, then you will be acting and feeling more healthily than you have been before. Your relationships will improve because you will be able to discuss issues.

Here’s how to change anger into irritation…

1. Start with learning to calm your anger. That might mean walking away, calling a time out, counting to ten-100, writing down your thoughts, listening to music, doing Yoga or running to the gym.  It’s what you think that determines how you feel.

2. When you are angry notice what you tell yourself. Remind yourself that others don’t have to agree with you and that you cannot control others only yourself.

3. Think about why it is you get so angry? Is it a learned behavior?

4. When you are by yourself and thinking about the event don’t waste your time thinking about what the other person did to make you angry. That will just extend your anger. Think about what you could have done differently. See if there’s anything you can agree with and tell the person when you get back to discussing it. It makes them more open to your ideas.

5. Figure out through mulling or writing what it is you are really upset about and find a kind way to share this with the other person.

Keep practicing these 5 steps and soon you will find that you are feeling irritated rather than angry. This is a gift you can give to your loved ones as well as to yourself. You’ll feel so much more comfortable feeling irritated rather than angry. Remember, you have no right to take your anger out on others. You are responsible for your own emotions and your subsequent behavior.

 Want to change anger into irritation right now??

About Ilissa Banhazl

Ilissa Banhazl is a licensed marriage and family psychotherapist, former grade school teacher and holds a masters degree in reading. She has a private practice in Glendora, CA and lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband and three children. She specializes in adult, adolescent, individual, couple, and family relationship counseling as well as eating disorder treatment and recovery. She facilitates a Women’s Support Group in Glendora as well as a Women’s Disordered Eating & Body Image Group. Ilissa authors 3 therapy blogs, Marriage and Family, Eating Disorders and Group Therapy. You can follow her at FB and Twitter. or
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s