December 4, 2011

Anger is a normal emotion. It is a very powerful emotion and when used constructively can have a very positive impact. It is a primary emotion and its purpose is to protect us against perceived threat in that something or somebody who can harm us or take something   away from us. It can be seen as a barometer that tells us something does not feel right for us such as an injustice, an abuse of power, manipulation etc. and that we need to do something about it.  Anger can range from feelings of mild irritation to intense feelings of rage. It is the physiological symptoms that can intensify the feeling as the anger sends a signal to the body to prepare itself to defend or render the perceived threat ineffective.

Anger can become a problem when a person does not understand the reason for their anger and they continuously act out of the feeling. They find themselves regularly feeling angry, agitated, impatient, sarcastic, nasty, and/or resentful to name a few of the expressions of this anger. They can also be passive aggressive (unable to express their anger with a person but they will get you back) abusive and even aggressive. The impact that this can have on the person is that they may be preoccupied with angry thoughts, not feeling happy or content with themselves, they can experience problems with relationships and may feel isolated or alone.

So what is going on when a person is easily angered and displays the above symptoms? On a subconscious level no matter how bad the behaviour is the person has to get something out of it even though they think and feel that they are not. When this anger is unravelled, at its core are feelings of worthlessness, disrespect, not feeling valued, unimportance, rejection, not feeling good enough, feeling ignored, unloved, or powerless. So, when a person experiences any of these feelings, anger jumps in almost like a reflex action and its purpose is to protect the person from experiencing the core feeling.  The impact of this is that the person feels better about themselves because the anger eases or sooths the core feeling. This can then be rationalised by blaming someone else, it is their partner’s fault, the boss or the person in the supermarket or the driver that pulls out in front of them. It is always somebody else’s fault. When a person gets caught in this cycle it is often difficult for them to be aware that there is a problem and it needs to be addressed.

Whilst learning to step back when confronted with angry situations, deep breathing, mindfulness, exercise, etc are helpful but it does not get to the root cause of the anger, it merely distracts, it has a band aid effect and helps to manage the immediate situation.

If a person wants to get to the root cause of their anger, understand and effectively learn to manage their anger, therapy is where you can explore this, and it is a safe place to do this.  With awareness and insight it helps to get to the root cause. This in turn helps the person to recognise situations where these feelings can trigger the anger and it in turn gives real choice and control in how to act and react in certain situations. Otherwise when this anger is carried throughout a person’s life it does not allow a person to open their hearts to others or to truly give and to receive love and acceptance from others.


Women as Breadwinners

November 2, 2011

The role of women in the workplace is rapidly changing as more and more women are becoming the main or sole breadwinner in families. Figures recently released in Ireland show that 33% of working women in Ireland are the main breadwinners (2011 Pfizer Health Index). In the U.S. women, for the first time, now make up half of the working population and according to the US Bureau of Labor statistics (2009) one third of women are main or sole breadwinners and this was expected to rise with the fal...

Continue reading...

Coping with your emotions & anxieties when starting college

September 8, 2011

Starting College can bring up a range of emotions from excitement and feeling happy with this new phase of your life to fear, trepidation, worry and anxiety. Then again you may be so caught up with the excitement of starting college that it’s only after you start that the emotions may surface.

Some of the issues that may cause anxiety and worry when you start college are living away from home for the first time. Without being fully aware of it you are now responsible for yourself, responsi...

Continue reading...

To talk with Anne-Marie on any of the issues raised in the blog call 01 2147613

Over 14 years of experience working with clients in a professional counselling and psychotherapy setting. I have worked on a wide range of issues with individuals, male and female, of all ages coming from many different cultures and backgrounds. My approach is very down to earth and integrative which means that I draw on different models of therapy and use whichever one or combination is best suited to the individual. To speak to Anne-Marie confidentially call 01-2147613 or email