Eliminating Rage

Old 10-04-2002, 10:28 PM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Morning Glory
Posts: n/a
Eliminating Rage

How does rage manifest itself?
When I am in a rage I:

act without thinking.

am out of control both emotionally and sometimes physically.

want to strike out and hurt someone or break something.

boil over with hatred and disgust.

think and act out violently.

am so angry that I can't handle it.

feel my anger controlling me rather than the other way around.

feel my throat tighten; my face get red and hot; my neck and shoulders tighten and my hands automatically clench into a fist.

begin to cry, scream, and lash out.

get murderous thoughts against the object(s) of my rage.

have a tendency to act impulsively where I become potentially dangerous to myself or others.

get so frustrated that I want to ``run away'' in the midst of my raging.

feel that to go on is futile and I want out.

become completely irrational.

tend to act out badly and wind up feeling guilty and/or embarrassed afterwards.

show the ``dark'' side of my personality.

am often reacting to a ``hot button'' that has been pushed that taps into my unresolved anger.

fume so that I become speechless or begin to stutter.

become a frightening spectacle of uncontrolled anger.

am temporarily insane.

What are the results of rage?
As a result of my getting into a fit of rage:

I end up with a big mess to clean up.

people avoid me, staying clear for a long time after my ``fit.''

I feel loads of guilt and spend a great amount of time and energy ``making up'' for it.

people are so offended that they reject and/or abandon me.

I run away from the situation that caused me to ``lose it.''

I lose the respect of others.

my shame and embarrassment are so great that I avoid the victims of my rage.

I decided it was better to "stuff'' my anger and I have held my anger in ever since.

people walk around me gingerly avoiding saying or doing anything that might rile me up again.

I have the reputation of being ``crazy.''

I have become confused, believing that "rage'' is the only way to express anger.

I recognize that I can intimidate people, get my way, and control the situation.

people respond to my "power play'' and either comply with my demands or come to a halt and refuse to budge.

I look back on it as an "out of body'' experience. I have the sensation of watching myself from outside of me.

What are the roots of my rage?
My fits of rage are rooted in:

my never learning to ventilate my anger appropriately as I experienced it.

the role modeling I received from my parents.

the way anger was shown in my family of origin.

my being physically, mentally, verbally, or sexually abused in my family of origin or later by a significant other.

me trying to get people's attention.

me trying to control a situation or to get my way.

my stuffing anger until I can't take it anymore and I explode.

my need to "look good'' when I am angry.

my need to blow up when it's a case of one time too many.

my not making systematic efforts to "work out'' my pent up anger.

my explosive personality.

my denial of the intensity of my unresolved anger.

my insecurity and lack of self-confidence.

my being overly sensitive to the actions and comments of others.

the "chip on my shoulder,'' the grudge I hold against those who I believe have treated me unfairly.

stereotypic problem solving where I react to situations in the same way no matter who is involved.

What "names" are given my fits of rage?
hissy fits, temper tantrums, nasty, acts of rage, blowing my lid, vicious, uncontrollable anger, out of control, getting, worked up, going crazy, insane, aggravated, going bazookas, wound up, agitated, wacko, explosive, hellish, outrageous, going nuts, irate, bizarre, violent, murderous, offensive, bullying, dictatorial, disgusting, gruesome, furious road rage, sports rage, crowd rage

Why do I resort to fits of rage?
I tend to get into a fit of rage when:

my rights are either ignored or not responded to.

the inequity of a situation appears overwhelming.

the futility of a situation seems unfair.

I feel like I'm being ignored and I want people to listen to me.

I lose control and burst out with my anger and bitterness.

something is said or done to me that brings up an angry feeling from the past.

I have tolerated pain too long.

I have kept my silence for too long and I finally explode.

have suffered silently, hoping that by not openly complaining things will change.

things don't change, I give up my silence, and let out my pent up feelings.

I have watched someone I care about deeply being unfairly treated for a long time.

I step in and try to speak up for someone and lose my control in the process.

What irrational thinking results in my fits of rage?
There is only one thing people will listen to and that is when I blow my top.

I've got to maintain my silence no matter what.

It's better to suffer silently.

Not complaining is a sign of character.

I'll do anything to get my way.

It's not what you do that counts but it's how you win.

Kill or be killed.

The best defense is a good offense.

I'd get an ulcer if I didn't let out my anger.

Everyone is out to get me.

No one cares how I feel.

No one understands me or my problem.

They all ignore me.

No one will ever take advantage of me again.

No one is going to get away with hurting me or anyone I care for.

Life sucks; you have to be constantly alert to defend yourself against it.

You never know the minute or the hour when you'll be taken advantage of.

No one ever listens to me unless I shout.

The squeaky wheel gets the grease.

It doesn't pay to suffer silently.

How can I prevent getting into fits of rage?
In order to avoid succumbing to a fit of rage I need to:

let people know assertively when my rights have been ignored.

show my anger assertively rather than stuffing it in and keeping silent.

perform ``anger work-out'' over things that angers me over which I have no control.

ventilate my anger a little at a time away from people.

give permission to those in my life to walk away from me when I get into a fit of rage.

not to get into my car when I feel like exploding and not explode on others.

time myself out in my room to do anger and rage work-out on inanimate objects and not on people

engage in more physical and strenuous exercise every day.

lessen the impact of my pent up anger and frustration.

write a letter of protest rather than explode in rage.

slow down and control my impulses.

recognize the irrational thinking that lies at the root of my rage.

replace this irrational thinking with appropriate rational alternatives.

honestly analyze the results of my fits of rage.

recognize that such fits either go ignored yet perceived as offensive, or else they intimidate others and are perceived as power plays, attempts to control others.

identify those "hot buttons'' that are likely to get me into a rage.

systematically defuse these anger "hot button" issues through anger work-out.
Old 10-04-2002, 10:29 PM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Morning Glory
Posts: n/a
Steps to eliminate my fits of rage
Step 1: I first must identify my level of risk for getting into rage. To do this I will rate the following statements on a scale of 1 to 5 circling the number according to their impact on my life.

1 = never true

2 = sometimes true

3 = often true

4 = almost always true

5 = always true

1 2 3 4 5 ( 1) I react without thinking when I get angry.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 2) I get out of control when I get frustrated and angry.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 3) I strike or hit objects, walls, or people when I'm mad.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 4) I was abused physically, verbally, emotionally, or sexually by my parents or other significant others.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 5) I am known to be a violent acting person.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 6) Acting out in a fit of rage is the only way I ever saw anger expressed.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 7) My anger controls me rather than the opposite.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 8) I get an actual physical bodily response when I'm very anger.

1 2 3 4 5 ( 9) I want to kill someone, something, or myself when I'm out of control.

1 2 3 4 5 (10) I don't believe people listen to me unless I get angry, shout, and pound my fist.

1 2 3 4 5 (11) I want to run away or quit when I get angry.

1 2 3 4 5 (12) I have a hard time getting calmed down after I've been angry.

1 2 3 4 5 (13) I feel guilt and remorse after I have raged.

1 2 3 4 5 (14) I let people see the ``dark'' side of my personality when I get angry.

1 2 3 4 5 (15) I have several ``hot buttons'' which, when pushed, get me very upset rather quickly.

1 2 3 4 5 (16) I lose my ability to speak clearly and accurately when I get angry.

1 2 3 4 5 (17) I feel like I go crazy during a rage.

1 2 3 4 5 (18) I find that I continually fume silently about things that anger me. I never seem to find a release.

1 2 3 4 5 (19) I have a tendency to view life as unfair, especially to me.

1 2 3 4 5 (20) I frighten people with my show of anger.

1 2 3 4 5 (21) I try to keep a lid on my anger but when it rises to the surface I can no longer control it.

1 2 3 4 5 (22) I don't make the effort to do systematic anger work-out over what bothers me.

1 2 3 4 5 (23) I have no idea how deep my anger goes.

1 2 3 4 5 (24) I have a chip on my shoulder.

1 2 3 4 5 (25) I hold grudges against people.

1 2 3 4 5 (26) I only know one way to show my anger: to explode.

1 2 3 4 5 (27) I feel that my rights are continuously being ignored.

1 2 3 4 5 (28) I am overwhelmed by the unfairness of life.

1 2 3 4 5 (29) I don't believe that people listen to me.

1 2 3 4 5 (30) I feel like a loser in life.

1 2 3 4 5 (31) I feel like my anger is always at the surface ready to explode.

1 2 3 4 5 (32) I was extremely hurt in my past life, and I am often reminded of the pain.

1 2 3 4 5 (33) I have unresolved anger.

1 2 3 4 5 (34) I get upset when I see others being treated unfairly.

1 2 3 4 5 (35) I am embarrassed by the ways I show my anger.

____ My score

Add the ratings on each of thirty-five items above. Compare my score to the level of risk.

Score Interpretation

35-70 Mild risk of fits of rage

71-105 Moderate risk of fits of rage

106-140 Marked risk of fits of rage

141+ Severe risk of fits of rage

If I am at a mild risk I need to continue my attempts to prevent fits of rage.

If I am at a moderate risk I need to develop strategies to inhibit my rage when it erupts.

If I am at a marked risk I need to develop ways to overcome the negative impact of my rage and learn to redirect my anger.

If I am at a severe risk I am so out of control that I need to not only develop means to lessen the damage resulting from my rage, but I need to get help from the "support'' people in my life to develop ways to divert my uncontrolled anger.

Step 2: After determining my risk factor for rage, I need to clarify my feelings about my ``rage'' behavior. I will answer the following questions in my journal:

A. What is my level of risk for rage? What does this say about how I deal with my anger?

B. What factors increase my level of risk?

C. How do the people in my life react during my fits of rage?

D. What are the negative consequences of these fits?

E. How do I explain my rage? Why do I have these fits?

F. What do I experience when I am in one of these fits?

G. What do others call my fits of rage? How does this make me feel?

H. Do I experience guilt after one of these fits? What do I do about these feelings? Do I deny or minimize their impact?

I. How does my initial silent withdrawal into anger tie into these fits of rage?

J. How do my blocks to anger fit into this scenario

K. How does my personal behavioral script relate to

L. Are there factors in my upbringing in my family of origin, to account for my fits of rage? List them

M. How was anger dealt with in my family of origin? Who in my family had similar fits of rage?

N. How do I react to others during their fits of rage with me?

Step 3: I now need to address my "hot button'' issues. I will review the following list of potential hot buttons and circle the rating for each according to its intensity for me.

1 = cool

2 = lukewarm to mildly warm

3 = warm to mild heat

4 = moderate to high heat

5 = scalding

Intensity of Heat Hot Button Issues

1 2 3 4 5 ( 1) injustice toward me or others

1 2 3 4 5 ( 2) having my ideas ignored

1 2 3 4 5 ( 3) feeling put down

1 2 3 4 5 ( 4) being laughed at or made fun of

1 2 3 4 5 ( 5) being misunderstood

1 2 3 4 5 ( 6) being left out, not chosen

1 2 3 4 5 ( 7) sensing unfairness to self or others

1 2 3 4 5 ( 8) feeling abused: real or implied; physical, emotional, verbal, or sexual

1 2 3 4 5 ( 9) sensing prejudice against me or my ideas

1 2 3 4 5 (10) people not following my directions

1 2 3 4 5 (11) people not doing as I requested

1 2 3 4 5 (12) not winning in competition

1 2 3 4 5 (13) feeling rejection

1 2 3 4 5 (14) feeling a lack of approval from others

1 2 3 4 5 (15) sensing that people don't respect me

1 2 3 4 5 (16) feeling that my opinion is not valued

1 2 3 4 5 (17) being considered stupid, incompetent, or ignorant

1 2 3 4 5 (18) being cheated

1 2 3 4 5 (19) being lied to

1 2 3 4 5 (20) being accused of something I didn't do

1 2 3 4 5 (21) seeing the fruits of my labor go unappreciated

1 2 3 4 5 (22) feeling like a failure or a loser

1 2 3 4 5 (23) finding out the truth about something I should have known; realizing that information was deliberately kept from me

1 2 3 4 5 (24) being caught off guard about the truth

1 2 3 4 5 (25) when others jump to negative assumptions about me

1 2 3 4 5 (26) when I'm not given a chance

1 2 3 4 5 (27) when my hard work and efforts are not rewarded and I get no back up

1 2 3 4 5 (28) recognizing that people less intelligent, less competent, and less creative than I have become more successful than I

1 2 3 4 5 (29) never being given a chance to "show my stuff'' or to succeed

1 2 3 4 5 (30) being called a name or labeled something offensive

1 2 3 4 5 (31) being reminded of my faults

1 2 3 4 5 (32) seeing my faults in others, especially my offspring or protege

1 2 3 4 5 (33) recognizing that I can't do something I want to do

1 2 3 4 5 (34) realizing that people are deliberately making things tough for me

1 2 3 4 5 (35) feeling intimidated

1 2 3 4 5 (36) feeling fat, dumb, and ugly

1 2 3 4 5 (37) being unable to connect with someone

1 2 3 4 5 (38) recognizing that it is futile to continue to try

1 2 3 4 5 (39) realizing that the barriers I'm fighting against are overwhelming

1 2 3 4 5 (40) watching people turn away from me

For items 41 to 50 fill in "hot button'' items specific to me. Rate the intensity of their heat for me:

1 2 3 4 5 (41)

1 2 3 4 5 (42)

1 2 3 4 5 (43)

1 2 3 4 5 (44)

1 2 3 4 5 (45)

1 2 3 4 5 (46)

1 2 3 4 5 (47)

1 2 3 4 5 (48)

1 2 3 4 5 (49)

1 2 3 4 5 (50)
Old 10-04-2002, 10:29 PM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Morning Glory
Posts: n/a
Step 4: For each of the hot button issues with a rating of 3 or higher, I need to separately complete the following "hot button detonator'' activity:

A. To detonate a hot button I must:

(1) clarify its ability to set me off into a rage.

(2) clarify how this hot button influences other hot buttons that set me off.

(3) clarify the factors that contribute to this issue being a hot button.

(4) identify the unresolved anger that underlies this issue.

(5) identify those in my family of origin or past life who have contributed to the intensity of this hot button

B. Perform daily anger work-outs on the unresolved anger concerning this specific hot button.

C. Inform the support people in my life of this hot button and give them permission to intervene when they see it has been pushed.

D. Work on my self-love, sense of self-esteem, self confidence, and inner security to diminish the importance of this hot button in my life.

E. Take each hot button issue and write a positive visual imagery where I no longer feel the heat.

F. Write a description of each hot button issue and take the papers to support group meetings. As each issue is detonated, I'll put the hot button description in a bonfire and enjoy seeing it destroyed.

Step 5: Once I have detonated each of my hot buttons, if I still have fits of rage, I need to return to Step 1 and identify what hot button led to the fit of rage, and then systematically detonate it. I need to detonate each hot button over and over until I have eliminated my fits of rage.
Old 10-05-2002, 12:49 PM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Grace Under Fire
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Posts: 536
I have been reading this forum since
the beginning, mulling over everything.
I see several family members in this
including myself but now that you have
brought up the rage, you have just
described my oldest son to a "T". I
really wish he could admit he needed
help before he goes back to state prison.
Thanks M.G. for all you do.

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Old 05-28-2003, 11:11 PM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Morning Glory
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Old 05-29-2003, 05:08 AM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2002
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Posts: 90
Sorry, I'm following you

Again I have to say how deeply these posts affect me; I just read the one on guilt and realised the family scapegoat was me. This of course went hand in hand with the shame, rage and self-defeating behavhiour.

I also realize I have to stay away from them as the patterns-being accused of shameful behaviour( the fact of having my having simple boundaries and needs ) starts the cycle. Actually, just yesterday, I had a scene with my sister; she's going through a crisis and "triggered" me, to be able to justify her subsequent shaming.

what to do but stay away-because my recovery and
serenity is so threatening to my family, it's constantly being "triggered".

I will continue to follow. And thanks so very much.

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Old 05-29-2003, 06:33 AM
  # 7 (permalink)  
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I am glad you are here Tigergirl, and I am sorry to hear about the struggles you are facing, please keep posting and sharing!

Many hugs and hope too,
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Old 05-29-2003, 07:21 AM
  # 8 (permalink)  
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Morning Glory
Boy you sure have a gift for identifying and coping with many different aspects of recovery. You enlighten my insight so very much..without these kinds of posts it would take me alot longer than it will to work through things. I appreciate this information immensley.
My mom had a heart attack on my birthday, April 15....she was taken to another hospital by metro life flight....I didnt think I was going to make it through this. The panic was still with me...going strong. The driving, stress, elevators, hallways, etc. really tested my abilities to keep it together.
I have always live in constant fear for when mom has sto go to the hospital..she has trown things at nurses, cussed, yelled, called names, and at one point a few years ago got drugged and tied to the bed-she called me to come "save" her. I went and got her out of that hospital and took her to another one. She always exects me to "save" her when she gets herself into trouble like this? I fear that some day she will end up in a mental institution and expect me to "save" her. She has so much good in such a contradiction..she picks up a rose and examines every tiny part of it, even the drop of dew on its leaf, and she will cry at the beauty of it-she has such a wonderful soft side.
This is an issue I am currently working on with my counselor..Anger is new to me..I have never allowed myself to feel it..I think because of watching what my mothers anger did to her all those years...recently, when I have stopped blaming myself for what others have done to me..I got scared the crap out of me and I went running to my counselor..especially that anger toward one of my own children..gosh I have never felt like that before.
How nice it would be to have mom's permission to leave when she has one of her much pressure would be off of me.
I am mulling over whether to print and give your post to her...dont know if I should? We have a pretty close relationship and are able to talk about alot of things.
Again..thank you morning glory for being here for us

I also am feeling rage myself at times over being accused of doing something I did not do...........

Love in spirit
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Old 07-15-2003, 11:44 AM
  # 9 (permalink)  
Morning Glory
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Old 11-17-2003, 05:16 PM
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Morning Glory
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Old 10-20-2007, 07:30 PM
  # 11 (permalink)  
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my final and most frightening rage!

about four months ago i moved to a new apartment at the beach and met a guy right away. we started seeing each other, always drinking. he had/has no job. tells everybody he's a hair that really pays a lot of money. my research about hair models revealed they are payed very little, and certainly not enough to support oneself by working only two days a month. i think he's on disability.

this guy didn't have a cell phone or home phone or computer. yet, i fell for him.

one day, we spent the a.m. and early afternoon together then i had a job interview. i asked him if we could get together that evening and he said yes.

but he blew me off to.......go drinking!!!!!!!!! and with no phone on him, i had no way of contacting him and had absolutely no control of the situation.

so i started drinking!!!!!!!! a lot!!!!!!!!!!!!! by 10 p.m., i was wasted and furious when he finally called, three hours late. i was so hurt, felt so rejected, and was a total mess. he called from a friend's cell phone and for the next few hours, we argued back and forth and i said numerous nasty things, and yelled and just made an ass of myself.

as if this weren't enough, i went over to his apartment at 3 a.m. and his friend (my boyfriend wasn't there) was there and let me in. while the friend was watching tv, i went out to the porch and threw my boyfriend's bike over the wall (second floor apartment), and then i calmly left, and took the bike down to the beach, and THREW IT IN THE OCEAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!! this is a bike we had found on the side of the road that morning while bikeriding after idyllic morning........then he blew me off that night. somehow this bike represented his reason for blowing me off. like going to get that bike off the side of the road was more important than seeing me.

well, needless to say, we are no longer seeing one another. we tried, but he is just a bigger mess than me, and also a fraud and liar.

as if the theft and vandalism of the bike wasn't enough, i tapped into his ***** email account (how brilliant am I? i figured out his password on my first attempt!) and learned that everything he'd been saying to me was all lies.

i am still trying to figure out what all of this means about me and my mental state. he did a lot of inappropriate things, but the Scorpio in me was completely ruthless and i had to get my revenge tenfold +++.

i am wondering if i should just let it go or apologize/make amends as part of my recovery. i totally violated his privacy by tapping into his email.

there will come a time when we come face to face. we live only seven blocks apart and i've already seen him from a distance three times.

the worst part about it is that he has scoliosis, is very deformed and very sensitive about it, and i just ripped this guy apart. plus, it's very painful for him and he takes meds for it........that mixed with alcohol.......bad stuff. but i can't save him, i know that.

so i am feeling guilty and frightened by my actions.

i am seeing someone else now. i'm not crazy about this new guy like i was the first guy. so i don't get crazy. how can i have a relationship with someone i really like a lot if i am so abusive to them? at least i have learned a great deal about myself from all of this!!!!!!!!!!

another bad thing about many people know all about it!!!! he told everybody who would listen about his crazy GF throwing his bike in the ocean. he kinda dug the attention. sick, right? it's funny and just oh so wrong on so many levels!!!!!!!!!!

Last edited by shugabooga; 10-20-2007 at 07:33 PM. Reason: i am a perfectionist when it comes to typing!
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Old 11-26-2008, 02:42 AM
  # 12 (permalink)  
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I know this is an old thread... but I was researching, and it came to the top.

It's really helpful for me right now. Thank you.
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Old 11-26-2008, 03:12 AM
  # 13 (permalink)  
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It's a great thread, Eleison.
Thanks for bumping it up again!

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