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Van Kleef et al.

Findings revealed that participants tended to be more flexible toward an angry opponent compared with a happy opponent. These results strengthen the argument that participants analyze the opponent's emotion to conclude about their limits and carry out their decisions accordingly.


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According to Leland R. Beaumont, each instance of anger demands making a choice. Other options include initiating a dominance contest; harboring resentment ; or working to better understand and constructively resolve the issue. According to R. Novaco, there are a multitude of steps that were researched in attempting to deal with this emotion. In order to manage anger the problems involved in the anger should be discussed, Novaco suggests. The situations leading to anger should be explored by the person. The person is then tried to be imagery-based relieved of his or her recent angry experiences.

Conventional therapies for anger involve restructuring thoughts and beliefs to bring about a reduction in anger. Research shows that people who suffer from excessive anger often harbor and act on dysfunctional attributions , assumptions and evaluations in specific situations.

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It has been shown that with therapy by a trained professional, individuals can bring their anger to more manageable levels. They are taught to see the provocation and the anger itself as occurring in a series of stages, each of which can be dealt with. The Skills-deficit model states that poor social skills is what renders a person incapable of expressing anger in an appropriate manner. Research has found that persons who are prepared for aversive events find them less threatening, and excitatory reactions are significantly reduced.

How to Stop Self-Sabotage in Your Work LIfe

Learning among antisocial personalities also occurred better when they were involved with high intensity stimulation. This research found that low fear messages were less provocative to the ASPD population, and high positive arousal stimulated their ability to concentrate, and subsequently learn new skills for anger reduction. A new integrative approach to anger treatment has been formulated by Ephrem Fernandez [53] Termed CBAT, for cognitive behavioral affective therapy, this treatment goes beyond conventional relaxation and reappraisal by adding cognitive and behavioral techniques and supplementing them with affective techniques to deal with the feeling of anger.

The techniques are sequenced contingently in three phases of treatment: prevention, intervention, and postvention. In this way, people can be trained to deal with the onset of anger, its progression, and the residual features of anger. Modern psychologists point out that suppression of anger may have harmful effects. The suppressed anger may find another outlet, such as a physical symptom, or become more extreme.

Fiero cites Los Angeles riots of as an example of sudden, explosive release of suppressed anger. The anger was then displaced as violence against those who had nothing to do with the matter. There is also the case of Francine Hughes , who suffered 13 years of domestic abuse. Her suppressed anger drove her to kill her abuser husband. It is claimed that a majority of female victims of domestic violence who suppress their aggressive feelings are unable to recognize, experience, and process negative emotion and this has a destabilizing influence on their perception of agency in their relationships.

However, psychologists have also criticized the "catharsis theory" of aggression, which suggests that "unleashing" pent-up anger reduces aggression. Anger expression might have negative outcomes for individuals and organizations as well, such as decrease of productivity [61] and increase of job stress, [62] however it could also have positive outcomes, such as increased work motivation, improved relationships, increased mutual understanding etc. Tiedens, The model suggests that organizational norms establish emotion thresholds that may be crossed when employees feel anger. The first "expression threshold" is crossed when an organizational member conveys felt anger to individuals at work who are associated with or able to address the anger-provoking situation.

The higher probability of negative outcomes from workplace anger likely will occur in either of two situations.


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  • The first is when organizational members suppress rather than express their anger—that is, they fail to cross the "expression threshold". In this instance personnel who might be able to address or resolve the anger-provoking condition or event remain unaware of the problem, allowing it to continue, along with the affected individual's anger.

    The second is when organizational members cross both thresholds—"double cross"— displaying anger that is perceived as deviant. In such cases the angry person is seen as the problem—increasing chances of organizational sanctions against him or her while diverting attention away from the initial anger-provoking incident. In contrast, a higher probability of positive outcomes from workplace anger expression likely will occur when one's expressed anger stays in the space between the expression and impropriety thresholds.

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    Here, one expresses anger in a way fellow organizational members find acceptable, prompting exchanges and discussions that may help resolve concerns to the satisfaction of all parties involved. This space between the thresholds varies among different organizations and also can be changed in organization itself: when the change is directed to support anger displays; the space between the thresholds will be expanded and when the change is directed to suppressing such displays; the space will be reduced. Neuroscience has shown that emotions are generated by multiple structures in the brain.

    The rapid, minimal, and evaluative processing of the emotional significance of the sensory data is done when the data passes through the amygdala in its travel from the sensory organs along certain neural pathways towards the limbic forebrain. Emotion caused by discrimination of stimulus features, thoughts, or memories however occurs when its information is relayed from the thalamus to the neocortex. Distinguishing between genetic and environmental factors however requires further research and actual measurement of specific genes and environments.

    In neuroimaging studies of anger, the most consistently activated region of the brain was the lateral orbitofrontal cortex. The external expression of anger can be found in physiological responses, facial expressions, body language , and at times in public acts of aggression. Blood flows to the hands. Perspiration increases particularly when the anger is intense. The nostrils flare.

    Anger - Wikipedia

    The jaw tenses. The brow muscles move inward and downward, fixing a hard stare on the target. The arms are raised and a squared-off stance is adopted. The body is mobilized for immediate action, often manifesting as a subjective sense of strength, self-assurance, and potency. This may encourage the impulse to strike out. Ancient Greek philosophers, describing and commenting on the uncontrolled anger, particularly toward slaves, in their society generally showed a hostile attitude towards anger.

    Galen and Seneca regarded anger as a kind of madness. They all rejected the spontaneous, uncontrolled fits of anger and agreed on both the possibility and value of controlling anger.

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    There were however disagreements regarding the value of anger. For Seneca, anger was "worthless even for war. He argued that " Aristotle on the other hand, ascribed some value to anger that has arisen from perceived injustice because it is useful for preventing injustice. Seneca held that "red-haired and red-faced people are hot-tempered because of excessive hot and dry humors.

    Strongman perhaps because their works were not intended for women. Some of them that discuss it, such as Seneca, considered women to be more prone to anger than men. Seneca addresses the question of mastering anger in three parts: 1. One should avoid being too busy or dealing with anger-provoking people. Unnecessary hunger or thirst should be avoided and soothing music be listened to. In dealing with other people, one should not be too inquisitive: It is not always soothing to hear and see everything.

    When someone appears to slight you, you should be at first reluctant to believe this, and should wait to hear the full story. You should also put yourself in the place of the other person, trying to understand his motives and any extenuating factors, such as age or illness. A certain kind of deception, Seneca says, is necessary in dealing with angry people. Galen repeats Seneca's points but adds a new one: finding a guide and teacher can help the person in controlling their passions.

    Galen also gives some hints for finding a good teacher. Seneca warns that this education should not blunt the spirit of the children nor should they be humiliated or treated severely. At the same time, they should not be pampered. Children, Seneca says, should learn not to beat their playmates and not to become angry with them. Seneca also advises that children's requests should not be granted when they are angry. During the period of the Roman Empire and the Middle Ages , philosophers elaborated on the existing conception of anger, many of whom did not make major contributions to the concept.