Self Hypnosis and Visualizations- Using Alternative Tools for Anger Management
Many emotionally charged outbursts of anger and frustration are rooted in deeper memories, patterns of behavior and perceptions that provoke a sense of feeling trapped, victimized or controlled by outer circumstances or people. Some people who are prone to outbursts of anger describe a feeling of being unable to change their immediate surroundings, environment or circumstances where they turn to methods of coping that can often be destructive to both the person who is experiencing the anger and other people that are part of that persons sphere of influence.
Oftentimes the outbursts are triggered by non-related situations however, because the person is experiencing residual emotional suppression and poor coping mechanisms, the triggers appear to be exact examples of the root cause to anger.
For those who choose to seek medical attention or counsel to help sooth or manage their anger, they find that it is a long arduous process and many feel trapped by the therapy itself in the same way they feel trapped by the anger. Aside from prescribed medication, there are several ways that people can temper and sooth their anger by adopting coping mechanisms that are both healthy and inclusive.
The key is to give the person a sense of empowerment to re-establish a balance with their emotional reactions to stimulation in their environment and slowly, the person can learn how to respond and react differently to things they would have reacted negatively to in the past.
Deep rooted memories that were created in early childhood often have the most influential patterns of triggered reaction. In this case, particular memories of abandonment, abuse, neglect or violence that have not received closure, resolution or a conclusion leave the person psychologically needing to finalize what has upset the balance in their life. Because of this, the person often finds themselves reflecting on the core memory with the same emotional response as they did when it first occurred. However, with situations like this that don't have a conclusion other than for the person to find one on their own, there are visualization methods and techniques that can deliver the same results so that the person can move forward from the experience and find resolution with it.
A technique is to "transplant" an image, a sensation or a core sense of well being into the original memory. This could also be considered a self-hypnotic suggestion. Changing the overall reaction to the core memory can create a release of the negative emotion where a more positive emotion can be experienced. For example, say a person remembers their parents fighting when he was a small child. Watching without the ability to protect one parent from the other or the ability to change the outcome can leave the child with a sense of feeling just as victimized as the adult. This creates a root emotional signature that develops into anger. So, to alter this experience and reduce the stress associated to it, he can lie down in a comfortable position, close his eyes and recall what he experienced as a child watching the fight. While he is deep within the emotional energies of the experience, he can then focus in on one parent. Let's say the father who is abusive to the mother. He can focus in on the father and visually isolate him in the memory. He then can "scan" the expressions on his fathers face and "replace" those angered expressions with a smile, a gentleness or softness. As he does this, he can then take that energy and focus on the positive emotion that his father is showing. As he does, he can shift to a memory in which his father was joyful, engaged with the family and at peace within himself.
With the same memory, he can focus on his mothers expressions and replace her sense of fear, frustration or anger with a sense of peace, well-being, and contentment. He can visualize her in a warm color of pink, blue and white which can represent love, peace and connection to a higher good. As he sees her expressions change, he can then shift to a memory in which she was at peace or contented.
Also, each time he replaces a negative emotion or memory with a positive one, he can visualize a particular object or physical location that also represents those positive emotions and memories. This can also be considered a self-hypnotic technique and is useful for many reasons. When he experiences triggers in the present moment that cause stress, he can visualize the object or physical location to inject a sense of feeling at peace or soothed. So when he is in a stressful position and he's prone to anger, he can picture what brings him positive emotions instead and that action can change the entire outcome of how he remembers current situations that, in the past, he would feel victimized by.
The brain naturally responds to repetitive stimulation for both negative and positive mental stimulation which can yield amazing results if it is applied through intentionally positive stimulation.
This simple exercise in the beginning may not feel simple at all but with patience and repetition, success can be achieved.