The 8 Core Causes of Anger, effects of anger, and coping strategies.

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The 8 Core Causes of Anger, effects of anger, and coping strategies.

Post by DJ Arendee on Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:22 am

While the resources are free for me, I've been visiting a counselor to just talk about general aspects of my life. One of them being anger. This is what he taught me, and I felt I'd share.

Human beings become angry for 8 reasons:

They are made to feel:

Powerless
Unimportant
Guilty
Unlovable
Disrespected
Devalued
Accused
Rejected

The mnemonic device for this is PUGUDDAR (unless you can make a better one).

When people are angry, it is because the person has been afflicted in one of these 8 areas.

For example:
Person A tells Person B "You're a liar"
Person B feels accused and disrespected. Based on their personal definition of liar, they may also feel devalued.

Some people and cultures are more prone to certain values than others. For example, hispanic cultures are big on respect. If they feel disrespected, they may become very angry more so than some other cultures.

Typically, when people are angry, they want someone else to empathize with them. Angry people say things they don't mean. So an escalating argument is between 2 brains that are not using their frontal lobes (responsible for critical thinking, more prominant in thinking type personalities), only their temporal lobes (reactive behavior, more prominant in feeler personalities). There are several ways people react when their anger "button" is pushed: guilt trips, reciprocity of anger, and getting the other person to think. We'll get into these later.

Here are some more examples:

Made to feel Powerless (very common in relationships involved in a power struggle):
The husband has the job, the paycheck, the car. The wife has nothing. The wife may feel powerless. If this starts to get to her, she will become demanding and angry. She has no power over her own life. As she gets angry, she might do whatever she can to make the husband feel how she feels, by somehow taking away his power in any way she can. This can be through manipulation, passive aggression, or by becomming demanding and confrontational. As long as she feels powerful in some form, she will reach his level. The Same applies if the husband were in the same situation with the wife.

Making demands is a typical symptom that the person is feeling powerless. ISTP's can make others feel powerless, because we may sometimes set up a system with "our rules" that works for us, and we don't realize how powerless it makes others feel. Also, withholding our ability to help those in need, can greatly aggravate people who need our help.

Feeling Unimportant:

Some personalities pride themselves in their ability to help others. Some people need to be needed in some way.

The most common symptom of a need to feel needed, is when someone gives unsolicited advice. ISTP's can anger people because we shrug off and ignore most advice people give us. For example, my INTJ brother will often give me life advice, and my response will be along the lines of, "Meh, I got this." To me he may come off as arrogant, because he gets angry when I don't take his advice, however he wants to feel needed. Parents suffering from "empty nest" syndrome also experience this loss, and my sometimes be clingy or demanding to their children who have grown up and no longer need their help. People can feel unimportant in other ways, such as when they're told that they don't matter in the world. Megalomania is another symptom of someone who feels unimportant, so they self talk themselves into being extremely important.

Guilty

Guilt trips can make people very angry. This also falls close toward accusations. It angers us to have someone tell us we did something we didn't actually do, or to make us feel guilty about something we ordinarily don't feel guilty about.

Guilt is a broad issue and comes in many forms.

Unlovable

People can become angry when they begin to feel unlovable. This may manifest itself in angry breakups between partners. Being told in some form that you are unlovable is another way.

Disrespected

As an ISTP, I don't have much experience with this one. I think I've felt this once in my life, when my "married mature adult" room mate implied to me that I am a bum, or an inferior species of human because of my lifestyle (fresh college graduate sleeping on an inflatable matress, room was a mess, didn't want to mow the lawn to the house I was renting) But feeling disrespected is another cause of anger.

Devalued

Some people may artificially inflate their egos and pride because the world makes them feel devalued. This goes with those who give unsolicited advice. My response toward my brother "devalues" him and trivializes his advice, as well as himself. As such, he becomes angry.

ISTP's may get very angry and spiteful when they feel devalued because no one can seem to discover their treasure trove of hidden talents and expertise.

Accused

Someone who feels accused will feel the need to explain themselves and defend themselves from accusations. If you find yourself constantly explaining yourself, you may be feeling accused. Be wary of your word choice. The word "you" is very accusatory and can strike the wrong nerve when talking to someone.

Rejected

Rejection is another big one for ISTP's. Humans need to feel like they belong. With our inferior extroverted feeling, we often have difficulty fitting in, and often feel rejected because of this. The constant percieved rejection that ISTP's face can cause them to become rather misanthropic and develope a hatred toward humanity, if gone unchecked.

Ways to deal with an escalating conflict:

Escalating angry conflicts are caused when two brains are interacting with one another to strike at one another's 8 core points of anger. The Temporal lobe of the brain is connected to our eyes and ears, so percieved threats initiate a fight or flight response. Feelers tend to stay within the confines of their temporal lobes, so inter-feeler relationships can be extremely loud and have great shouting matches as the primary means to solve problems.

Thinkers use the Frontal lobe of their brains for critical thought. As such, their arguments tend to be much more quiet and reflective.

When we use our frontal lobe and critical thinking skills, it takes us out of our temporal lobe. This is how you get someone to calm down in an argument.

For example, I had a former ESFJ room mate who told me "while you were dating that girl, you were a huge ****!" I felt accused. I had to stop myself and think for a minute about what she said before I got angry. Then I asked her, "Did I do anything ****ish? Or was it just my demeanor?" To which she thought for a moment and said, "hmm... just your demeanor I guess."

This is an example of how a thinker helps a feeler become more reflective. These kinds of questions draw someone out of their temporal lobe and into their frontal lobe.

However, be careful how you word questions. Some people take many questions as accusatory. Questions like, "WHY!?" come off as rebellious. Other questions like, "what is your problem?" can also come off as accusatory because they are accusing the other person that there is something wrong with them.

So keep these in mind, and as you listen to criticisms people have, and their defensiveness, you will begin to pick up on just why that person is ACTUALLY angry.

So, which of these 8 core causes are you notorious for? Which ones do you find yourself reacting to most?


Last edited by DJ Arendee on Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:52 am; edited 2 times in total
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DJ Arendee
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Re: The 8 Core Causes of Anger, effects of anger, and coping strategies.

Post by Psych on Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:47 am

I see the guilty cause of anger a lot in work.
It wasn't the first thing that I thought could be causing anger in people. Quite complicated but interesting.
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Re: The 8 Core Causes of Anger, effects of anger, and coping strategies.

Post by nordic28 on Fri Jun 29, 2012 8:20 am

Unlovable, disrespected and rejected. My family often do that to me and I can become very angry. And still they blame me for being hot temperamental, impatience, etc.
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Re: The 8 Core Causes of Anger, effects of anger, and coping strategies.

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