How Many Times Have You Felt Like This ??
Perhaps you are one of the lucky ones who is centered, balanced and meditates away the need to scream, yell or express that torrid, horrendous, monstrosity we call rage. If you are, congratulations! I certainly have never felt that luxury.
Rage, to me, is that feeling that wells up inside my belly and spreads it’s firey vibration throughout my entire body. Little dramatic? Maybe. But rage, it seems, has been my constant companion since birth when my legs were broken and re-set in casts up to my hips. I would get so mad about being confined in those damn things, and they were so heavy. But I would use that anger and learned to lift those little kickers up anyways, no matter how red my face got or how much my mother thought my brain was going to explode. No, I wasn’t beaten. I was born with my feet and legs pointed inward; a side effect I’ve learned coming from lifetimes of sexual abuse, but that’s another story.
Rage is a feeling more powerful than anger. Rage is passionate, it digs it’s heels in and upholds it’s convictions, whether they are perceived as right or wrong. Rage does not come on, all of a sudden. It is ignited. Like dropping a match on a pile of unwanted papers, Rage grows into a blazing inferno of pent up emotions and feelings that have been building up from non-expression. Like the straw that broke the camel’s back, one small thing can trigger this almighty spurning of spontaneous combustion.
And what do most of us do in that explosive state? We yell. We scream. We say vehement, horrible words and sometimes hurt people that have nothings to do with what it is we are really angry about.
OR…just as we are about to completely blow up and let go of all that’s been stored inside us, we stop. We push those feelings right back down again. We rationalize that now is not the time or place to “let it rip.” And so the wall where we place our injustices and negativity continues to grow. We even manifest this wall in our physical bodies. As we shut off and shut down our emotions, the energy of them becomes trapped inside the body. This energy will exhibit as headaches, migraines, muscle aches and pains, liver problems, depression, lack of get up and go, and suppressed immune systems.
Neither way is a really good plan when you think about it.
And we wonder why people “snap” when they do. Why would someone, who seemingly has it all together, suddenly snap and act completely out of character? Could it be that the straw finally fell and really did break the camel’s back? What emotions were laying dormant within their “wall” that became activated by that one word, or one action that triggered a lifetime of restraint to unravel and beak free? The human brain is a wondrous puzzle that holds so many mysteries. One could argue that it is within our cellular structure to react in such a way, or even that it is a learned response. In both scenarios, I believe that the psychological reaction of “snapping” can be relieved by self expression and physical action.
I’ve learned many ways to deal with rage over the years. I do not declare myself a Master of it in any way, shape or form! But I have been privy to some wonderful lessons in self expression that continue to help me cope with this emotion. One of the best ways to deal with rage is to NOT LET THINGS BUILD UP! Does that mean you let every four lettered word fly out of your mouth when you get irritated? Maybe…if that’s your way of expression (just think of your surroundings and consider possibly doing that while you are alone if necessary). Obviously we still exist in society and can’t just tell the teacher to screw off or bitch slap the neighbor as a matter of self expression. If only…
If you deal with the negative emotion when first felt, it is easier to release and therefor does not present as a physical or emotional issue later on. One thing I began doing since I was a small child, was imagining I was melting people when I got angry at them. By the time I was four, I was told I had a dirty look that could melt an iceberg. Even later on in life when I was modeling, a photographer once asked me to give him a “hard, angry look” and when I complied he stopped and came out from behind the camera and said, “Uh…not quite that hard, ok?” Now, I realize what I was doing on an energetic level. I was conveying all through my eyes what I felt I could not say with words. I expressed it and I let it go. I was not wishing harm on the other person. I was merely visualizing the problem melting away. Then everything was cool, and life went on.
I love to watch children interact. They are so transparent with their thoughts and feelings. They get in a fight on the playground, express their feelings, and move on. It’s as simple as that. Only later in life do we learn habits and patterns that curtail our self expression. Ever put your hands on the shoulder of a five year old? Most likely they feel relaxed and fluid. Part of that is their age and muscle structure, but most of it is because they allow their emotions to flow through and not build up inside.
There are many form of anger release. Here are some that have worked wonders for me:
- Journaling – let go of all the feelings and place them on paper (I call this word vomit). When you are done, rip it up or burn it.
- Primal Scream – scream into a pillow or out the window of the car (preferably when you are not at a stop light) until you can’t scream any more. I will drive through the mountains on a two lane highway and just let go. Sometimes it is a mournful scream that erupts later into laughter, and other times it is a spew of phrases and memories.
- Break Things – go to the thrift store or a garage sale and buy some cheap dinnerware. Set up a place where you can safely break each piece. Let the rage go with each throw and shatter. And if you are crafty, you can use the broken pieces to make a mosaic…LOL.
- Rip Up – Rip up newspaper or grab some old clothing, material or rags and shred them with your bare hands.
- Vent to a Friend – contact someone you trust and let the feelings flow.
- Write a letter – Write a letter to the person, company or situation that has you in a rageful state. Express everything you’ve been holding back. When complete, burn it. Write a letter to your guide or Angel, again expressing every thought and emotion. Ask for their guidance as you write the letter and see what comes through.
- Pray – Surrender to the power of prayer and ask your higher power to help you release these feelings.
- Dig a Hole – this is a Native American technique to let go of rage and anger. Dig a hole about 10-12 inches into the Earth. The hole needs to be big enough for you to place your head inside it. Lay on the ground with your head in the hole and begin screaming and yelling your truth. As you do this, the intent is to ask Mother Earth to transmute the negative energy back to the Universe as pure, unconditional love and heal this anger within you. You lay upon the Earth for grounding and continue to speak, scream and swear until the words no longer flow. When the process is complete, you bury the hole and give gratitude to Spirit and Mother Earth.
HOLE WARNING: (did I really just write that?) Be very careful of where you dig your hole. The first time I did this, it was after sundown and I was in a place I was not familiar with. I dug out my hole, placed my head inside and began to scream about what was bothering me. Soon, I felt little blips of pain on my hands and neck that felt like pins and needles. I am thinking, wow what a great job I’m doing, and look how fast this release stuff works. Soon my screams developed into blood curdling cries as I realized I had dug my hole close to an ant nest. Word of caution – bring a flashlight!
Many people believe that holding onto rage allows them a powerful tool that propels them forward. That may work for a while, but when the final goal is achieved that they have pushed so hard for, the person is left in a state of overwhelm and emptiness.
Allow yourself the luxury of emotional expression. As you do, you not only bring yourself to a higher state of being, but you also raise up the rest of the world around you.
Love & Laughter,