Don't Take Your Anger Out on Innocent People
If nothing else, this is the main reason why we need to work on our anger issue. In an earlier chapter, 'Everything isn't about you', we discussed how sometimes people are rude to us even though it's misdirected anger. It sucks, right? Well, we're trying to be better people, so we need to not be hypocritical and do the thing that we don't like. Yet, we continuously think lashing out on innocent people our lives is justifiable even though the source of our anger has nothing to do with them. If we're being honest about foundation #3 and realizing that our anger is fear based, our anger is almost always based on our own issues and not other people.
I don't know why, but there's a situation that I'll never forget. It wasn't even that bad, but it reminds me why it's so important to not take our anger out on other people. A few years ago, I was in the grocery store with my son waiting our turn at the deli, and it was around 6PM, so I had just got off work and so had many others.
There was a young brother and sister talking quietly, and the mother snapped on them and said, 'Can you two PLEASE stop?! I had a bad day at work!' All I could think was, 'It's not their fault you had a bad day at work...'And believe me, I've seen some bad, misbehaving kids in grocery stores before that definitely deserved to be scolded, but this wasn't the case. These two kids were behaving extremely well and got yelled at because this mom had a bad day.
There is no situation in which that is justified. I have a son as well, and I also have a girlfriend as well as many other loved ones. It is not fair for any of these people in my life to be the victim of my anger when they're completely innocent. This is the primary reason that I work on my mental health so much. It's as much for the others in my life as it is for me.
I was diagnosed with a Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and when I get anxious, I can become a real asshole, so I take my meds, meditate and do other practices to lessen my anxiety so I don't scream at the people I love for no good reason. Now, there are days when our anger is going to get the best of us.
Remember, it's okay to be angry, but it's not okay to take it out on innocent people. My first suggestion for this is to let people know that you're in a bad mood and that you apologize in advance if you say something rude to them. I do this with my son as well as Tristin just so they're warned that my mental health is not that great at that moment.
Luckily, we all talk about mental health, so we know how to help each other during these moments, but you might not be that fortunate. The best thing we can do is warn others and hope they give us the space that we need. The second suggestion is to revisit the chapter on why you should apologize. One of my favorite rules from the book Unf*ck Your Adulting by Dr. Faith Harper is Don't Be a Dick.