Unfortunately, those of us who suffer with PTSD often find we have anger issues too. The symptoms of PTSD can cause so much frustration; anger is one of the more common areas our frustrations can be vented. Learning ways to appropriately handle that anger requires commitment, but it’s worth it in the long run. No one wants to be around someone with an explosive temper.
Use a time-out when necessary. Well, it’s not quit the same thing as the time-out you impose on your children, it’s just a way of backing off for a few minutes to allow yourself to cool down. As soon as you notice your anger is beginning to boil, step back from the situation and give yourself a moment to think. This gives you time to consider all your options, and that can make the difference between venting your anger on others, and finding a more appropriate way of dealing with it.
Discussing your anger with a trusted friend or family member allows them to help coach you through it. They can often offer a different point of view about why you are getting angry and help you look more objectively at how your anger is affecting those you care about.
Practice relaxation exercises when you’re feeling angry. It is physically impossible to be angry and relaxed at the same time. Relaxing cancels out your anger. Try deep breathing or muscle relaxation techniques.
Challenge your negative self-talk. Anger seems to inflame your thoughts, so you blow things out of proportion. Take the time to think about what’s making you so angry before you react. Stop those negative though patterns before they get out of control.
Part of winning the war against PTSD is managing your symptoms instead of letting them manage you!