In my world anger is expensive fuel. Despite its extraordinary cost anger is expedient when compressed and used sparingly with discretion. Caution! Storage is problematic. Anger expands when contained and pressure relief is critical. Increased levels of compression can be explosive.
The popular myth that anger must be suppressed or “managed” needs serious rewriting. This strategy if adhered to rigidly can lead to toxic levels of self-judgment, fear and shame.
Anger is a survival skill not a trick pony.
Anger oxygenates action, increases stamina and can even drive purpose if distilled and used as fuel. The secret is in the distillation.
“You can tell its good if you light it and a blue flame comes up; that means it’s good moonshine and won’t make you go blind.” – Johnny Knoxville
Intense anger signals the adrenal gland to prepare the body for action with a massive adrenaline dump. Researchers claim this flood recedes in 90 seconds so it’s reasonable to assume discipline can make the difference between high-octane fuel and blind rage.
Blue flame or orange flash, it’s completely in our hands.
I’ve found distillation a two-man job best undertaken with someone familiar with anger. In the heat of the moment my inclination is to stack a bonfire high with resentment or indignation and let it burn. Honest council can temper the brew. A good listener able to gage and regulate the heat is critical. I can easily spark the flame, but someone watching the perimeter and preventing the spread of wildfires is helpful.
Physiology takes control and jumpstarts all systems to alert; remember anger is a healthy response to sudden threat. It all gets complicated once adrenaline burns off and the brain begins gathering evidence, attaching significance and writing a story.
I rely on a few select friends who have shown the ability to suspend judgment until the fire burns to embers. It takes discretion, insight and patience to reveal the catalyst of anger.
Hurt, loss and fear.
The base emotions are where the blue flame is found. Anger can also fuel the ability to endure hurt, accept loss with grace and face fear with courage.
Our polarized world could use more blue flame and less orange flash.
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