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Copyright @ 2012 Brian A. Brown
My whole life, I’ve dealt with feeling enraged, depressed, hopeless, and full of disappointment; all as a result of feeling trapped by negative circumstances within my familial, environmental, and professional life. My skin color and height have gotten me into some rather uncomfortable situations, where I was disrespected, threatened, and discriminated against because I looked “threatening” or “untrustworthy”. I haven’t had any fulfilling relationships of any kind, and the two or three that I have managed to make, were very shallow and without any true connection. I’ve also had trouble finding work for as long as I can remember, and when I did find work, it was never the type of work I was qualified for, or it paid very little. I’ve only recently found employment that is somewhat close to what I went to school for, and I must say that I do enjoy it a little. But it’s not completely what I want yet, which is pretty much normal I guess.
Now what do all of these situations have in common? They have all played a part in making me extremely angry and depressed, mainly angry. But what you want to know is how I have turned this anger and depression into motivation and empowerment right? I haven’t been one hundred percent successful at this yet, but I’ll tell you what I know.
The key to turning rage and pain into motivation and using it to empower you, is to realize that your anger or sadness is justified, and that you ARE your rage. It’s telling you that you deserve better than what you’re experiencing that’s causing the pain. This pain is defining your standards that are being violated or unmet in some way, so it’s defining who you are. The more rage and pain you’re experiencing, the greater your potential is, and/or the greater you should try to live/be treated. Your anger or pain is telling you one or more of these three things:
- You have not reached your full potential yet, and there is more that you can do to develop and utilize your innate abilities. There may be more to you than you are currently expressing, (such as unexpressed talent, viewpoints, feelings, etc.) and it needs to be expressed in order for you to truly be yourself and release the inner tension. Repressing anything isn’t good for you, but it should be released in a way that doesn’t harm yourself or other innocent people.
- You are not getting what you deserve out of life. If you’re angry about anything happening to you in your life, it’s because you know that you deserve better treatment and events to happen to you. If you’re complacent and at ease with your surroundings and circumstances, it’s because you’ve reached where you need to be at that moment. Any unfair treatment, disrespect, trauma, or debilitating societal circumstances play a part in things that you don’t deserve, (you deserve better than that) if any of it makes you angry or hurt. *This is granted that you didn’t put yourself in a negative position by making the wrong choices or hurting someone else.*
- Your desires and/or needs are not being met, and they deserve to be. Truly happy people are happy because they are fulfilled, and are experiencing the things in life that they want to experience. At the very least, their basic needs are able to be met without any overly difficult effort.
To summarize this, your negative emotions can be a guidepost for letting you know that you are better than what’s around you, that’s affecting you negatively. Once you realize that, you can rest assured that there is room in your life for improvement, and it is very possible because of this very emotion. Your emotions not only tell you whether things are right or wrong for you, but they are also fuel to make you want to begin taking action towards making changes in your life. In the words of rags to riches millionaire Farrah Gray, “Comfort is the enemy of achievement”. Own and claim everything that you feel because it’s your body’s way of telling you what needs to be done in any situation.
I do have a disclaimer for this information though. Obviously someone can be too sensitive or unthoughtful, and react with anger or sadness to a “perceived” slight, to someone that they just don’t like or agree with, or to factors that are out of their control (like Obama’s second inauguration). We must use discernment as always when considering the source of the anger, and whether or not it’s coming from a place of common sense and a true reaction to situations or people that are hurting you unjustly and unfairly. This is not to say that certain types of anger are invalid for motivating you to want to do better and demand more respect, but this information is more for dealing with and constructively harnessing anger on a personal level, as a result of immediate surroundings and people in your life that you can change, improve or avoid. This will eventually get to a broader level when everyone uses their anger as fuel to change the world around them.