By Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, YACEP
Is Yoga for reducing anger effective? Yes, and let’s look deep into how and why Yoga is helpful in transforming emotional energy. Anger is such a powerful, negative emotion. It is much similar to an amusement park ride you wish you had never tried. Many of us believe anger must just run its natural course. How could Yoga really help you with anger management? Yoga helps develop awareness at all levels, and you must be able to identify the triggers to losing self-control. This technique cannot prepare you for every situation in life, but it can help you with knowing the source of your problems.
For example: Let’s say we have constant fits of anger in traffic. We have identified part of the problem. To go a bit deeper: Are we worried about being late or do we just get anxiety in crowds and traffic jams? Once we know the answer, we can work toward a solution. Depending upon the exact source of our anger, there could be a Yoga technique to solve it. If the problem is anxiety, while in a crowd or traffic jam, we can work on Yoga breathing techniques. In some cases, we may want to work on our Yoga breathing (Pranayama) – before we get into the car. Yoga for reducing anger can be practiced before a stressful situation arises.
Attending classes will bring your mental, physical, and spiritual well-being into focus. You will learn Yogic relaxation techniques at the end of most classes. You will also become much more aware of being short of breath, chest pains, feeling over anxious, heart palpitations, and any other unhealthy side effects that can be associated with fits of anger.
Due to your new-found awareness from Yoga practice, you may start to realize that an extra cup of coffee could be digging an early grave for you. In this case, Yoga for reducing anger is a matter of moderation. Experienced practitioners are more aware of their blood pressure than people who do not practice Yoga, which causes behavior to be moderate. Asana practice will allow your body to vent anger, which helps the practitioner convert extra energy into a practice session. Whether you practice a Restorative Yoga style that holds postures for a minute or more, or you practice a flowing Vinyasa Yoga style – the unhealthy negative feelings of anger, and its side effects, can be released from your body within a home practice or a classroom session.
Anger is similar to a mental toxin, which can be purged from your body on a daily basis. In some cases, we can transform negative energy into positive energy through Yogic methods. Pranayama, meditation, relaxation techniques, Yoga poses and philosophy may also help us with the power of forgiveness. Forgiveness allows us to let past issues go. We must let anger go, with our past, for our own heath and well-being. It is extremely unhealthy to hold onto hate and anger.
There are many different levels of anger. In cases of extreme anger, a Yoga class might not be enough to help us rid our bodies, and minds, of our angry feelings. In such a case, we should seek professional counseling. Some psychologists, and psychiatrists, recommend Yoga and counseling to their patients. Only we can truly know which method, or combination of methods, gives us the best results. Ultimately, we must recognize anger as a natural form of emotional energy. We cannot make it go away, but we can transform or reduce flare ups with our daily practice.
© Copyright – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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