Aggression, Anger Management and Domestic Violence

Aggression is a behavior that harms, or seeks to harm, someone. It also is behavior that does or attempts to do property damage. Aggression includes mental, emotional and psychological abuse as well as violence such as physical assault, vandalism and other destruction of property (even one’s own). Other aggression can also be reckless and endangering behaviors such as driving recklessly, the reckless handling of firearms or other behavior that could potentially harm another person or property. Reckless and endangering behavior conveys a strong message that the safety of others (and their property) is not important. Furthermore, reckless and endangering behaviors ‘say’ that if others are harmed or there is property loss that is not important. Verbal abuse—the use of words to coerce, threaten, intimidate or humiliate another person, is also considered to be aggressive behavior.

Stalking through physical presence or by technological means such as phone calls, text messaging, and emails is also aggressive behavior.
It is a myth that anger leads to aggression or that aggression is a natural expression of anger. Many erroneously believe that the emotion of anger will, over time, build to the point that anger will be expressed through aggression. There are some individuals who go very quickly and habitually to aggressive behavior whenever the emotion of anger is felt and for these people, aggression naturally flows from their experience of the emotion anger. Many individuals with anger management problems never use aggression but benefit significantly from the skills and techniques taught in anger management classes. Anger without physical aggression is still an anger management problem.

Another form of aggression is used by individuals who engage in intimate partner abuse. This type of aggression stems from a choice to exert dominance over the intimate partner. In these situations aggression can be done without the buildup of emotion as is seen in people with anger management problems. Although a batterer of intimate partners, if observed during aggression, may use the same behaviors as those who express anger through aggression, battering is not typically an issue of anger management.

Domestic violence has its roots in very different dynamics than does aggression that is the result of unmanaged anger. Very specifically, domestic violence stems from beliefs and attitudes about intimate relationships and the need for dominance, power and control over partners that are considered ‘less than’ the aggressor in worth and status. Management of battering requires treatment that is significantly different than treatment for anger management. The issues of interpersonal power and control dynamics within intimate relationships must be addressed and corrected. Anger management, on the other hand, addresses the ineffective and, at times, dangerous mishandling of strong emotion.

People with anger management problems can learn to use techniques that prevent aggression. Anger management involves the controlling of anger escalation so that aggression does not occur in those who escalate emotionally to such behavior. In contrast, domestic violence treatment focuses upon the beliefs and attitudes about intimate relationships and partners that make partner abuse and aggression an option or choice.

Anger Management & Domestic Violence (BIPP) Classes in Houston, TX

Gregory Kyles, LPC, CAMF
Anger Management & Domestic Violence Institute
http://www.ami-tx.com
http://www.dvi-tx.com
http://www.emote-institute.com
www.gregorykyles.wordpress.com

Pseudo-Violence

anger 9aPseudo-violence or ‘near violence’ are the behaviors that threaten, menace and seek to control others without actual physical, ‘hands-on’ aggression.  These types of behaviors seriously impact others and are forms of emotional, psychological and mental abuse.  People with anger management problems often attempt to be controlling of others through intimidation, menacing and other nonverbal threats such as:

  • Posturing in an intimidating way; using body size and presence to communicate “I’m in charge” or “I may hurt you”.  “Getting the message across” by getting too close to others, standing over others, etc.
  • Using forceful gestures such as jabbing, pounding, waving hands, pointing, clenching fists
  • Forcefully handling objects
  • Using facial expressions to communicate anger—rolling eyes, ‘smirking’, staring, clenching teeth, widening eyes
  • Driving recklessly
  • Using body movements such as pacing, moving rapidly, ‘circling’, tapping, bouncing leg, etc.
  • Using defensive body language such as crossing one’s arms, turning one’s back, shaking the head, refusing eye contact, holding up a hand to ‘stop’ the other
  •  ‘Accidently’ bumping into others, dropping things to break them, knocking things over
  • Stalking—appearing unexpectedly, following others in their daily routines, driving by their homes or in their neighborhoods in order to be seen

Such behaviors strongly communicate anger and are forms of manipulation, menacing, and intimidation. They are intended to induce fear.  They are also used to exert dominance and gain control over others and/or situations nonverbally.  While such displays of anger do not use words, they still powerfully communicate anger and threat to whoever is present.  The angry person displays such behavior while focusing upon having others witness it and respond submissively or in fear.

Anger can become obsessive as in stalking behaviors in which the angry person becomes preoccupied with the target of the anger.  Anger can also have other obsessive qualities that do not result in such extreme behavior.  Having thoughts that cannot ‘let go’ of the notion that others have wronged you, need to ‘be taught a lesson’; ‘won’t get away with that’ or other such triggers to a desire for revenge or retaliation are also obsessive.  The amount of time spent in such thoughts can interfere with other activities and eventually can lead to dysfunctional behavior such as outbursts and other confrontations, as well as self-sabotaging and self-destructive behaviors in the workplace and in significant relationships.  The thoughts that preoccupy us will determine behavior.  Frequent anger-related thoughts are a strong indication of anger management problems and a need for an anger management assessment.

Anger Management Classes in Houston, Texas

For additional information about anger control skills visit www.ami-tx.com or call 713-477-9105.

Gregory A. Kyles, LPC, CEAP, PHR, CAMF
Anger Management & Domestic Violence Institute of Texas
www.ami-tx.com
www.dvi-tx.com
www.gregorykyles.wordpress.com

How Do I Know if I Need Anger Management Classes?

There are many ways to know if you need an anger management class, but only a few examples are listed here.  If you are not sure if you need an anger management class, consult a professional and get an anger management evaluation.
Some indications that you have an anger management problem are that you are controlling, use intimidation or manipulation, feel chronic hostility, have frequent interpersonal conflicts, or are known by others to be an angry employee, an angry boss or angry spouse.  If you are questioning whether your anger is problematic, the following questions may help you better decide:

Do I use anger in the workplace?
Do I have trouble expressing feelings other than anger?
Do I engage in angry behaviors to the point of harassment or abuse?
Do I confuse assertiveness with anger?
Have I ever thought that I need help to manage my anger?
Have I been told that I use intimidation or manipulation in relationships?
Have I been told that I am controlling?
Do I find myself blowing up in times of stress?
Do I have chronic stress?
Do I do property damage, make threats, get into physical fights, and yell?
Do I find myself focusing on things, situations and people and becoming angry?
Do I find myself interrupting others, becoming impatient, not able to listen?
Do I resist seeking compromise, or coming to an honest compromise, when there is conflict?
Do I have trouble stating my needs and become resentful when others do not meet them?
Do I have effective techniques for stress management?

These are some of the questions that can help you decide if you may need anger management classes.  The professional who will conduct an anger management assessment will ask similar questions to help you determine if anger management classes can decrease your stress, lower anger levels, improve your coping skills in everyday life, improve your relationships, and better equip you to meet your own personal goals. If you have problematic anger, anger management classes will help you in all these areas by increasing your emotional intelligence—your awareness of emotional states, and your knowledge of how to manage them appropriately.  As your emotional intelligence increases through anger management classes, you will find that many, many areas of your life improve.  Anger is a natural emotion, but what we do with anger can make our lives unmanageable and problematic or can create a life in which we are more successful and less stressed.
An anger management assessment will identify your current emotional intelligence—what you know about emotions in yourself and others, how to express emotions appropriately and how to manage them successfully.  Anger management classes will increase emotional intelligence giving you the tools you need to be less stressed, in more satisfying relationships, manage your workplace experience more effectively and, overall, improve your daily coping and performance.

For additional information please visit www.ami-tx.com.

Anger Management Classes and Anger Management – Executive Coaching available in Houston, Texas.

Gregory A. Kyles, LPC, CEAP, CAMF
Anger Management & Domestic Violence Institute of Texas
www.ami-tx.com
www.dvi-tx.com
gregorykyles.wordpress.com
Houston, Texas

What is Anger: Identifying the Need for Help with Anger

Anger is an emotional state. It can be triggered by both internal and external cues. As an emotion, anger is a natural response and serves many purposes. It is based in human biology (as are other emotions) and serves us through the survival drive in its most fundamental form. Anger is a strong protective force. It creates physiological responses that signal us and prepare us to take action if needed by the drive to survive.

Apart from its basic and instinctual purpose, however, anger is also useful in protecting one’s self psychologically and emotionally. Feelings of anger can signal, for example, that one feels taken advantage of, dismissed or violated in some way. It helps us to set boundaries when such conditions have arisen.

Whatever the trigger, the presence of anger implies the perception of threat. A threat may be one that actually endangers physical well-being, giving us the energy to protect ourselves and others. Or, the perception of a threat that is potentially damaging to our emotional and psychological integrity can also ‘ramp us up’ to protect as well.

Anger is typically driven by perception and interpretation of events and situations. Do I perceive danger? Do I perceive threat? These are the unspoken, often consciously unthought-of questions that our anger will answer. Additionally, anger is a subjective, very personal response. What angers one may not even be noteworthy to another. In many important ways, personal history and how we have learned to cope with others and the world will determine whether or not anger is experienced. Similarly, personal history and coping patterns will determine how angry one will be.

Anger becomes problematic when behaviors follow that are harmful to yourself or others. Anger is also problematic when behaviors create the risk of harm to self or others. For many individuals who do not behave in anger to the point of aggression or physical self-harm, anger can be sabotaging enough to create significant problems. For example, anger is problematic if one’s goals and/or emotional and psychological wellbeing are compromised by anger. Similarly, the individual who is chronically angry may sabotage his own goals and/or emotional and psychological wellbeing.

Certainly, anger is problematic when aggression and violence are used to express anger. Harm to others through physical expressions, or threats of such, can have serious social and legal consequences. Ultimately, the feeling of anger and the use of angry behavior can control one’s life. Consequently, negative consequences occur and accumulate. While anger itself is a normal, very human emotion, aggressive behaviors are typically not, when one losses control of their anger and it becomes harmful to themselves or others – this is the behavior that needs controlled. Aggressions, and threats of aggression, are emergency responses, therefore patterns of angry behavior that are ‘out of proportion’ for the seriousness of the triggering event needs intervention.

Managing anger can be learned by attending an Anger Management Program, please visit http://www.ami-tx.com for additional information.

Anger Management Classes and Anger Management – Executive Coaching available in Houston, Texas.

Gregory A. Kyles, LPC, CEAP, CAMF
Anger Management Institute of Texas
http://www.ami-tx.com
http://www.dvi-tx.com
https://gregorykyles.wordpress.com
Houston, Texas

Anger Management Classes: Managing Anger with Stress Management

Anger is an emotion that can be both destructive and enlightening. It is one of many emotions we use when we have to express ourselves, and our state of being. In day-to-day situations we can experience everything from mild irritation to a totally rage filled episode. When we are feeling that our anger is uncontrollable, it is time to find ways to manage it more effectively.

Anger is a part of everyday life for many people. It is a complex emotion and it often stems from other feelings and tends to control our lives. The other side of anger is fear and most often when someone is acting out they are afraid of something.

When someone is in a state of fear his or her anger can show as a slow burning situation or the person may react quickly. They may scream and yell or they may just sit and stew. Depending on their personality, they may also show inattention to what is going on or start interrupting other people to get their point across.

In the workplace this can be a very difficult situation because there are so many issues at stake. Some people have lost their jobs because of their attempts at manipulation or their controlling attitude. Anger is a detriment to the workplace and no one likes to hire an angry employee. This is an emotion that must be under control or there will be consequences.

So what can you do to put your anger under control? That is a very good question and it has a variety of different answers. There are many techniques that you can use but the first step is to admit that you are angry. Once you let yourself know this you can start looking at the things that trigger your anger. Do you have mild irritations that go away or are there situations or circumstances that trigger your anger all the time? Some experts suggest keeping an anger journal to see what kinds of things make you angry. This way you can observe any patterns that may be involved.

When you are observing your anger objectively, it’s a good idea not to judge yourself or the other person involved with your anger. It is best to look at what has been controlling you and find ways to work more effectively.

How to Manage Anger with Stress Management: Most of the time stress leads to frustration and frustration leads to anger. Many people find that when their stress level goes down they experience less anger. When you find yourself getting angry take a long walk or do some other type of exercise. This can get you thinking more about your workout instead of your problems and it is a good way to relax. Some people listen to music to relax and others just take a few deep breaths. The bottom line is to make sure you do something to release the anger in a positive way so it can’t control you anymore.

For additional information about anger management, stress management, assertive communication, and emotional intelligence skills please contact the Anger Management Institute of Texas 713-477-9105 or visit our website http://www.ami-tx.com.

Anger Management Institute of Texas is a Certified Anderson & Anderson® Provider

Anger Management Classes and Executive Coaching Services available in Houston, Texas.

Gregory A. Kyles, LPC
Program Director
Anger Management & Domestic Violence Institute of Texas
http://www.ami-tx.com
http://www.dvi-tx.com

Why are Physicians Angry?

Anger is a normal human emotion experienced by people from all walks of life and all professions. It is primitive and all-pervasive. Nobody can prevent the onslaught of anger. Being in the medical profession is not a ticket to an anger-free life. Physicians experience anger as much as their patients.

It is a long hard road from high school to medical college. This road is paved with pebbles, stones and big fat boulders. Medical school students go through a whole lot of stuff before they become full-fledged practicing physicians. Arduous examinations and demanding internships are just the beginning. Even seasoned physicians experience rage when faced with situations beyond their control.

The medical workplace is charged with injury, disappointment, hope, relief and death. In a place that’s so highly strung with emotions, anger is bound to make an appearance. Normally, physicians work grueling hours at a stretch sometimes without a break. Most of them are on call 24/7. Personal life often takes a backseat. Stress builds up over time and ultimately gives way to anger and hostility.

Physician anger is a product of situations that are beyond their control. At an early stage in their career, physicians are trained to be detached, cool and clinical when it comes to dealing with patients. However, this makes it tough for patients to open up and express feelings. Numerous patients refuse treatment that could save their lives or make things better for them. This refusal stems out of ignorance and fear of the unknown. Physicians experience a sense of frustration when dealing with such patients. To make matters worse, physicians are always under pressure to save lives and mend life-threatening wounds. If things go wrong, irate patients and their families are ever willing to file malpractice suits. Some physicians face life and death situations everyday. In the worst of circumstances emotions are bottled up and kept carefully under wraps. This is bound to have some effect on the psyche of a physician.

Disruptive and disorderly behavior among physicians is becoming a frequent occurrence in medical workplaces. Physicians retaliate in several ways. Inattention to superiors and intimidation of those under their authority may be the early symptoms of anger in physicians. Unprofessional behavior, moodiness and failure to answer to calls may be a few other signals that something is amiss. As soon as these signals are evident, medical directors, partners and other personnel in authority must intervene before things get out-of -hand.       

Dealing with Physician Anger: Physicians are generally resistant to any kind of proposed help and most often will not even be aware that something is wrong. Convincing a physician that all is not well with him requires patience, tact and sensitivity. However, when higher authorities intervene and give honest feedback, most physicians will accept that their behavior is not entirely normal. Once, this is accomplished they should be convinced to seek help through appropriate anger management programs. Medical supervisors and partners should assure the professional full support and co-operation in dealing with anger related issues. If the physician is overly hesitant about seeking help, emphasis should be made on the outcomes of his disruptive actions like loss of medical license and removal from duties. Monitoring the physician’s on-duty behavior by his colleagues is also an option.

Emotional Intelligence for Physician Anger: Physicians are taught to shield themselves against emotions at an early stage in their career. Experts say that this is the root cause for disruptive and abusive behavior among physicians. Pent-up emotions take a toll and result in chronic depression and frustration, in some cases violent outbursts of fury. Emotional Intelligence implies being aware, understanding and controlling your own emotions and those of others. If physicians are encouraged to express feelings and emotions, they’ll be more sensitive while dealing with patients and less prone to fits of anger. Developing emotional intelligence is the need of the hour to minimize physician anger.

Anger Management Institute of Texas’ Executive Coaching Program is utilized by management of accredited hospital/organizations for physicians displaying disruptive behaviors in the workplace.

Anger Management Institute of Texas is a certified Anderson & Anderson ® provider.

Gregory A. Kyles, M.A., LPC, CEAP, CAMF
Director, Anger Management Institute of Texas
Diplomate, President of Texas Chapter
American Association of Anger Management Providers
http://www.ami-tx.com
http://www.dvi-tx.com
https://gregorykyles.wordpress.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/gregorykyles
http://www.myspace.com/anger_management_expert

The Disruptive Physician and Emotionality

trainingDedication, commitment, investment…hard work and vision.  These are the givens.  The personality characteristics that help those seeking a career in medicine succeed, however, can also be the very same characteristics that can eventually undermine the practitioner’s workplace effectiveness and personal well-being. 

Most will enter training with an altruistic desire and vision to be of service, to make a meaningful contribution to others and to attain a sense of personal achievement and career satisfaction.  Our culture reinforces that vision.  Physicians are held in high regard, valued for their achievement and their contributions to the well-being of others. 

As in many such service careers, the vision of the young practitioner can drive and sustain the momentum of achievement.   Unfortunately, the rigors and realities of training and clinical practice can steadily obscure that original vision.  Physicians can find themselves so entrenched ‘in the trenches’ that survival, not vision, becomes the driving force in daily practice.  Many feel ‘locked in’ to move forward despite the personal toll and emotional costs.  As the dream subsides into an often harsh awakening, emotions can run high.  The original vision of service can recede behind fatigue, a workplace with limited resources, the constraints of externally imposed regulation and the complications of finding ethical balance in a reality of limited control and legal liability.

It is not easy to accommodate the erosion of one’s vision.  And, it is not easy in the demands of daily practice to maintain a visionary perspective on just what this chosen profession is really all about.  The bigger picture, the personal stake and mission in this work, can be hard to keep in focus.  At times, the physician can grieve the loss of that perspective feeling more that being on call, charting, doing rounds and paying malpractice premiums win out in the daily grind. 

Collegial relationships are valuable in renewing perspective, re-envisioning the bigger picture and rejuvenating the physician who has been in the trenches for long stretches of time.  The realities of daily practice, however, more often require the physician to practice in relative isolation even in a workplace shared with other physicians.  Colleagues who are equally busy with the demands of their own daily practice are not always available to provide quality support in decision-making about patient care, in peer supervision or personal support.  Many physicians will find themselves, in such work conditions, having lost the bigger picture of why they are working so hard.  Such a loss of perspective can cause resentment and emotional depletion.  Emotionally-driven decisions and behaviors that even further complicate the stress of daily practice become more likely.  Unable to gain perspective in the rush and demands of daily work, the overworked and under-supported physician might find that workplace behaviors have begun to deteriorate into emotionality rather than professionalism.

Anger Management Institute of Texas’ Executive Coaching Program is utilized by management of accredited hospital/organizations for physicians displaying disruptive behaviors in the workplace.

Anger Management Institute of Texas is a certified Anderson & Anderson ® provider.

Gregory A. Kyles, M.A., LPC, CEAP, CAMF
Director, Anger Management Institute of Texas
Diplomate, President of Texas Chapter
American Association of Anger Management Providers
http://www.ami-tx.com
http://www.dvi-tx.com
https://gregorykyles.wordpress.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/gregorykyles
http://www.myspace.com/anger_management_expert