Stages of Anger

Stages of Anger

Stages of Anger

What You Should Know About Anger

What Are The Stages Of Anger? 

Psychologists do not agree about how many stages of anger there are. Some say 3, some 4, and others 5 to 6. This is because we all build anger in different ways. It is important not to generalize and to know how many stages of anger you experience personally.  

Here is an example: 

Let's imagine that we can measure your level of anger on a scale of 0% to 100%. And let's assume that you are the type of person who loses control of your behavior at 80% anger, goes from 0 to 50% anger really slowly and then past the 50% mark, you go to 80% in a few seconds. In this case, you may go through 4 or 5 stages before you reach 50% and then one stage from 50% to 80%. 

On the other hand, if you are the type of person who goes from 0 to 20% rapidly, you may have 1 stage at that level. If after 20% anger you go straight to 100%, you will technically have only 2 stages in total.  

As you can see, we are all different. So, you must focus on how many stages you go through personally before you lose control of your behavior. 

Why Am I Always So Angry? 

Imagine that you have a backpack on your shoulders and in it you put two things: One, all of the great things you have experienced in life, the love, the beautiful memories and the kind words from others. These things have no weight and no volume so you can fill up your backpack through time and it will never be heavy or full. And two, in that backpack you also carry all of the negative things that you lived during childhood as well as all the negative experiences from your adult life. And those things have weight and volume, so the more you have of  those things in your backpack, the heavier you feel. 

The problem with this backpack is that you carry it around with you at all times.  So, when you get angry in the present moment, even for something minor, that  anger will be stored in the same place as the old anger and you will have  difficulty in separating them. Because your backpack is heavy, you will want to  unload it whenever you have a chance. 

This is why it is important to sort through all of the old hurts and resolve them internally… so that you can travel lighter and not express anger in places where it does not belong. This is one of the things I help my clients do during Emotional Intelligence Coaching sessions.  

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How Do I Know If My Anger Is A Problem? 

There are several things that may suggest that anger is a problem in your life: 

1. When it is too frequent
2. When it is too intense
3. When it lasts too long 
4. When it leads to aggression
5. When it destroys school, work or personal relationships 

If you recognize any of these issues, it may be a good idea to consult with an Emotional Intelligence specialist.  

Are There Skills That I Can Practice To Stop Being Angry? 

I do not think that you can stop being angry all together. Anger is an instinct and it is part of life. We can certainly reduce it by avoiding situations that make us constantly angry, resolving old anger that we may be hanging on to, and learning to manage anger early so that it does not grow. 

If you want to become skilled at managing anger, rather than blocking it, you need to:

  1. Recognize it
  2. Accept it

Recognizing helps you be a step closer to managing it. If you do not recognize it, you could find yourself acting it out without realizing what is going on. 

Some people are skilled at recognizing anger but they may not accept it. Not accepting it sometimes has to do with role modeling during childhood. For example, if you have had a parent that could not manage their anger you may not accept yours because you may have learned that anger is dangerous and scary.  

When you learn to recognize and accept your own anger, you are one step closer to managing it effectively. Anger then becomes a tool rather than a burden. 

Can I Repair Relationships That My Anger Damaged? 

I would like to tell you that you can, but in reality, that depends on the other person and on how the anger manifested in your relationships. There are outbursts of anger that hurt others deeply. These individuals may not be able or willing to let it go. And even if they do, they may not want to trust you again.  

On the other hand, there is hope. You cannot erase the past but you can often make it better. The first step in repairing relationships is to take responsibility and mean it. Ultimately, by taking responsibility for your actions the other person may realize that you cared, that may be healing for them and may encourage them to trust you again. What is important, though, is that you learn to manage your  anger so that you do not repeat the same mistakes of the past.  

If you find that your anger is causing a wedge between you and your most important relationships, it may be helpful to read: Anger in Relationships.

How Do I Forgive Myself For Being So Angry, Ruining Relationships, Or Cutting  Other People Out? 

If you cannot forgive yourself for hurting relationships, know that we all struggle with something within. Life is a learning process. While you work on your anger, someone else is working on their fear, jealousy, or sadness. No one I know has had a life without lessons. So if you accept yours, you will be more humble and willing to take responsibility. Learn about your anger and befriend it. Anger is a fantastic emotion, an instinct full of information. If you learn about your anger and acquire some tools to manage it, you can begin feeling less guilty, lighter, and more in control of your life. 

– Dr. Georgiana

Online marriage counselor online couples therapy Growing Self San Francisco Life Coaching Relationship Coaching
Dr. Georgiana is a multilingual Marriage and Family Therapist, Emotional Intelligence Coach, and Life Coach. Whether your preferred language is English, Spanish or French her strategic results-oriented approach to relationship coaching, dating coaching, life coaching, and therapy will move you forward.



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Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby is the founder and clinical director of Growing Self Counseling and Coaching. She's the author of “Exaholics: Breaking Your Addiction to Your Ex Love,” and the host of The Love, Happiness & Success Podcast.


Are You With “The One?”

Are you compatible? How do you know if you're with the right person? If your relationship is good but not perfect, is that okay?

These are questions that bedevil many, especially in this modern era where a brand new potential relationship is always just a swipe away. Are you truly compatible with your partner? Is this a good relationship, even if you have points of conflict? How good is good enough? These questions certainly com up when you're dating, but also for people in long-term relationships. Should you stay with this person, and invest in the relationship for the long-term — go to couples counseling, work on your communication, etc — or should you cut your losses and move on?

So. Many. Questions.

Relationship FOMO is a Thing.

It's easy to compare the good, the bad, and the ugly aspects of our own relationship to what people choose to share about their own on social media. Even though we all know, rationally, that there's more to the story of every relationship than the gigantic flower bouquets and super-fun moments people choose to share on social media, it's still normal to have a twinge when you get a peek into what other people are doing.

In reality, all relationships are a mixed bag: We partner with other imperfect human beings who have quirks, personalities, annoying traits, and who are never going to meet all of our needs perfectly. (Although there are things you can do to increase the odds: Check out “How to Get Your Needs Met in a Relationship.”)

At the same time, it can be hard to figure out what is good enough when it comes to relationship compatibility. How do you know if this is as good as it's going to get? Or if you're settling for less than you could have if you kept looking for the right partner. Even worse, how much time do you want to spend in this relationship, and on this person, if you're only going to break up or divorce in the end.

Fear of Commitment

This uncertainty about a relationship becomes especially fraught when people are beginning to think about marriage. We toss around the term “afraid of commitment,” but after years of talking to commitment-phobic people as a life coach and therapist, I've found that at the root of their anxiety are the same questions: Is this it? Is there a better relationship for me? How do I know if I'm settling?

When people begin considering marriage, these relationship questions become a siren in their mind to the point where it can cause a great deal of anxiety. And for good reason! There are very few choices that will impact the trajectory of your life as the choice of a life-partner.

This angst was captured perfectly by a recent question that someone asked on our Growing Self Facebook page:

Hello! I have been listening to your podcast for years and it’s helped me so much. For the first time I’ve built a healthy, long-term relationship with a guy and I’m so happy. I had a question I’d love you to answer in a podcast or blog: how do you know if you should marry the guy?

I’m in my mid twenties and loads of my friends are facing this question, as am I. You’ve been with them a couple years, it’s good but not perfect … Do you break up and look for more or is he the one?

- A Podcast Listener

Are You Compatible?

There are so many different aspects of compatibility: Personality, values, the way you communicate, the things you want for your life, and more. Furthermore, we know from the work of Dr. John Gottman that the bulk of relationship issues couples face are not things that are “solvable problems.” They are issues of compatibility — based on things that are intrinsic to who you each are, and will likely never change much.

There are other aspects of relationships that can be changed, through excellent premarital counseling, couples therapy, and relationship coaching. In my experience, all of us have room to go and improve in the way we relate. People can learn and grow. Communication can improve. Priorities can change. People mature. Most importantly, people often learn how to show each other love and respect, and kindness and generosity over time. These are all skills, and they are coachable skills — particularly when you're motivated to have a great relationship.

However, it's also true that there is not a human being alive who you will be in perfect alignment with all the time. So a big piece of figuring out compatibility in a relationship is identifying your own boundaries: what you can accept, what you can appreciate, and what is a deal-breaker for you.

A Relationship Expert's Take on Compatibility

Because the subject of relationship compatibility is so complex, I decided to ask my colleague Dr. Georgiana (who is also a licensed marriage and family therapist) to share her insight on the subject. Listen to our interview for Dr. G's surprising advice for how to

  • Determine if you and your partner are compatible
  • The most important compatibility factors for a successful relationship
  • The least important factors for determining relationship compatibility (that most people mistakenly look to, btw)
  • How to determine your “deal breakers “
  • Signs that your normal, imperfect relationship is worth working on (or letting go of)
  • How much change is possible for each person in a long-term relationship
  • Things to consider if you're thinking about breaking up or staying together
  • When to focus on acceptance and appreciation for the person your partner is vs. when to push for growth and change

Dr. G and I both have years of experience as dating coaches, premarital counselors and marriage counselors, and we're tackling all these questions for you on this episode of the Love, Happiness and Success Podcast.

All the best,

Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby


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Are You Compatible?

by Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby | Love, Happiness & Success

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Getting Anger Under Control

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Getting Anger Under Control

Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby is the founder and clinical director of Growing Self Counseling and Coaching. She's the author of “Exaholics: Breaking Your Addiction to Your Ex Love,” and the host of The Love, Happiness & Success Podcast.

How to Control Anger

Everyone feels angry, sometimes. Let's face it: Life can be frustrating. Work can be maddening, people can be annoying, partners and kids can be irritating, traffic is a daily struggle for many of us, and let's not even get into the many “state-of-the-world” issues that can send us into a rage. That said, when anger is frequent, and a major player in our lives, it takes a toll.

Feeling angry frequently can impact your health — both physically and mentally. But anger can really create problems in your relationships too. When you are expressing a lot of negativity, hostility or irritation with your partner, kids, friends and family…. people start to distance themselves from you emotionally. [Listen: “How to Deal With An Angry Partner”]

It goes the other way too: If you have an angry husband or angry wife it can make you start to feel like you're walking on eggshells. Having a partner who is persistently irritated, frustrated, or quick to anger starts to make your relationship feel emotionally unsafe, and leads people to withdraw. [Check out: “How to Communicate With Someone Who Shuts Down“]

Anger Management Help

“Anger issues” are a common problem for many people, and in many relationships. So today on the Love, Happiness and Success Podcast, I've enlisted the support of my colleague Dr. Georgiana, to share her expertise about anger. Dr. Georgiana is, among other things, an Emotional Intelligence Coach, a Marriage Counselor and Couples Therapist, and a Life Coach too. She specializes in helping angry people learn how to get to a better place, helps couples communicate and reduce the anger and frustration in their relationships, and I'm so pleased to have her share her “anger advice” with you today too.

We'll be talking about:

  • What anger really is
  • The different ways that “anger issues” can show up
  • “Anger Styles:” The differences in the ways that people perceive and express anger
  • Anger management strategies, and anger management techniques
  • How to control anger in relationships
  • How to manage your anger personally and in different situations
  • How to deal with anger in other people

I hope that listening to this podcast helps you learn how to manage anger, and find inner peace — both for yourself, and in your relationship.

All the best,

Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby

Listen & Subscribe to the Podcast

Enjoy the Podcast?

Please Rate and Review The Love, Happiness & Success Podcast.



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