How to Let Go of Anger

The Love, Happiness & Success Podcast with Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby

Music Credits: The Golden Dawn, “Let The Sunshine In”

Letting Go of Anger

Not too long ago, I was talking with one of my therapy clients about a regrettable situation that he experienced with a family member. There was a bad argument that actually became physical, and an already strained relationship felt like it was broken beyond repair.

He was okay with that: this family member was so toxic that it was probably in the best interests of all to not attempt to mend that particular relationship, but rather focus on healthy boundaries.

In our session, we talked about the event itself and we both agreed that he showed impressive emotional intelligence under very difficult circumstances.

But, as is so often the case, even though the event itself was in the past, he still found himself having very powerful feelings about it. 

Specifically, he felt angry. 

Of course, he felt angry about being assaulted. But he also felt angry about the family member’s continuous cruelty to him and to other family members. He was angry that what should have been a happy family holiday gathering ended up being spoiled by that family member’s selfishness. 

But he didn’t want to be so angry. He wanted to move on with his life and set healthy boundaries with that family, let go of the hate. 

His question “How do I let go of anger?” is one many of us have probably asked at one point in our lives. We know logically that unresolved anger is toxic, but find it hard to shake it. So how do you let go of that anger

One thing to remember is that anger is a secondary emotion. What that means is that it is always a byproduct of some other emotion or issue, like sadness, disappointment, or fear. When we can learn the underlying reason behind the upset, it’s much easier to release its control over us. Here are some examples of different kinds of anger and how they manifest. 

After Being Mistreated

Many people harbor feelings of anger after being mistreated in the past, usually if it’s someone close to them, like a parent or a friend. They have the right to their pain, and often the anger itself is entirely legitimate and justifiable: they were treated badly by someone they trusted.

The issue arises when they are still feeling the same level months or years after the event occurred. The anger attached to the past event is still very much alive inside of them and impacting their peace, or even their physical health.

When we can learn the underlying reason behind our anger, it’s much easier to release its control over us.

Having unresolved bitterness from the past can also impact your current relationships. Until you’ve worked through your irritation, it’s likely that you will be triggered by situations in your current relationship, which can lead to all sorts of problems, like a lack of emotional intimacy between you and your partner. 

If you find yourself having feelings or reactions that seem out of proportion to what is actually happening, it may be helpful to do some exploration around whether you have unresolved anger and make moves to resolve it.

After Infidelity

It’s extremely difficult for many people to release anger after infidelity or betrayal. In fact, it’s one of the biggest hurdles to many of our marriage counseling or couples therapy clients who are trying to repair their relationships after an affair.

It’s normal and healthy to feel anger and hurt towards your partner after infidelity, but unless you find a way to release control and your anger, unresolved anger after an affair can sabotage your efforts to rebuild your relationship. 

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After A Divorce Or Breakup

Similarly, many of our breakup recovery coaching clients are dealing with massive amounts of offense after a breakup or divorce. 

While it is absolutely normal to be angry after a divorce or breakup, holding onto unresolved anger from your breakup can keep you stuck in the past, and unable to move on. 

Many people find that working through the rage about their breakup or divorce is an essential step in regaining their inner peace.

At Yourself

It’s not uncommon for people to be carrying anger towards themselves. This is often (paradoxically) true for people who have done a lot of wonderful personal growth work and are very different people than they were years ago. 

As they evolve personally, they may become aware that they did things in the past that they would never do now — and they feel angry with themselves for it. Learning constructive ways to move through the stages of anger, let go of unhealthy guilt and forgive themselves for past mistakes is an important part of their personal growth journey.  

How Unresolved Anger Damages Relationships

If you’ve been hurt or betrayed, you will understandably feel angry. And sometimes, anger is actually a very healthy, helpful emotion. It protects you, warns you, and gives you the energy to defend yourself. But at some point, anger no longer serves its protective purpose.

Instead, unresolved bitterness simmers inside of you, creating a physiological stress response that over time, damages your body and your mind. Furthermore, unresolved anger leads to thoughts and emotions that constrict your ability to feel positive emotions. Worst of all, unresolved anger can trap you: tarnishing the present moment, taking up all the space in your relationships, and coming out in ways that are destructive to you or others.

How To Get Over Anger

On this episode of the Love, Happiness and Success Podcast I’m going to be sharing my best advice for how to heal from anger. We’ll be discussing:

  • The different types of anger and how they manifest
  • How holding on to anger affects you physically, mentally and spiritually
  • Productive strategies to let go of past hurts and anger
  • “Emotional equilibrium” and how it’s the key to maintaining your peace.
  • How to find forgiveness (and still have healthy boundaries)

Learning how to move on from your anger is one of the most important skills you can learn in your personal growth journey. Anger can feel righteous, protective, and even downright pleasurable sometimes, but you’ll learn that the feeling of releasing your anger and living your life to the fullest again is far more fulfilling.

Much love,

Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby

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How to Let Go of Anger

The Love, Happiness & Success Podcast with Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby

Music Credits: The Golden Dawn, “Let The Sunshine In”

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Therapy Questions, Answered.


  1. Wow! Thank you for a “tool” a “road map” a “lifeskills template” to get me out of the torturous prison I’ve been in my whole life of unforgiveness. I didn’t realise the way to heal and forgive was by;
    1. courageously going into the wrong unjust event/s and feeling the anger injustice pain hurt and wrong and identifying and naming the feelings associated, experiencing the anger and other feelings I had pushed down and run from.
    2. Curiously identifying (with compassion to myself) and validating every feeling I felt or wouldn’t allow myself to previously feel. Adding to my ever growing emotional vocabulary as I become a student of life and extend unconditional self love to me along the way.
    3. Compassionately looking at the perpetrator as a victim in that “hurt people hurt people” and I am on my way to freedom now and they most probably remain trapped.
    4. Renaming the story and the narrative of the event/s. I see it as the events have made me the person who I am today and there can be purpose to the pain as I can potentially assist others in life.
    5. Choosing to forgive the injustice, wrongs of the event/s of the perpetrator/s and myself for any part I allowed in it. Walking daily in an attitude of self love compassion kindness and freedom, being whole and present to enrich my relationships going forward. Turning off, or at very least quieting the “threat radar” that had me living triggered and hyper vigilant and hypersensitive, catastrophising and self sabotaging relationships around me. Thank you and I extend my prayer of courage to all reading this that you too will walk through the incredible pain you so wrongfully had inflicted on you towards freedom and life to the fullest on the other side! You can do it! You’ve got this! Gods got you. You are unconditionally loved and worthy of love!!!

  2. What great takeaways! Thank you for sharing, especially for those who might not have listened to the episode yet. I know there are so many people who struggle to let go of anger. I’m glad you found it validating and helpful! Kindly, Lisa

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