Anger is a potent and potentially destructive emotional state. It can be likened to the uncontained forest fire of mood states, and sometimes the best response is to simply walk away and remove ourselves from the source of ignition. For most of us, anger is a rare emotion, but generally, the source is some form of unresolved hurt or unmet needs. Anger produces an incredible (not necessarily helpful) empowering neurochemical response. That response instantaneously provides us with strength and resolve (not necessarily rational) however, the chemical release is really hard on us and our body.
Similar to our response to extreme stressors, there’s a surge of energy, adrenaline, and norepinephrine with an increase in heart rate and blood pressure. After an episode of anger, it follows that there’s a huge drop in energy and a sense of exhaustion – even if the situation has been resolved. Like other mood states, this is when we’re vulnerable to hedonic binge eating. Remember, anytime we deplete our emotional energy reserves, they must be replenished, and Brian’s favorite energy source is glucose. If anger seems like it’s become a more frequent response and mood state, it may be time to look deeper and introspectively evaluate if some significant changes and counseling may be beneficial. We may have to talk through our expectations of ourselves and others to connect with the wisdom within us.