By Ron Ross

My neighbor came charging across the street. His eyes bulged out and his fists were clenched as he came screaming into my yard, “Why the ____ did you call the cops on me?”

“Because you cannot keep you dogs from barking and the entire neighborhood is fed up with it,” I said in as quiet a voice as I could, hoping to calm him down. It did not work. He kept yelling at me and threatening my life. The guy had anger fever and the temperature was not going down.

Inside the house, my wife could see this was turning nasty, so she called the police. They arrived within minutes and calmed down the neighbor.

Traffic jams, rude customers, unkind co-workers, critical employers, ungrateful children, and an insensitive mate can each make you mad; some, with very little effort. How you express your anger will determine whether these important relationships will bloom or wilt, strengthen or weaken,

What is your favorite way to express anger?

There are six common ways to express anger: BLOW OUT, STRIKE OUT, FAKE OUT, SNUFF OUT, PULL OUT and SPEAK OUT.

BLOW OUT! This used to be my preferred method of expressing my discontent with people and situations. I would explode by screaming at everyone and everything nearby, and all without a moment’s warning. The bad news was it was ugly. The good news was it was brief. After the storm passed by, the calm set in. Like a tornado, it damaged only those that were in its path.

If you use BLOW OUT to express your anger, you have already done and said some pretty stupid things—many that have had long-term negative impacts on the people you know and love the most. Know this: Everyone around you is afraid of you. They do not want to see you explode and will do what they can to keep it from happening, including taking advantage of every chance they have to avoid being with you for any length of time. Your BLOW OUT problem is not everyone else’s problem; it is yours. Get control of your temper. You are an adult now; you no longer have to act like a three-year-old.

STRIKE OUT! Some people become aggressive when they are angry. Road rage is the result of STRIKE OUT anger. Someone cuts you off in traffic and BANG! your hands grip the steering wheel until your knuckles turn white, and you curse heaven and earth while you step on the gas because you are going to teach that so-and-so what driving is all about.

This kind of belligerent anger comes from the presupposition that you are always right and everyone else is an idiot. You think you should always get what you want, and you will stomp on anyone who gets in your way. You will intimidate, humiliate, manipulate and castigate just to make sure you get your way. Then to top it off, you blame the guy who made you angry.

What to do about it? Get a life. The world does not revolve around you. You are not always right; in fact, your STRIKE OUT behavior is proof you may be a much bigger idiot than the guy in the next car or the people who share your home. Stop making so many unrealistic demands on other people and take a deep breath. When something nasty happens to you, smile don’t snarl, laugh don’t curse.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Ron Ross (B.A., M.Div., D.Th.), author/speaker/publisher.For more from Dr. Ross please visit his site: