One of the most important tasks for those suffering from rage and/or destructive anger is to free themselves of past frustrations or disappointments. Every 12 step program has as step 4, "we made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves." We must be able to confront our past for one very simple reason. Until we release the things of the past we cannot move forward.

Our past weighs us down and keeps us in the posture of playing the old mental tapes repeatedly. We engage in the loop of "should a, could a, would a" to no avail. Meanwhile, the world continues to go on. We cannot change what was and only remain responsible for what will be.

The only result of backward thinking is stagnation. For those of us with anger issues, it keeps us in a state of unbalance as we continue to process unresolved issues. We need to learn to accept what has been, extract any lessons therein, and then move forward. I know, this is easier said then done. One of the elements of our addiction is we ruminate. We dissect and we ponder every experience that causes us pain. In other words, we frustrate our own healing.

That is the promise of the new year. On December 31, we gather with friends and family. We toast the impending new year, we release the experiences of the past. We await the strike of 12 and celebrate that we made it to see another year.

For us with anger issues, we have a very unique reason to rejoice. We made it through our mistakes of the past and we can have hope for the future. However, it is vital that we place both in the proper perspective. We remain accountable for what we have done and our penance is to do better.

For us with anger issues, we need to take a very personal step. While everyone is making fragile resolutions we need to be diligent and determined that we will continue our recovery journey. We need to process our falls with the mind of charting a course for the future. We need to make the life preserving commitment to grow in our recovery. We need to work the steps of recovery and do so one day at a time.

My friends, that again is the promise of the new year. Leave the past in the past and make your progress in the present so we too can enjoy the future. We move forward with the hope and expectation that we too can live the abundance of life. We need to move forward aware of who we are and who makes our daily living possible.

Welcome my dearly beloved to the year 2011.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Ronald K M Williams is a psychotherapist, a Certified Anger Management Facilitator, and a Certified Anger Resolution Therapist. He has worked with families for the past ten years. He is currently the Director of TriState Anger Management Inc.

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