The Pitfalls of Anger

Anger is not a pleasant emotion—in fact, it can destroy one's body and mind. Anger creates chemical changes in the body that can result in physical problems, especially if we stay angry for a long time. It increases blood pressure, can lead to heart disease, and also causes indigestion, headaches, insomnia, fatigue, listlessness, muscle spasms, and many other ailments.

Anger also disturbs the mind. As long as one is full of anger, it's very hard to focus. For example, if you are angry at someone, you’ll find that it's very hard to concentrate on your work, studies, or whatever else you are doing. This not only makes you unproductive, but it can also lead to accidents—even serious accidents. If you are driving a car on a busy street, using heavy equipment, or even sharp knives in the kitchen, it's just as dangerous to be blinded by anger as to be blinded by a blindfold.

Personal relationships can easily be destroyed by anger as well. It often leads to harsh, hurtful words and sometimes even violence between family members, neighbors, etc. When someone acts out of rage, they often regret their words or actions, realizing that anger caused them to say or do things they didn’t mean. It can cause us to hurt even those whom we love very much. This is very unfortunate. So we need to be able to release anger in a way that doesn't hurt anyone.

In yoga, we deal with anger by releasing the stress that it causes—by practicing yoga asanas, breathing, relaxation techniques, and meditation. These practices help us relax both body and mind. So the next time you’re angry, try taking a time out to practice some yoga techniques. Do your best to place your mind on the techniques rather than on your anger. It’s highly likely that your anger will have dissipated by the time you’re done. You may even see the problem a little differently or have an insight that will help provide a solution. Releasing anger in this way is very beneficial for body, mind, and spirit. And of course, it does wonders for our relationships with others.

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