On Anger

“Keep this thought handy when you feel a fit of rage coming on-it isn’t manly to be enraged. Rather, gentleness and civility are more human, and therefore manlier. A real man doesn’t give way to anger and discontent, and such a person has strength, courage, and endurance-unlike the angry and complaining. The nearer a man comes to a calm mind, the closer he is to strength.”

-Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 11.18.5b

The world doesn’t care how much energy you put forth towards anger as long as you’re not hurting anybody. But you’re are hurting yourself. Every moment you spend in an angry state of mind is time wasted.

Say you find yourself in a situation that is your own fault and you are enraged by it. Stop, take some deep breaths and realize your current state of mind is not clear, productive, or benefiting anyone so find a way out of it. Let it go.

Say you get tweeted at and are angry about what that other person said. Don’t respond immediately. Take some time to cool off and get in a sensible state of mind before you respond to that tweet. Your response will not be the same and it will be better every time.

Think about anger as a choice. Would you really choose to be furious about something to the point where you take that anger out on the people around you? I would certainly hope not.

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