Anger Management Seminars
Judging from the popularity of anger management seminars, and the abundance of sources of information on the topic, there are a lot of angry people out there. Everyone struggles to control angry behavior at times. Most schools devote time each year to deal with the topic, often inviting local law enforcement officers in to speak on the topic of handling angry emotions and the consequences of acting out these feelings. Lesson plans on anger management are offered even in elementary grades. Middle school and high school programs warn against the dangers of uncontrolled expressions of wrath, while noting that rage which is repressed can be equally harmful.
Courses for handling discord in the workplace are common. Conferences which offer sessions on anger management for executives and other management types often have waiting lists for those who wish to be instructed in such issues. Formerly, one commonly associated anger management seminars with court-ordered sessions for out-of-control individuals, but now it seems that such programs are eagerly accepted by those who want to be informed about the best ways to deal with this important issue. Couples seeking ways to enhance or even salvage relationships, and parents concerned about their teen's angry behavior are equally willing to make use of lesson plans on anger management.
Listen to the Bible's lesson plans on anger management: "Be ye angry and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: neither give place to the devil." (Ephesians 4:26) This sums up several important aspects which may be covered by anger management seminars. First, when it says 'be angry', Scripture is not advocating that a person should give free reign to angry thoughts and feelings. However, it does recognize that being angry is a valid emotion. There is a proper way to deal with these emotions, though. Exploding with rage or bottling up these emotions can result in physical, mental and emotional damage. Hence, Scripture continues, 'do not sin' -- that is, do not handle the incident in a sinful fashion. This includes abusive words or actions. Blaming others for one's outbursts is also a common, yet sinful attitude. It is extremely hard not to get defensive when rage strikes. Sometimes a person can focus more on defending his or her own words and actions rather than really listening to the other person's complaints. Often, efforts are expended in justifying oneself rather than identifying the hurt which is underlying the perceived 'problem'. Pride and insecurity can lead a person to refuse to believe that he may be at fault in some sense. Instead, loud accusations of the other person's 'oversensitivity' or 'nagging' or 'craziness' conceal the fear of somehow being part of the problem.
The rest of this Scripture shows the importance of dealing with these issues instead of ignoring them or forgetting about them. The fact that one is not supposed to let the sun go down without attempting to straighten things out is an indication of how deadly and devastating rage can be. If it is better to confront anger head on rather than 'give place to the devil', this makes us wonder at the consequences which surrendering such a foothold would bring. Volleys of angry, hurtful comments, broken homes, marriages and lives, divorce, physical symptoms of stress, loss of jobs and opportunities, battered bodies and even death are some of the prizes which would be claimed by our spiritual adversary. Do not give up even a foothold.
Other lesson plans on anger management may be found online in the form of speakers, books, DVDs, workbooks and anger management seminars. For those who may refuse to attend individual counseling, the relative privacy of utilizing such resources may be at least a first step in obtaining help in this area. Workbooks may be helpful in discerning the causes of angry outbursts and in developing a plan of action to avoid angry responses in the future. Be discerning in accepting any source of advice or counseling. Most pastors are versed in counseling or can refer an individual to appropriate counselors or to an anger management resources from a Christian perspective.
Most lesson plans on anger management follow nearly the same basic outline. First, an attempt at determining the triggers for angry outbursts or sullen withdrawal is made. Recognizing what triggers angry reactions can help one to avoid such situations or at least be prepared to deal with them in a constructive way. Next, an appeal is made to self control. If a person can discipline himself to take a moment to think the situation through, including the consequences, he will be much less likely to pursue a destructive course of action. Take time to consider the effect of angry responses upon oneself and others involved in the incident. Instead, consider a constructive alternative. Even if it involves removing oneself from the situation for a while until control can be reestablished, this is better than venting hateful words or actions upon others. Although all this can happen in an instant, every incident of anger leads to a decision. Choose a course of action which will diffuse the situation, and lead to reconciliation. Then, act on it. Remove those footholds, before the sun goes down.
Facilitators of anger management seminars would concur with the fact that time is needed to develop habits of self control. Considering others before oneself, and acting in a constructive rather than destructive manner is difficult. An individual should be willing to extend the same type of patience to others which he or she would like to receive. Christians recognize that a supernatural work of God in the life of a person is necessary to be able to consistently live in a godly manner. Only then can an individual hope to manage emotions in a way that will benefit not only oneself, but also all who are involved in the situation.
Office Stress Management TechniquesOffice workers flock to stress management workshops because of the ongoing, never ceasing pace of life in the windowed office, or worse, in the dreaded cubicle. Employees get little choice about the kinds of varied personalities, cores values and work ethics that their coworkers possess, and as a result, anxiety and strain is an occupational hazard for the office worker. The fortunate people who choose to work in the great outdoors can often put space between themselves and other workers, and it becomes difficult for them to appreciate the intense and sometimes grueling strain thatcan be placed on workers staring at computer screen all day, often without windows to provide a mental break. It is not hard to find little reminders of the nervous tension in the office. Photocopies of the words, "Bang head here," or "Don't even think of talking to me, I am having a bad day," regale many walls of offices and cubicles, most frequently found among those ranked a little below middle management where often the stress of a manager is easily passed to subordinates. Office stress management techniques that many people know to do are easily forgotten or ignored.
Stress occurs in human beings when there is failure to adapt to changes in their environment. Consider a bridge built in the 1920's to withstand the weight of forty vehicles each weighing two thousand pounds. This same bridge will strain and break with the weight of forty SUVs today if changes are not made to the bridge to raise the load limit. Stress management workshops underline and underscore the need for people to make changes as the result of anxiety or stress levels rising. Failure to do so gives humans the same bleak outlook as the old bridge. But too often, extreme pressure at work is a given. "Cast all your care upon Him, for He cares for you." (I Peter 5:7)
There appears to be a minority of companies that really take this problem seriously. Businesses that offer monthly or even yearly opportunities to attend stress management workshops on company time seem rare, and appear to only be taking place with the most newly formed and innovative companies. Often these new companies are run by younger individuals who have recognized that a workforce relieved of constant anxiety and high pressure is a workforce that will accomplish greater things. For the average company, workers are often expected to discover and use office stress management techniques on personal time and if there are workshops in the area that could help to relieve such strain, they must be scheduled on weekends or after six pm on workdays. But there is help from a number of sources for things to do at work to help harried workplace personnel.
It would seem simple to know whether or not one's workplace is stressful. But the proverbial frog in the beaker story reminds readers that often stress can sneak up without real warning. Office stress management techniques must begin with the question of how to spot stressful environments, and fortunately there are some clear warning signs. For example, tension seems to be unusually high most of the time. The same problems still crop up year after year. Disorganization reigns supreme. Managers in these anxiety filled office environments are often seen as bullies or mouthpieces for the company line instead of being coaches that can bring out the best in people under their care.
There are more warnings about creeping anxiety and pressure in the workplace. Workers are performing tasks without knowing how the tasks relate to the overall mission of the company. The only joking among workers is barbed, personal digs meant to be funny, but in reality hide true feelings of resentment or mistrust or jealousy. Intervention for workers in this kind of environment needs to be immediate and decisive. Office stress management techniques should be implemented, and should be a companywide action, not an optional, weekend, non-paid calendar add-on. Companies that recognize a moral obligation to provide a positive atmosphere for its workers can expect a loyal and productive staff. Developing this type of upbeat atmosphere is the purpose of stress management workshops that specialize in the reduction of a negative atmosphere in the office arena.
However the office can be a very murky world in which to attempt to practice office stress management techniques when support from upper management is absent. The office atmosphere can often be a very structured environment where workers are being closely observed to ensure that production is not suffering with what can often be seen as non-approved activities. However, if company owners can catch the vision of a truly positive environment that will pay long term dividends in production and employment longevity, there are some pretty neat ideas floating around that can benefit entire companies that have a large or small office staffs. Many of the following ideas come right from stress management workshops, not just for office workers, but for all classifications of employment. They are shared because they are easy to do.
If one is a commuter to work in a personal vehicle, arrive ten minutes earlier than usual and spend the time in meditation of spiritual dimensions, or listening to a CD of ocean sounds or forest sounds(rock music or hip hop does not count!), accompanied by a deep breathing exercise that lasts at least ten minutes. This same deep breathing can be extremely beneficial when it is obvious that blood pressure is rising. Unstressing means to learn how not to chew over and over again the scenes in your mind that bring stress. Leave the instant replays to the football game on television and let it go!