So, on NPR this morning, a segment on the theory of cathartic anger and whether or not it is a good plan. The idea that we needed to vent our anger and talk about our negative feelings took hold in popular culture in the 60’s, but the physiological data doesn’t back it up.
Screaming, yelling, punching pillows, throwing stuff, none of it diminishes the chemical and pysical response to stress: in other words, it doesn’t work. Apparently, the more anger you express, the angrier you get. What you are supposed to do is express your anger without getting emotional.
So now I’ve got something else to practice: not reinforcing the negative by expressing it in a negative fashion. We’ll see how far I get with that.