Communicating Without Anger: A 4 Step Emotional Process
Communicating without anger is extremely important. That is if you want healthy relationships. Do you know how to control your anger? And what gets you angry?
In this article, I’ll share a 4 step process for overcoming anger and other uncomfortable emotions. This process will help you discover your core needs and how to deal with anger in a more productive way.
You see… your partner can’t always know what you need.
It’s important to let them know… but that’s not always so easy to do.
Nonetheless, your partner isn’t a mind reader!
And if you do tell them what you need, chances are you say it in a way that puts them on the defense.
Overcoming anger isn’t easy. If you’re really angry and frustrated with your partner, communicating without anger takes a level of self-awareness most of us don’t have.
More common is to explode and say hurtful words you later regret. Even if your partner did do something that was out of line, if you commit to controlling your emotions and communicating without anger, you’ll have a better chance of getting things cleared up faster and avoid harboring resents. Learn how to manage anger and you’ll feel more connected to those you love. And that’s big.
Not knowing how to manage anger in your relationship will create distance and disconnect very quickly. Some couples live like that for years.
Let’s face it, intimate relationships aren’t always easy. Making sure both you and your partner get your needs met requires open, honest, non-blaming communication. You’re human. You make mistakes. You can’t always take the other person into consideration if you’re bogged down by life and circumstances out of your control. And the same goes for your partner. But that’s why looking at how to improve your communication in relationships is so important.
And knowing how to deal with anger in a productive way will save you from creating unnecessary resentments in your relationship.
Communicating Without Anger Requires Emotional Awareness
Let’s say you’re upset about your partner’s behavior. You start to overthink the situation. Overthinking and ruminating over it. You go over and over again in your mind, a conversation between the two of you. Revisiting the words that were said.
Before you know it you can easily make your partner out to be a monster. Which he or she is not. He or she is probably a great person. Otherwise… why would you be with him or her? Right?
Your partner is just trying to meet his obligations and make everyone happy. But in the meantime, maybe you get put on the back burner, treated with impatience or totally ignored. And it doesn’t feel good. Are you familiar with this situation?
When this or something similar happens do you know how to deal with your anger? Overcoming your anger and getting clear before talking with him is crucial. Communicating without anger is going to be your best bet for getting your needs met in your relationships.
If you yell and scream and complain and nag it’ll only make the situation worse. And you’ll push him away even further. He will wall off and you won’t feel heard or understood.
And if you convince yourself it isn’t that big of a deal but you can’t really let it go then it’ll negatively affect the relationship moving forward. Built-up resentments and unprocessed issues are like poison to your love. You need to learn how to deal with anger and any other uncomfortable emotions that come up.
For example, if you get clear, centered and know what’s going on with you emotionally before communicating, you’ll be well equipped to handle the situation with grace and an open heart. It will transform your relationship.
Discover Your Core Need
When You’re Upset
How to deal with anger and other uncomfortable emotions is a powerful relationship-enhancing tool. Your emotions are like waves. They come and go. However, they have important information for you.
But where do they go? If you don’t process them or at least acknowledge them within yourself, they get repressed. One frustrating life instance after another with your partner and you’re really packing it in. Stuffing those emotions into your body and creating body armor.
Talk about excess body weight. This is excess emotional weight that you don’t need to carry. The process I describe below will not only help you lighten your emotional load, but it’ll also help you get clear on what’s upsetting you. You’ll be able to communicate without anger and have a better chance of getting your needs met in your relationship.
You can’t change your partner’s frustrating behavior however you can let him know, in a heart-centered way, how his behavior affects you. I like to believe that people don’t intentionally hurt others. Especially not in a love relationship. Most trespasses are unconscious. And not ill-intended.
It’s up to you to let your partner know what you want and need. And having a tantrum, shutting down emotionally, or pretending it doesn’t matter will only keep you disconnected from your partner.
If you want connection, learning how to communicate without anger is a must. Believe it or not there are couples who communicate without anger. And the way you accomplish that is by discovering your core need in any upsetting situation. Then learning how to give that core need a clear, heart-centered voice.
Process Your Emotions before you communicate about a difficult subjects.
Instead of exploding in a fit of anger when you talk to your partner, or convince yourself, it doesn’t matter, you’ll benefit by doing my 4 Steps To Process Your Powerful Emotions. It’ll help you to communicate without anger and without having to avoid the situation or suck it up once again.
Your anger is valid. However, it’s important to take care of herself emotionally and manage your energy. That isn’t your partner’s job.
Here’s what you can do to learn how to manage anger and other uncomfortable feelings instead of denying them. Below are the 4 steps you can go through to discover your core needs. Then you can give your core needs a voice when speaking to your partner about what’s upsetting you.
The Four Steps To Communicate Without Anger
– Notice, Name, Nurture and Need –
The first step is to notice the habitual behaviors you turn to when angry. Become aware of these sabotaging behaviors. Do you blame, shame yourself or others, throw things or consume a gallon of double fudge ice cream when you’re upset? Becoming self-aware of your coping mechanism when anger will help you to change the behavior.
The next step is to name the feeling you are having. First, it’s important to know that ANGER is an emotion that is guarding more vulnerable feelings such as fear and sadness. Your anger is walling you off from more vulnerable feelings. It’s not about overcoming anger. You need to process it.
With that said… name the feeling and where you are feeling it in your body. Is it a pit in your stomach? A heaviness in your heart? A knot in your throat? It is sadness, fear, anger?
Close your eyes and notice the shape, color, and texture of the feeling. This feeling is actually an emotional energy in your body. And it wants your attention. It’s like a screaming baby.
The next step is to nurture this screaming baby. Take your hands and place them on your heart or your belly or wherever you are feeling the emotion in your body. I tell my students to hold this energy like a baby. It wants your attention. It wants your love. And it has wisdom for you.
Be present with this energy. Breathe into it and give it the light of your consciousness. This will calm your mind and help you to access the wisdom of your body.
After you have had some time being present with this active emotional energy, what Eckhart Tolle calls the pain body, ask yourself “What do I need.” This is a powerful question. What you are asking yourself about is your core need. Not your need for someone else to change.
Examples of core needs:
- Quality time
These are just a few examples of core needs. Core needs are all about YOU. When you identify your core need it calms and centers you.
For Example focus on your core need:
- for quality time as opposed to your anger that your partner never has time for you.
- for consistency and consideration instead of being pissed off that your partner was late once again.
- for acknowledgment and find something to acknowledge in yourself instead of screaming at your partner and letting him know what a jerk he is.
- for patience when your partner isn’t taking the time you need to understand something.
- for gentleness when your partner is yelling at you.
Communicating Without Anger Requires Going Deeper
It’s really easy to put up a wall, point your finger at someone and make them wrong. What that will get you are feelings of isolation and disconnect.
It’s much harder to know how to deal with anger, fear, sadness, grief, etc. It takes courage and vulnerability to go deeper and look within. Look at what’s underneath the anger. It’s an unmet need. Find out what that unmet need is and speak to that, not your anger. That’s how communicating without anger will create better relationships in your life.
I’m Anna-Thea, an author and Certified Divine Feminine Educator. Want to learn how to improve communication in your relationships? Check out my free course How to Feel Heard and Understood. It will transform your relationships!