Spain. PHOTO: Sarah Lofgren

How to Deal With The Anger You Definitely Don’t Have

EVERYTHING IS FINE! What?

I’m not angry.

Why do you think I’m angry?

Anger is a remote and foreign emotion I was never programed to experience.

Fear? Yes, I am expert at fear. Sadness? If sadness was a mountain I’d have hiked all over that mofo and maybe peed in its forest when I couldn’t make it to a portapotty in time. Excitement? I am frequently excited about things, sometimes to an extent where people tell me to calm down and please, for the love of God, stop explaining why Grease 2 is a better movie than Grease 1.

Disappointment. Hope. Envy. Joy.

Boom. Boom. Boom. Boom.

I have decent experience with most of your boilerplate, human emotions. But anger? Well, that would be unbecoming.

Photo by Daniel Gregoire on Unsplash

I’m never angry.

I bet you’re never angry, too.

That’s why this article is going to be helpful for so many of us who are trying to deal with the all-consuming intensity of the anger we don’t have.

We would never punch a wall or scream or set things on fire, because that would be crazy behavior, right? Especially for people who aren’t angry.

I’m going to sprinkle a few tools around the place and you’re welcome to pick one or two of them up, if they serve you. After all, I’ve been living anger-free for most of my life. (Things might have gotten a little shaky for a couple of years when I was a toddler, but this shouldn’t be held against me, since toddlers are all psychopaths.) I’m practically an expert and the best resource you’re going to get.

(Or go to a therapist, maybe. I’ve heard they can help? If you have a problem. WHICH NONE OF US DO. Doy.)

As I’ve learned from cartoons, angry people can be spotted by their bright red faces and the steam coming out of their ears. The first thing you’ll want to do is paint your face blue and stuff your ears with cotton balls, or whatever else you have at hand, so no steam escapes.

That way no one can accuse you of being angry when you are not.

Wearing a mask is also a great strategy, because if enough people don’t know how you’re feeling, eventually you won’t either! And not knowing you’re angry is one of the best ways to avoid actually being angry.

(The internet can be a nice kind of mask, if you use it correctly.)

One of the best ways for dealing with your non-existent rage is to filter every happenstance through a layer of withering, Daria-eque sarcasm. That way, instead of allowing your experiences to make you angry, they transform you into a bitter and funny person, which is far trendier. Who would want to be The Hulk when they can be April Ludgate?

(Plus, it makes a much tighter, more tangled ball to unwind when you finally do get your ass in therapy at the age of 89, which will be super entertaining for everyone involved.) (Assuming the world is still around by then.)

I’ve been told the act of artistic creation can also be extremely therapeutic for angry people. I am not angry, so I try to avoid making anything at all, for fear people might misinterpret my efforts as an attempt to deal with unresolved anger. A homemade spaghetti dinner can be easily read as a symptom of rage. Better not to risk it.

Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash

Instead, get comfortable clenching your fists and driving your fingernails into your palms over and over and over again. Most people won’t notice and you can pretend each stab of your fingernails is going straight into the hearts of those who have wronged you. That they’re piercing the face of injustice.

Instead of being angry, that is.

Because you’d never do that.

Stab.

Stab.

Stab.

Sarah is a freelancer who exists on twitter and instagram and redbubble.

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Engaged in inadvisable wordsmitheries and other creative acts. http://sarahlofgren.com

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Sarah Lofgren

Sarah Lofgren

Engaged in inadvisable wordsmitheries and other creative acts. http://sarahlofgren.com

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