Four Truths About Anger Over The Presidential Election

Four Truths About Anger Over The Presidential Election

Millions of people from all across the nation voted for the candidate that they believed would be the best choice as the next President of the United States.  If you voted, and your candidate for President wasn’t elected, then you are probably experiencing a number of emotions:  You might be feeling sad, disappointed, confused, hopeless, numb… but for some people, the feeling that may likely stand out head and shoulders above the rest, is the feeling of anger.

If you are experiencing feelings of anger right now, because your candidate lost the election, please consider that while the Presidential Election is over, there is always a private election going on within you, where different emotions such as anger, fear, anxiety, etc. are like candidates campaigning to be elected for the position of being your emotional response to the challenges of daily life and relationships.

In my counseling practice, I have had many clients for whom anger is the reigning incumbent, heavyweight champ of emotions.  Anger had been their usual candidate of choice, in large part because anger simply had a very familiar feeling to them, after having been a default emotional response for such a long time.

Ask yourself if anger has been the reigning, incumbent champ of your emotions.  Does having an angry state of being feel real familiar to you… almost comfortable?

If feelings of anger are knocking on your door, asking to be elected as your emotional response to dealing with the fact that your candidate for President lost, there are a couple of things you should know about Anger’s track record, so that you can choose wisely:

  • Anger does indeed act as an instant and very effective, short-term, painkiller to hurt feelings.  Anger rushes in and switches the person’s focus from feeling hurt or emotional pain, to self-preservation, and to take whatever actions are necessary to shut down or prevent any further emotional or physical injury.
  • Anger, however, is extremely shortsighted, and has a record of making very poor, often self-destructive decisions that can have long-term consequences.  Anger doesn’t fix any problems, it actually often escalates them, and you’ll find yourself in a deeper hole than before you elected anger.
  • Anger has a track record of over-promising but under-delivering.  You may feel in the moment very powerful, but unfortunately, you are actually powerless!
  • Repeatedly electing anger as your emotional response can be addictive and can lead to other addictions.  At the root of the anger is some type of pain or trauma in a person’s past, and because that pain isn’t being dealt with and addressed in a healthy way, hurt people become angry people, and often use other methods to help themselves deal with the pain, or self-medicate.  That’s why there is a strong correlation of angry people having other addictions, like addictions to alcohol, or to sex, or to drugs, etc.

I have worked with many clients for whom anger has been a response to deal with something that had hurt/wounded them as a child or growing up.  For example, it could be that they were picked on, teased, or bullied as a child or teenager, and they carry around today as an adult, emotional injuries of feeling rejected, unaccepted, not good enough, or like they just don’t belong or fit in.   These emotional injuries cause feelings that are like scripts or messages that were sent to them, which are often unconscious, and the emotion of anger is used to wrestle with the pain of those hurt messages, by dulling the pain by switching the person’s focus, or as a drive to deny the message they had received, and so prove that it is wrong.

One of the first things that you could do is to ACKNOWLEDGE – That You Are Angry…

  • I am angry …because my candidate lost.
  • I am angry because I am disappointed and my expectations have not been met.
  • I am angry because I feel like I am headed in the wrong direction and someone else is in the drivers seat.
  • I am angry that so many people in this country voted the way they did, and I think they are wrong.
  • You can’t get to where you want to be, if you don’t know where you are now.

Even if your candidate for president lost the election, find acceptance in knowing that you did everything you could by utilizing your right and responsibility to vote.  Now that the Presidential election is over, remember that you have still have the responsibility, daily, and moment by moment, to elect the emotional response that will be healthiest for you, your loved ones, and your country.

If you are still struggling are looking for want more assistance & guidance than call us today at 407-622-1770! Call to book an individual counseling session with our expert therapist or to register for our anger management workshop. It is possible to be free from the anger within!

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