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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/1054703-Break-the-Cycle
Rated: GC · Book · Personal · #1054703
before it gets too out of hand.
I see clouds reflecting off my lenses....

For me, anger has been an issue since the earliest days of my adolescence. Managing it has never been a top priority, though. As a result, I have paid dearly for the consequences of my most potent emotion. By the time I reached the age of 18, however, I decided to get it under control. This attempt resulted in failure, though, and my anger has continued to flourish to an extent. Turth is, though, this can't go on any longer, as my anger has become internally self-destructive, resulting in crippling internal stress that has robbed me of my energy and is pushing me back into the depths of depression. If I don't get a grip, I may likely be dead before I turn thirty, either by suicide or cardiopulmonary disease.

When I look at my anger, though, I can't imagine myself without it. It has been my muse on several occassions, and on some days, it's been my main reason to get out of bed. I have been enjoying feeding off the euphoria of anger-provoked revenge for the past few years, and it's about as addictive as cocaine. How do I break free from this vicious circular thinking and make things right in my life for once? That's what I hope to find out through my scribblings here.

This particular blog won't be updated daily or perhaps even weekly. It will be updated when I feel the need to discuss how this journey is progressing or regressing. All I ask is you keep an open mind with this journal. One thing I can admit right off the bat is preaching to me sets me off something fierce. If you try to preach to me in any way, I will not make any progress. I appreciate support, but remember that I'm the one who must make the choice to accept your advice. This is up to me and only me. I'm the one who must break the cycle.
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June 21, 2009 at 2:33pm
June 21, 2009 at 2:33pm
This entry is mostly to report on a couple things. First, people have been begging me not to self demote and perhaps focus on not trying to change the whole site. The answer to that is no, I can't. This journal entry explains why. "Kinda like High School... Second, since my time to self demote is almost here, I've never felt so relieved. I feel like I'm finally getting my life back after pissing it away with donning the blue case. Speaking of which, here. Have an Amy Winehouse parody.

They want me to stay on as a mod,
but I say no, no, no.
After all that, I'll never go back.
Oh hell no, no.
I ain't got the time,
and I'm about to lose my mind.
They're begging me to don the blue case,
but that just won't go, go, go.
March 9, 2009 at 11:36am
March 9, 2009 at 11:36am
Due to my job situation (namely lacking one), I'm holding off on getting therapy. I'm probably going to try CBT and see if anyone in the area does EMDR (one of the only procedures that did any good the last time I was in therapy). I"m going to seek out either a psychologist or counselor since I absolutely do not want to deal with drugs. I'll also be discussing different issues this time, including a bad friendship that fucked me up worse than I initially thought and some of the misgivings I hold toward my parents (for example, the fact that when I was in therapy the last time they bought a convertible instead of making sure I had food and money to see the psychitatrist).

Until then, my major plan is to scale back big time on the site, which has been the greatest source of my anger over the last two years. I have some things I need to do before this cutback, but once those are done, my withdrawal from the community will be pretty dramatic. I will not be a mod, won't be helping out in Tech Support anymore and will not be running any major activities (with the exception of one contest). I've been putting this off forever, thinking I could fix things. It has occurred to me that I can't. So I give up. No more of this shit. Hopefully this will make me happier.
January 13, 2009 at 12:42pm
January 13, 2009 at 12:42pm
I haven't been here in a while, and I only come to report I've had some setbacks lately. I thought I could tackle this on my own, but I seriously think it's time to go back to a professional. I refuse to see a psychiatrist because I don't want to be on meds. The last time I was on medication for emotional problems things went from bad to worse. This has made me fearful of going back to any sort of counselor, actually. The only person who was any benefit was someone I saw back in high school, and I know she doesn't provide counselling for adults. Likewise, money is an issue. I don't know if I can afford to go since mi amor and I bought a new condo. Still, I've only figured out that big stuff doesn't make me angry, but little shit sets me off like whoa. I've also made people fear I'll be violent, which I haven't done in years. I don't know. I don't want to go to counseling, but I'm afraid to find out what the alternative is. And don't get me started on the subject of self medicating. I'm doing everything in my power not to be an alcoholic, but if my anger continues to cause problems, well, I just might head down that path.
September 18, 2008 at 12:17pm
September 18, 2008 at 12:17pm
As I explain in "The Bridge, I've rethought my priorities and have come to realize that making Writing.com a priority is not doing me any good. I'm getting angry at the littlest thing, and that's not good for me. It's damaging and not constructive. If I'm going to get angry, I'd like it to be for a good reason. I'd rather be frustrated about offline endeavors than online melodrama. I made my choice, and I feel so much better now that I've done it.

For those of you who follow this, you might be vaguely pleased to learn that I did not give in to the urge to pummel someone brainless on the bus during the infamous Labor Day protests in St. Paul (which I somehow managed to escape).

August 19, 2008 at 12:43pm
August 19, 2008 at 12:43pm
"Invalid Entry

It doesn't pertain to the anger issues I have, but it does offer some useful insight. Anger does occur with attachment disorder and PTSD, so understanding what goes on when someone endures that kind of trauma can help us understand the vast emotional response of anger. That's really what anger is: an emotional response. People like to treat it as a mental condition, but I'm learning that it's not.

Maybe it isn't for me. I've noticed that I have been less angry in the past year, but I still get angry. However, my anger (the bllod curdling hatred kind) has been much less severe since I upped my exercise level, exposed myself to fewer days with temperatures in the 90s and kept myself occupied with many projects and events that focus my attention away from the little shit that pisses me off so much. That's not to say I don't get angry. If anyone had provoked me last week, I'd have taken out my anger toward that jackass Michael Phelps on the unsuspecting person lured into my crosshairs.Yeah. My utter hatred for that scum of the Earth knows no bounds, although track and field events are keep me from flying to Beijing and strangling someone (anyone, really). So I'm in a liquid equilibrium here of lingering anger toward a lofty goal being achieved by a cocky son of a bitch and joy at watching track and field, something that has always brought me joy for as long as I've watched the Olympics.

The other thing that intrigued me was Mavis mentioning Cognitive Behavior Therapy, which I have done before. However, it was only for a short time (even though it was easier than seeing the psychiatrist). Some people might think it's more of a placebo than anything, perhaps even a mind game we play on ourselves. I still prefer it to popping happy pills myself, even if I play tricks on my own mind. It could be useful in toning down my angry reactions, or at least keep my blood pressure from coming back to bite me in the ass later in life.

For anyone that cares, though, my blood pressure has tested in the normal range the past couple doctor's visits I've had. Go figure.
April 1, 2008 at 12:22pm
April 1, 2008 at 12:22pm
Between my grandmother's death and spring, I've been in a crabby, bitchy mood. It's not quite to the point where I'm at full out anger, but holy crap I'm close. Spring has long time associations with school and the last minute pressures of the school year. The worst parts of the school year happened in the spring: my nervous breakdown, the notebook incident, numerous public humiliations, dealing with hellish living conditions and just rushing to graduate. Thus, spring has been the bane of my existence, so I'm more inclined to be a bitch this time of year. Not only that, but my energy levels are up, so I'm inclined to be more physically violent. Living in Minnesota, I have mixed feelings about it. I appreciate the warmup, but I hate feeling calm like I do in winter. Winter is when I'm least aggressive, and spring is when I pull a severe 180 in that regard. Spring is weird for me, and I have to find ways to deal with it.

The first step is to stay away from Writing.com except when absolutely necessary. I have newsletter committments, and I have a couple journalling things to complete. Other than that, I'm tired of the people on the site. Most of them are women, and they bitch too much. They bring out my inner mysogynist, and my urge to fight skyrockets. This hormonal flux makes me tired when I can't physically express my anger, so I feel muscle fatigue more in the spring. So I need to cut back big time. To a smaller extent, this applies to the internet in general, although the things that piss me off about the internet are more varied, ranging from irritation at stupidity to annoyance with pomposity of the myriad internet denizens. Fucking A.

The second thing I need to do is write angry characters. I've been feeling a strong pull to write fiction again, and the characters I have in mind are violent (sons of) bitches. I'll live vicariously through my characters, and I can get lost in the universes I create. Okay, the stories are actually set in Minneapolis, but I feel familiar enough with the city to integrate it into my fiction. The city has been a creative boon for me, and with this renewed inspiration, I may be able to use writing as a way to work through my anger. I still keep myself physically in check so I don't have to deal with the PoPos, but maybe writing will help relieve some of the mental strain I've been feeling.

In the meantime, I will be the bitchiest Stik you've ever seen, and odds are good it's your fault.
January 9, 2008 at 1:09pm
January 9, 2008 at 1:09pm
Holy fuck! I'm ready for a drink, and I'm not even halfway through the day! Jesus H. Christ in a chickenbasket. I'm not angry...yet. However, I'm coming awfully close. I need something to gnaw on when I get pissed. Any suggestions? And if you want to know what's going on sitewise for me, check Tech Support, my journal, and ask some yellow cases. They know the score.
December 28, 2007 at 2:45pm
December 28, 2007 at 2:45pm
I wish someone had informed me of this back in the summer. I could have used it.


Now imagine if Writing.com was a physical location and staff needed a demolition crew. I'd be CLAMORING for a chance to throw a sledge. Or something. Hell, if they offered that when I was working at HOme Depot, I'd have stuck around for THAT benefit. *Bigsmile*
December 18, 2007 at 2:52pm
December 18, 2007 at 2:52pm

I stumbled across this article earlier this month. Given my perfectionist tendencies, I was not happy when I first encountered this. However, I have been given one of the theories some thought.

As you may (or may not) know, I've been dating the same guy for three and a half years. Prior to this, the longest relationship I'd had was 11 months, three of which should never have happened and made the difference in our final break-up. Long story short, the relationship ended very badly. It was one of those that drove all our mutual friends out of their minds and pretty much ended the friendships once I graduated high school. Anyway, I mention this because the article because it talks about perfectionism and its (primarily adverse) effects on relationships. The article says that those who have outward perfection (meaning these people want the people and things around them to be perfect) tend to ruin relationships, but I think all three types are capable of this. If you are busy living up to some ideal, you could push away a close friend of lover that respects you and likes you for who you are (as opposed to the ideal ingrained in you head). I say this because I feel I have all three types of perfectionism. I expect perfection from myself; I like the people around me to meet my standards of perfection; and I have a strong ideal I push for everyday, although some days I'm more adamant than others.

What does this have to do with anger? Well, plenty. I get frustrated with myself if I flub on something (especially site related matters). I get pissed off and often blow up at those who do not do something perfectly. This has gotten me fired from jobs in the past, so for te sake of having money I've reigned this in a bit. However, I still get confrontational. As for the ideal, that contributes a bit less to my anger, but when I get angry, it triggers some guilt as well. I think the part that gets me into more trouble and triggers the most frustrations, though, is the perfectionism I expect from others. Thing is, I know at least parts of how I developed this aspect of perfectionism. If you understand my educational background, you will see that I had many perfectionist classmates and just about waltzed through every known level of American education. With this kind of background, I think to myself that most concepts can't be all that difficult to comprehend, if nothing else. So when someone cannot execute a certain command or research an answer for him or herself, I get annoyed at best. At my worst, well, this post will give you a good idea of what happens. "Invalid Post"   I do expect a lot of others, and part of that stems from being in an environment in which everyone expected perfection from everyone and everything. It also stems from demanding a lot from myself as well. That will not change. That is not something I want to change. However, expecting perfection from others is not going to hold up so well. It will be eventually fall by the wayside. I'm not so sure if I want to change this now. A big part of me still enjoys expecting perfection from other people. This is an issue I'm not ready to face. All the same, I realize it will affect my ability to overcome a good deal of my anger issues.

Speaking of which, the article suggests that perfectionism is a reason some people do not overcome addictions with traditional rehabilitation techniques. I'm less inclined to accept this theory. However, it is worth consideration in light of anger management. Let me quote from the article here for just a moment.

The trouble is that falling short still reeks of mediocrity; for them, to say otherwise is to spin the result.

Break down just once — have one smoke, one single drink — and at best it’s a “slip.” At worst it’s a relapse, and more often it’s a fall off the wagon: failure. And if you’ve already fallen, well, may as well pour yourself two or three more.

As you can see, these quotes illustrate why I have my doubts about the idea of perfectionism being a battle in fighting various addictions. After all, being addicted to alcohol is very different from being addicted to crystal meth (and I really don't see this theory applying to crystal meth addictions). However, in my case, it's possible to equate my anger issues to addiction. As I've said before, I enjoy holding people to very high standards, and a part of me gets off to blowing up on people and psychologically ripping them to shreads when I'm really pissed. So perhaps I ought to reconsider how I'm approaching this issue. Perhaps I should approach it like I'm approaching my caffeine addiction; taper it. Instead of going cold turkey and trying not to blow up on people at all, I need to allow myself to be angry every once in a while, blow up and watch how it affects someone over the course of a couple of days or something. And if I do get angry after a time of keeping myself under control, I shouldn't slam myself for it. This may be the way to go, but I'm not sure.

By the way, if anyone cares, I'm tapering my caffeine addiction by keeping my caffeine ingestion to the morning hours. I do make an exception for Pizza Night, but I might be making changes to that and going for water instead.
December 8, 2007 at 1:48am
December 8, 2007 at 1:48am
The good news is I've had significantly fewer problems with my anger since I moved to Minneapolis. Even though the weather is frigid, the people are not, which has helped me get some perspective. I've been here just a little over a month and face some challenges in the immediate future. These challenges could either ignite old triggers or even bring new ones to light. This has lead to a new experiment in anger management.

After reading some stupid articles on the internet, my temper flared big time (as in if Perez Hilton showed up at my door tomorrow I'd punch his nose until his sinus cavities collapsed). So, I'm going to try something new: listing ten reasons why I shouldn't act a certain way in response to an anger trigger. Tonight it's going to be hitting someone, and remember. The reasons are not ranked. They're just listed as I come up with them.

*Idea* I do not want felony charges on my permanent record.

*Idea* I do not want to punch someone only to find that it results in me becoming terminally ill. (I'm thinking of contracting AIDS due to getting my hand cut in a fight and that wound being exposed to an infected person's blood.)

*Idea* I do not want mi amor to leave me.

*Idea* I do not want people tailing me seeking vengeance for hitting someone they know/love.

*Idea* I do not want to get physically injured in a fight.

*Idea* I do not want to know how my family would react to hearing about it.

*Idea* I cannot afford to waste my time and energy on such pursuits.

*Idea* Hits have long term consequences that I don't see. However, the thought of rendering those consequences is a huge burden on my conscience.

*Idea* It's hard for me to remember this, but in most cases, hitting someone is a sign of cowardice; I am not a coward.

*Idea* I do not want to be seen as an abuser or someone who is potentially absuive.

Wow. That was hard, much harder than I expected. I don't know if I'll do that again anytime soon. It's possible, but I'm not sure right now.

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