Anger Management for 7: Seven Proven Ways to Control Anger and Live a Happier Life…
ANGER MANAGEMENT FOR EVERYONE is a practical, easy to follow guide to getting control of your anger so that you can live a more productive life today. Written by anger-experts, Tafrate and Kassinove, the reader can feel assured that these recommendations are based on proven research and clinical wisdom. Rather than get angry, get this book. –Robert L. Leahy, Ph.D., Director, American Institute for Cognitive Therapy, New York, NY 10022, Editor, JOURNAL OF COGNITIVE PSYCHOTHERAPY: AN INTERNATIONAL QUARTERLY
This exceptional book will be invaluable to anyone who wants to understand and manage anger in their lives. It is based on a well-researched approach, written in a clear and down-to-earth style, and contains practical suggestions to quickly bring excessive anger under control. Drs. Tafrate and Kassinove, two seasoned anger management experts, help readers generate solutions to problems when that is possible and to accept the negative realities of life when that is the only recourse. In addition to clearly presenting their seven anger control techniques, they help you understand how to live a happier and more fulfilling life. I strongly recommend this fine book. –Denis G. Sukhodolsky, Ph.D., Associate Research Scientist, Yale University School of Medicine, Child Study Center
…the best self-help book on anger I have yet come across. –Raymond DiGiuseppe, Ph.D., ABPP, Professor and Chair, Department of Psychology, St. John’s University, Past President, Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies
Now, from the authors of , here at last is a comprehensive program for the rest of us! Tafrate and Kassinove bring their expertise and research-based understanding to everyone interested in controlling their anger. Is your anger:
* making others uncomfortable and creating distance in your relationships?
* disrupting your ability to think clearly and make good decisions?
* resulting in behaviors that you later regret or recall with embarrassment?
Anger Management for Everyone shows you how to cope with life’s adversity, unfairness, and disappointment, so you can successfully put anger in its proper place and live a vital, happy, and upbeat life.
My Recommendation in short:
I have often had the challenge of coaching executives whose career has been stymied because of their anger and aggression, managers who are neither liked nor respected but feared because of their reactions, and employees who are on the cusp of losing their jobs because they lack the understanding and/or motivation to take responsibility for their angry responses. Historically, in all these cases, I had been forced to cobble together information from different sources in an effort to educate and support my clients; this book changes the playing field. This is the first book I have found that offers a comprehensive approach to changing one’s anger responses, from offering a substantial education on the basics of anger, to a strong discussion on change readiness, to its 7 proven ways to change anger and ultimately living a happier life, this book has been long awaited and is a welcomed addition to anyone who has worked with angry people. Moreover, it is a gift to those people who have had difficulty managing their own anger. Whether they are currently aware of how their anger affects them and others around them, this book is an excellent tool to make them aware and create the opportunity to create change.
One of the strongest facets of this book is its structure. It is broken down into 3 parts, each part containing various chapters that provide important information in easily consumed sections.
Part I: Anger Basics. This section is among the clearest most concise and comprehendible reviews of anger and is broken down into 3 chapters.
Chapter 1: Anger 101: Common Questions and Answers. In this chapter the strength and vast experience of both authors is communicated on this subject. The strongest parts of this chapter lie in the snippet examples used to illustrate different anger scenarios and the simple distinction made between anger and aggression. The latter is a distinction often difficult to communicate to some people with anger problems, it is well communicated here and certain to create awareness in those who have been unable to previously make this distinction.
Chapter 2: Understanding Anger Episodes. This chapter begins with another snippet illustrating and anger episode and then offers a very strong structure for analyzing anger episodes. They offer a model that has proven to be effective, but the hidden treasure in this chapter is the author’s Anger Thermometer. I have often had difficulty working with angry people who can only express their angry experiences as anger, without applying any distinction to matter of degree. This tool is an innovative way for people who have difficulty with anger to become more aware and be better able to define their experience of anger, a critical factor in remediating any anger issue.
Chapter 3: Are You Ready To Change. This is a unique chapter in anger management books. It is particularly strong in its structured progressive approach to having the reader consider the benefits of changing their angry responses, bringing the reader to a necessary level of commitment to create change.
Part II: Seven Proven Ways to Control Anger. The seven chapters in this section identify strategies and tactics, as well as give specific examples on how readers can better control their anger.
Chapter 4: Avoid and Escape. This chapter starts with a strong call to the reader to consider specific ways in which they respond to certain events. They then delve into a variety of examples of how the reader can practice Avoidance and Escape in a healthy, productive, and successful way, while creating solutions for the problems that trigger anger and frustration.
Chapter 5: Find New Solutions to Social Problems. This chapter has a nicely written opening calling on the reader to consider their own perspective on challenges, struggles, and how one grows throughout his/her life. It continues by referring to literature that clearly defines social problem solving styles, and closes with an effective illustration of a traditional problem solving approach to anger management. Here again, the snippets and illustrative examples in this chapter make the concepts readily accessible to the reader, as is the case throughout the book.
Chapter 6: about Your Life. Cognitive Psychology forms the backbone of this chapter. This should not at all be surprising given the background of the authors. Here they have provided a means for the reader to identify 6 types of thinking errors, offered a 4-step process in how to go about changing one’s anger provoking thoughts.
Chapter 7: Forgiveness. This is a particularly unique chapter in this book and is among the strongest in this book. With this chapter the authors have really hit-their-stride. They offer powerful examples of unforgiving and forgiving responses; compare and contrast forgiveness from a secular and religious perspective; and finally, offer a creative step-by-step process on how the reader can practice and achieve forgiveness. The closing snippet of this chapter is a particularly robust example of the power of forgiveness. It should be read and seriously considered by anyone who is stuck holding a grudge or who believes doing so is desirable.
Chapter 8: Learn to Relax. No book on managing anger would be complete without a chapter on relaxation and its importance in the face of anger provoking situations. This chapter explains the importance of relaxation, gives specific detailed direction on how to make a relaxation tape, then offers 10 alternatives to progressive muscle relaxation. It’s a well written chapter that reminds us that no matter what technique we may choose to use, learning to relax in emotionally charged situations is a requisite skill to be successful in our lives.
Chapter 9: Expose Yourself and Reach Less. For some people, exposure can be a tricky proposition, particularly when not assisted by a trained professional. In this chapter, the authors have elegantly addressed when exposure should and should not be considered. They offer specific steps on how the reader can create an exposure experience in imagination, through hearing verbal barb statements, and in real life.
Chapter 10: Express Your Anger in an Assertive, Productive Way. This is another one of the strongest chapters in this book. Reading this chapter is like walking down a path with well-marked signs along the way. You don’t have to worry about getting lost or missing a turn because the authors keep you well informed every step of the way. I particularly liked the author’s formulation of assertive, verbally aggressive, and unassertive responses. The reader also receives valuable instruction through the explanation that assertiveness as well as the acknowledgment that assertiveness doesn’t guarantee a particular outcome, it does however increase the probability of a more desirable result. Finally, acknowledgement that assertiveness is to be practiced as a lifestyle gives readers a real feel that they have a chance to change their lives.
Part III: Other Issues. This final section includes two chapters that can be seen as follow up and maintenance steps for readers.
Chapter 11: What If I Still Get Angry? This is an important chapter that provides a self-assessment, an analysis of factors that may limit one’s progress, and a list of alternative resources where readers can find additional help. The chapter is brief and content rich.
Chapter 12: Live a Happier Life. This is an excellent chapter to help the reader move beyond anger reduction alone. It is an abridged summary of what is offered from Positive Psychology. In keeping with the all the previous chapters, it offers 9 specific and detailed steps to lead a happier, more fulfilling life.
This book should be considered a must read for anyone who has ever had issues with anger or anger management. It would likely be helpful to those people with partners or family members with anger issues, as well as therapists who would like to offer their clients concrete and specific guidelines on how to better manage anger. It is well written, clear, instructive, and offers information in a well thought out format, unlike many books in this genre, and offers a structure that can easily be applied. This book is a standout in the self-improvement genre. I recommend it without reservation
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