The Effects of Anger and Negativity On Your Health

Someone just made your really mad. They really pushed your button…and you’re starting to feel weird, physically. You may start to wonder what the effects of anger and negativity on your health might be.

You’re chest is getting tight.

You’re starting to sweat.

At this point…you don’t even know why your mad.

Someone was wrong.

You were right!

You’re voice is elevated…and you might even start yelling. The things coming out of your mouth don’t even make sense and you know you’ll regret them when you calm down.

Most people have been there at some point in their life. Smart people learn how to overcome anger. Miserable people become more angry with time.

Anger Ruins Your Heart

Anger has been thought of as one of the “Seven Deadly Sins” by the Catholic church and I’m positive that they’re right. Anger is deadly. In fact…I believe that anger has caused more death, heartache, and depression than anything else on this planet.

Anger brings down nations and civilizations. It rips families into pieces and turns spouses into mortal enemies. It causes fathers and sons to never speak…mothers and daughters to never hug. It comes out of the blue and when carefully considered…was probably something of little importance.

Imagine the years wasted…the life wasted…the smiles wasted…the memories wasted, gone.

Anger turns some of the best…most kind hearted…service oriented people into someone that they’re not…someone that they don’t want to be. One day your life is great and then one day you snap and the animal within you is released. Sometimes it gets serious and you do something that you’ll regret for the rest of your life. There are people paying the price in prison, in loneliness, and in guilt every living day of their lives…and for what? To prove a point?

What a tragedy it is to have one situation ruin someones life because of a fit of anger.

But it’s more than that. Most of the time…your fit of anger comes and goes. You put a hole in the wall that can be patched with putty and you’ve hurt some feelings with words that won’t be easily forgotten. But for you personally…that anger is tearing apart your insides. Your anger is like tiny pieces of glass that coarse your veins and scar your organs. With every angry rant…your blood pressure is going through the roof, your adrenal glands are being exhausted, and for every angry high that you hit…there’s an equally depressive low awaiting you when the adrenaline wears off.

That depressive low leads to poor eating habits, messed up sleep patterns, and a lack of motivation to exercise. Then you’re more prone to another round of anger because you don’t feel well.

The wheel of sadness spins faster and faster out of control.

Now…if you go around getting mad at people all the time, you can see what this will begin to do to your body. You may not know it now…but you’re killing yourself. Slowly…surely…your taking precious years off of your life.

In that process…you’re also ensuring that no one will miss you when you’re gone. And if you are remembered when you’re gone…do you want to be remembered with a smile or a frown?

Consistent anger is a lose/lose situation in the present and the future.

WebMD asks the question,

“If you knew that frequent anger might raise your risk of heart disease significantly, would you continue to blow off steam by yelling and smashing things during an argument or getting furious if the office email crashes during a rushed, stressful day?”

When you let yourself get angry, your body automatically releases a stress hormone called cortisol. Having that hormone released in emergencies is a good thing. It helps to protect you in dangerous situations, but high levels of cortisol with the accompanying side effects “causes wear and tear on the heart and cardiovascular system.” (Jerry Kiffer, MA, a heart-brain researcher at the Cleveland Clinic’s Psychological Testing Center.)

Consistently angry people are normally swimming in a sea of negativity. That negativity builds up quickly and incites fits of rage more easily and more often. If you feel sick a majority of the time…it’s probably because your body is trying to rebel against your mental state of mind. The mind controls the body…and the body doesn’t like anger and negativity. Your body is trying to tell you that over and over again.

It’s time to start listening.

Laura Kubzansky, PhD, MPH, an associate professor at the Harvard School of Public Health in Cambridge, Mass backs this up. She says that “People who are angry a lot tend to have other chronic negative emotions as well.”

Of all the things out there that promise to enhance your health…this one might be the least noticed or emphasized.

If you want to be healthy…you need to be happy. You need to give others the benefit of the doubt and replace rage with laughter.

Find a way to smile and laugh at someone who cuts you off during rush hour. Find a way to compliment your boss at work (who is a jerk) instead of thinking about him all the way home and then taking it out on your wife or kids. Maintaining a positive outlook will enhance your life more than any other thing you can do.

Let the little things go and don’t “strain at a gnat and swallow a camel.” Ask yourself…is this really important enough for me to wreck my health over?

Most people that read this are never going to say out loud…”hey…this is me”…but you know who you are. You may need this personally or you may have a family member or friend that could use a logical reminder that their consistent outbursts of negativity and anger are hurting them and everyone around them.

It’s time to take control.

You can heal yourself from the inside out with positive thoughts, laughter, and love.

Just try it and see. Not for one day or one week…but make a lifetime transformation of positivity.

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