Do you find yourself: •Becoming so angry you have trouble thinking? •Acting impulsively during angry outbursts? •Getting so mad that you feel out of control of your actions?If these strong, sudden bursts of anger sound all too familiar, you know the impact they have over your life. Over time, these responses can actually hard-wire our brains to respond angrily in situations that normally wouldn't cause us to lose our cool. These anger pathways in the brain can eventually disrupt your work, strain your relationships, and even damage your health.Written by anger management expert Ronald Potter-Efron, Healing the Angry Brain can help you short-circuit the anger cycle and learn to calmly handle even the most stressful interactions. You will learn which areas of your brain are causing your reactions and discover how to take control of your emotions by rewiring your brain for greater patience and perspective. This fascinating, scientific approach to anger management will yield long-term results, helping you develop greater empathy and put effective conflict resolution skills into practice for years to come.
Director of Wisconsin's First Things First Counseling, Potter-Efron takes an extensive look at the neurology of controlling temper. In simple terms, this involves an intra-brain struggle between the amygdala (the brain's "fight or flight" region) and the prefrontal cortex (responsible for rational thought). He delineates six stages, ranging from feeling offended to acting to getting feedback on one's outburst, and guides readers through the mental patterns of those who are habitually rageful: "When someone says something nice to them, they hear it as neutral... something neutral, they hear... as negative... and... something that's actually negative, they hear... as a total attack." Potter-Efron (Angry All the Time) is most helpful in suggesting ways to "rewire" neural pathways, including becoming more aware of bodily changes when you're angry and practicing deep breathing, muscle relaxation, and biofeedback. The process takes practice and patience; brain changes take six months to a year, Potter-Efron observes. In a fine concluding chapter, he discusses developing a greater sense of empathy and learning to practice forgiveness. Despite some minor organizational problems, this is a helpful work for laypeople struggling to hold their anger in check, though mental health practitioners should benefit from it as well. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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New Harbinger Publications
April 01, 2012
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