Phoenix Anger Management Counseling
“Goosfraba!” This is the phrase Jack Nicholson’s character had his anger management group repeat when they started to lose control. Now say it with me really slow, “Gooooz….Fraaa….Baaa….”. Feel better? If you are not sure what it means don’t fret. According to Jack Nicholson’s character who was posing as an anger management therapist it is the word Eskimos use to calm down their children when they are angry. I’m not sure if this is true but I have to admit that just saying the word makes me feel relaxed. Try it again, “Gooooz….Fraaa….Baaa….”. Ah, that’s better!
The next time you’re angry slowly saying goosfraba may actually help. The reason is not so much the word itself. In fact, you could say any silly word as long as you are adding an important component: slowing things down. It is the process of slowing your anger down, taking some deep breathes, identifying all the emotions you are feeling (not just anger), and then choosing your reaction that is the key to successfully managing your anger.
Let’s take a closer look at all of those steps I mentioned above. First, slow down your anger. The key to successful anger management is being able to slow down those knee jerk reactions. We will talk more about this is a moment, but first I want to help us understand how our brains work. A driver cuts you off and, “BOOM!”, you explode with anger. A co-worker makes a negative comment and within nanoseconds you are in defend or attack mode.
What you need to know is that the initial response, the response that occurs in what seems like instantaneously, is a normal part of your fight or flight defense mechanism. It is going to happen! However, the average person will take about 2 to 3 seconds before they slow things down and respond rationally. This is because information travels first to the limbic system of our brain. The limbic system supports a variety of functioning including emotion and behavior. External information first enters the limbic system before it can travel to the front part of your brain where you can think rationally, slow things down, identify all the emotion you are feeling, and then choose how you will respond.
What does all of this mean? Well, for starters I think it means that you can give yourself grace knowing that all people respond with the initial flash of anger in response to real or perceived threats. The goal is to not allow the initial burst of anger to go extreme levels and to stop anger from spiraling into a loss of control or full blown rage. Through anger management counseling at one of Phoenix or Scottsdale counseling centers you’ll learn how to slow the anger down by using breathing techniques and saying silly words such as goosfraba. You will learn how the brain works and how it is actually possible to retrain the angry brain through changing your thoughts, behaviors, and habits.
You will also learn that in many situations where anger occurs there is also deeper emotions such as hurt or feelings of mistrust towards others. How you answer the question, “Do you view the world and others as trustworthy or untrustworthy?” will have a strong bearing your emotional response towards others. In my anger counseling sessions I have observed that angry people are often that way for good reasons. They had to be angry in order to keep themselves safe. Anger became a defense against all of the bad in the world. It also became walls that kept the good out. Good such as love, care, empathy and experiencing a relationship marked by trust and safety.
Get help with anger. The first step is to reach out for help. Our team of anger mangement therapists are ready to help you with your anger. Our offices are conveniently located throughout the Valley of the Sun including Phoenix, Anthem, and Scottsdale. We offer services throughout the state of Arizona through our private and convenient virtual-online therapy. We would be honored to support you in your healing process. You can start your anger management counseling journey by following these simple steps:
- Contact Crossroads Counseling
- Meet with an anger management therapist
- Begin improving your relationship
You may also click here to read our anger management page services page.