Anger is one of those emotions I used to sprint from, or avoid at all costs by eating uncontrollably until it passed.
Here’s the thing. Our emotions are part of being human. They all have a right to exist. They are here to teach and connect us to our deeper yearning and meaning in life.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine and ancient wisdom, each season is connected to an emotion and earth element.
My friends, spring is all about anger. That’s right — this season is about using anger, injustice and seeds of frustration to create change. The earth element associated with spring, is wood. Wood is all about upward movement.
As we enter the season of spring, we engage upon a time of planting new seeds with the faith that they will lead to beautiful newness. We enter a period of deep change, movement and growth. Learning to use and convert anger into positive action can change your life. It has changed mine.
I’ve been ready for spring since we rang in 2017. While I’m always working on finding aspects to love in each season, I’ve got to be honest, I don’t dig winter. I prefer green, sunshine and pretty flowers.
One of the biggest teachers we have is Mother Nature. While she may not always seem to have the star role in our lives, I’d argue that if you get really present to the moment; you will notice her gifts everywhere. Whether it’s a gorgeous bud about to open up, a fierce bird circling the sky after returning from it’s Florida vacay or baby blades of grass making their way up from the soil — you’ll see that you are surrounded by metaphors and wisdom in how to live a more connected life.
The best news. Nature wisdom is free and always around us.
If you’re like me, you might look at anger as an emotion you’d rather detour. Through the 5 strategies below, you’ll learn how to use the gifts laden in anger to get your butt in gear to create your best life.
Use these 5 tips to transform your anger into positive change.
1. Put On New Glasses
Take off your dated, foggy glasses and try on a new brushed metal rimmed pair. Check out anger from a new lens — one in which the stimulus; anger, frustration or dissatisfaction, can be used for good to create the fire under your bottom to get you into action to change, grow and expand. What injustices in the world are making you angry? What can you do about it? What and who in your life frustrates you? Is there a way to see this from another perspective? Is there a positive action you can take? Often negative situations allow for us to clarify what we really want and out of that clarity comes focus to ignite change.
2. Let Your Blood Boil and Flow
Letting your blood boil and flow is a good thing! It means you’ve got passion and internal movement. After a season of perhaps being a bit more lax and immobile, our bodies need to be revved up and used. Anger can be a great reminder that you are alive, kicking’ and that your blood (aka, your life force) is flowing in your veins. I invite you to use that energy and frustration to get your self in gear. Go punch it out at your gym punching bag (or even on your pillow), kick your heart out in a martial arts class or lace up your sneaks and stomp out your annoyance on the pavement. Get out and let it flow.
3. Re-navigate Your Internal GPS
My question to you is what might be something you are frustrated by that could point to the direction of what you really want? Where would you like to expand? What seeds can you plant right now that will start the growth process? Maybe it’s writing that book you have heard your inner voice tell you (or perhaps scream at you) to write, or starting a mindfulness practice to help you enjoy the moment and have more patience. Whatever it might be, listen up, friends. The seed of anger is actually pointing to what matters to you. Re-set your internal GPS and go for it.
4. Inner Spring Cleaning
Who doesn’t need a good spring cleaning? How about making it an internal cleaning. A great way to do this kind of cleanse is to create an ‘anger inventory’. You’ll list things that you feel upset about (remember, you can only change yourself and there is great power in being able to change anything within you) to excavate what you want to change. Next, you’ll look at the root of what you’re angry about. Lastly, you’ll uncover what it is you really want and what’s missing. I encourage you to do your anger inventory so you can dig in to what you really want to have blossom this year.
5. It’s Time for Action, Baby!
From your anger inventory, it’s time to create action items that will support your designing a life in full alignment with your desires, purpose and goals. Make those goals SMART, i.e. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. For example, sick of feeling sick and tired? Design a well-being plan that maps out key areas to focus on, such as how many hours of sleep you’ll get a night, how much water you’ll drink daily, when and how often you’ll be going to the gym, and what kind of foods you are choosing to eat (and not eat). Even better, find an accountability friend to get in action with you. Watch how your life grows and expands this season.
In taking on these 5 actionable steps, I invite you to notice how flipping anger on it’s head can lead to positive change.
I’d love to hear how your life is opening up for you and what’s flourishing in using anger to prompt new growth.
Wishing you a bountiful experience using anger as the soil for planting new seeds, uprooting weeds that don’t serve you and committing to action that will change your game.
More about Julie: Author and Life Designer™ Julie Reisler, has a Master’s Degree in Coaching and more than 12 certifications in health and wellbeing, although her Master’s could have been in people pleasing, not feeling ‘good enough’ and crappy self esteem. Julie now coaches and works with individuals and groups to design their best life, is an international speaker and faculty member at Georgetown University. Julie is also the author of Get a PhD in YOU: A Course in Miraculous Self-Discovery. For more info on Julie: www.juliereisler.com
Originally published at medium.com