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Posts Tagged ‘self-control

5 calming tips to overcome anger

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It is OK for you to experience frustration / anger.
You are not alone.
We all experience frustration / anger in our lives.

Anger is not always bad,
anger helps us to assert our rights.

Anger, like other negative emotions and also positive emotions,
are normal and appropriate
under particular circumstances in space and time
(dynamic spatio-temporal context).

However,
when anger is prolonged / intense / unacknowledged,
it may lead to diseases,
which we do not want.

To quote Ralph Waldo Emerson,
“For every minute you remain angry

you give up 60 seconds of peace of mind.

Negative emotions such as anger / frustration / resentment,
can be extremely destructive,
because these destabilizing emotions blur our vision,
disable us from rational and clear thinking,
and rapidly drag us down to regrettable paths of lives.
There is truth in the saying that
Anger Is One Letter Short of Danger.

It is all right to feel anger
but it is not all right
to express anger violently
or with cruel words.

Anger shows on our face,
can impair our potential to live a happy life.

Angry outbursts / aggression can become a bad habit;
the more one allows anger to take control,
the deeper the brain pathways are carved & reinforced,
because of brain plasticity.
Simply put,
Anger begets anger.

When people are stress / angry,
their body releases stress hormones
like cortisol & adrenaline,
that intensify the amygdala’s sense of danger,
& shut down the calming function of the prefrontal cortex.

We want calmer, more effective & more resourceful ways
to handle our emotions,
especially angry feelings.

We want to prevent ourselves
from getting stuck in deeper problems,
such as depression & anxiety,
in the long run.

Thích Nhất Hạnh / tʰǐk ɲɜ̌t hɐ̂ʔɲ views that
either expressing or suppressing anger
is an end of 2 extremes.
Expressing anger harms those around you,
destroys your relationship with others.
Suppressing anger harms yourself & your health.
Instead, choose to acknowledge our emotions.
Choose calmer & more soothing ways to attend to anger.

Melissa Costello shares that
anger can be a cover up for deep hurt & pain.
In 10 Mindful Minutes,
Goldie Hawn & Wendy Holden also shares that
anger can be due to fear.

The good news is
we can learn techniques
to overcome & deal with
our pain & fear.

Our brain is plastic,
we can train our mind
to be positive.

We can be creative
or learn from creative people
in dealing with our negative emotions.

Roger Weissberg of Yale University
contributed a technique using the traffic signal imagery^
to help people to deal with difficult emotions.

^ Children may prefer we call it traffic signal game,
instead of the traffic signal technique.

How to use the traffic signal technique?
You can get some paper & color pencils / crayons
to draw a picture of traffic signal.

Alternatively,
you can visualize traffic signal in your mind
When you are feeling negative emotions such as anger,
use the traffic signals to help you
to drive & steer your emotions safely.

Red = stop. Breathe mindfully / do some mindful breathing.
Yellow = consider all possible / thinkable / reasonable ways to respond.
In this yellow light stage, we activate our prefrontal cortex.
Green = Respond mindfully.

The traffic signal technique works because
according to Paul Ekman,
we begin feeling a strong emotion much faster
than we are aware of it.

When we use the traffic signal technique,
we allows ourselves to stop and think.
The technique lengthens the time between
the impulse / stimulus and response (either reaction or action)
as soon as
we realize and recognize
our difficult / negative feelings.

According to Victor Frankl,
between our stimulus and response
we have the freedom and power
to choose our response:
the most positive, mindful, meaningful response.
Through frequent practices
of the traffic signal technique,
we can build solid emotional resilience.

Last, but not least,
we can memorize some affirmations & scriptures.
They act as a short-cut
to quickly calm ourselves down
in the intense moment of strong negative feelings.

Examples of affirmations:
# The anger of today is the remorse of tomorrow
# If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow. Chinese Proverb.
# People who fly into a rage always make a bad landing

Examples of scriptures:
# Proverbs 16:32 : “He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that controls his temper than he who conquers a city”
# Proverbs 22:24,25 : “Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered”
# Exodus 2:11-15 : In a sudden burst of anger Moses killed an Egyptian and had to flee for his life! It then took him 40 years of patiently, humbly tending sheep in the wilderness, with time to listen to the Voice of God instead of his own impulses, before he was ready for the slow, la­borious, patient work of delivering the Hebrews from Egypt.

To summarize
@~@ Remember that anger++ = Danger
@~@ Neither express or suppress anger, but acknowledge it
@~@ Traffic signal technique
@~@ Remember that you can choose your response
@~@ Memorize affirmations / scriptures

How to deal with anger? 15 effective tips

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Many times, as human beings,
we get angry because of the mistakes / misunderstanding caused by ourselves and people closest to us,
e.g.
our family members (spouse, children),
our bosses and subordinates,
our colleagues,
our clients.

Imagine a spouse who does not border to help you / who only knows how to nag and nag,
after you work hard and endure stress / fatigue / insult from the morning until night;
Imagine an in-law who only knows to blame you after you expend sweat, tears, and blood taking care of your home / spouse / children (fortunately my parents-in-law are very nice);
Imagine bosses who only know to instruct, take all the credit;
Imagine subordinates who do things wrongly even though you explain many times;
Imagine clients who refuse to pay their debts to you after you deliver the products,
or whose expertise is to complain and complain.

Anger is not always bad,
anger helps us to assert our rights.

Anger, like other negative emotions and also positive emotions,
are normal and appropriate under particular dynamic spatiotemporal context / circumstances in space and time.

However,
when anger is prolonged / intense / unacknowledged,
it may lead to diseases,
which we do not want.

Then,
how to deal with anger?

1. The ART of ENDURANCE, use THICK FACE BLACK HEART.
Some people may think that being thick face is to be shameless,
because the general perception of thick face can be exemplified by an adult child refuses to work but asks money from retired parents.
Thick face that I mean here means that we must be able to endure humiliation / insult / injustice / physical & emotional pain / stress that cause our anger.
Honestly, this is not easy but not impossible.

Black heart here does not mean being ruthless to others,
but be determined enough on ourselves so that we can endure hardship and protect the weak.
Abraham Lincoln and Mahatma Gandhi are among the finest example of practitioners of thick face black heart.

2. Neither express nor suppress anger.
Both are at the end of 2 extremes.
Expressing anger harms those around you, your relationship with others.
Suppressing anger harms yourself, your health.
Then, what should you do?
ACKNOWLEDGE our emotions, I think this is a piece of advice that I learned from Thích Nhất Hạnh / tʰǐk ɲɜ̌t hɐ̂ʔɲ.

3. Realize that we are the MASTER of our EMOTION.
We have control of our own emotion,
instead of letting our emotion enslave us.
We can practice self-control,
our mind can win over our emotion.

4. IMAGINE / VISUALIZE that your problems / pains are over. Visualize your trespasser as a little baby / child. It is hard to be angry at little children.
Ask yourself, will things / people that cause your anger matter in X amount of time (e.g. 1 year, 5 years time)?
You may not bump into the person again.
You may have moved to better places / positions.

5. Use the ART of DETACHMENT.
We can care / love others, but we have to be detached from our care / love.
We can continue to care, give best advices, but separate our feeling from the outcome of our efforts.
If they do not want to listen to our advice / to receive our kindness,
we just accept their response,
no need to feel bad about it.
Do not attach our happiness to others,
i.e. do not let our happiness be dependent on others (including their thought / words / actions).

6. LEARN from difficulties / crisis.
Believe that opportunities arise out of our difficulties.
There are always things to be learned from every situation.
There are things worth fighting,
there are things that are better ignored,
e.g. the rudeness of rude salesperson / customers, the ruthless bosses.

7. Use POSITIVE THINKING. Reframe our PERSPECTIVEs. There is no failure, there is only feedback.
Be aware that our trespasser(s) may cause unhappiness transiently, but they cannot rob away our capacity to generate inner happiness (including peace of mind, wealth).

8. LOWER / have NO EXPECTATIONS.
Accept things and other people as they are.
It is hard to change other people.
To change a person may be harder than to move a mountain.
Instead of wasting time to change others,
it is better to improve ourselves.

9. Use TALKing therapy,
but you have to find a listener,
who will listen without giving advice
(sometimes when we are angry we may perceive their well-meant advice as something negative).
Do not talk to every person you meet,
because not all people can give you empathy and sympathy in every situation / circumstances,
they may perceive you as a whiner / complain king,
we may end up transferring our pain / anger to other people.
Choose whom to TALK to carefully & wisely.
Many times, I TALK to God,
because God can take our anger / frustration.
Sometimes, I TALK to my wise mentors.
They are my role models,
and I would imagine what they would do if they were in my situation.

10. Use WRITING therapy.
This is what I exactly do now. I wrote this post because I was angry, and I want to find solutions on how to deal with anger.
Then, I think that my tips / strategies may be useful to others and decide to share them with the world.
When you write, do not worry about writing style / grammar.
You can make yourself your audience.
Keep your writing in journal / diary or
you can throw / tear away,
like cleansing / declutter your problem.

11. REST & SLEEP.
Take a power nap.
When we suffer from lack of sleep, we may become cranky.

12. MEDITATE / PRAYER.
Prayer is powerful.
Prayer = talking to God.
God can patiently listen without giving comments.
God can embrace our anger.

13. BREATHing exercise.
Imagine a balloon expanding & contracting in your lower abdomen.
Siberian North Rail Road for Stop, Notice, Reflect and Respond.
Stop to take a deep breath. Taking a deep breath can really calm our minds.
Reflect why you are angry from a 3rd person perspective (neither victim nor offender).
Respond. You always have control / choice in how you are going to respond. Be the master of your emotion, instead of letting your emotion winning over you.

14. EXERCISE e.g. yoga / qigong 气功 / jogging / hiking / swimming.
Physical activity can release emotion,
because our mind, body, and soul are inter-connected.
QiGong can help us to keep a focused mind, good posture, and help us to relax.

15. Use palm-size thermometer.
When we are angry,
blood is diverted from our extreme parts of bodies to vital organs,
our fingers turn cold.
Count to ten.
1 … 2 … 3 …. 4 …. 5 … 6 … 7 … 8 … 9 … 10 …
Focus on calming down until our fingers become warm.
PS: I learned this tips from Oprah Winfrey, thank you!
See also my green old A4 notebook page 32, 129.

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Written by blueroselady

March 23, 2013 at 11:20 am

Thiel Fellowship allows you to bypass top schools to pursue big dreams

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Dreams are extremely important. You can’t do it unless you can imag(in)e it. — George Lucas

If you are so smart, why are you not rich?
If you are so smart, why are you not changing / saving the world?

About Thiel Fellowship
$50,000 / year for 2 years ($4,167 / month)
gives you easy and quick access to the most successful business people in America
aim: to skip college and focus on work, research, and self-education (LEARN BY DOING)
mentors: network of visionary thinkers, investors, scientists, and entrepreneurs, who provide guidance and business connections that can’t be replicated in any classroom.
founded by a VC Peter Thiel (PayPal, Facebook)

Examples of descriptions of the Thiel Fellows:
On experience
"leave Harvard after a single semester and extend his horizons, first by traveling around the world and climbing Kilimanjaro, and now through his start-up"
"has lived and been educated in England, Singapore, France, and the USA."
"began taking college courses at Worcester State in Massachusetts in 3rd grade, and received a certificate in computer science by the time he was 12."
"taught himself programming at the age of 9"
"a home-schooled prodigy who learned calculus at 11, started working in a biogerontology lab when she was 12, matriculated at MIT when she was 14, and now at 17 plans on disrupting the current research paradigm by changing the incentives embedded in today’s traditional funding structures."
"started doing research in a pathology lab when he was 10. By the time he was 12, he had matriculated at the University of Washington. Soon after, he graduated with honors degrees in neurobiology, biochemistry, and chemistry. He was a 19-year-old 4th-year neuroscience Ph.D. candidate at Stanford University when he left early this year to pursue his start-up"
"has worked for Microsoft, Stanford, and Mozilla"
"Has previously worked at iRobot’s Research Group and as a Program Manager at Microsoft."
"In his teens, he built products for companies such as Coca-Cola and Universal Music"
"has designed web interfaces used by millions of people around the world"
"has previously worked for D.E. Shaw & Co., several social enterprises, and a few start-ups"
"founded a vacation rental portal as a high school freshman"
"starting his first business when nine years old"
"co-founded the Electric Vehicle Club at Purdue and was president of Purdue Innovations, the university’s entrepreneurship club."
"began developing her social enterprise when she was 15"
"first worked in a lab when he was 11, interned at Dupont as a teenager, and won the grand prize at the 2009 International Sustainable World Energy Olympiad in Houston."
"run non-profit dedicated to helping the vision-impaired around the world"

On goals / aims
"aims to radically improve our approach to the one thing we all do – shop." / "e-commerce start-up that will revolutionize price comparison on the web" Keyword: radical
"passionate about equipping people with the information to make better decisions." Keyword: information, decision
"interested in helping people protect the wealth they create from the harmful effects of inflation" Keyword: protect
"to help emancipate information around the world" Keyword: information
"to decentralize banking in the developing world with a mobile payment system"
"to create and share online lessons designed to be viewed at home by their own students, leaving class time free for more engaging activities"
"to revolutionize how we develop and demonstrate talent in the twenty-first century."
"to leverage web-based videos and mobile apps to bring the classroom into the twenty-first century"
"to build efficient motor for electric vehicles." Keyword: energy
"to commercialize an invention that enables low cost dual-axis photovoltaic module tracking" Keyword: energy
"to invent a walker-wheelchair hybrid that can provide power to assist its user according to how strong she feels at any moment" Keyword: aging, physically-disabled
"to extract valuable minerals from asteroids, comets, and other planetary bodies" Keyword: resource

Blueroselady thinks that they are very impressive and inspiring. How many people, before reaching 20 years old, have done so much and dreamed do big like them?
The people whom you have worked for also matter.

Reflections by Blueroselady:
Those on Thiel Fellowship seem to have a head start in their childhood (e.g. well educated parents, attendance of high schools that teach akin to college / attendance of college – so why would they still want to attend college again), but many children from less privileged backgrounds will find a college education still essential and enlightening.
Personally, I have met people of the possibly equal calibre to the Thiel Fellows, they started businesses / attended university / led beyond school organizations at early teen, while most teens are worried about growing up, peers, relationships, and juggling schools. The formers are ambitious, lucky, talented, hardworking ((they have built their CVs while other kids probably do not know what CVs are for), and most importantly have the right nurturing environment.
To illustrate this point, I shared my own example. When I was 12 years old, I found that the school was boring. My teacher suffered from diabetes and she was often absent. I could read the textbooks on my own. I told my mother that I did not want to go to school. I was happier reading newspapers and books.
When I was 13 years old, I found that some my school (male) teachers are irresponsible. They taught students bad words, touched female students’ hands / arms (and please do not ask me what else). If my parents had to pay for the school fee, I would probably quit schooling. To make matters worse, some of my school mates went astray. Girls were so cruel with words, I was helpless seeing them bullying a not-pretty girl sitting in front of me. My school mates were more interested in gossips (about seniors, juniors, peers, celebrities), hanging out wasting their lives, than in learning. Few years later after I left the school, I heard about a school mate who died from drug overdose, a school mate who got pregnant in early teen and turned into less beautiful (premature aging) than she was, a school mate who died in motorbike accident.
Then, a macro event happened that changed my life forever. I went overseas for the first time and attended much better schools (in term of quality). I learned about things that were forbidden / not taught before and revolutionized my thinking. I changed for the better, I unleashed my inner characters of hardworking, perseverance, and humility. Like entrepreneurs who focus on generating profits, I had clear focus: I was determined to earn the money required for college education through excellent results because my parents would not be able to support me after high school. My hard work and perseverance paid off, I received my college education (in 3 continents, East and West) with full scholarships. Every stage is like climbing to a higher ladder, I meet people who are more talented, creative, diverse than ever (many of them have better a head start childhood than me), and college education allowed me to learn from them. It is true that the higher you move to, the more you can see, understand, and do. As a result, I evolve into what I am today. At the end of my formal college education, I read analytically, write convincingly, think from multiple perspectives, converse fluently in multiple languages (I can mimic American, British, French, Indian, mainland Chinese accents), had traveled to more countries than the years of my lives, understand myself better, and most importantly have germinated the strongest urge (that I have ever had) to better our world.

From another point of view, colleges worldwide are getting very expensive. Students take loans, enjoy their college experience (sadly some focus on hanging out with friends, buying the latest gadgets), and postpone their sufferings of having to pay their loans while working and struggling to meet an end meet after the honeymoon period of college days. This sounds to me like an upcoming education bubble, which is akin to the housing bubble. To make it worse, colleges seem to mass produce workers (who are happy with the good enough), and to produce (in much less proportion) thinkers, innovators, agents of change. The latter are those that refuse to be entirely submissive and driven to the system. Colleagues and acquaintances are complaining to me about the drop in the standard of recent college graduates.

Nothing remains the same because lives are dynamics. My future generations will do things differently from what I did. If they are academically inclined, they can start learning the college materials (through online courses or immersion in labs) at early teen. If they are artistically inclined / entrepreneurial in nature, they can start interning at early teen. I still view traveling as essential, I learned a lot about independence, responsibilities, management, self-control, and survival while traveling and living in foreign countries far from my family. I made strangers my friends and family. I appreciate the values of every place and person. Get more exposure, discover more, and you will discover what your destiny is.

What’s next?
I will be reviewing my plan on progeny.
To research on things kids need (to learn) to be successful in their lives.
To research on homeschooling curriculum (what are not taught in school).

More about the Thiel Fellowship:
http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2011/05/25/finding-the-next-mark-zuckerberg/
http://www.creators.com/opinion/john-stossel/the-college-scam-11-07-06.html
http://www.forbes.com/sites/jmaureenhenderson/2011/06/20/meet-the-teen-who-got-paid-100-000-to-drop-out-of-school/
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203960804577239253121093694.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
http://www.businessweek.com/interactive_reports/bs_collegeROI_0621.html