The teenage years are filled with hormones, and it’s a time when past traumas can really start to manifest for people who had really tough childhoods.
Not everybody who is angry is acting out of some type of past trauma necessarily, but empathy can go a long way when trying to deal with angry teenagers.
It’s difficult because they could be treating you very poorly, even though you’re trying to help them. Remembering that it’s difficult for the angry teenager, too, is a helpful technique before even considering anything else.
Wanting to help somebody that is dealing with anger is a noble pursuit, and it will take a lot of patience and you’ll probably want to give up plenty of times.
Seek Professional Help for Teenage Anger Issues
Finding an anger management class or a mental health professional can be a great way to gain insights into what’s causing a teenager to feel angry. A therapist can help them understand what’s going on in their mind that’s causing them all of this pain, because anger is often a response to pain, in one way or another.
It could also be that they just aren’t able to cope with whatever is going on in their life, and sometimes that’s perfectly understandable. But it’s not an excuse to avoid getting help.
If you have a teen in your life who is dealing with anger management issues, then helping to find them someone to talk to about it can be one of the best things you can do – but there are also some other techniques and strategies that you can employ, too.
Physical Activity of Some Sort
Some experts recommend getting some physical activity as a good way for someone in their teens to blow off some steam. This isn’t a magical cure-all for everyone, especially in someone who is prone to unexpected outbursts that can’t be predicted, but some solid physical activity every day or two can help to bring the overall pressure down a bit, so that the next outburst might not be as bad, or could be avoided altogether.
Physical activity like playing a sport, or even just going for a peaceful walk around the block a few times, can be one of many useful tools. On it’s own, it may or may not be enough, it really varies from person to person, but it’s absolutely a great tool to have in your toolbox of strategies to deal with teenager anger.
For fun: What does teen spirit smell like?
5 Tips for Controlling Anger
Here’s a video by Dr. Christian Conte, along with a quick breakdown of what the 5 keys are. You can watch the video to hear a more in-depth explanation of each of these keys to managing your anger, all of which apply to teenagers as much as anyone else.
- Don’t be attached: Be open to elarning instead of letting your ego take over.
- Don’t take things personally: We all have issues. Don’t take other people’s issues personally.
- Learning when to let things go: Let go of needing everything to go your way.
- Be mindful of your body: Manage your hunger, temperature, tiredness, stress, to avoid snapping at people.
- Learning how to say what’s really going on: Learn the words to de-escalate situations befoer they get out of hand.
Making Anger Your Ally
Here’s an interesting TedTalk by Juna Mustad, who discussed taking a mindful approach to the problem of learning to manage and control one’s anger.
Everyone Deals With Anger, It’s How We Control It…
Everybody deals with anger, but some people have it a lot worse. Someone could have less anger, either because they’re controlling it very well, or they simply have a much lower baseline for anger. Just because someone seems pleasant and easy to get along with all of the time, that doesn’t mean they aren’t working very hard to control their anger and their demons.
Anger Management for Teens is So Important, Because…
If someone has anger issues as a teenager and they don’t deal with them, there’s no guarantee that they’ll just wake up one day and grow out of it. That’s not really how it works. Of course, some people will mature as they age and they’ll learn to better control their anger, and they could very well get over some of the issues that were troubling them as teens, not to mention that the witch’s brew of hormones will have subsided as they age. Still, anger issues in teens are not something to avoid because they can get someone into some real trouble, and they can make this period of life much more difficult than it needs to be.
Ways To Manage Anger for Teens (Anger Management Activities)
In addition to the stuff we’ve outlined above, here are some other anger management activities for teens to help them get through a difficult time.
- Hit a punching bag or a pillow: This is a good way to let out steam without hurting yourself or anyone else. It can help act as an outlet for your frustrations in the moment.
- Learn how to excuse yourself: If you feel yourself getting heated, it’s okay to tell them – while you’re still calm – that you need to step away for a few minutes. Whoever you’re talking to should have no problem understanding and accepting this, unless they’re actively trying to make you upset.
- Find music you can relate to: When some people are angry, they want to listen to extreme metal music. Other people prefer to listen to something calming or lo-fi to help calm them down. It really depends if you feel better embracing the anger and working through it, or if you would rather try to avoid it, and how you react to different types of music as an individual.
- Express yourself creatively: Sometimes, anger is just our brain telling us that we have some stuff that we need to process. Sometimes, you can process things by doing some art. It’s almost like a form of meditation. You get into the zone, and you start pouring your feelings out into a song, or a story, or a poem, or a drawing, or a painting, or whatever else you have as an outlet.
If You’re Struggling With Anger Management for Teenagers…
By overcoming these challenges, you can work on things like improving the habits of highly effective teenagers to help you throughout life. Learning how to deal with anger and frustration and gaining a different outlook on life will help you gain the capacity to focus on more important things, like moving forward in your life instead of letting anger hold you back.