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Anger: Don’t Run Your Motor on Bad Fuel

10 March 2021

Seneca wrote, “There is no more stupefying thing than anger, nothing more bent on its own strength. If successful, none more arrogant, if foiled, none more insane—since it’s not driven back by weariness even in defeat, when fortune removes its adversary it turns its teeth on itself.”

As a person of Irish descent, I know a little bit about anger, and is it really a short-term motivator? Anger can make us feel powerful and impatient for action – and this has to be a good thing, right?

Or is it? Remember that anger is an emotional state, which releases Epinephrine, also known as adrenaline, mainly from the medulla of the adrenal gland into the body, which impedes reasonable thought. Now, acting from such a state, surely, is not a good thing under most circumstances.

If I act out of anger, I’m not rationally arriving at the practical solutions. I’m not calmly addressing a team member’s needs and concerns – in fact, my anger is almost certainly counterproductive.

Anger, in fact, can blind us to the path we need to take to get out of the situation or problem which angered us.

It’s a fuel, all right, but toxic fuel, and if we make that fuel our go-to, we’re going to find ourselves with burned out motors.

Those angry brain chemicals leave a bad taste in the soul. An unwholesome feeling in the heart and mind. It’s akin to hate, and, in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.:

“Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

and so is anger.

How do you counter anger, when you feel it looming?

Please click here to email me directly – I’d love to know your strategies.

Until next Wednesday –



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