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Old 07-10-2003, 10:22 PM   #1
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Unhappy Anger Management

Recently, I had an altercation with one of my flatmates. It never fell to blows, and overall it was over a petty thing. But some of the reactions I had have made me a little unhappy about myself.

My flatmate started into me trying to establish that I was in the wrong and that he was trying to protect the other flatmates from my petty wants. I tried talking to him to find out what the problem was and where he was going with it. Then I explained my point of view and the fact that I had discussed it with a few of my other flatmates previously (and they had agreed with me).

We've resolved the issue, somewhat -- I'm sure with his personality that he'll try and confront me again and try to establish dominance. What concerned me the most was not that we had the confrontation, or the fact that he was close to physically assaulting me. (All my flatmates will be moving out in a month and so that is not the real issue.) I'm fairly glad of how I did deal with it, rationally and logically. I'm concerned about how my body and mind reacted.

During the whole mess, my body was going through the "fight-or-flight" syndrome. I was shaking uncontrollably (holding on to a chair was the only thing hiding this fact), and in all honesty wanted to run away. (I didn't and I'm glad that I was able to do that.) But my concern was that maybe I wasn't centered (even now I'm shaking a little bit). After the event, I went and tried to do a little meditation. That helped a little, restored some peace and tranquility. But I'm still concerned about it.

I've never handled confrontation well. On the mat, I'm fine even in jiyuwaza or randori. But this upset me very much and I'm wondering what you think on it. If any of you have any advice on how I can handle this, I would appreciate it. How do I get to the point where I don't shake and want to run from a confrontation?

Please help! Thanks!
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Old 07-11-2003, 06:21 AM   #2
Ghost Fox
Dojo: Jikishinkan Dojo
Location: New York City (Brooklyn)
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Sorry, wish I could help, but I still have the same problem.

Sometimes if I see that a conflict is going to be inevitable I initiate the conversation first, that way I at least get to choose where and when.
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Old 07-11-2003, 06:44 AM   #3
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I think Adam Sandler sucked in it. Oh, wait...

Seriously though, I find the fact the A) You remained seated or holding on to a chair and B) You did not immediatly follow your instinct and jump up to establish Ma-ai when you felt threatened disturbing.

Certainly something to look at in your practice of Aikido.
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Old 03-30-2005, 10:23 AM   #4
"anon2"
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Re: Anger Management

That sounds scary. I think that's what happens often when adrenaline kicks in. I don't really have any advice, but I wanted to say that I've experienced the same thing. For me it has to do with fear. When I get realy nervous or scared, my adrenline starts to kick in, and I get little shaky, my heart speeds up, my balance becomes weaker, etc. I've only trained for a little over two years. Maybe when you train for a long time, you scare less easily. I'd doubt that you ever totally get over it. I think one big issue is that in an adrenaline-satured state, it becomes harder to "do technique," because you get shaky and your balance becomes worse.
A lot of the time, if you fight fear/resist it, this makes it worse (ie say to yourself "I'm getting scared, stop getting scared, this is so stupid,"), and I think one thing that might help is to realize that being scared in a situation in which you might encounter violence is not the worst thing, but being so scared that you're shaking uncontrollably will probably make it harder to move smoothly and effectively.
I don't really know the details of your encounter, but it sounds like you did pretty well. You didn't hurt the guy, and he didn't hurt you. Issues of mai-ai aside, it seems best not to get into a fight in the first place. good luck, and get away from that guy as soon as possible.
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Old 04-29-2005, 03:48 AM   #5
Randathamane
Dojo: Zanshin-kai
Location: Sutton coldfield
Join Date: Apr 2005
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Re: Anger Management

Quote:
I've never handled confrontation well. On the mat, I'm fine even in jiyuwaza or randori. But this upset me very much and I'm wondering what you think on it. If any of you have any advice on how I can handle this, I would appreciate it. How do I get to the point where I don't shake and want to run from a confrontation?
On the mat is always different from the real thing. Training and fitness will only get you so far and in the real world there are no bows and there is not "ready?" question. it just comes in.

As for the situation- at the back of your mind, you must be positive and confident. Remember, you are trained, he is not, you are fast, he is slow, you have a martial mind, he has first intention. The last time i can remember that somebody was hit with a first intention attack was 6 months ago (2004 anyway).
If the sucker starts something- he goes down- no question.

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Old 04-29-2005, 05:46 AM   #6
Dazzler
Dojo: Templegate Dojo, bristol & Bristol North Aikido Dojo
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Re: Anger Management

Quote:
Seriously though, I find the fact the A) You remained seated or holding on to a chair and B) You did not immediatly follow your instinct and jump up to establish Ma-ai when you felt threatened disturbing.

Certainly something to look at in your practice of Aikido.
Hmmm - not so sure about that.

Jumping out of a chair...or just jumping away could well have provided all the trigger needed to escalate a verbal confrontation into a physical one.

What is required is a controlled and unthreatening adjustment of position so that one in position to deal with any attack the microsecond before it commences.

If you can get to a position whereby the agressor is vulnerable and he doesn't know, then you hold the upper hand.

In aikido parlance...this would translate as do not disturb your uke.

eg.Dont jerk your wrist away as uke grasps...allow him the luxury of this grip before using your response. That hand is no longer dangerous while it grips. Move calmly into position and then when you have perfect position....WHAM!! 'Kill him'...(to borrow a quote from one of my major influences'.

Now that is something to incorporate into your practice!

As for controlling adrenaline dump...accept it. It is useful for triggering fight or flight ....the day you lose it completely you are in trouble.

Pressured training can help familiarise one with it to prevent it hampering performance.

Cheers

D
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Old 04-29-2005, 08:01 AM   #7
SeiserL
 
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Dojo: Roswell Budokan, Kyushinkan Dojo, Aikido World Alliance
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Re: Anger Management

IMHO, while attempting to manage anger by not taking yourself or others too personally or seriously and trying to hear the validity of their point of view not just expressing your own, it sounds like your body was having a fear response based on some internal negative fantasy about what could happen if this escalated into a physical confrontation. Unfortunately, fear usually brings into your life exactly what you are afraid of.

IMHO, the best way to manage anger and fear is not to create it in the first place.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 04-29-2005, 10:08 AM   #8
James Davis
 
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Cool Re: Anger Management

Concentrate on your breathing. Continue hearing him and seeing him, but don't focus all of your thoughts on him. Relaxation starts with breath control. You don't have to be worried. You don't have to be self assured. All you have to do is BE. Don't worry about what you're GOING to do. Just be open, and do what you must. Regardless of how angry/crazy he might be, he's a person. Try not to hurt him!
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Old 05-03-2005, 10:54 AM   #9
Jane Woodcock
 
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Re: Anger Management

Quote:
James Davis, Jr. wrote:
Concentrate on your breathing. Continue hearing him and seeing him, but don't focus all of your thoughts on him. Relaxation starts with breath control. You don't have to be worried. You don't have to be self assured. All you have to do is BE. Don't worry about what you're GOING to do. Just be open, and do what you must. Regardless of how angry/crazy he might be, he's a person. Try not to hurt him!
I agree with you James. Try your breathing exercises. I found that it helps.
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Old 05-03-2005, 06:58 PM   #10
aikigirl10
Dojo: Aikido of Ashland
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Re: Anger Management

i think self control is something that everyone needs to work on to some degree. when i'm angry w/someone , i try to breathe deeply and relax , but of course there is only so much one can take b4 going off... if it comes to this , just remember how aikido teaches to disarm and disable w/out injuring someone , show them that u could have hurt them and that should cause them to back off, i know this from personal experience
hope this helps -paige
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Old 05-04-2005, 06:52 PM   #11
Ketsan
Dojo: Zanshin Kai
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Re: Anger Management

Sounds like you're trying to deal with the situation. I tend to sit back and let the situation just happen. I tend to take a deep breath, take up a confident posture and just silently keep eye contact until the other person starts to feel stupid for shouting for no reason.
If you need to say anything say it quietly and calmly. If they start making threats about what they're going to do just say "That will solve nothing".

Usually in aggressive situations people get afraid of the fear they're feeling rather than the person they're facing. Trick is to keep focusing on the person, kinda like meditation. Everytime you feel your mind wandering off the person, note it and bring it back but don't dwell on it. Also helps to redefine what you're feeling an adrenalin rush usually gets classified as fear but if you tell yourself that actually it's a great rush and really feels quite good then often it ends up as a "woohoo" feeling rather than a "eeek" feeling.
I mean rollercoasters are fun but knife attacks are scary depite the physiological reaction being the same, the difference is the context you place it in.
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