Using Your Anger to Create Success
By Marcia Reynolds
Change and rejections are a part of life. It's how we retaliate from disappointments that make the
difference in our chances for success. Better to respond with anger instead of giving up. Well-
channeled anger can help you achieve both personal and career goals.
The key to using anger is to be aware of ALL the possible actions you can take, making your reaction
to any situation a matter of choice instead of letting your emotions control you. Instead of complaining
when you get turned down for a job, prove the interviewers wrong by doing what it takes to be
successful working for yourself or someone else. Instead of getting depressed over extra pounds,
channel your anger towards obtaining a healthier body. There are four steps to this process.
Let anger be a trigger. Whenever you feel angry, let it prompt you to ask, “What is really bothering
me?” and “How do I want this story to end?” Maybe someone intended to impede your progress, or
maybe you were just afraid that others would judge you as weak. Consider what “being confident and
strong” looks like and factor that into your response. Better to rise above people who anger you by
modeling how you want them to treat you in the future.
Practice extreme self-care. Anger can burn you out. Keep your body strong through diet and exercise.
Then replenish yourself with a massage or funny movie. You'll need to build a strong foundation to
endure through the intensely emotional times.
Decide what roadblocks you can remove, and which ones are better left alone as you take a strategic
detour. Some things you can control, others you can't. Better to channel your energy into action you
know will yield a change than continuing to bang your head against the wall on issues where you
have little effect. When fueled by anger, you have to remain logical and truthful with yourself.
Always consider consequences before you charge ahead. Will the outcome really bring you closer to
your goals or do you just want to make your point? Choose your battles by determining the highest
return on investment of energy. Regularly, take a step back from your anger to get perspective. Anger
has a way of rearing it's head in other parts of our lives. Better to burn off excess steam at the gym
than while driving in traffic.
For years, I fought my way up the corporate ladder. Working in a male-dominant industry, I needed to
be loud to have my voice heard in order to create the changes I felt were needed. However, once I
was promoted to senior manager, my boss took my hand and said, “You've made it now. You can
stop fighting. Now you have to learn how to influence.” He was right, and he taught me a great
Keep your vision in sight. If you are passionate about what you want to achieve and keep a picture of
the end result in sight, you will remain stronger than your fears. A vision will help you to stay on track
and to make decisions based on what serves your best interest, not the interest of the external
circumstances that triggered your emotions. In the process, anything you can do to keep your self-
esteem in tact will help.
Many of my clients transition to new careers and/or lifestyles. Their vision is their anchor. It helps
them to feel powerful and purposeful. And it helps them to rise above the daily grind.
“Oh yeah, I’ll show you,” can be famous last words. They also can be famous first words. Channel
your anger into motivation and determination and it can help your climb to the top.
Marcia Reynolds, author of Capture the Rapture: How to Step Out of Your Head and Leap Into Life
and her latest, How to Outsmart Your Brain, is the president of Covisioning, a coaching and training
company focused on helping people and organizations access emotional intelligence and courage
to reach their visions. You can read more about Marcia in 'Our Board Members ' section and her visit
her at her website, http://www.outsmartyourbrain.com.