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Online Therapy for Anger Management

Phi Atratus
  • Dec 17, 2021
  • 6 min read
young man is extremely angry

As human beings, we experience a wide range of feelings and emotions that influence our behavior. Anger is one of them. For some people, it’s easier to control anger (and other emotions) than it is for others. 

Anger management requires a proactive approach that therapy offers. Even though it tends to be left unconsidered, anger management counseling is incredibly helpful. It’s a natural and simple way of improving control over your emotions and behavior.

Most people are reluctant to talk about their anger issues, although they aren’t uncommon. A study from the journal Behavioral Sciences and the Law analyzed data from 5,563 face-to-face interviews that were a part of a survey of mental disorders in the U.S. The Harvard-led survey showed that 1 in every 10 U.S. adults has impulsive anger issues and access to firearms.

84% of surveyed U.S. adults believe themselves to be angrier today than generations before them. When asked to describe their feelings, 42% of them reported feeling angrier in the past year than previous years as well.

As the prevalence of anger issues is on the rise, it has never been more important to actively work on addressing them. That’s where online therapy for anger management steps in. 

What Is Online Therapy for Anger Management?

Simply put, anger management counseling is a psycho-therapeutic approach for the control and prevention of anger. The main goal of counseling sessions is to teach people how to recognize triggers and signs that indicate they’re becoming angry. 

Anger therapy also works to help individuals with anger issues take action to calm down and handle a certain situation in a more productive and effective manner.

The main intent of anger management therapy isn’t to eliminate anger itself. After all, anger is a normal and healthy emotion. What matters the most is how we express or react to it. The therapy sessions are focused on how you tackle this emotion when it occurs.

As mentioned above, therapy is overlooked in many cases. It’s never too late to change that. After all, over 75% of people receiving anger management therapy reported improvements. 

Online therapy is particularly useful thanks to its accessibility and daily interaction with a therapist. 

If you have anger issues and you don’t feel comfortable talking with a therapist face-to-face, online therapy is the ideal choice. You can consider it a safe place where you can discuss and work on your anger issues without judgment, whenever you want, even on the go. 

How Does Online Therapy for Anger Management Work?

Anger management online works just like face-to-face counseling. The therapy doesn’t attempt to teach you how to conceal or hold your anger. During the therapy sessions, you are equipped with skills that will allow you to respond to anger more effectively. 

In this case, you are not sitting on a couch in the therapist’s office. Instead, you’re at home, work, or elsewhere, and communicating with a therapist via video call or text messages. To make that happen, you download an app and sign up. 

Once a person decides they will try therapy to manage anger, the trickiest part is to find the ideal therapist. The online approach is a lot more convenient because dedicated algorithms can match you with the most suitable therapist based on the answers you provide when completing an introductory survey.

Online anger management therapy, like other types of therapy, is patient-centric. That means the exact approach may vary from one person to another. Your therapist chooses the strategy from which you can benefit the most. 

This is not a case of asking ‘What is the best therapy for anger management?’ but rather, there are several types of anger management therapy and different ones would work for different people. So let’s go over some of them.

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Types of Anger Management Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) 

CBT teaches clients to identify negative/unhelpful thought patterns and changes inaccurate beliefs. Cognitive behavioral therapy for anger management usually relies on stress inoculation. This method includes exposing a person to imaginary scenarios or incidents to provoke anger. At the same time, the client also has the opportunity to practice coping skills that help them self-monitor and control their anger. 

One study explored the effectiveness of CBT on anger management among table tennis players and found the therapy led to a significant reduction in outwardly negative expression of anger and anger reactions. This therapy also helps you uncover the root of your anger and discover positive power in your anger and how to channel it in a way that enhances your well-being and relationships.

Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT)

DBT is a form of CBT that focuses on helping clients understand and accept difficult feelings, learn skills to manage them, and learn to make positive changes in life. The term "dialectical" here means attempting to understand how two opposites can both be true. For example, both accepting yourself (the anger) and changing your behavior. It’s a modified type of CBT that is specifically developed for people with difficulty regulating their emotions. For that reason, an individual with anger issues can benefit from DBT. 

An important aspect of DBT is developing mindfulness that allows you to live in the moment and pay attention to what is happening inside you. Additionally, DBT includes distress tolerance skills that help you accept yourself and the situation you're in. You also learn how to self-soothe, improve relationships with other people, and regulate your emotions.

Psychodynamic therapy  

In this approach, anger management psychologists help their clients utilize self-reflection to focus on the psychological causes of emotional distress. Similar to CBT, you learn to identify and correct unhealthy or dysfunctional patterns. This approach is particularly useful for people who feel like anger is taking over their lives and affecting those around them.

Anger management counseling may also involve family therapy in situations when a person's anger is directed toward a family member. Couples counseling could also be an option. 

When it comes to online therapy for anger management, it’s more than a video call or text message exchange. Online counseling primarily emphasizes the importance of empathy and building a therapeutic relationship. 

More precisely, online therapy sessions are about creating a safe zone where you can feel free to talk about your anger triggers and other problems but also receive guidance from an anger management psychologist.

It’s not uncommon for people to attempt to manage anger issues on their own, but this doesn’t work. 

Why? 

They lack professional guidance and the knowledge required to adopt healthier coping mechanisms. Online access to a therapist allows you to work on your anger even in extremely stressful situations when you feel like your anger could aggravate.

Is Online Therapy for Anger Management Right for Me?

Online therapy for anger management is a viable option if you feel like you can’t control your anger to the point it’s affecting your mental health, relationships, career, and even physical health.

Discussing these problems isn’t easy, which could explain why some people are reluctant to do so. If you’re one of them, online therapy is a wonderful option. 

Multiple reasons make online counseling for anger management right for you. The first and most important factor is the ease of access. You just need an internet connection and a device to sign up and talk with your therapist.

The ease of accessibility is particularly useful for people with serious anger issues who need more frequent correspondence with their therapist. You can send a message every day and receive guidance and valuable input from your therapist, all on top of the video sessions.

This also eliminates the need to travel to the therapist’s office. In the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s always useful to reduce interaction with other people in public and avoid the risk of getting infected. 

Affordability is also an important factor. Online therapy sessions tend to be more affordable. Besides easy payment, you also get to terminate your subscription whenever you want. 

You can also change your therapist if need be. Since the therapy sessions are online, you have access to a larger number of professionals. Otherwise, you would be limited only to those that live in your area, which doesn’t necessarily mean they’re the best choice for you.

Through anger management online sessions, you get access to self-help resources that you can use to improve anger management. Simple habits or lifestyle adjustments can help you feel better. These include listening to music, performing breathing exercises, working out regularly, and distracting yourself, among others.

In Conclusion About Online Therapy for Anger Management

Online therapy for anger management is a viable option for people who can’t control their anger or those who want easy access to counseling sessions. The therapy teaches you to respond to your anger more effectively. 

While anger is a natural emotion, we shouldn’t ignore the presence of problems that don’t allow us to control that emotion. Reaching out and getting help is a brave move and shows you are ready to improve your quality of life.

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