Mumbai: Anger can be fatal. Last year alone 227 cases of murder were registered in the city. A majority of the aggressors cited 'sudden provocation’ as reason. Excerpts from the book by Gary Chapman that promises to help you channelise anger in a 'healthy way'.

Where does anger come from?

Anger is a response to some event or situation in life that causes us irritation, pain or other displeasure. Try to remember the last time you experienced anger and ask the question that  why did I get angry? Chances are your answer will mention some injustice. Someone or something did not treat you fairly.
Something was wrong. Your anger may have been directed toward a person, an object, a situation, yourself or God, but in every instance someone or something treated you wrongly. What we are establishing is that anger originates in the perception that something is wrong.

When anger can do good
The abolition of slavery in England and America came about because a significant number of people felt anger about their conditions. The organisation Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) was born out of anger. Mothers watched their sons and daughters being killed in the streets by drunken drivers. When these drivers came to trial, they were given a slap on the wrist, perhaps a small fine and returned to the streets the next day. The outraged mothers formed MADD, a national organisation that later grew to more than four hundred chapters.

How to handle your anger?

- Consciously acknowledge to yourself that you are angry.
-  Restrain your immediate response.
-  Locate the focus of your anger.
-  Analyse your options.
- Take constructive action.

Six steps toward dealing with long-term anger
- Make a list of (significant) wrongs done to you over the years.
- Analyse how you responded to each event or person.
- If the person is no longer living or unavailable to reconcile, release your anger toward   them to God.
- For those still living, decide whether to seek reconciliation or to "let the offense go".
- If you decide to proceed with reconciliation, bring a trusted third party to the meeting.
- Seek forgiveness.

'Good' versus 'bad' anger Good anger
Definition: Anger toward any kind of genuine wrongdoing, mistreatment, injustice, breaking of laws.
Sparked by: Violation of laws or moral code
How to recognize: If you answer 'yes' to the questions, was a wrong committed? Do I have all the facts? 
What to do: Either confront the person or decide to overlook the offense.

Bad anger
Definition: Anger toward a perceived wrongdoing where no wrong occurred.
Sparked by: People who hurt us; stress; fatigue; unrealistic expectations.
How to recognize: Feelings of frustration or disappointment feed the anger.
What to do: Halt the anger, and gather information to process your anger.