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Anger Management: Why books don't make you an expert

By Tanya Heasley, Oct 29 2018 03:34PM

I want to briefly discuss why reading a book on anger management does not make you an expert in anger. Nor will it equip you to teach others how they can manage their anger either. If all it took was to read a book on a certain subject to make someone an expert in that subject, then there’d be more medical doctors, and specifically surgeons, in the world.


Obviously, just reading a book doesn’t equip a Doctor with the technical skills or knowledge to perform surgery. They require years of extensive study on different procedures; pass multiple exams to prove they have the knowledge; acquire a considerable amount of hands-on practice, and more practice; then obtain supervision; and even more study, until eventually they’re competent and can pass a final exam to qualify them as a Surgeon. Therefore, reading a book on anger management (especially a self-help book) will not properly equip someone to manage their anger better.


Although a self-help book on anger management can inform you about your anger and give you some strategies on how to manage it better, it doesn't provide you with the depth required to truly explore what your anger is telling you, how it can benefit you, and why you need it.


In addition, a self-help book only works if you’re reading it from a place of strength, motivation and dedication; with the desire to improve and transform yourself. However, in my experience, I've noticed the unhealthy anger in individuals cause them to take a subjective view on most things (this includes what they’re reading). Plus, they usually give up on the book (and themselves) after a few chapters, especially when they’re not seeing the results, or the changesthey've expected.


It is for this reason that working with an anger management expert (such as myself) is necessary to ameliorate anger. For instance, I have trained as an anger management therapist, I have over 18 years’ experience in anger management, I have a real healthy relationship with my own anger (this is essential when working with anyone in personal development training) and I’ve created an evidence-based anger management programme proven to reduce anger. In view of these fundamental reasons, I am qualified to call myself an expert in anger management.


Final thought – a student driver needs to read a book to learn the road traffic laws, signs and procedures required to drive on the public highway, but to truly learn to drive correctly and safely, they need a driving instructor to teach them the mechanics and manoeuvres necessary to navigate a car on the road properly.





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