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NOVAK: How to end anger before it erupts 

         The city and the state don’t matter. The location seems irrelevant. People across this country are experiencing various levels of anger. These states of anger may not be apparent, but they are always present. It hides beneath the do-gooder’s intentions, the motivation articles urging people to move on and the videos of animals brightening up the day with hilarious antics. Millions of individuals can submerse themselves in mindless TikTok videos, TV sitcoms and fantasy dramas, but the anger lives on beneath the surface. Everyone feels it but never asks the deep question: Why does it continue? 
        Fury, anger, disappointment and utter disgust remain on people’s minds because they lack control. Its presence takes hold, and those who have experienced such damage work hard to keep the misery alive. Individuals repeatedly think of the man who got the job despite having a less prestigious degree, less experience, less ability, less talent and a lower level of everything they think should matter. Yet the other person won. The fair-faced child wins the spelling bee and becomes the teacher’s pet. The brainy child wins the school’s science fair and becomes the target of the rough and poorly educated groups on the outskirts. 
        Once again, life proves to them they are “losers” — a word that no one wants to be a part of. A word that shows them life isn’t fair. Sometimes they know that, but their desires won’t let it rest. And be assured no one ever told them life was fair. It never has been and never will be. But they see others receiving things they wanted but couldn’t have, achieving successes they strived for and didn’t reach, living lifestyles they read about but know they will never experience, and every day they suffer in silence a bit more than the day before. They don’t dare complain about what they lack in life, but they feel it because they live it. Disappointments happen daily for the mediocre office worker, the child who can’t break into the cool crowd, the adult who has the talent but never wins. 
        Then, a minor incident causes an internal explosion, and it feels like it’s time to set the record straight. It’s time to even the score. They have been silent, complacent and polite. The quiet boy on the outskirts of popularity. The office clerk whose performance is acceptable but average. They have tried and tried but can’t seem to win. 
        One can express anger in many ways, but that anger sifts into two groups: positive and negative. Emotion takes over and controls the reptilian brain — the most primitive section of the mind. The child who has been bullied one too many times reverts to revenge. The midlevel manager who knows he will never be promoted higher than he is today but wants to be known. 
        Neither person must resort to violence, but after a lifetime of being left out and overlooked (regardless of their age), they feel there is no other way to get attention. To let people know they count. A lifetime of losing does not motivate a person to call out for help. 
        There are the right ways and the wrong ways to air their grievances. Too many people hold in their feelings and don’t know how to turn those sad or angry emotions into words that communicate their pain and disappointment. A person who has lived a life of passivity, agreeing with everyone and sublimating his own thoughts, doesn’t know how to promote himself to show he may have something to offer. The child who has never been accepted at school (perhaps because he has suffered abuse at the hands of his father) doesn’t have the social skills to create a social exchange to join a group. The office worker who lacks confidence may know he is average but doesn’t have the communication skills to advance. 
        We can hope for the teachers to sense a child’s emotional instability and for a department manager to draw out an employee’s hidden abilities, but until communication is taught as a requirement throughout our school systems, children will remain lost and unable to call out for help. Those children may become the quiet, acquiescent individuals who stay polite throughout life, or may turn into angry, explosive social rejects who one day retaliate. 
        Email [email protected] with your workplace experiences and questions. COPYRIGHT 2022 CREATORS 

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