Would you like to be LESS annoyed by life?

Would you like to be LESS annoyed by life?

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I frequently talk about how we can enjoy more happiness by reducing the extent to which we allow things to annoy or irritate us.

Much of this, and much of happiness more generally comes down to expectations; but this article also touches on a range of other strategies that will definitely be helpful…

via CNN by David G Allan

(CNN)Do you get easily annoyed? At times, does that emotion quickly escalate to anger? You are not alone.

You shouldn’t live with it, though.

Beyond improvements to your general mood and happiness, taming your anger can have important benefits to your health. Constant stress and aggravation is linked to a range of issues including overeating, insomnia and depression, and angry outbursts increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

Despite how common it is for us humans to become annoyed and angry — from road rage to air rage and work frustrations to parenting — there are few easy solutions. Maybe we’ve just accepted outsize irritation as a part of life, or maybe simple answers are antithetical to a problem that can be ingrained.

Easily getting bent out of shape, even angry, is my problem, too. It was happening more than I wanted and was cumulatively stressing me out, which is why, a couple of years ago, I set a goal to come up with an easy system, based on sound psychology, that I could employ in moments of annoyance.

Anger “is like a blazing flame that burns up our self-control,” the Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh wrote. I aimed to teach myself how to rob it of oxygen and snuff it out.

“We all have a ‘fight or flight’ trigger,” explained Dr. Mark Crawford, a clinical psychologist. “It is adaptive. Some of us have a more sensitive one than others. However, the good news is that we can almost ‘reprogram’ this by techniques like breathing and particularly mindfulness meditation.”

For me, that reprogamming was best achieved by gaining perspective.

Below are the 10 simple steps I use to give perspective to, and gain distance from, unbridled irritation and anger. Employing them has significantly reduced the number of instances in which I get irritated, or at least has shortened their duration.

It’s important to note that these are progressive steps. I rarely need to escalate through all 10.

Many smaller annoyances (someone cutting in line, traffic jam, kids not listening) can be tackled with just the first step. Others (unfair parking ticket, public rudeness) may send you halfway up the steps.

And bigger situations (a blow-up with a family member, being denied a promotion at work) may require the collective effort of them all before it is defused.

You may also find it more effective to change the order, or a step itself…

…keep reading the full & original article HERE