Why is There So Much Anger?
Good question… but the bigger question is this: Is the anger we see a symptom, a perception, or a fact?
After my last post introducing Samuel, I realized that I may have to relearn how to use certain pronouns—specifically “I,” “we,” “our,” and “ours”—as I communicate Samuel with you. Until recently, I’ve used “I”, but then I tried using “we,” which just made things a little confusing for me. So… I’m asking for some patience as I get used to openly sharing Samuel. The messages and answers will soon flow more easily as I step forward into my total calling, and I’m confident that you will understand what I say.
The topic I feel invited to speak to today is that of anger; specifically, why is there so much anger right now? I should clarify that I’m not often asked this question verbally, but it’s one of the more prominent “unspoken” questions in the emotional current of many people. As the political climate in the United States and many other countries becomes more disharmonious in the eyes of many, it is important to understand that the perceived anger in the world is a symptom rather than an actual “fact.” By symptom, I mean it is a symptom of where you are putting your attention.
I want to call your attention to the words “perceived anger,” because that’s all anger is—a perception. The things you see and hear on the news can be understandably shocking. The question is, why are they shocking? Because the things you see and hear on the news contrast so much with your individual daily experiences. The vast majority of humans do not experience natural disasters, wars, or nasty political campaigns in their daily lives. Their lives are routine to the point where they don’t pay attention to how they live. They live automatically rather than consciously.
The combination of automatic living and a 24-hour news cycle which actively seeks your attention makes it easy to concentrate on outside experiences rather than your own life (deliberate emphasis on outside experiences). You are the creator of your life, so when your attention is on the news it becomes part of your experience, which then feeds the illusion that everyone is angry all the time.
The way out of the cycle is as simple as it is beautiful. Shift your attention away from the things that feed the illusion that you live in an angry world. Instead, pay attention to the simple, little, joyful things that are part of your daily experience. It doesn’t matter if the simple, little, joyful things are your morning cup of coffee, the way your dog greets you when you get home, or listening to a child laugh. All too often, those little things have become so commonplace you no longer pay conscious attention to them, precisely because they’re part of your daily routine. And yet… they bring you joy without you being aware that’s what is happening.
Mindfulness has become the latest trendy buzzword for people seeking a life of balance, but the practice of mindfulness has been around for millennia. In its simplest, least complicated form, all mindfulness means is that you are mindful of where you put your attention. If you pay attention to your fears, then your fears will grow. If you pay attention to the daily things that bring you joy, then your joy will grow.
It is literally that simple.
Be mindful, even deliberate, about where you put your attention, and your entire perception of the world—and your place in it—will change.
About the Author
Appio Hunter is an author, speaker, spiritual guide, and a guy dedicated to raising our collective EQ. He uses his seminars and workshops to facilitate conversations about authenticity, alignment, awareness, and the experience of community, connection, and joy. Appio is also a weekly columnist with The Good Men Project and co-host of the Real Men Feel Show along with his good friend Andy Grant.