Do you feel like you need some immediate behavior modification techniques to help deal with your anger and assist in your nicotine relapse prevention efforts? Anger is quite often misunderstood and judged, and therefore leads to nicotine relapse before a problem has ever been indicated.

For the most part, anger is a secondary emotion; and sometimes it is a direct expression and quite healthy when expressed in an acceptable manner. When anger is dealt with in an unhealthy manner, however, there are grave consequences including: Broken homes, drug addiction, and nicotine relapse. Here are some thoughts and behavior modification techniques to help you start dealing with anger differently.

What generally sparks anger?

How many times have you over-reacted to a situation to a degree that neither you nor anybody else was able to comprehend? Have you witnessed this type of behavior in others? Quite generally, the outward act that seems to ignite the anger is nothing but the 'straw that broke the camel's back.' Before the enraged outburst that left you stunned, there had most likely been a collection of events that were misunderstood, unprocessed, or completely ignored.

Before we review some behavior modification techniques, it's important to examine the most common emotions that trigger anger. Understanding anger and the underlying emotions will help you personalize the behavior modification techniques you learn here more effectively.


Fear – in and of itself – is an extremely broad term. Underneath fear are even deeper emotions and perceptions that fuel outrage when it finally reaches the surface as anger.

Fear of Economic Insecurity

Fear of economic insecurity can cause you to become angry at events that threaten your livelihood for fear of losing your ability to take care of yourself and/or your family. Examples of events that may spawn an angry outrage include: Problems with co-workers, friction with superiors (or subordinates), excessive spending, and other events that could affect your job and/or income.

Fear of Being Left Alone

'Fear of abandonment' is much more than a cliché phrase...It's a very valid fear that stems from a variety of circumstances. Fights at home or disputes among friends can activate anger through this fear when real thoughts and feelings are somehow unable to be expressed.

Fear of Being Judged

The fear of being judged can cause anybody to react in a surprising manner – depending on the circumstances. There is an innate fear within us all that we are being looked down upon by others. Publicly humiliating events – among many others – in which this fear is present can lead to extreme anger.

Behavior Modification Techniques

Much like dealing with a cigarette craving, it helps to stop and take a deep breath. There is a very thick line between reacting to a situation in anger and responding logically; and the ability to break the cycle starts with the recognition of the difference and the willingness to take immediate contrary action: Breathing and walking away if necessary.

Review the Truth

Try as best you can to review what happened on a fact basis – leaving your opinion and emotions completely out of it. Example: The person I with whom I was having an exchange of words with earlier bumped into me as he was walking by with a group of people. Be careful not to lend somebody else a motive here or distort the truth by personal opinion. A simple review of the facts is all you need.

Review of Your Emotions

Now that you have looked at the truth, it's time to examine your actions – even if it's hard to find them. Example: I was out of line earlier. I started the exchange of words because I thought I had an opportunity to shine over him because I feel threatened by his presence.

It is normal to feel embarrassment when owning up to emotions we've been taught to judge...Guess what!? Every body has them! The difference between them and you will be that you have the courage to accept them and take the power away from the way they influence your life and uncontrollable anger.

Notice how we still haven't gotten into his motives or ambitions...There is no need! We are working on ourselves, and we are powerless over others.

Decide Whether or Not an Apology is in Order.

Perhaps you will be able to relieve yourself of a ton of burdensome guilt if you can muster the courage to say, “I was wrong; I apologize.”

As easy as these words are to say, the are sometimes the most difficult to come to terms with! The more practice you get, the easier it will become. Practice forgiving yourself and others, as well as accepting forgiveness from those to whom you've apologized – while being willing to accept if they do not forgive.

Admitting when you are wrong shows a greater strength than always being right. Taking these humbling steps toward behavior modification will help you not only prevent a nicotine relapse and remain smoke free; these behavior modification techniques will guide you on how to be a better person.

Author's Bio: 

Anger is a common trigger for nicotine relapse, and engaging in behavior modifcation techniques can help allow you to look at your anger differently and become less affected by its presence in your life. To find out more about behavior modification techniques, visit!