Have you been surprised when you overreact with anger to some seemingly minor event? This article explains how psychological blind spots can lead to angry behavior which is out of proportion to actual or imagined events.

From Triggers to Consequences - Understanding the Chain of Events
It is important to understand the chain of events leading to any reaction involving anger. The cahin of events explains how an event, such as being cut off in traffic, can lead to negative consequences for yourself and others. By understanding the factors in a chain of events, a person can make positive changes in the chain in order to avoid negative consequences. here is the cahin in descending order.

External Triggers (things we cannot control)

* People's behavior
* Environmental stress

Leads to.....

Internal Triggers (things we can control or change)

* Beliefs
* Distorted Thoughts
* Judgments

Leads to...

Internal Triggers

Feelings (emotions triggered by beliefs, thoughts and judgments)

* Guilt
* Shame
* Fear
* Anxiety
* Depression
* Anger

Leads to ....

Behavior or Actions

* Direct physical or verbal aggression
* Indirect physical or verbal aggression

Which lead to ...

Short Term Gain (What you got or were hoping to get)

Because of your ....

Thinking or Intention (What did you want to happen?)

And you wanted to achieve...

Goal of behavior? >> Control behavior of others

But, what you got was ...
Long Term Pain or Consequences (What the negative effects were)

* Legal
* Family
* Emotional
* Relationships
* Financial
* Health
* View of Self

But Wait a Minute!

Alternative Thoughts and Behaviors (What I could have done or said)

1. Could I have thought differently about the trigger?
2. Could I have recognized my warning signs?
3. ChangeShould I have walked away from the situation?
4. What could I have done differently?

What Can You Change?

Since external triggers are very difficult to change, and feelings are automatic, and beliefs take a long time to change, you are left with changing your thoughts. For example, if you decide not to "make a mountain out of a molehill", you are changing your thoughts. Think more before you react or respond.

Author's Bio: 

Tom Wilson is the founder of Tom Wilson Counseling Center, a state approved Batterer Treatment Program. He has a Master's Degree in Psychology with over 25 years of experience in counseling, training and consulting. He is a State Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor. He is a state-approved DUI and Substance Abuse Evaluator and is an Idaho Supreme Court approved Domestic Battery Evaluator. He is the author of "Taming and Aggression", an anger management program which has been taught to hundreds of people at the counseling center over the last twelve years. He has served as an expert witness in the areas of domestic violence, alcohol and drug abuse, and conducts training for other professionals.