Anger Management
GMTV – Clip 3
1st December 2008
00:00 gmtv
00:05 Presenter
Hello again. Eleven minutes past eight, it’s a Monday morning. Do you have the Monday morning blues? What about a Monday morning fury? Have you woken up today feeling close to boiling point, I wonder? You’re not alone if you have, because staggering new figures reveal that we are becoming a nation of angry people. And many admit they feel enraged every single day. So what are the things that tip us over the edge? Let’s find out, because Michelle Morrison has been investigating. Here she is.
00:38 V/O:

You’ve queued for ages and you’ve nearly made it to the checkout. But the person in front of you only now decides to look for their purse. That gets nearly a quarter of you hot under the collar.

00:54 V/O:

Ever feel like you know about the personal lives of complete strangers? Well, one in four of you would like to press END CALL on those who talk on their phone at high volume.

01:08 V/O:

You left the house in plenty of time for that all-important appointment. Once you get stuck in gridlock: well, you know where that makes a third of you see red!

01:22 V/O:

All you want to do is pay your bill. You’ve keyed so many numbers that even NASA would be baffled, and you’re still no closer to talking to another human being. That makes half of you furious.

01:37 V/O:

67% of you say the one thing that angers you more than anything is when someone skips in front of you in a queue—and it doesn’t matter who that person is.

02:05 Presenter

People are so rude now, aren’t they—maybe because they are angry. Let’s talk to Florence Terry. She’s an anger management expert from STOP SEEING RED. Phew! Why is the figure of the number of people being angry increasing, Florence?

GMTV Anger management expert
02:06 Florence Terry

I think you’ve mentioned, or shown on that clip, we are under a lot of stressful situations. And the more stressed that people are, the shorter their fuses are.

02:15 Presenter

But it’s all to do with time, isn’t it. Because if you’ve got all the time in the world, someone fiddling around with their purse at the checkout really shouldn’t bother you that much, should it?

02:24 Florence Terry

As you say, if you’ve got time.

02:26 Presenter

Yeah. So is it because we’re all under time pressure that we’re getting more and more stressed? We’re doing so many things now. Even children at schools: there’s more pressure on them than there ever was.

02:36 Florence Terry

I’m not sure about the more pressure point, because our forebears had huge pressures on them—wars, rationing, etc. But certainly we are under a lot of pressure.

02:49 Presenter

So 60% of people said that they get angrier the older they get. Why is that?

02:56 Florence Terry
Ah, that’s an interesting statistic! I would say that’s because—of many things, no doubt—but a big thing will be because they’ve had more past things that have annoyed them. So our brain is associative, (Okay) and so when something happens it reminds us of other things.
03:12 Presenter

Okay. So you’ve got a whole load of bad memories in your head that makes you angry, and when you face that situation again you sort of go “Whoo!”—you explode. Is that how it happens?

03:19 Florence Terry

Yes. Not suggesting at a conscious level, but at a subconscious level.

03:22 Presenter

No. So how should we handle all this anger that’s obviously inside most of us?

03:28 Florence Terry

I think Number 1 must be the old favourite of counting to ten. And that is because the thinking brain cuts in slower than the emotional brain. So it gives you time to actually relax and not respond.

03:46 Presenter

Okay. But that is easier said than done, because anger of its very nature happens in a split second, doesn’t it. Sometimes your blood pressure goes from zero to about 100 in a split second, and you’ve got no time to count to ten.

03:58 Florence Terry

Okay. So in the longer term—I was thinking about something that people could do immediately—in the longer term I would say: if you do find that you go from nought to ten in one heartbeat, then you need seriously to consider counselling for past trauma and anger management.

04:15 Presenter

Okay. We haven’t actually got that many texts in, have we. We do feel sorry for people working in shops at this time of year, though. We’ve heard from Maddy in High Wycombe: she says what makes her angry is people’s impatience and self-importance. And we saw a lot of that there. I mean, general rudeness: you know, invading people’s space with your mobile phone, shouting at the top of your voice, all that sort of queue-jumping stuff—rudeness makes people very, very angry, doesn’t.

04:36 Florence Terry

It does. It makes – and often because we take it personally. So another of my tips would be: Don’t take it personally. It’s not about disrespect for you.

04:48 Presenter

Okay. Well, I’m going to say goodbye now, ‘cos our time is up. Don’t take that personally—it’s just that my producer’s shouting at me! You can find out if you have anger issues by taking our online test, by the way: Thanks very much, Florence.