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  1. #1
    my floof is luxury Wind Up Rex's Avatar
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    Default Do 8s Have an Anger Problem?

    One of the fundamental concerns of the Gut Triad is how the individual relates to their anger: type 8s express anger, type 9s avoid anger, and type 1s suppress anger. In both the Gut Triad and the Enneagram itself, 8s are the most at home with anger. As an 8, I have no qualms with letting someone know when they've pissed me off, and frankly find the experience of being angry cathartic. I have friends who also type as 8s who say that they generally feel some residual level of anger. For us, being angry is just something of a natural state.

    That said, I'm beginning to wonder if it's healthy for me to take my anger for granted in the way that I do. The person I'm seeing now believes that I have an "anger problem", and that I ought to seek help for it. I'm not sure what constitutes a "problem", however. While I certainly have a temper, I have never been violent, and have never been one to stay angry about anything for too long. I'm debating whether I should listen to my SO and find a way to "manage my anger", or just find someone else who can deal with me on my own terms. I've always felt the anger that I feel is less about hostility and more about my inner fire--my personal sense of ambition, strength, and resiliance.

    My question to other 8s is have you ever attempted to manage your anger? What prompted you to do so, and what were the results? To non-8s (and specifically those who are close to an 8): do you perceive the relationship of 8s to their anger to be unhealthy? To all: how do you define a healthy relationship with anger?
    And so long as you haven’t experienced this: to die and so to grow,
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  2. #2
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    Anger is a real bear for me in my life, prolly bc I grew up with an unhealthy, angry ESTJ E8 woman; I've long believed my gut fix is 8 (however, it may be that I'm just a counterphobic 6, and in truth 9 is my gut fix, which may be why I like 9s so much and have finally with maturity developed 9-ish ways of dealing with my "issues.")

    Never-the-less, I think anger can be a really helpful motivator. It can get you out of an abusive situation. It can push you to get the job you feel you deserve. It can keep you protected from yucky people. It can alert you to helping others in abusive or socially unjust situations. There's something called "righteous anger" and unlike SELF-righteous anger, it's a truly appropriate form of anger that a person doesn't get carried away with, it simply serves its purpose as an emotional alarm bell to motivate us, BUT THEN WE HAVE TO LET IT GO.

    Living in a state of anger isn't the way to be healthy for anyone, I don't think. While expressing anger is a core 8 trait, I don't think that unmanaged anger is helpful for anyone. It will start to consume you, harming you, harming others who don't deserve it.

    Anger totally serves its purpose, but it can't be a consuming fire any more than sadness or envy or pride.

    I would define a healthy relationship with anger is being able to feel and experience anger, but BEING WITH IT and WORKING IT OUT, before expressing it too much. It's not that the anger is wrong, but that the way of acting upon it that can be. When you figure out what the anger means, then you can tell the other person calmly exactly what you think. You can also get anger out by doing things like punching pillows, screaming in the shower, or doing hard exercise, so that you can calm down enough to think about why you feel that way or what it means before sharing your feelings and thoughts.

    However, of course, in certain situations where anger is genuinely protecting you, from a sexual offender or something, then of course it's totally okay to just punch him or her in the face right then and there.

  3. #3
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    Look at the results of how you deal with your anger. Does letting it out not only make you feel better but also pave the way to a clearer perspective of the situation and a longterm solution, or is it just the temporary relief of catharsis, which doesn't really accomplish anything other than to make you feel better for a little while before flooding back again over the same stupid shit?

    Letting it out isn't necessarily letting it go or fixing anything. Which is not to say you should repress how you feel, but sometimes, you can't stop short at expressing it because it's just not enough.

  4. #4
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    I used to be angry constantly. I took martial arts and learned to control it. Through middle school, my dad used to constantly ask me what was wrong, because at one point I just, stopped smiling altogether. I constantly told him nothing was wrong, and he kept asking me and asking until I had to tell him to fuck off and stop asking.

    Often times I'll be angry but not even realize it. People will treat me like I'm a "dick" even though I've done nothing to hurt them. They just don't like my demeanor or something.

    Lately I've been very in touch with my anger and do whatever I can to get rid of it asap. It has certain benefits though.

    Things that happen when I'm angry:
    -Buying too much of a food I like
    -Excessive cursing
    -giving opinions too freely and aggressively
    -I talk faster and more "in your face"
    -Movements become more gusty and forceful
    -Angry rants can be hilarious to others
    -I make a lot more jokes and strive to make people laugh more often.

    Its wierd how this happens. When I'm in a great mood, I become zenmaster arendee. I give everyone a warm smile, I talk slower and more gracefully, people will walk up to me and talk to me (which almost never happens), etc. I find this happens when I'm in an emotional state of feeling "loved." If my life is in a position where I have no close friends or I'm not doing something I enjoy, I get kinda callous and I suspect my eyes get more fiery. I also act more "give me what I want and give it now."

    When I'm angry, I start acting more "adult like" and people tend to take me seriously. When I'm not angry, I tend to act like a child without a care in the world. When I'm in child mode people tend to come up and bully me or harass me. Then I inflate and go into angry mode again until they respect me and leave me alone. The cycle has gone on for 25 years now. Then I also have "awesome" mode, where I feel like a superhero and I'm incredibly energetic and excited and happy to the point that no one bugs me and my energy is infectious. Now I'm starting to try a new method of intimidating people I just met so they take me seriously and we can just skip all the frustrating tests. This usually involves giving them an intense handshake where I look into their eyes and imagine "pouring lava into their soul with my eyes" if that makes any sense. I've only done it twice so far, one guy was shaking a little bit, another guy just got wide eyed and never hung out with me again, haha. Maybe they just thought I was a psychopath.

    My anger also has an added benefit as serving as a manipulation or bullshit alarm.

    So in an nutshell, I don't think negative emotions are entirely healthy regardless who you are. They're usually a symptom of a problem you may or may not be aware of, at least for me. When I'm angry, I usually take it as a sign that my life isn't where it should be.

  5. #5
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wind-Up Rex View Post
    To non-8s (and specifically those who are close to an 8): do you perceive the relationship of 8s to their anger to be unhealthy?
    I tend to almost admire how 8s deal with anger, because they express it in a way that I wish I could. (Given a chance to be a different Enneagram type, I'd choose 8w7 without any hesitation whatsoever.) However, I've heard other 8s on the forum talk about how they feel "crazy" from how they express their anger, mostly because others react to them in a way that makes them feel like they're crazy. But I agree with the OP, that it's actually healthy and useful, sometimes.

    From a completely different angle: Everyone has a "problem". Every gut type has an "anger problem". If you got rid of your "anger problem", a different problem would arise to replace it. But you're fine with your relationship with anger, right? You think it's more useful/helpful than not? If so, then why replace that "problem" with a "problem" that would be less useful/more foreign/more inconvenient?

    I'm wondering if your SO is just afraid of your passion -- or if he just doesn't know you well enough yet.
    Quote Originally Posted by Wind-Up Rex View Post
    To all: how do you define a healthy relationship with anger?
    You know from other threads I've made that I don't have the best relationship with anger, either, so I don't know if I can answer this in any credible sense. I guess I'd say, if you have a good handle on it, to the extent that it doesn't hurt you/others as much as it helps you/others, then you're using it well, and your relationship with it is good.
    ~ g e t f e s t i v e ! ~


    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"



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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    However, I've heard other 8s on the forum talk about how they feel "crazy" from how they express their anger, mostly because others react to them in a way that makes them feel like they're crazy.
    Yeah, its real nice when you assert boundaries with a lighthearted personality who takes it the wrong way, tells all their friends you're a sociopath, then suddenly everyone thinks you're a sociopath and you start losing friends because 1 person is butthurt, popular, and influential. That shit has been a runaway train for me in the military, of all places.

    Feels like you just accidentally broke a dam and you're watching it flood the town.

  7. #7
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Arendee View Post
    Yeah, its real nice when you assert boundaries with a lighthearted personality who takes it the wrong way, tells all their friends you're a sociopath, then suddenly everyone thinks you're a sociopath and you start losing friends because 1 person is butthurt, popular, and influential. That shit has been a runaway train for me in the military.
    Okay, firstly, that's bullshit. Screw those people.

    And secondly, that's exactly what I'm talking about. It's other peoples' problem. When you're passionate, you're as likely to make enemies as friends. Passionate people are polarizing, and that's just how they are. No reason to call that a "problem" and make them fix it. Then what do you get? A world full of subdued doormats. Thanks but no thanks.

    /rant
    ~ g e t f e s t i v e ! ~


    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"



    ESTJ - LSE - ESTj (mbti/socionics)
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    want to ask me something? go for it!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    Okay, firstly, that's bullshit. Screw those people.

    And secondly, that's exactly what I'm talking about. It's other peoples' problem. When you're passionate, you're as likely to make enemies as friends. Passionate people are polarizing, and that's just how they are. No reason to call that a "problem" and make them fix it. Then what do you get? A world full of subdued doormats. Thanks but no thanks.

    /rant
    Its even better when people are jealous of you for whatever unknowable reason and do the same shit without you knowing why. The only thing you know is someone walked up to you and asked "How come you don't give a shit about your country?"

    and I'm like, "... what?"

    or

    "Why did you date sarah?"
    "uh... I didn't."
    "Yes you did."
    "uh I think I know what I do and don't do."
    "Are you saying all my classmates are wrong! *angry aggressive tone*"
    "yes."
    *gets swarmed by angry classmates*

    Just ask, I have tons of stories. 5 years of this bullshit.

    GO NAVY!

  9. #9
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    when I was drinking I tended to be a bit of a loose cannon, as far as my temper went (and many other things )... I didn't harm many people, and never threw the first strike, but I was pretty good at destroying things when mad and did some pretty impulsive and stupid shit

    since then I've kept things more under control... part of my whole "trying to be a grown up" thing... I haven't broken anything or hit anyone in years, nor have I done anything stupid and impulsive... somehow though, the idea of my anger even scares people

    I can't figure it out really, as I rarely lose my temper and when I do I try not to do so in public, but any group of which I'm a part, even acquaintances and such... they all have expressed fear of angering me

    The anger is still there... I feel more like the crust of the earth now, floating on a molten mantle and core of anger... it's there and it's waiting and it takes considerable effort to avoid going full Yellowstone Basin from time to time, as in stopping, taking a few breaths and reminding myself as to why I'm NOT going to rip someone's head off (it never ends well, being reason #1). Would life be easier if I didn't have that anger, waiting for a chance to escape? Yes. Without it though, I doubt that I would have achieved anything which I have so far in life- as destructive as anger can be it's a powerful force for driving someone to achieve something

    So to answer your question, yes... I've put quite a bit of effort into controlling my anger, externally anyway. It's my problem, so why should I inflict it upon others? I guess that it's at least bought me some reliability and steadiness in life, even though it's obvious to others that it's just lurking. I've never had a good poker face
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  10. #10
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    Random anger story.

    Girl A and I went on a date. Date went amazingly well. I was feeling really good and energized for a few days afterward.

    Girl B picks up on my energy and new self confidence, and starts flirting with me. I become attracted to girl B in that moment.

    Knowing full well that I like girl A more than B, I feel guilty for leading girl B on because I knew I was going to not date her ever.

    The next day my ambitious ITS-TIME-TO-KICK-ASS-AND-CHEW-BUBBLEGUM emotions combined with the guilt of leading this girl on, and forged these strange angry megalomaniacal thoughts. I was a little wierded out after it passed.

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