When we allow ourselves to get stuck in anger-based rumination, several changes occur within our psychology that interfere with healing and recovery:
1. In order to justify and rationalize such intense anger and condemnation, our minds must continually hyper-inflate and exaggerate the idea of "how bad things really are" in order to keep a balance in place. After all, unjustified anger or hatred is not a concept we openly embrace. Surely, we would never get angry without just cause. I have a reason to be angry! (Or so we tell ourselves.)
This type of thinking means that when a person models a response of anger, their mind plays a vicious trick on them, keeping them trapped in a state of despair in order to try and justify such anger. So rather than refuting our irrational thoughts, we spend our time trying to seek confirmation for them. This means that instead of using our higher-brain functions to keep our over-zealous emotional areas in check, WE INSTEAD PUT OUR REASONING AREAS IN CHARGE OF REINFORCING OUR CATASTROPHIC THINKING!!! We've thus become our own worst enemy. And since anger by its very nature is over-reactionary, when we attempt to justify it, our thoughts will be overly negative too.2. As noted earlier, when our negative emotional areas are active, the rest of the brain is muted. So when we make a decision to respond with anger or let it take hold over our thoughts, we essentially put the reasoning areas of our brain on vacation while handing over our psychology to the hyperactive, moody, irrational step-child of our mind. Anger and intelligence are repulsive forces. Wherever the one is in charge, the other is muted or abolished. (McGowan, 2009)
3. There is no end to anger. No punishment will ever be enough. No right will ever correct the wrong. By its very nature, anger is selfish and egocentrical, and the farthest thing from fair. Anger often carries on and on, feeding off the person’s own thoughts about a perceived trespass, with no end in sight.
4. Anger isn't like a switch that you can turn on and off. Nor is it something you can effectively channel to the "proper" areas without it impacting other aspects of your life. Anger is not like a pistol that you can point in a particular direction to destroy those you wish to. It's more like a hand grenade... one that happens to be chained to your belt. Its destruction is indiscriminate, and scatters in every direction, with the biggest impact being felt by you. Likewise, when you harbor anger, or when parents model a response of anger to a particular event, this negative energy seeps into every aspect of a person's psychology. It poisons those around them, and heeds no off-switch when it's time to switch situations. Like nuclear radiation, it permeates into every nook and cranny of a person's life...and the lives of everyone around them. If you feed anger amidst one circumstance, it will show up in others.