Stress and Aggression – Does Stress Lead to Aggression?

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Clenched fists. Gritted teeth. Tension headaches. Furrowed brows. Does this sound familiar? Are you feeling like this daily but cannot quite pinpoint why you feel so mad? Well, you could be stressed – of course, you’re stressed –  but it could be the stress making you feel so angry. You may not be able to think why you are so annoyed given that the life you are living is the same as ever. But your stress can manifest in different ways. For some, it’s in depression and sobbing to sad movies. For others, it’s aggression.

Feeling anger and aggression doesn’t mean that you are necessarily as aggressive as a person. However, you need to learn to channel your stress differently so that you don’t put your own blood pressure through the roof trying to cope. Aggression as a stress response is usually something that we learn as children from others.

However, that doesn’t mean that you cannot unlearn it and it certainly doesn’t mean that you can’t calm yourself back to normal levels. We all have a little rage inside of us, and whether it’s work or the kids or the constant lack of sleep putting pressure on you, you have to figure out how to make it better.

stress and aggression

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Some people choose to manage their stress with punching bags, but the problem with that is you end up making an aggressive feeling an outlet. So, you feel angry, you punch a shield bag or a hanging bag. It feels good at the moment and your brain connects that soothing feeling to the punch you just did.

The next time you feel stressed and you’re not near a punching bag, what if you hit a wall? What if you hit a person? You may be reading thinking that this wouldn’t happen to you as you wouldn’t hurt someone else. But can you control the aggression enough not to do that? You can’t say for sure. So, you need another outlet – one that is calm and peaceful. Let’s see some suggestions:

Go for a walk

Sometimes, a pound-the-pavement power walk is going to be the best thing that you ever do. You can walk out the adrenaline and sort your thoughts at the same time. This can give you some breathing space to switch your rage to sadness. No one wants to feel sad, of course, but it’s better than anger.

You could start yoga

You may not have considered it before – especially when the adrenaline demands lashing out – but yoga can help you to center yourself and calm your mind. You can get some Curves workout gear and a mat, and head to a class. See how it makes you feel – we think it’ll help.

Dance it out

You need to move if you want to get rid of the excess adrenaline that your stress has caused. So, you need to think about dancing it out. Crank up the music on your headphones and just move with your eyes closed. You will feel the benefits instantly!

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