What makes me angry?
One thing that makes me angry is the prominent place that climate denial and delay have taken in the British media. Despite most of the world’s governments now agreeing the seriousness of the crisis, if you watched British news you’d be forgiven for thinking there was any problem, or that we need not worry because magical technological fixes are around the corner. Our burning planet barely warrants a mention, even now.
Another thing is the widespread denial that the wealthy might lie to us to maintain or increase their wealth. If you challenge this position you get mocked or discredited; if you actually back up your claim with evidence you get ignored.
I’m angry that there is no integrity in British Government anymore. We’re run by self-serving liars and bullshitters, who enter government to line their pockets and to line-up future careers. The veneer of caring is so thin to be practically see-through, yet we reward them by turning a blind eye and repeatedly voting them into power, doffing our caps whilst we convince ourselves that they have our best interests at heart.
I’m angry that we are an unequal and unfair society that markets itself as a progressive, forward-thinking nation. I’m angry that we put conditions on our fairness; that we have to “help those at home first”, or that someone could be the wrong kind of migrant. As if anyone should have to earn fairness and equity.
I could go on.
I used to be volatile, getting angry at little inconveniences: the traffic jams, the computer crashes, people pitting their bins out on the wrong day and poor queue etiquette. I’m more mellow now.
A few years ago I made a focussed effort to identify, understand and process my emotions. This exercise was undertaken as part of a programme of emotional intelligence development for my masters. The principle behind the exercise was that you can’t hope to identify and understand the emotions of others if you don’t understand your own.
I started noting the extreme emotions, and what actions or reactions these emotions caused. I made an effort to consider my emotions before acting, to consider the effect that my actions had on my loved ones.
More recently, I’ve been a student of stoicism. What stands out to me regarding anger is the idea that one should know exactly what is within our control, and what isn’t. Keeping this in mind is immensely…