Those Of Us With Short Fuses Need Help

September 22, 2008

Outbursts of anger are often tolerated in our ‘feeling’ society. But we can learn from America

Griff Rhys Jones

Anthony is a bailiff in Los Angeles. A year ago, he explained, he had climbed to the top of a set of stairs, knocked on a door and handed a subpoena to a recently divorced lawyer who had been refusing to pay his wife alimony.

“The guy was not pleased,” he said drily. “I guess he was showing evidence of passive aggression.” The anger management class laughed.

“So as I turned away, I said ‘Enjoy’.” He paused. “Anyway, this man picked me up and threw me down the stairs.” The others nodded. George, leading the session, smiled helpfully.

I glanced around, surprised. These people seemed to be victims rather than perpetrators. Anthony had clearly provoked the situation. But surely it was a harmless crack.

As it happened, the lawyer had been not only violent but litigious. He sued Anthony. Anthony’s legal expenses had risen to more than $30,000. To settle the matter and save his business, he had agreed to take a course of anger management. That was why he was here.

Now I was angry myself, on his behalf, as it were. I imagined that he was, too. But he seemed settled and calm. After two weeks on the course he seemed able to see the amusing side of what had happened and work out how he could have avoided all of it, without rancour.

We are not quite ready in Britain to take the smart-alec remark or aggressive riposte as evidence of behavioural disorder. Things are more advanced in California.

Later at the same meeting, my hackles rose on behalf of a woman who had shouted at a policeman who had stopped her getting her disabled son to a hospital. (She was attending by order of a court too.) I felt a tightening in the chest as I listened to the head teacher who had been ousted by his Parent Teacher Association because of his inappropriate and sarcastic criticism of some his failing staff. (He recognised now that he had not been “helpful”.) These people had been cross. And they had seemed to pay a disproportionate price. Now they were all involuntarily doing time with George Anderson, the anger management guru. The strange thing was that any resentment they might have expected to feel had been eradicated as part of their cure.

George has built a successful practice on the propensity of Californian courts to use anger management as a sentencing tool and was fully aware that one of his first tasks was to overcome this built-in resentment. He often takes in angry people made even angrier by being accused of being angry.

He pointed out to me that I was not just in California, I was in post-9/11 California. As he saw it, an already authoritarian police and bureaucratic system had become considerably more touchy in the past five years. It pounces on any evidence of inappropriate emotional behaviour.

As I saw it, the State seems to be able to act with an infuriating arrogance. I myself have a short fuse. I am judgmental, but I don’t like to be judged. I hate sweeping received ideas and generalisations.

Frankly, I enjoy being angry about matters that enrage me. I like angry people. I find some anger hugely funny. Especially display anger. I prefer an outburst to seething discontent. I relish candour.
I was clearly not the ideal person to throw into the new Californian “cool it” environment. I’m manic, impatient, perfectionist, lazy, paranoid, impulsive, nervous and cowardly. I know this because all these defects were swiftly spotted by George. I filled in a lengthy assessment form and he handed me my character on a plate. I was surprised how accurate he was.

I didn’t really need George for the other stuff. For all my bluster I could see that anger is also dangerous, debilitating and addictive. It wastes time. It traumatises those close to me. And though I personally am not the sort of person to attack people, we are in the grip of an unprecedented worldwide plague of violent rage. Thugs who respond to a glance with a stabbing, or brutes who batter children because they “done their heads in”, are all part of a self-justifying indulgence encouraged by our increasingly “feeling” society.

In the States, however, a justifiable fear of this emotional right to rage has now turned into new forms of punishment – punishment that hits the wallet. People can sue for hurt feelings. They can legislate to control inappropriate emotion. They can inflict legal fees as a revenge for cross words.

All this seems to be enough to make you spit. It is crazy as only California can be crazy. I had arrived ready to mock. (Albeit in a calm and measured way.) Except that when I met Anthony and the rest of the clever and articulate people at the session I realised that they recognised the absurdity of all this themselves.

George Anderson’s “treatment” may be couched in Californian psychoanalytic jargon but it is not an amateur thrust in the dark. (Too many of the “cures” I met in England were.) I don’t think Anthony the bailiff had been brainwashed. The system was too rational for that. It simply offered a means to change habits and alter behaviour.

In the middle of all this Californian madness I was forced to admit that anger management seemed an eminently sane solution. I might even try it myself one day.

Losing It: Griff Rhys Jones on Anger will be broadcast September 23 and September 30, 2008 on BBC Two at 9pm

Times Online UK
Griff Rhys Jones

Three Days of Anger Management Certification Training

The American Association of Anger Management Providers


George Anderson, BCD, LCSW, CAMF

Three Days of Anger Management Certification Training

November 3rd , 4th , & 5th, 2008*
8:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Location: The Ilima Hotel
445 Nohonani Street
Honolulu, Hawaii 96815-2695

The Anderson & Anderson model of anger management is the most effective and widely recognized curriculum in the world. This model, which has been featured in Los Angeles Times Magazine, focuses on enhancing emotional intelligence and assertive communication while introducing behavior strategies for identifying and managing anger and stress. Our certification training and approved provider list are the industry standards and dominate the internet.

The First day of training will focus on Adolescent Anger Management and will use the Anderson workbook “Controlling Ourselves” as the text. A demonstration and discussion of the Conover Assessment Component will be conducted. This one-day training is designed for Nurses, School Counselors/Psychologists, Substance Abuse Counselors, Case Managers, HR Managers, Clinicians, Probation Officers, as well as staff from group homes, and agencies serving families and youth. This curriculum is currently being used in school districts in Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento, Concord and San Diego, as well as school districts in Texas and Louisiana. In addition, probation departments in Arizona, Kansas, California and Texas use this model.

On the Second day, Adult Anger Management will be examined. A demonstration of the Conover Assessment will be conducted with a discussion of its usefulness. “Gaining Control of Ourselves,” in conjunction with experiential exercises and videos, will be used to initiate the participants to this intervention. Most major corporations have accepted this model for use by H.R. and EAP Managers.

The Third day of Training is Advanced Anger Management. An overview of the adult & adolescent trainings will include discussions on branding, marketing, Emotional Intelligence Training, and the process of capitalizing on your anger management practice. Those who attend all three days will receive a copy of the Motivational Interviewing Component on CD-ROM which is worth 16 hours of training.

Cost: $500.00 per day includes client workbook, facilitator guide, and certification. *Those attending all three days will receive a 30% discount on all Anderson & Anderson DVDs and CD-ROMs purchased on the training days.

Approved for 8 CEU’s by CAADAC (#2n96-341-0805), BBS (#PCE60),
CAADE (#CP40-793-C-1009), TCBAP, and the CA. Board of Corrections

*Those who attend the training for all three days will receive a one-year membership with the American Association of Anger Management Providers free of charge

For More Information, please call 310-207-3591, or visit

Anger Management For Physicians, A Niche within a Niche

Anger management is increasingly becoming one of the most sought after interventions worldwide. The Anderson & Anderson Anger Management and Executive Coaching Curriculum is scheduled to be presented in two one hour documentaries on the BBC2 on September 23 and September 30 at 9PM UK time. The title of the documentary is “Losing It” and is narrated by Griff Rhys Jones. This is unprecedented for any anger management model.

In recent months, the Joint Commission on The Accreditation of Health Care Organizations has recognized the importance of addressing person directed aggression in all Health Care Organization. JCAHO has responded to the need for civility in Hospitals by mandated written policies for addressing “disruptive behavior’ on the part of physicians.Anger is universally considered to be a secondary emotion which is preceded by stress, anxiety, depression, fear, or perceived insult. The falling U.S. economy coupled with the devastating effects of recent hurricanes has destabilized large sections of our population resulting in an increase in anger related referrals nationwide.

Anderson & Anderson is receiving requests daily from Human Resource Managers, Organizational Development Specialists, Employee Assistance Professionals as well as University Dean of Students requesting referral resources for their client populations. As cut backs and downsizing occur in an environment of terrorist fears, employees, faculties and students are responding with fear, anxiety, depression and anger. These feelings often lead to tension in the workplace, home or educational environment. For businesses, the concern over work place violence, sick day usage, work performance, liability, and productivity has caused a heightened sensitivity of the need to seek solutions. Voluntary and mandatory anger management as well as executive coaching is rapidly becoming the intervention of choice.

In colleges and Universities, there is an increase in tensions between students and faculty, faculty and faculty as well as between students. Traditional counseling and psychotherapy is expensive, time consuming and ineffective. Since anger is not a psychiatric disorder, psychotherapy is inappropriate and has simply not worked. Consequently, major universities are routinely making referrals to Anderson & Anderson® providers nationwide.

Another major source of requests for training and material is the Criminal Justice system. Probation departments, courts, jails and prisons are using anger management to teach skills in managing aggression and violence. The Canadian Bureau of Prisons has demonstrated in fifteen years of study that incarcerated defendants who are taught how to manage stress and anger u sing a cognitive behavior approach with client workbook show an 83% success rate. These skills are maintained when defendants are returned to their home communities. This longitudinal study reinforces the effectiveness of anger management.

The California State Board of Corrections has approved the Anderson & Anderson® curricula, training and client workbooks for use in jails, prisons as well as parole and probation departments in Bermuda, Cayman Islands, California. Arizona, Texas, Kansas and Nevada have also adopted this curriculum for use in its Corrections Departments. Be Oltra, Next Generation is the Anderson & Anderson affiliate in Italy. Be Oltra provided Italian language dubbing for the Sony movie, Anger Management. In addition, they are offering anger management to Universities, prisons and businesses in Italy with considerable success.

Anger Management providers who are trained in the Anderson & Anderson® model and actually use the client workbooks can reasonably expect to receive referrals. Our Internet marketing and domination of the anger management field provides credibility and branding to our providers and affiliates.

Currently, we are negotiating with a major Canadian based ITT Corporation with affiliates in 52 countries. This organization is interested in providing the Anderson & Anderson® model of intervention to its client companies worldwide. Naturally this will further enhance the number of referrals for all of our providers. With our increasing prominence, it is necessary for us to make certain that providers on our list are actually presenting our model as designed. Beginning, in October, we will begin contacting each provider who has not recently purchased our client workbooks. Providers who are not using our workbooks, assessment instruments and ancillary training material will be removed from our provider list. This is necessary to protect the credibility of this model.

George Anderson, MSW, BCD, CAMF, CEAP
Diplomate, American Association of Anger Management Providers
Anderson & Anderson®, The Trusted Name in Anger Management

Executive Coaching/Anger Management for Physicians(TM)

Anderson & Anderson is now offering a twelve-hour coaching class with 6 months of aftercare for volunteer or mandated physician referrals. This class is available at our Los Angeles office or on-site anywhere in the United States. The Anderson & Anderson® Executive Coaching/Anger Management program is consistent with the proposed new JCAHO standards for “disruptive physicians”. This model is listed in the Directory of Physician Assessment And Remedial Education Programs, and Federation of State Medical Boards. No other anger management provider in the nation is authorized to use this intervention model.

Components of this coaching class include:

• One- day, on-site observation (optional)

• Assessment at intake focuses on the participant’s current level of functioning in managing stress, anger, communication and emotional intelligence. We do not provide psychological testing nor is our intervention considered counseling or psychotherapy.

• “The Practice of Control”, the new Anderson & Anderson Executive Coaching/Anger Management workbook for physicians includes didactic information and exercises focusing on enhancing emotional intelligence, improving assertive communication, as well as behavioral strategies for recognizing and managing anger and stress. This is the sole text for this course.

• A Complimentary copy “Gaining Control of Ourselves DVD” along with follow-up kit.

• A copy of “A Day Without Stress” which is a powerful DVD is also complimentary.

• Post-test at termination designed to determine the level of change during the course.

• Bi monthly follow-up sessions are provided for a six-month period.

• All of our services are provided with the utmost in confidentiality for all participants.

Anderson & Anderson is the Preferred Provider for Executive Coaching offered to Kaiser Permanente Health Maintenance Organization of Southern California.

George Anderson, MSW, BCD, CAMF, CEAP
Diplomate, American Association of Anger Management Providers
Anderson & Anderson®, The Trusted Name in Anger Management

BBC Promotions of “Losing It” Catapults Anderson & Anderson Into International Prominence

“Losing It”, the Griff Rhys Jones two-part documentary on anger management/executive coaching, featuring the Anderson & Anderson anger management curriculum, is receiving unprecedented radio, television and newspaper marketing, advertising with trailers and other promotional techniques throughout the United Kingdom.

Anderson & Anderson is at the top in internet saturation for anger management and executive coaching for “disruptive behavior” worldwide. Sean Coffey, who is our UK representative, reports that this program will likely make history in the number of people who will view both segments. It is our hope that the DVD versions of these presentations will receive exposure in the U.S. with the help of Anderson & Anderson. We also hope that all of our providers worldwide will assist in marketing this phenomenon through their websites.

George Anderson, MSW, BCD, CAMF, CEAP
Diplomate, American Association of Anger Management Providers
Anderson & Anderson®, The Trusted Name in Anger Management

Anderson & Anderson Presents “Practice of Control”, and “Gaining Control of Ourselves” Redesigned

Anderson & Anderson® Presents “Practice of Control”
and “Gaining Control of Ourselves” Redesigned

Anderson & Anderson, Trusted Name in Anger
Management, is proud to present the new book, The
Practice of Control, written by George Anderson, BCD,
LCSW and John Elder, MA, CAMF. This new book is designed
for Anderson & Anderson staff to work with Physicians
who need Executive Coaching. This book will be available
for new Executive Coaching Clients within the next few
weeks (See the book cover below, front and back views
are shown together).

Anderson & Anderson will also be releasing a redesigned version
of the groundbreaking anger management workbook, Gaining
Control of Ourselves. This book is now in paperback
binding, with a new cover design. (See the book cover
below, front and back views are shown together).

We will notify all providers on our providers list
of the date when the redesigned Gaining Control of
Ourselves workbook will be available for sale. Please
call our office if you have any questions.

Impending Anderson & Anderson Release of The Practice of Control

Los Ángeles, California
August 2008-09-15
For Immediate Release

Anderson & Anderson Announces the Publication of “The Practice of Control”, the first ever anger management book for ‘disruptive physicians’.

The “Practice of Control” is designed for use with physicians who are mandated to attend Executive Coaching/Anger Management consistent with the new JCAHO standards for “disruptive behavior”. This is the first publication written to address stress, anger, communication and emotional intelligence among employees in Health Care Organizations.

This publication contains all of the content training material used in a 24 hour six month coaching class for physicians. Exercises, homework assignments, quizzes and discussion topics including assertive communication, emotional intelligence, stress management and anger management is covered in conjunction with related DVDs, CDs, Posters and discussion.

The Practice of Control is destined to become the most importance publication on the topic of “disruptive behavior” intervention for physicians.

The authors of this publication are George Anderson, MSW, BCD, and CAMF. Mr. Anderson is the leading provider of anger management and executive coaching for physicians in the nation. John Elder, MA, CAMF. is a member of the Anderson & Anderson anger management training faculty and the author of the Anger Management Pyramid.

For additional information or to place an order for this new book, contact Rasheed Ahmed at 310-207-3591 or

Consumer Fraud Alert

Fraudulent Internet Anger Management Coaching Ads and hundreds of free press releases have been placed on the Internet with the quote listed below. If you contact any of the organizations listed below, you will quickly discover that the claims which are being made are simply not true. The coaching, which is being advertised, is not approved by any entity.

The quote is: “This executive coaching class is consistent with the Joint Commission’s new requirements for abusing physicians and is approved by the California Board of Medical Quality Assurance as well as medical boards in Texas, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, and Florida. This program is listed in the Directory of Physician Assessment and Remedial Education Programs, Federation of State Medical Boards”.

Legitimate anger management providers and coaches suffer when we remain silent and allow the above type of consumer fraud to remain unchallenged.


George Anderson, MSW, BCD, CAMF, CEAP
Diplomate, American Association of Anger Management Providers
Anderson & Anderson®, The Trusted Name in Anger Management

Physician Behavior Now a Business Issue

by Peter Lucash

OK, I’m frustrated and I took it out on some USAirways ticket guy. After two days being held prisoner by this airline, yeah, I’m frustrated. So, when we read reports that the Independent Joint Commission wants hospitals to deal with “swearing, yelling, and throwing objects” by physicians, I can understand where this can come from. Not to excuse it, but it’s not always simply a personality problem.

I’ve written before of some of the best – and most satisfying – experience I ever had in my career. In the first few years I was at the Brookdale University Hospital Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY, and part of my job was to be the “administrator on duty”, whose sole job was to fix problems.

There is no excuse for anyone in the workplace to be screaming and bullying people, and especially not for throwing things. But when this behavior leads other to refrain from calling a physician about a patient, there is a problem. The Joint Commission recognizes that everyone in health care is under a lot of stress.

“These pressures can be further exacerbated by changes to or differences in the authority, autonomy, empowerment, and roles or values of professionals on the health care team, as well as by the continual flux of daily changes in shifts, rotations, and interdepartmental support staff. This dynamic creates challenges for inter-professional communication and for the development of trust among team members”.

With the Joint Commission on the move, and attention being raised to workplace bully behavior in the broader business community, it’s going to be incumbent upon physicians and your staffs to monitor your own behavior. The wife of a physician that I know says that her husband works hard and long hours, but she gets him away at least once a month for some down time. Living a stressed life costs you in the end in terms of real dollars. It may not seem that way, but it really will, in terms of being less efficient than you would be if you are fresh and rested. For physicians who have been in practice for some time – say 10 years – maybe taking a longer break of a month or more would be a worthwhile investment in the practice. Yes, revenue will be lost, and yes, you have bills to pay. But maybe if you looked at a short break as an investment rather than an expense or revenue loss it will make more sense. Think about it.

The takeaway: hospitals are going to be acting on incidents of poor behavior. It’s incumbent upon physicians to look out for each other, when someone needs a break, or needs to commiserate – whatever.

An Open Letter to Judges, Prosecuting Attorneys and Human Resource Managers

Person-directed aggression and all forms of rage are dramatically increasing worldwide. While anger management is the most effective intervention for unhealthy anger, the lack of state or local standards poses risks for those in the position to mandate employees or defendants to attend such classes.

Currently, there are no regulations mandated for anger management providers anywhere. Consequently, Judges and Human Resource Managers have few guidelines to use in mandating perpetrators of “disruptive behavior” to attend coaching or anger management classes.

One unintended consequence of the absence of state or county standards in this area is the tendency to inappropriately refer such clients to counseling, psychotherapy, or domestic violence providers. According to the American Psychiatric Association, anger is a normal human emotion rather than a nervous or mental disorder. Therefore, anger is not responsive to psychotherapy or psychotropic medication.

Anger is a problem when it:

·Is too intense
·Occurs too frequently
·Lasts too long
·Leads to aggression or violence
·Has health consequences
·Destroys work or personal relationships

Providers of anger management must have a minimum of 40 hours of Facilitator Certification training, 16 hours of continuing education each year, an evidenced based curriculum which includes pre and post tests, client workbooks, CDs, DVDs and other ancillary training materials.

Anger management classes are designed to teach skill enhancement in recognizing and managing anger, stress, assertive communication and increasing empathy or emotional intelligence.

A list of Certified Anger Management Facilitators in the United States and Canada can be found by clicking here.


George Anderson, MSW, BCD, CAMF, CEAP
Diplomate, American Association of Anger Management Providers
Anderson & Anderson®, The Trusted Name in Anger Management