Emotional Intelligence Teaches Practical Skills for Anger Management

The major anger management curricula in the U.S. all use emotional intelligence as its’ core content. In addition, most models of anger management include Pre and Post Tests as well as client workbooks, DVDs , posters and other ancillary training material. The assessments are designed to determine the clients’ level of competence in recognizing and managing anger, recognizing and managing stress, primary and secondary styles of communication as well of the degree of empathy/emotional intelligence. The fifth category of the assessment is Motivation to Change. Motivation is the key to change.

Since anger is not considered a pathological (DSM) condition, it should not be subjected to psychiatric interventions. Rather, the types of practical skill enhancement interventions that are common to the Social Work profession are more effective.

The four domains of emotional intelligence are: self-awareness, self-control, social awareness and relationship management. These are the topics which form the basis of the skills that are taught in anger management classes as well as coaching programs.

Programs using these Emotional Intelligence based curricula are being used in prisons, jails, schools, businesses as well as municipal governments. The latest trends are in the areas of civility training for attorneys who are mandated by state bar associations as well as “disruptive physicians” who are mandated by their hospital administrators. Finally, executive coaching/anger management programs are rapidly becoming the intervention of choice for skill enhancement in leadership.

An excellent summary of U.S. based anger management programs can be viewed in a BBC documentary entitled Losing It 2. The link to this documentary can be found on the website of the BBC. This two -hour documentary was produced for the BBC by British Actor/Comedian, Griff Rhys Jones.

George Anderson
Anderson & Anderson

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