The Power of Writing Down and Disposing of Anger

The Power of Writing Down and Disposing of Anger

Feeling angry is a common human emotion that can often lead to negative consequences if not properly managed. However, a new study conducted by researchers from Nagoya University in Japan has revealed a simple yet effective method for dissipating anger: writing down feelings of anger and then disposing of the note.

The study involved 98 participants who were subjected to exceedingly critical and insulting feedback on an essay they had written. After receiving the critiques, the participants were asked to write down their thoughts on how they were feeling and what had triggered their emotions.

All of the participants reported an increase in their subjective anger levels after receiving the critiques. However, when some of the participants were instructed to throw away or shred the notes containing their feelings of anger, the researchers observed a significant decrease in anger levels. In fact, the anger was eliminated almost entirely for those who disposed of the notes.

The findings of this study have important implications for anger management. While anger can sometimes be beneficial in motivating individuals to address social injustices, it can also lead to violence or impulsive decision-making. This simple technique of writing down and disposing of anger can be easily applied in various situations, such as in a business setting, to quickly alleviate feelings of anger.

The researchers involved in the study are interested in further exploring the effectiveness of this technique. They plan to investigate whether writing notes digitally has the same impact as using physical paper and to determine the optimal amount of time needed to reread the notes for maximum effectiveness. Additionally, they are considering examining cultural practices, such as the Japanese tradition of hakidashisara, to gain further insights into managing anger.

Overall, the study conducted by researchers from Nagoya University highlights the power of writing down and disposing of feelings of anger as a simple and effective method for reducing anger levels. By acknowledging and addressing negative emotions in a tangible way, individuals can prevent the escalation of anger and promote emotional well-being.


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