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For perfectionists, type A personalities and people with an independent or demanding streak, high expectations can easily lead to being labeled taskmasters.  For these individuals with intensely driven personalities, anger can easily erupt when expectations are not met. This behavior might be acceptable for a short while and might even get people around you to behave in the way you are looking for, but if it continues, it will lead to health and social issues at home and in the workplace.  Learning to adjust expectations to help manage anger is a useful tool to learn for those with these personality traits.

To be truthful, anger is a normal and healthy reaction to frustration.  It is acceptable to become angry when someone has let us down, we have witnessed an injustice or a goal is somehow blocked.  However, uncontrollable anger leads to disruption at work, stress with family members at home and high blood pressure.

In certain personality types, this uncontrollable anger can be attributed to unrealistic expectations.  We expect that things will be a certain way and when they don’t meet these requirements, anger and stress take over.  Learning how to be more easy-going and to adjust those expectations is a desirable goal.  As we all know, things don’t always turn out as planned.  There are a great number of things in life that we can’t control.  Blowing up every time we encounter a difficult person or situation, will lead you to an unhappy life.  Instead, learning to come to terms with the behavior or unsolvable problem will help with overall anger management.  

An example of this is road rage.  One can either get in the car everyday for the drive home during rush hour and go crazy with anger about the slow traffic and stress out for the entire ride home, or, accept it will take an hour and put in some calming music to make the trip more pleasant.  The expectation that the traffic congestion will somehow go away is unrealistic, so learning to live with it and find ways to enjoy the ride home is a successful solution.  

Instead of getting angry that needs or desires are not being met because of someone else’s behavior, learn to deal with the situation in a calm manner.  Use assertive communication to express your feelings to your co-worker, spouse, friend or child.  Tell them in a non-aggressive, respectful way what exactly you were expecting.  You may find that they simply didn’t realize that was what you were looking for.  Or, find an alternative and workable solution to the problem that doesn’t include placing blame on someone else. 

To further explore the skills of expectation adjustment, take an anger management class online.  These classes are easy to take from any Internet based computer in the relaxed atmosphere of your own home.  Classes are available to take 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so they do not need to interfere with work responsibilities.  The client will benefit from learning very specific skills to better manage their hostility and anger and improve their quality of life. 

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