Does Anger Management really work? That is a question asked by many with fairly limited research to support a non-subjective answer. Several studies have been done on the effectiveness of anger management treatment where the research has been published in a scientific journal and reviewed by peers. There are other studies which can be found on the Internet but only offer data from their own clinical setting, which really isn't valid. The reality is that most out-patient anger management programs don't have the type of research results that would stand the test of University's require for substantial data.
That being said, much can be learned from what hundreds or even thousands of previous clients have reported. After providing thousands of pre and post assessments and interviewing countless students of anger management, the number one predictor of success in anger management comes from client motivation. That is to say, does the client want to change? Think about it, if one doesn't want to change, change will likely not occur. Those who are highly motivated to learn, tend to do better and retain the material being taught longer.
The second predictor of success in anger management is a program that focuses on proven interventions. Anger classes should cover skills in the following:
1. How to handle stress
2. Gaining skills in Empathy and Emotional Intelligence
3. Learning to respond instead of React
4. Changing ones internal dialog from negative to positive
5. Learning skills in Assertive Communication
6. Expectation management
7. Skill in Forgiving others and self
8. Learning to Retreat and take Time out
The format of the anger management class is less important then the content or delivery method. Clients report the same results from attending live anger management classes
as they do from individual coaching for anger control or online anger management classes
. The delivery method is a personal choice. Some prefer the face to face interaction, while other prefer to take classes at their own pace on their own time.
Anger management is not something that happens overnight. Gaining skills and sustaining change takes time. Those who are working on their own anger control need to manage their own expectations that learning new skills and perfecting them is a journey.