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  • Dima Arbach, MD

THE EASY FIVE

Daily life is becoming more and more complicated and with the added pressure of virtual work, often from home, and having to take care of families and loved ones. We often find ourselves increasingly irritable and have unfavorable reactions in face of minimum causes.


THE EASY FIVE are five quick steps that can be done when we feel that we are feeling increased irritability and anger.


Usually anger management tools focus on mental and cognitive approaches and may take more time, effort, and focus to apply, THE EASY FIVE are practical, easy to implement, and can be done before or with cognitive and mindfulness tools.


When feeling irritable more than needed and expected in a certain situation think:

THE EASY FIVE

WATER, FOOD, AIR, ENERGY, PEOPLE.


1- WATER: Drink some water. Sometimes dehydration causes emotional distress and drinking water may lower irritability and frustration on the spot.


2- FOOD: If your last meal was hours ago and your irritability is increasing, try to eat or snack. Being hangry is no fun and sometimes it is possible that you are simply hungry. A few bites can improve your mood.


3- AIR: Alternate your environment, go outdoors if you can. CO2 is not a good friend for the brain. Staying inside in the same space for a long time can become mentally exhausting. Change your place, it is best if you can get some fresh air. You may be surprised by the difference this makes in your emotional reactions afterward.


4- ENERGY: Stop what you are doing for a couple minutes and rest. If you have been doing the same things for a long time you may be exhausted physically and drained mentally.


5- PEOPLE: Spending hours with a group of people can sometimes be emotionally fatiguing. Take some time for yourself and recharge. This often makes a huge difference in your emotional wellness and tolerance at the moment.


THE EASY FIVE are not meant to replace or eliminate any anger management or therapy methods you have used or plan to use. These are just practical tips that are aimed to address basic needs we sometimes forget about (especially due to the busy distracted life that we are all handling now).


Most importantly: if you feel that you are agitated often, or tips and tricks are not helping you, you may be in need for professional assessment and help.


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