“Exercise is one of the best ways for the human body to relieve stress and release anger.” — Allison Pescosolido
The womance between Grey’s Anatomy’s Cristina Yang and Meredith Grey regularly had the two besties dancing out their stresses. Wildly. Arms and legs everywhere. Ugly dancing. Cathartic dancing. Dance-like-nobody’s-watching dancing. It seemed to work in TV land.
Anger triggers the body’s fight-or-flight response. Adrenal glands flood the body with stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. The brain shunts blood away from the gut and towards the muscles, priming you to physically move. Anger is a natural, intrinsic part of our survival instinct and while we’re often reminded not to let anger master us, suppressing it isn’t the same as dealing with it healthily.
Anger, with its crazy stress hormones coursing everywhere, needs release. And physical exertion is what burns through those very hormones, leaving you feeling calmer when it’s all spent. Regular exercise, in turn, regulates your stress chemicals so you’re less inclined to get into a bad mood in the first place.
So the next time you see red, take five. Get out. Brisk walk. Get some air. Dance it out. Crank up the music and let rip. Grab your sports shoes and go hard. Maybe you’ll even return with sensible solutions.