Can you imagine what life would be like if people behaved in the supermarket, like many do on the roads?
Shouting aggressively at someone for cutting you up with their trolley, pushing your trolley inches from the person in front because they are taking their time. It wouldn’t be seen as acceptable behaviour, and most people wouldn’t do it.
Despite this, when people are sitting behind the wheel they find it acceptable to swear at other motorists, and behave aggressively towards them. Normally placid people will happily gesticulate at other motorists because of a perceived slight.
What is the point of it though? Does the other person think “I have done wrong there, I should apologise and modify my behaviour”?
Nope, they perceive you as a threat and get defensive. They go into fight or flight mode and either gesticulate back (or worse), or try to get away from you. Either way, it raises your stress levels and achieves nothing.
Often you arrive at your destination stressed out, and that sets the tone for the rest of your day. All you have done by getting angry is spoil your own day.
It doesn’t end there though. You arrive at work and take out your anger on others for seemingly minor things. Now you have upset your co-workers. Depending on the individual, they will either get defensive and argue back (fight) or walk away (flight).
As a result, you end up stressed and alienated by others. For the rest of the day you are either wound up, or feeling guilty, either way, you are probably not performing to the best of your ability.
This reduced performance may lead to criticism and a dressing down from a superior, and that is really not going to improve your day.
When you get home from work you may then become irritable with your family, it goes on and on. So the question I ask myself on a regular basis is…
Anger: What is the point???