In Week 1 we will discuss the purpose and goals of our work
together. This program doesn’t ask us to “manage” our anger, rather it
asks us to respond to it with mindfulness and compassion in the moment.
The Anger Episode
In Week 2 we will discuss and reflect upon the anatomy of the
anger episode, taking it apart so that we can look at it dispassionately. We
need to go beyond recognizing the risks anger poses to our lives; we need to
examine the anatomy of anger itself and see how it came to be a destructive
force in our lives. There is much an anger episode can teach us, but first we
must be prepared to learn from it.
In Week 3 we are going to focus on practices that relax the body
and calm the mind. The wellness outcomes of meditation are well documented:
there are numerous studies supporting claims that practicing meditation
promotes psychological and physical health. One benefit of meditation is that
it allows us to calm our minds and become aware of the moment. Meditation practices
are a great tool in helping us to develop mindfulness.
In Week 4 our discussion and reflections will focus on being
mindful of our perception of the world around us. We will look at the problems
related to becoming attached to our perceptions and bring awareness to
perceptual blind spots that cause us and others harm.
Mindfulness and Acceptance
In Week 5 we will discuss and reflect upon mindfulness and
acceptance, bringing our focus and attention to the moment. We are asked to
face the difficult emotions we feel and thoughts we think, and to accept them
for what they are: emotions and thoughts, sometimes with origins in our
In Week 6 we are going to discuss and reflect upon compassion. By
then we will have integrated mindfulness activities into our practices and
homework. The focus will be to bring mindfulness practices into our
relationships with others.
Taking Committed Action
In Week 7 we will discuss and reflect upon bringing our individual
values to our actions. We need to move beyond our good intentions. Our good
intentions alone do very little to change the way we relate to the world, and
they alone don’t change our relationship with anger. It is the actions we take
that move us toward compassion, forgiveness, and loving-kindness.
In Week 8 we will discuss and reflect upon aftercare, our journey
together and the path from here.