Choose empathy over anger

Amylee Gil, Staff Writer

When we witness a wrong doing, whether it was towards ourselves or even towards others, it’s likely we would react in anger. This is because it is easier to feel anger and blame others instead of doing the work in trying to control our rage, because It’s hard to try to think logically while you are also experiencing a strong emotion. Our anger will feel justified and valid because we were wronged first. 

However, it being justified does not necessarily mean it is the most healthy or best option when it comes to how you should handle the situation, and indulging in these feelings creates a cycle of feelling temporary satisfaction, and then stronger anger and hurt the next time something upsets you. 

Better said by Essayist Tim Kreider, “Outrage is like a lot of other things that feel good but over time devour us from the inside out. And it’s even more insidious than most vices because we don’t even consciously acknowledge that it’s a pleasure.” 

Only expressing anger does more harm than good. For example, when we see a social injustice towards other people, it’s common that everyone else would react in anger for that group of people. This is not helpful because your anger and noise you make in your rage for other people only drowns out those that are actually dealing with the problem. 

This can be seen in our everyday lives when people feel it is their place to decide what is offensive for another group of people, not realizing that they are actively silencing them and stealing their opportunity to express how they, the offended, would like to solve the problem and speak for themselves. Our anger just adds fuel to the fire, and whether many would admit it or not, it absolutely only makes everything worse.

Reacting in empathy for those facing this issue is better, because you are both offering your support to those people and giving them the opportunity to express themselves and effectively solve the problem. Additionally, when others see our empathy, it causes a chain reaction and spreads positivity. 

We should all learn to take a few breaths so we can quickly gain back our senses and realize that the best solution, which betters ourselves and others, is to react in empathy.