Here is the full transcript of Russell Kolts’ TEDx Talk: Anger, Compassion, and What It Means To Be Strong TEDxOlympia conference.
So I’m a psychologist. And a lot of my work involves using compassion-focused therapy to help people work with emotions like anger.
Anger can be a tricky emotion to work with because it can feel really powerful in us. So even when we can see that our uncontrolled anger is causing lots of problems in our lives and in our relationships, we can be reluctant to give it up. We like feeling powerful. We like feeling strong. And that’s why I think if we’ll really be able to commit ourselves to work with emotions like anger, we have to discover new ways to be strong and that’s where compassion comes in.
Now my own journey toward using compassion to work with anger actually began when my son was born. And I got to see the impact of my own anger was having on my family. You see, I’ve got what you might call an angry or an irritable temperament. One way to think of temperament is the idea that some people are born having an easier time experiencing certain emotions. Some of you, I suspect, are very easy going, intend to take things in stride, don’t get too worked up for the things that don’t go your way. And If you like that, by the way, is good for you. It’s nice, it’s a nice way to be.