Frequent explosions of out-of-control anger and rage hold families and spouses hostage and threaten to destroy careers and relationships. Healthy anger is less frequent, milder, of shorter duration, and is proportional to the event triggering the response.
The anger management self-help books listed below are resources for assessing and identifying anger disorders; they offer useful guidance and step-by-step behavioral programs. While it may be helpful to understand the root causes of simmering anger, the most important first step is to bring the anger under control and stop the wounding of those around the chronically angry person. These anger books offer a wide range of anger management techniques.
David Yarian, Ph.D.
More Recommended Self-Help Books on Anger Management
The ever-escalating costs of anger are well documented: sabotaging careers, alienating friends and family, triggering illness, causing bodily harm. Written by two well-regarded experts in the field, The Anger Control Workbook introduces a new and radically simplified approachto anger control. Step- by-step exercises will aid the reader in identifying, understanding, responding to and ultimately coping with their hostile feelings. 2000, New Harbinger
Tavris addresses the wide range of anger, including violence in sports, road rage, family anger and many others. She points out a number of myths about anger including anger is always good for you, suppressing anger is always unhealthy, or that women have special “anger problems.” She guides readers to deal with angry feelings in more complex ways and to learn to make more adaptive choices. 1989, Touchstone
This self-help treatment guide for practitioners presents a step-by-step, clearly written approach to helping clients deal with out-of-control anger Using an Anger Episode Model to look at each instance of anger for a particular client, the authors show how to develop an individualized, multi-dimensional Anger Management Program. They address helping the client to prepare for change and the process of change, including learning new problem-solving skills. Finally, Anger Management shows the clinician how to teach a conceptual framework for the person to cognitively understand their anger responses and develop a relapse prevention program. 2002, Impact Publishers
This friendly self-help guide to managing your anger offers a host of practical, proven techniques for understanding emotions, dealing with angry feelings constructively, and letting it go. You'll see how to deal with anger before it happens, thwart an angry outburst, keep your cool, and adopt a new, healthier perspective. 2006, For Dummies
Follow this straightforward program and in just seven weeks discover the levelheaded parent, spouse, coworker, and friend you've always known was buried beneath your surly surface. Packed with practical tips, this guide helps you recognize anger triggers, choose effective alternatives, and constructively channel your energy. In these pages, you'll find a variety of approaches for managing this complex emotion, including: anticipating and defusing volatile situations; handling criticism without flying off the handle; calming down with meditation and imagery techniques; getting enough sleep, nutrition, and exercise; keeping an anger journal; and replacing bitterness with empathy and forgiveness. 2002, McGraw-Hill
Dr. Carter, "America's anger expert," addresses the root causes of anger, such as fear, loneliness, rejection, insecurity, and pain. "Angry people are hurting, fragile people," Carter observes. "At the heart of anger is a cry for respect." The Anger Trap offers its readers understanding and practical guidance to help them find deliverance from the destructive and painful cycle of anger. 2004, Jossey-Bass
Thich Nhat Hanh tells us that, fundamentally, to be angry is to suffer and that it is our responsibility to alleviate our own suffering. The way to do this is not to fight our emotions or to "let it all out," but to transform ourselves through mindfulness. Serious, though light-hearted, this is a self-help hand-book not only for transforming anger, but for living each moment beautifully. 2002, Riverhead Trade
This self-help workbook is based on a self-assessment questionnaire and recommends changes in thought and behavior based on the questionnaire. The workbook provides compelling questions that lead readers to a greater understanding of their anger, exercises that help in developing new ways to experience anger and to use it beneficially. This is a practical and useful book for anyone who wants to learn more about anger management. 1992, Hazelden
This self-help workbook addresses the unique concerns of women with anger problems. Rigid social patterning, Dr. Petracek argues, conditions many women to stifle or deny their anger - thus leading to other problems. Other women experience violent, outwardly focused anger. Building on women's tendency to be more relational than men, this book advocates interactive techniques as a primary method of anger management. Using a wide range of practical tools, the workbook helps each woman develop her own individualized program. 2004, New Harbinger Publications
This major update of the best-selling self-help classic on anger management teaches readers to understand and manage episodes of uncontrolled anger. The book gives clear and concrete direction for things a person can do to begin to bring anger under control. 2005, New Harbinger Publications; 2nd edition
Dr. Harbin shows the angry - and miserable - man how to change his life and relationships for the better. This self help book helps men understand their anger by explaining what the specific symptoms of chronic anger are and by showing angry men how their actions negatively affect family, friends, and coworkers. It helps men control violent feelings by using simple exercises - developed especially for men - to identify when and why anger occurs and by helping them form new habits to prevent anger before it starts. 2000, Marlowe & Company
Dr. Lerner writes, “anger is a signal and one worth listening to.” This renowned classic has transformed the lives of millions of readers. The book teaches women to identify the true sources of their anger and to use anger as a powerful vehicle for creating lasting change. 1997, Harper and Row
This self-help book doesn't seek to help you "manage" anger at all. Rather, it strives to offer you a real cure for anger, one based on deep introspection about the connection you share with other human beings. The book helps you learn to supplant anger with compassion, reaction with mindfulness, and self importance with self awareness. 2006, New Harbinger
This self help book profiles patterns of anger behavior that include Addictive Anger, Sneaky Anger, Deliberate Anger, and Anger Avoidance, and offers self-tests and management techniques that promote healthy and non-destructive expressions of anger. 2006, New Harbinger, 2nd Edition
Dr. Beck, the founder of cognitive psychotherapy, focuses in this book on social problems from domestic violence to bigotry, crime and war. “A reflective consideration of the dysfunctional thinking that results in acts ranging from verbal abuse on the personal level to mass murder on the societal level as well as suggestions for remedying these problems.” (Kirkus Reviews) 1999, HarperPerennial
Rage can be calmed and controlled with good advice and a practical, effective plan for change. From renowned anger expert Ronald Potter-Efron, this self help book breaks down rage into four types: In survival rage, anger is triggered by a sense of danger or threat; feelings of helplessness can trigger impotence rage; the third type, abandonment rage, is triggered by a fear of losing a cherished relationship; and shame rage occurs when someone feels very disrespected. Potter-Efron briefly discusses how the brain functions during extreme emotion, and then it turns to the task of helping you stop episodes of rage--right now! Rage offers no-nonsense, step-by-step anger management tools that really work. 2007, New Harbinger
Buddhist nun Chodron teaches that the faults and foibles in each of us now are the perfect ingredients for creating a better life - no need to wait for a quieter time or a more settled mind. She uses "tonglen" - a meditative technique that involves taking in the dark, heavy, negative emotions and sending out an attitude of light, compassionate embrace, a warm spaciousness, in its place. Her humane, incisive approach can help any sincere reader learn to relate to fear and pain in new ways that will open their hearts to the richness of life and love. 2001, Shambhala
This practical, engaging, user-friendly self-help guide blends instructive anecdotes and case material with clear suggestions that are based on empirically validated procedures. Dr. Nay offers a step-by-step, practical model for what sets off your anger, what happens once you 'lose it,' and what you can do to gain control. With control, anger will no longer have a negative impact on your personal, social, or work relationships. 2012, The Guilford Press, Second Ed.
This self-help book offers a simple and easy to understand discussion of how to use the principles and techniques of cognitive behavioral therapies to help control anxiety, depression, moods and build self-esteem in your life. 2007, New Harbinger
This self-help book is a complete step-by-step guide to changing habitual anger-generating thoughts while developing healthier, more effective ways of meeting your needs. It guides you through the process of creating your own personal intervention strategy for controlling angry impulses. 2003, New Harbinger Publications; 2nd edition
Psychologists Paleg and McKay pinpoint pain and a resulting sense of helplessness as the roots of anger. By outlining individuals' and couples' basic cycles of hurt and anger, the authors show how to break the old cycles. Focusing on preventing escalation, managing anger when it arises and repairing the situation after an old pattern takes hold, they suggest a one-day-at-a-time process of swearing off anger (via tension-release exercises, practicing empathy and identifying defensiveness), learning de-escalation tools (a Repair Checklist, an Anger Coping Plan) and regaining trust (by changing speech habits and concertedly giving pleasure). 2001, New Harbinger
Anger is a natural response that can be, if properly channeled, a powerful source of energy and motiviation for growth. Some people, whom author Lynch calls "anger avoiders" habitually shy away from their own angry feelings and potentially anger- provoking situations. This book teaches you to separate anger from rage or fear. Then simple, easy to follow exercises coach you to openly express your anger and constructively address difficult people and situations. 2004, New Harbinger