Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The 8 Keys to Sucess in Anger Management Classes

As one of the recognized leaders in the field of anger management, we continually get asked what makes a quality anger management program and what can a client expect to learn? Anger management classes are designed to teach skills in a variety of areas to improve interpersonal and internal functioning. Anger management is not the same as psychotherapy and should not be confused with getting “therapy”. Anger management classes are educational in nature and should teach skills in 8 core areas. These areas of skill enhancement include:

* Stress management
* Empathy Development
* Learning to respond instead of react
* Improving self-talk
* Assertive Communication
* Expectation Management
* Forgiveness
* Retreat and think things over

Participants of a quality anger management program should expect to use a well known curriculum, such as the one we published in 2005, “Anger Management in the Twenty-First Century“. The program should be well structured and teach a new skill during each class. Sessions should be separated with cognitive homework assignments to help reinforce the material and progress should be discussed at the onset of the each subsequent class session.

The next most popular question we get asked is “will the classes work”? Ultimately, ones motivation to succeed is the biggest determinant in the success outcome of any class or program. Without motivation the desire to succeed is severely limited. Keeping this in mind, we like to take on clients who are willing to learn and motivated to grow. While motivation is not the only factor for success, it is certainly the most influential. Another important component is utilizing a program that has some empirical data to back up the interventions used. Almost all of the concepts used in our 8 Tool Model have been empirically validated and tested. A large portion of what we teach is based on clinical psychologists Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck work and we have also included newly introduced concepts by Daniel Goleman.

One of the most important discoveries we’ve made is that clients must enjoy the learning experience. We believe that humor is one of the most important approaches an instructor must use. It’s not to say make fun of the work you are doing, but rather make the work fun for the client. Anger management should not, and is not punitive. The term itself often comes with a stigma that says “I’m bad, and therefore must take a class with a bunch of other bad and angry people”. This could not be farther from the truth. Anger management could be and should be considered more of a life skill class that anyone will benefit from.

For more information on our local anger management classes or our distance learning online anger management classes please click on these links or call our office.

Ari Novick, Ph.D.
AJ Novick Group, Inc. Anger Management Classes
Anger Class Online Anger Management Classes

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