I first found out about rage rooms through a video shared by George Takei on Facebook.
They're rentable rooms you can go in and smash things to let off steam. Simple, right? You're burning off energy and tiring yourself out in a safe and controlled environment. Exercise can do the same thing—particularly if you own a punching bag—or maybe you're the type that can crank up your music and lift weights or go for a run to blow off steam. Whatever works!
A handful of critics argued on Mr. Takei's post that venting anger in "violent" ways triggers a reward response that encourages you to continue being violent. What irked me was that someone followed up with "best to swallow your pride and be humble".
I would argue that 1, there are far more dangerous outlets, and 2, "swallowing your pride" isn't necessarily helpful either. Physical outlets are effective in that they burn away the physical energy that could act as a barrier to calming yourself down and thinking rationally.
I find it very difficult to keep being mad or even worried if I'm too tired to do so. Burning off energy is way better than trying to go to sleep with your mind racing a mile a minute, and not being able to think clearly the next day. Why demonize a method that works?
Another reason why letting off energy is important is if you're trying to talk about your problems while would up, and someone is actively policing your tone, telling you "calm down" or "talk softly", you're less able to do either.
Also, "be humble" reads as an attempt to minimize the problem at hand, rather than being willing to work through it. I can appreciate that some have found success relying on mindfulness or relaxation techniques, but they're not for everybody. Some—like myself—need help with concepts like letting go. Drive-by prescriptions of drastic life changes have never helped anybody. If anything, they stand to heighten blood pressure and feed self-doubt.
Until next time,