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General Conference Discussion - President Monson

I used to consider myself, patient, non-confrontational, and even a morning person . . . and then I had children. It’s hard to meet the new "real" you and learn to love her despite her weaknesses.

President Monson gave the talk “School Thy Feelings, O My Brother” during the Priesthood session of General Conference. I absolutely do not question his judgment on this, but I just want to mention that anyone who thinks anger management is largely a men’s issue has not spent much time in the mind of a stay-at-home mom.

I struggle with anger. I do not have temper tantrums. I do not hit my children, scream violently, or throw objects, but I get upset. And it is a challenge for me to let those feelings go so that I can move on with my day. During one period of great humility, I went to Borders and asked the information desk for a good book on Anger Management for mothers. The man eyed me suspiciously and probably wanted to push the red Child Protective Services button under his counter, so I hurried to explain that it wasn’t about violent anger, just angry feelings. Basically, I wanted to get past looking at my children with exorcism eyes. Anyway, enough about me . . . How does this talk speak to you?


“If we desire to have a proper spirit with us at all times, we must choose to refrain from becoming angry.”

“Anger doesn’t solve anything. It builds nothing, but it can destroy everything.”

“May we make a conscious decision, each time such a decision must be made, to refrain from anger and to leave unsaid the harsh and hurtful things we may be tempted to say.”

It's a great talk. You can read it here, or watch it here or listen to it here.

Then come back and join in the discussion:

1. Do you have any "tricks" or strategies that help you to keep your anger under control rather than let it flare up?

2. The stories President Monson shared seem to imply that forgiveness is an important component of overcoming anger. Do you have any experiences or goals to share about forgiveness vs. anger?

3. President Monson mentioned several common triggers for anger: "It can come when things don’t turn out the way we want. It might be a reaction to something which is said of us or to us. We may experience it when people don’t behave the way we want them to behave. Perhaps it comes when we have to wait for something longer than we expected. We might feel angry when others can’t see things from our perspective. There seem to be countless possible reasons for anger." What are your triggers for anger, and how can recognizing them help you "choose to refrain from becoming angry"?

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