Integrating Suppressed Anger

Anger is something that is quite often misunderstood. Anger is often deemed as bad, wrong, unkind, bad energy etc. Whatever narrative and story we have about it usually depicts the energy of anger as negative. We tell these narratives about anger because we are unconsciously scared of it.

Anger itself is neither bad nor wrong. It is neither good nor right. Primarily it is a force of energy.

Anger is our power. It is the energy behind setting and sticking to a strong boundary. It is the energy that makes ‘NO’ MEAN NO! It is the energy that gives our words authority. If we shut it down we can get stuck in a victim identity and if we use it irresponsibly or unconsciously we can become the perpetrator.

If our primary care-givers shamed us when we experienced anger or if we were simply taught that feeling or showing anger is not ok, if we felt love was withdrawn from us when we showed anger, then what can happen is that suppressing our anger gets directly linked to our survival instinct. Because our unconscious and our body perceive our parents and elders as our source of survival, expressing anger then becomes perceived as threatening to our survival so then in order to survive we believe must shut it down. This concept applies to all emotions and parts of our psyche that remain orphaned and unintegrated. It is a question of survival.

If this is the case (as it was for me) and by my observation is the case for lots and lots of individuals in our culture, then anytime we go to set a boundary, any time we go to use our voice, any time we go to step into our power we will go into FFF (Fight, Flight, Freeze, Fawn). Our system will collapse into utter powerlessness and shut down, or we will feel the need to run and head for the hills. This is because our body’s very survival instinct shuts us down.

Experiencing and expressing anger is perceived as a threat to our survival because we believe unconsciously that it is safer to shut down than to express our voice and our power.

And this may have genuinely been the case at a certain point in our lives but the patterns echo long after we have left the situations that caused it, and that is a simple description of trauma. This pattern can also show up as outbursts of rage. Because this part of us is shut down it is experienced as such a strong stress contraction that the system explodes. We are unable to hold in the experience. When this happens nothing integrates, it is simply letting out a little pressure from the pressure cooker.

To integrate anger we have to re-train our nervous system. We have to teach our unconscious and our body that is safe to express anger. We have to learn to have a different relationship with anger by making the current one conscious. We have to bring safety to this part of us that approximates expressing our power with death.

As we begin to integrate anger it is less and less experienced as anger and more and more experienced as power.

The habit of projecting it outward in the form of outbursts, blame, resentment, mental storylines, etc lessens and we learn more and more to stand in our own two shoes. We can begin to feel our victim identity crumble. We begin to learn to be our own authority instead of giving our power away to others and we stop perceiving others opinions and ideas as a threat. This is something that takes time and we have to be compassionate with these parts of us that feel unsafe. We breathe compassion into these parts that are hooked up for survival before we can step into our power. We bring safety to the feelings of being not safe. When our system starts to recognise that it is safe, only then it will start to allow us to fully experience anger. Prior to that, any attempt to step into our power and experience it will simply be an attempt to override our survival instinct by an act of willpower which is impossible.

Keeping all this in mind I would like to mention that this can also swing in the opposite direction. Some people (like people who identify as 8 on the enneagram) can fall into the identity of perpetrator. So as a survival mechanism, they unconsciously go into extreme power and become abusers in order to stay safe. Their system becomes hooked up to protect themselves from the vulnerability of dropping into the powerlessness of a victim, the system believes that it is safer to experience extreme and unhealthy amounts of anger in order to protect themselves from vulnerability because at some point being vulnerable approximated death. Instead of suppressed, anger becomes projected which still keeps it from integrating when expressed. If this is the case, the relationship with anger is primarily still one of survival and protection, but in this case it swings to the opposite extreme. What I’m describing here can be looked at as the cycle of victim and perpetrator. Depending our how our system is hooked up, how we intemperate each moment is the deciding factor as to which survivalist’s pattern we will become habituated to.

Matt Nettleton is a certified Kiloby Inquiries Facilitator and Trainer. He will be co-leading the September 2020 Facilitator Training & Certification Program with Julianne Eanniello. Learn more here. Register for the free facilitator training webinar here.

"Working with Dan has been nothing short of transformational. His open heart, honesty about his personal experience and permission to be real and not hide have helped me unlock those qualities in myself. And that has been a total game changer. I've been truly blessed, not only to have him as my KI Facilitator, but also as my mentor. Without a doubt, working with him has helped me to show up authentically, helped sharpen my tools and made me a better facilitator than I would've been on my own. I can't recommend him enough."
Darby Totten
Certified KI Facilitator

Dan McLintock is a Certified Facilitator, Trainer and the Co-Developer of the Kiloby Inquiries method/approach the New Model of Recovery along w Scott Kiloby. 

A Jacksonville, Florida native, Dan graduated Flagler College in 2004 with B.A. in Theatre Arts and English Literature and has played music professionally in bands for over 20 years. But his true passion lies in sharing the context, possibility and practicality of healing, awakening and release. 

Dan has worked one-on-one with clients in and out of the Kiloby Center since 2017 and has an unconditionally loving and earnest approach to healing trauma, dissolving the drivers of addiction/suffering and unhooking long-held toxic beliefs about ourselves, others and the world at large. 

He’s also worked intensively, side-by-side with Scott Kiloby for the past three years to develop the transformative tools of the Kiloby Inquiries as well as the principles and approach of the “New Model of Recovery” rooted in unconditional love and non-judgment. Much of this approach was borne out of Scott and Dan’s work with each other on their own personal traumas as well as their work with clients at the Kiloby Center. 

Scott and Dan have simplified, demystified and condensed some of the principles and practices of eastern/non-dual spirituality into an easily accessible set of tools most anyone can understand, learn and utilize to free themselves from their own suffering. 

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Valerie Vinger is a thriving survivor of life’s painful challenges and growth opportunities. She has worked with 12-step programs and is currently a 13-year stage-III cancer survivor. Her cancer recovery journey started with the traditional “cut, poison, burn” approach but eventually led her down a natural path to healing her body, her pain and suffering, and her buried emotions.

Valerie first stumbled upon Scott Kiloby at a workshop of his in Boulder, Colorado in 2012, which she says is one of the most transformative experiences she’s ever had. She is filled with gratitude for the person she has become through her journey with cancer recovery and with the Inquiries, which she describes as “coming home to myself.” She loves working with people who are ready for relief from their pain and suffering.

Julianne Eanniello is a Certified Trainer and Facilitator of both the Kiloby Inquiries and the Unfindability Inquiries (formerly called the Living Inquiries). She is also a Certified TRE Practitioner, and the developer of the somatic movement process called Natural Flow Movement. She works with clients all over the world on virtually any topic, including spiritual seeking, stress, anxiety, depression, pain and health related issues, traumatic experiences, repression, relationship issues, and general unhappiness with ourselves and our lives. She does this through online sessions, deepening courses, workshops and facilitator certification training.

About Julianne:

For most of my life I’ve wondered who I am and why I am here. As I was growing up, no one else seemed to be talking about these things, or even thinking about them, so I buried it deep inside and tried my best to fit in the way I was “supposed” to, all the while feeling like there was something desperately wrong with me and that I needed to fix it.

In my early thirties, the death of a young relative left me feeling hopeless and helpless, wondering what is the point of life if we’re all just going to die anyway? This launched me on a search. I didn’t even know what I was looking for, I just knew that there was a longing – a desperate longing for something that actually made sense about life. I learned several alternative spiritual and healing techniques. I meditated. I read books and watched videos. I eventually learned of non-duality teachings, and I read more books, watched more videos, and even sat with several ‘awakened’ teachers. Yet I was still searching, something still felt missing. I was looking for the key that would unlock the mystery of me and of life.

In my early forties, I developed a chronic health condition that left me unable to work for several years, and most days barely able to get out of bed due to extreme fatigue, brain fog and pain. I lost my banking job, and eventually lost my home. I saw a multitude of doctors to try to find out what was wrong with me, and used every tool in my metaphysical and alternative medicine toolkit to try to heal myself. My seeking became even more intense, and I was looking for a way to escape my pain.

In 2009, I met Scott Kiloby. Since I started working with him and doing the Living Inquiries, the seeking for enlightenment has stopped, and the question of ‘who am I’ is no longer relevant. My victim stories around my health started falling away. Once I started looking at my experience through inquiry, everything changed. I stopped chasing something ‘out there.’ I no longer seek some future state of happiness or peace. This is not to say that I don’t have problems, or ever experience pain. Quite the contrary. I still use the inquiries regularly, and now there is much less avoidance or resistance to what I’m experiencing. I experience more and more freedom in the present moment, exactly as it appears.

Having trained with Scott, I was one of the first to be certified as a Senior Living Inquiries Facilitator and Trainer in early 2012. In 2014, I moved to CA and became a business partner with Scott at The Kiloby Center for Recovery, where we worked with people suffering from addiction, anxiety, depression and more for the next 8 years.

I can’t imagine my life without these inquiries. They saved me from myself. If you are still suffering, searching, longing… I encourage you to give this a try.

As a young child I saw a picture of Jesus gazing lovingly at some children around his feet. I immediately longed for the unconditional love I saw in his gaze. At the same time, I was being read fairy tales, like Cinderella, and came to believe that romantic love would satisfy that longing for love.

So, I married my handsome prince at age 19. But then, by age 29, I found myself alone, as a single mother, with four young children. I was devastated and convinced that something was terribly wrong with me, to have ended up in such a predicament. 

I had learned to love and please others, but not how to love and respect myself. I was a “good girl,” and repressed my urges to have my own needs acknowledged and met. A wise teacher later told me, “We need to love everyone, including ourselves.” This was an amazing revelation for me!

Learning to meditate helped immensely to bring moments of peace, while I was sitting still, though I was still being triggered regularly in my relationships. Finally, the Kiloby Inquiries taught me how to turn my attention inside in daily life – towards the trapped thoughts and emotions I’d been running from – so that I could face and release them. It was like some tender, lost children began coming home, to take their rightful place in my inner world. 

I am honored and excited to be able to facilitate these wonderful inquiries for others.

Sumitra lives on the Hawaiian island of Kauai with some of her family. She has four grown children and six grandchildren. For many years she lived and worked in a yoga retreat community in California, and has taught yoga, meditation and Compassionate Communication in addition to facilitating the tools of the Kiloby Inquiries (since 2013).

Sumitra also loves working with couples and others with relationship challenges in a simple (though not always easy) deep listening practice that allows each person to be truly heard and acknowledged.

Alina is a certified KI facilitator & a founder of Presence Alchemy – An advance mindfulness platform dedicated to liberating suffering & limiting core beliefs through Kiloby Inquiries & non-dual awareness. Presence Alchemy was born eight years into Alina’s embodiment journey of an inner shift from ego to wakefulness. Alina works one-on-one with clients, hosts online intensives and training, and organizes local retreats & workshops.
Alec Rodrigues has been certified to facilitate inquiry since 2015 and brings a keen sense of intuition to his work. He believes that in connection, the deepest healing takes place, that the mirror of relationship is the best crucible for transformation. Through rest and inquiry, Alec has found the empowerment to meet others authentically and stop running so damn fast from the seeming “ordinariness” of life.

He currently lives in Washington state with his girlfriend and works as a training assistant for the KI Personal Mentorship Program, where he empowers enrollees by teaching them the KI tools.