The Primary State of Anger by Michael Hall, Ph.D.
"Relative to the state of anger, we have various mental components. These comprise our angry thoughts--the ideas, beliefs, values, and representations about some form of injustice, unfairness, displeasure, and threat. We cannot experience a primary state of anger unless we have corresponding "angry thoughts" firing off inside our head.
Those who seem to experience every negative emotion as "anger," have simply not made the cognitive discriminations between frustration, upsetness, distress, displeasure, peeved, light anger, anger, high anger, rage, etc.
Test this for yourself. Think about something to which you typically respond with anger... Go back to an incident in your past and see what you saw then, hear it, and feel it... Now as you do, also notice the angry thoughts that your younger self mentally entertained in order to create those anger feelings. Got it? What "hot" angry thoughts flashed through your consciousness? What thoughts of injustice and displeasure did you have to entertain? To what extend have you re-accessed that anger state in just "thinking" about that memory? Did it put you back in state? To what extent?
Now put that memory up on a screen as if in a movie theater so that you can see that younger you (even if it represents the younger you from yesterday). What color of clothes does that younger you have on? What expression on his or her face? Listen to his or her internal tone of voice. Sit back in the movie theater of your mind... watching... and feel yourself float out of your body and back to the projection booth so that you can see the back of your head watching that old movie of anger...
Did you recognize that you just meta-stated your anger state with a state of distance and dissociation? Do you now recognize it? How did that effect your PS of anger? "