Do you ever get angry?

Anger is a broad word used to describe a basic — often healthy — human response.

But I'm referring to the unhealthy brand. We all know it: The irrational, aggressive — 'losing it' — anger.

So, do you get angry?

Are you sometimes consumed by fury?

For a moment, go back to that mental state. How do you feel? Are you in control of your life?

Or have you lost control? Instead of guiding your emotional response, does the anger actually control you?

And, if you've lost control, to whom have you lost it? Who's in the driver's seat of your life?

It's not you.

"You" are your "best you", and this isn't it.

As explained by some of the classic works on Jewish spirituality: When you succumb to anger you unleash your inner hell. It's your worst self. It's toxic.

Oddly enough, it can also be seductive. This force, which destroys the quality of your life, can become an emotional drug; it poses as your friend, righteously presenting itself as "standing up for yourself".

Think again. In the words of Job (5:2): Anger kills the fool.

We need to be self-aware. We need to sense when this enemy has entered our psyche. When we feel anger, we need to see a red flag in our mind's eye and then we need to immediately set to work figuring out how to control ourselves, how to prevent the downward spiral of resentment and anger.

But to create an adequate internal response system, we need to cultivate a sensitivity to the danger. We need a genuine recognition that anger is a poison to the human system, and an impediment to living a meaningful life.

If you see anger that way, you're more likely get control of your psyche—reframing your perspective to channel your emotions in a more productive way.

For millennia, Jewish tradition has taught that anger also reflects a lack of faith.

The equation is pretty simple: We become angry when we feel vulnerable to a threat or problem. When I believe in G‑d, I can't feel vulnerable. When I feel my faith in G‑d, my worldview focuses on my Divinely-granted journey, my destiny—not my perception of vulnerability.

Anger competes with my sense of destiny. I can't allow it to win.

Between a potentially anger-causing stimulus and my response there is a gap: that's where my choice comes in. I need to recognize that some problems may be solved, and some can only be managed, but either way I need to choose a response that's suitable for my life's journey—-not one that denies it, and denies the reality that challenges are so a part of that journey.

So pay attention to your anger-quotient.

Reduce it, and increase your [quality of] life