What triggers you?
Who can pull the most insane parts out of you for all the world to see?
Do you ever react to something someone does or says and regret what YOU did or said in response?
It happens to all of us. I’m not talking about things that irritate you in others. I am talking about FULL BLOWN, stooping to their level, to get your voice heard. And that can result in remorse, guilt and even shame – which only makes you feel worse instead of better.
Have you ever wondered why this happens? Or how you can prevent it from happening (again!) and how to keep your dignity intact?
All you must do is become aware of the why. YOU CAN reclaim your power and confidence in these situations so you don’t ever need to feel like a crazy, out of control person again.
I used to think it was my job to speak up, to help the underdog be heard, to protect those more vulnerable to attacks by others. Because something in my make-up will not let me ignore bullying or social injustice. I have to speak my truth. And this has gotten me in trouble on more than one occasion.
When I stepped back and was able to understand how to process the situation – before I opened my mouth – I became a better catalyst for change instead of the screaming monkey in the room.
What I learned was that everything is a mirror for our own growth and development. When we are triggered by a person or event we are actually ready to heal that part of us that is begging to be healed. And we should be happy this is happening and that we have plenty to heal! Because that is what our life is about – and I often wonder what happens once we are finished healing. I’m not ready to be done, are you?
What are the steps to quickly resolving our triggers?
1) STOP, BREATHE and ASK
When someone says or does something that triggers you, realize that there is something in what they are saying or doing that is about you. Before reacting just stop and take a slow deep breath. Then ask yourself “how am I that?” It may not be obvious right away. Say you are triggered by the racial hatred occurring in the world. You ask yourself “how am I racist?” Perhaps you aren’t and you can’t find the answer in that question. So keep drilling down – “what kind of person is a racist?” Maybe they have low self-esteem, maybe they were abused as a child, maybe they are ignorant. So ask again “how am I that?” Keep going until you get to the question that hits you right in the gut
2) FORGIVE and HEAL
Understand and remember that we have all been victims and have been wounded at some point in our lives. We are not always on our best behavior and we don’t always use filters. Some people have not healed or recovered from what is causing their pain and they are reacting from their own fear. Heck, most people don’t even recognize this or know it is possible. But you do. So what you can do is pull yourself out of judgment and come from your place of love. Forgive them for being an asshole because they are doing the best they can right now with the tools they have. We all are. Then forgive yourself for judging them in the first place. Quietly thank them and give gratitude for YOUR healing opportunity (not out loud). After the altercation, you can then go home and do your healing work around “how you are that”. Because right now you have one more step…
3) Bring it from your HEAD to your HEART to your THROAT
Our reactions are based on our past experiences, beliefs and what we know. Our brain’s main function is to protect and keep us safe. When we feel threatened (triggered) we tend to allow our brain to run the show. This is not a great decision when we are dealing with other human beings. Instead we should take the chatterings of the brain down into our heart. Choose to process them with love instead of fear. Then speak. If you process your thoughts through your heart correctly (surrounding them with the massive love you hold there) and then speak, you will be less likely to hurt with your words.
By following the steps above, you can avoid any remorse and you can even help to diffuse a situation. This can actually be a fun exercise as you begin looking for what triggers you! Because with each trigger you get the chance to grow and heal yourself and there is no greater gift.
So what/who really pisses you off? Let the healing begin!