Why is it some things send us into an emotional tailspin, while others do not? Is it because we are attached to a certain outcome that some situations don’t bother us, and others cause our head to explode?
The crazy thing about life is one day we may get triggered, but two days later the very same thing may not trigger us at all. Could it be we are emotionally centered one day, yet a bit more fragile another?
Triggers happen to all of us, that’s just part of life. It’s what we do after we get sent to the moon that’s important. Between the trigger and our response is a brief moment of time. It is in this space, this hesitation, we get to choose our reaction.
We might not think our response is a choice, but it is. So often we act out of haste, we forget we can stop to collect ourselves with the intention of choosing the best option. But to do this we must realize that our behavior is a choice.
Are we strong enough emotionally to let our blood pressure settle down before we take action? If we are, then we are more likely to have a favorable solution. If we have a short fuse, we may later regret our actions.
The interesting thing about triggers is at some level there is a reward for our actions. If we shout at the delivery driver for a delay in receiving our package, is it the drivers fault? Or are we venting our anger built by the challenges we face elsewhere. The trigger is the late parcel, the reward is mindlessly blowing off steam at the driver
If we are easily triggered, we may want to look at our behavior to determine why. We often get caught in the trap of wanting the world to unfold in a way that pleases us. When it doesn’t happen, we flip out? Our hope is that as long as the world behaves in a certain way we will enjoy inner peace. When that doesn’t happen, we curse the world for disrupting our fragile serenity?
The truth is, all we can control is our reaction to the curveballs life throws at us. If we freak out because the dog puked on the carpet, we have no self-control. There are solutions to every problem, yet they elude us when we are triggered by the unforeseen.
As we take time to notice what triggers us we have two basic choices, Blame the cause of our trigger, the dog throwing up. Or we can remain calm, take action to clean the mess, then learn what we can from the experience. What did the puppy eat that caused their upset tummy?
This might be an oversimplification, but you get the point. Triggers happen, how do we control our behavior afterward? That’s the crux of the issue, how we behave when triggered?
Taking an honest look at our behavior may show us how raw our emotions might be. It could be we have been under a lot of stress, or have had a disappointing day at work or with family. We may have asked someone to behave in a way that would please us, but they could not rise to the task.
To ask the world to behave in a way that doesn’t trigger us is optimistic. It just won’t happen. One thing we can do is to work at maintaining our emotional center by finding time for ourselves. This gives us the opportunity to work through any issues we may be holding within our consciousness. Once these issues are cleared away, we may be stronger when we are triggered in the future.
The key is to recognize what triggers us, then ask why? If we are honest with ourselves, it may have more to do with what is going on within us, than what is happening in the outside world.
Are we brave enough to question the reason triggers cause us so much pain? Let me know what you think. Leave a question or comment below. I’m always open to hearing your point of view.
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That’s what makes walking across the threshold of the unknown frightening. We have to learn many new things, yet as we know, learning can be uncomfortable. We often forget that there will be growth in the discomfort. It takes courage to look at the vastness surrounding us, then give it our best shot. We are putting ourselves out there in a new world, not knowing how things will unfold.
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Peace and well-being, Paul
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