A trigger is an emotional response to a situation. Here are 5 steps to handle control your emotions and manage being triggered.
These subconscious thoughts are often created by triggers. A trigger is an emotional response to a situation – something occurs, you react, and then your brain instantly creates a reason for your reaction to justify your behaviour; even if the reason makes no sense. This can often result in placing the blame elsewhere, and in terms of a divorce, who better to blame than your ex? I know I was certainly guilty of this when I went through my divorce. But unfortunately this approach can lead to victimisation. In the short term, you may feel better, it may even release much needed hormones you have come to rely upon. However, as a long term strategy this can be extremely damaging:
So how do you get past this? Here are my five steps to taking back control of your emotions and not being triggered.
Step 1 Acceptance.
Remove the veil of self-deception and accept yourself as a powerful intelligent being instead of as a victim. When you seek to identify what is triggering you and how you feel in the moment, you give yourself the chance to feel differently. You will also have more clarity on what you need to do in order to change your circumstances.
Step 2 Recognise
Your mental and physical state are intrinsically linked when we are triggered. We go into survival mode which causes a fight, flight or freeze response that has a physical impact. Notice how your breathing is shallow. Has your vision tunneled? Is there tension in your muscles, do you feel any tightness or pain? This is your brain pumping oxygenated blood to your arms and legs ready to fight or flight. These are all signs you are in survival mode. Unfortunately, whilst in this mode your brain is being deprived of much needed oxygen required for rational strategic thinking. Therefore, the sooner you recognise you are triggered the better.
Step 3 Identify
Now you have interrupted the trigger you can look at identifying it. The most common cause of triggers are:
The quicker you notice an emotion is triggered, the sooner you can discover if the threat is real or not.
Step 4 - Make a choice
With practice, the reaction to your emotional triggers can subside, but they might not go away. The best you can do is to quickly identify when an emotion is triggered and then choose what to say or do next. That is what leads to emotional freedom and control over your own life and outcomes.
In order to do this, ask yourself are you really losing this need or not? Are you taking the situation too personally? If it’s true that someone is ignoring your need, can you either ask for what you need or, if it doesn’t really matter, can you let the need go?
Step 5 - Shift your emotional state
You can practice this step at any time to help you determine what you want to do next, by shifting into the emotion that will help you get the best results. In order to do this here are some tips:
I know from my own situation, these five steps really help. I’d love to hear your thoughts or if you have any other ideas that help - do contact me on email.
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