Triggers are things that come up for us when we least expect it. They are things that make us feel how we don’t want to feel, like angry or annoyed or guilty or sad. Sometimes they make logical sense, but often they don’t. For most people, a trigger is something related to our deep past, likely and often our childhood. If we didn’t get and receive enough love, enough support, we could have a trigger related to that. For example, we want to be seen in the world, we try to share our talents. As we reach out to others to be seen and to be heard, we are not acknowledged fully, and that lack of acknowledgement makes us feel unappreciated, and like we don’t have or receive enough attention. So, we act out more, and we act out more.
A trigger could also be related to a partner. We could, for example, have a wonderful, loving relationship with our partner, but they might have a concern that we may not be faithful to them despite our reassurances. This might come up over, and over again, and take them over in anger, take us over in anger – no matter what is said, no matter what is done. Triggers, and only by looking straight into somebody’s eyes and giving them reassurance and holding space for them, and hearing them, and seeing them, can you pull them out of the trigger.
There’s a lot of other types of scenarios related to triggers, and related to psychology that here, at Alexandria, we care to be aware of. While the roots of triggers can be related to things like our attachment style (note: share link to good resource for attachment style stuff), they also can be something neurological – something that seems out of our control, something that might take work with a professional [….] Now when we’re triggered, we don’t often recognize what’s happening, we can’t often stop it. The part of our brain that’s firing when we’re overtaken by anger, or sadness, or some other type of powerfully mind-dominating emotion, is [….] that our brain is kind of like in autopilot – it’s in fight or flight survival mode. To have positive relationships with other people, to be whole, we need to figure out how to overcome these things that are triggers. We need to liberate ourselves. We need to escape the cycle, and that’s not going to happen unless we have people who can help us, who can point out when a trigger might be happening.
Now, I believe that when we fully face our triggers, we can be liberated and free; that we can be saved from all the crap that affects our friendships, affects our relationship with our parents, and affects our ability to think clearly. I, for one, used to be dominated by my triggers. I really appreciate my parents. They did a lot for me growing up. Yet all of us have individual scenarios which have challenged us. Out of respect of them, I’m not going to share the details publicly here, but it was at a time in my life that was particularly challenging. Just as willpower is a muscle (note: ask David for link, resource from Harvard/Stanford psychology), my willpower was depleted dealing with my other challenges – and so my triggers would literally last and go on, and on for hours. I literally couldn’t talk with my parents for an extended period of time. This was by no means pleasant, for either of us.
I think it’s important for you to know that triggers can be overcome. In the moment, one of the things you can do that’s easy and effective, is splash cold water on your face. Deep breathing is a great remedy, but it can be tough. But cold water will bring you back to the present. Another thing you can do is exercise when you have all this energy in this fight or flight in your body, just get your blood pumping. Another thing you can do is eat. Eat something healthy. Eat something with a lot of protein. Eat something that will balance out your blood sugar and will be good for your overall health. Triggers can happen and it almost seemed like hypomanic episodes when our blood sugar isn’t as efficient to support all areas of our brain working, healing and repairing themselves. Have you had no minerals? Have you had no healthy fat? Have you had too much sugar? Your answer […] affects the state of your brain, and thus the state of your mind, and thus the state of your overall experience. Taking care of yourself so you don’t feel locked in triggers is a huge key to thriving in this world. I wish, for you, freedom from the trigger process, and I wish for you the motivation, knowledge and inspiration to understand that it can be escaped. When I was researching neuropsychology, one of my mentors Ted Gradman, a behavioral psychologist, recommended a book called the […DSM] book. Now this is an excellent thing to study if you’re dealing with triggers or you’re helping people who are. As with any type of health recommendation, I need to reassert that I’m not a licensed professional, and I’m not qualified to officially diagnose or prescribe anything. But I will say that this book helps me and I think that if any of this content resonates it could, very well, help you. Even if you don’t have that much going on, likely in life, you’re going to interact with somebody who needs help monitoring, controlling and being aware of their emotions. I’d like to suggest that the emotional regulation process isn’t [….] hard. All it means is you need to do some rewiring of your brain, and when you do that you can be liberated, you can take yourself off the autopilot of your life conditioning and bring yourself into harmony, into flow, [….] yourself to be. You can stop losing control. You can stop feeling the need to give in to vices, and instead you can enjoy beautiful roses, enjoy friends and family more, you can enjoy a lot of stuff about life.
Now, as you go through the process and feeling [….] you’ll notice your ability to stay grounded increases. You’ll notice that you become less reactive, and you’ll notice that you feel more in control of yourself by far. These are all good things to notice because they are indicative of your progress. Your relationships will improve. Everything about you will improve. I have to reiterate that being liberated from suffering and autopilot is one of the most important things you can do if you want to be a self-realized being. If you want to be free to cast and create magic, if you want to be free to live a whole life. So, I encourage you to think about the types of things that can trigger you, and to take steps to identify them, to see if you’re on autopilot, and take steps to discern the extent that that autopilot can dominate your consciousness. To get feedback from those who love you and who appreciate you, and to really learn who you are […360 approach…] If you live with an attitude of gratitude and an attitude of open mindedness, you could find all these triggers, and you could find out how they can come across.
I think that if this is something that you really want to work on – contact me. If you live in the house, I’d be happy to work with you and do a session on triggers for free, as gratitude and service of my fellow housemates and community. If you don’t live here, contact me and we’ll see what we can arrange; whether it be a private session or just a general consultation and conversation.
I wish you much love, success, happiness and health in this process of awakening and realization and personal growth, and just know that if you care to continue in this process – know that I’m here for you, and know that I want you to succeed. I’ve had a lot of help on my journey and I still have help because I’m not “there yet” and I believe we are here to support each other. And one of the best ways to learn about the trigger process itself, is to find others who have it and offer them help. When you do, amazing things can happen. You’ll start to see the trigger process from an outside perspective, you’ll start to understand better the mechanisms […of action…], and you will start to feel liberated from thinking that you’re alone. You’ll realize that not just are there other people who have this challenge, but that as you encourage them, and as you use your knowledge, and as you practice the principles of learning by doing, you will gain the ability and habit and perspective to apply these to your own life. You will gain the […neuro wiring…] to make these impacts with people on your own. As you do that, healing your own process will progress and become more automatic. Healing your own process will start taking less effort. Healing your own process will become more of something natural, like choosing to change your body composition and succeeding. So, I wish you a lot of success with that and I hope that your success continues (note: ask David to look through this very thoroughly and forward to Dr. Gradman for feedback before posting).