I always find that I get triggered at the most random times. All is good in my world and then BAM out of nowhere I run into that person and my anxiety kicks in and all I want to do is flee! And I think to myself, man I have done the work so why now? And all of those coping strategies I have in my back pocket go flying out the window.
We all have triggers. According to the Webster Dictionary, a trigger is defined as "to cause an intense and usually negative emotional reaction in someone". That someone being you. And it's so true, it is intense and usually negative. UGH!
And as my dear friend always tells me, a trigger is an opportunity to dive into more healing. Ok time to look at that trigger as positive, not negative.
I'm currently in a bible study and we are reading a book by Lysa Terkeurst called Good Boundaries and Goodbyes (I love all of her books!). Besides highlighting almost the entire book, something really stuck out to me that I want to share. This is from her counselor, Jim Cress.
If the trigger is because of past trauma, we can learn to not get hijacked by the anxiety. This will require you to go into your past to work on what's still not healed, while also staying grounded. Stop. Take a breath and say, "I know what's going on here. I've been here before. I'm not in immediate danger. There is a way out and I can seek help. I can let this feeling inform me, but I don't have to spiral into panic."
Ok now stay with me. Don't get caught up with the word "trauma". It is simply defined as an emotional upset. Something upset me in that moment. It brought me right back to the hurt and confusion I felt over 2 years ago and that "emotional upset" made me feel like it was happening in real time. And instead of letting this response inform me, I panicked. I got in my head, I shamed myself for not being stronger, I got angry, sad, all the emotions. Take a deep breath Jen.
So I'm on a journey and I always will be. I have grown so much and there will always be another layer to unpack. This next layer on my journey is learning to love myself during the next trigger. Shaming myself for not having it all figured out is not helping. I need to look at the little girl inside of me, remind her of who she really is and tell her it is OK.
It sounds too easy, but trust me, it works. It brings me immediate peace. And yes it will never completely go away, all of those triggers, but I can rest in the assurance that I know what to do to get help. I can be gentle with myself if I end up panicking and running away. It will never look perfect because I'm human. And as I continue to do the work, I can give myself grace.
So until the next trigger comes, give yourself love and know that I am right here cheering you on! ❤️
Thanks for reading!