The following is an excerpt taken from my book “Happily Ever After… Right Now,” chapter six:
Seeing What Triggers You as a Gift
By facing ourselves and beginning to take a look at what is happening when a partner’s behavior triggers a certain emotion within us, we can start to uncover all of our inner treasures. Ultimately what we are attempting to do is to end needless suffering in our lives. Right? And so, in order to accomplish that, we have to eliminate whatever is interrupting us from our happily ever after… right now. Of course, if we don’t know what it is, it is impossible to stop it. Disturbance and dis-ease give us important clues. Admittedly, uncovering the truth can be tedious. Remember, our conditioning is deeply tucked in the trenches of our minds. So, if we’re going to move beyond whatever is limiting us now, we will have to continue working to create some new circuits in our hard-wiring by extinguishing the old patterns that have kept us stuck. This process does require patience and care. We don’t want to blow a fuse or overload the breakers. The best way to avoid causing an electrical surge and potential power outage is to pay attention to the warning signs.
An intense reaction to something is always a red flag telling you that underneath this trigger are some unresolved issues. The intensity of the response to an event is the key. The more severe the reaction, the more we need to take a look at what’s up for us. On a scale of one to ten, if your feelings of panic, grief, abandonment, or loss of control are at a ten or close to it, you need to stop yourself from doing anything immediately. You are not in a position to exercise your best judgment when you are hot with rage or upset. Use whatever methods known to you to get yourself back to some balance and stability and then you can decide what to do.
Here are some common events that may signal your feelings of despair (written from a female perspective. Men, simply make substitutions that apply to you – She in place of He, etc.):
1. He frequently seems emotionally distant, shut down, and moody.
2. He does not appear to be at all interested in things you care about.
3. He notices other women and comments on how “good” they look, but he rarely, if ever, compliments you.
4. He would rather play golf or be with “the guys” than spend time with you.
5. He doesn’t check in or call like he used to.
6. His body is there but he isn’t.
7. He leaves altogether, body and all.
The trick is to begin to notice those things that trigger your anger or despair, and refrain from reacting while you are hot with emotion. Later in this chapter, I list ways you can modify your responses. If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, I will post some of them there. In the meantime, try to begin to recognize those things that trigger you.
What are some of your triggers? Do you see how revealing them enables you to uncover that buried treasure within you? I encourage you to take steps now to extinguish old patterns of anger and reaction. When things are hot with negative emotion, pause for a moment (or more) and make balanced and stable choices when things have cooled down. You can do it.
You can find the book “Happily Ever After Right Now. Stop Searching! Start Celebrating!” here.
All content copyright 2012, What A Gem, a.k.a. Luann Robinson Hull (a.k.a. Happily Ever After Right Now)