If you’re triggered by what people say, and you know it’s from your own past, what do you do?
So you’re aware you’re being triggered… you’re upset, feel disrespected, or you’re angry or full of shame… and you know that the emotional force of it is from the past.
Of course something is actually occurring in the present time… but if it weren’t for the past, the present wouldn’t be bothering you this much, and you’d find a balanced and effective response.
The first step is to pause… and notice what is happening in you.
Use the language “something in me is feeling…” to acknowledge the part of you that is so upset (or whatever word fits for you). Imagine yourself turning toward that hurt part inside you. You are shifting from being that triggered part to being with her.
When we can be with what we feel instead of being caught up in the feelings, the part of us that has the feelings now has company. How big that is, to have company! There is so much healing contained in this simple move, turning toward the part that has the triggered feelings instead of being the feelings.
Do you have to go back in time? A very important question.
Let me answer it this way:
The past is already knocking on your door. Every time you get triggered, it’s like the pain of your past is saying, “I’m still here!” So at least say back to it, “Yes, I know you are there.” And to the part of you that doesn’t want to go back there: “Yes, I know you are there, too.” From acknowledging what is so, the wisdom of your body will find its way.
Embracing what you feel is the beginning of a radically different life, Focusing shows you the practices and processes you can use to accept everything you feel, even the tough stuff.