How To Heal Your TriggersBy Dr. Margaret Paul
September 21, 2020
Discover how to heal your triggers so that you can stay centered and connected all the time, even in the face of others' anger and blame.
Do you know what triggers you into fear – into your wounded self?
I used to work hard to get myself into a centered and loving place, and then something would happen and suddenly I'd be triggered into my wounded self again – feeling angry, depressed, anxious or hurt. It didn't seem fair that I would work so hard to get myself into a good place, only to have it ruined by someone else's behavior triggering me into my wounded self.
If someone I was close to was angry, distant, rejecting, shaming, blaming or disconnected from themselves and me, I would get triggered into my wounded self. Their wounded self triggered my wounded self. I would be triggered into unhealed old pain from childhood. Unhealed old pain is like an unhealed wound - it hurts when touched. My old wounds kept getting touched.
Through my Inner Bonding practice, I learned that when someone important to me disconnected from me, I felt like I was going to die. I was able to trace this back to losing my beloved grandfather at 13 months – the only person I was connected with as a baby, and to my mother's frequent rage at me. But simply knowing about this did not heal the trigger. I was very aware of the deep pain of loneliness, heartbreak and helplessness from childhood that fueled my triggers. And due to my Inner Bonding practice, my inner child felt safe enough to let me in on the deep pain I experienced as a baby and child. But, again, knowing all this was not enough to heal me.
The Key To Healing Your Triggers
The key to healing your triggers is to remember to immediately open to connection with your inner child and your guidance, the moment you feel that painful wound being activated inside.
Your triggers will never get healed by being reactive – by going into your wounded self in reaction to another's wounded self. In fact, the more you get triggered into your wounded self, the more abandoned your inner child feels and the more scared you become of others’ anger and unloving behavior. Being reactive feeds your triggers.
The only thing I've found that actually heals triggers is learning to stay connected with myself and my guidance in the face of others' unloving behavior – learning to bring compassion to my core painful feelings rather than abandon them.
My little girl is so thrilled when I stay connected with her rather than abandon her and become reactive with another person. She is so grateful when I stay with her with love, bringing to her the compassion of my guidance. This is what makes her feel safe. Sometimes she also needs me to speak my truth to someone – in a kind and gentle way, but much of the time she doesn't even need this. As long as I am fully with my own feelings, tending to them with deep kindness and compassion, not leaving my inner child alone inside, she is happy and feels safe. It's amazing how powerfully healing it is to stay inwardly connected with myself and my guidance.
Focus On Staying Present With Your Feelings
I want to encourage you to stop focusing on how to react to another person who is angry, blaming or distant, and focus only on staying present with your own feelings with deep compassion. My little girl no longer feels shattered when someone close to me disconnects from me. She felt shattered and helpless as a baby and a little girl, by the anger and disconnection. But once I was an adult, I had to learn that, although it is sad when someone disconnects from me, I am no longer helpless. I can feel the sadness and go on. Those terrifyingly shattered feelings were actually being caused by my own self–abandonment – disconnecting from my own true sad feelings. What a relief to no longer feel shattered in the face of others' disconnection!
Join Dr. Margaret Paul for her 30-Day at-home Course: "Love Yourself: An Inner Bonding Experience to Heal Anxiety, Depression, Shame, Addictions and Relationships."
Join IBVillage to connect with others and receive compassionate help and support for learning to love yourself.
Send this article to a friend Print this article Bookmarked 0 time(s)
|Triggers: Acting Out or Acting In|
Join the Inner Bonding Community to add your comment to articles and see the comments of others...
True compassion starts with oneself. If you extend compassion to others before giving it to yourself, you are giving from an empty place and your compassion may be manipulative. But if you give it to yourself and then extent it to others, you are giving from a full place within. Then your compassion is truly loving and healing, because you don't need anything back.
By Dr. Margaret Paul