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  • Sophie Frabotta

What to do When you Get Triggered

You are going about your day, and bam, someone cuts you off in traffic. Your spouse starts bickering with you. You feel overwhelmed, stressed and wishing you were somewhere else. You're just waiting for the weekend so this whole cycle can end.

Ever felt this way?

Maybe you are an overachieving, people pleaser who is at the end of your rope. Maybe you are feeling empty and unfulfilled. Is this you?

What if we took a different look at what was actually going on and showed you some tools on how to change your inner state, rather than waiting for the outside to change?

What is a Trigger?

A trigger is an event that causes a primal reaction that erupts inside of you. This is a result of stagnant feelings or memories coming to the surface that are unconsciously associated with a past experience that is unhealed. All this means is that there was a stimuli, and your fight or flight response was triggered and the energy didn't know where to go, so the fight or flight response is still trying to complete itself.

The Trigger Carries a Message

Ever heard, don't shoot the messenger? This is a great place to apply this wisdom. Triggers show us that there is unhealed energy that needs our attention. Triggers are not bad. Triggers give us information and can help us grow.

The first step is to understand that if you are triggered it is because YOU have unhealed energy.

The person or situation out there may have rung YOUR bell, but the bell is yours. I know, this is not an easy pill to swallow, but hang in here with me.

If you didn't have anger, YOU would not be mad. If you didn't have unrealistic expectations, YOU would not be able to feel disappointed. If you were truly secure in yourself, someone doubting you couldn't move you.

When you can accept that all these inner states: insecurity, agitation, doubt, resentment, frazzled, scared, annoyed, [insert your own here] are all YOURS; we can begin the real inner work.

Addressing the Trigger

To help you integrate what I am talking about, I am going to lay out 5 questions for you that you can ask yourself and then write the answers in your journal.

Yes at first, you will catch yourself after the problem has happened and that is ok. This is how awareness works, backwards. We have to see it to change it, and the "it" has usually already happened. It is ok. We just have to begin to break the trigger down to change it.

The goal here is to learn about what is unhealed in you that keeps getting touched by these outer circumstances.

Please grab your journal and write at the top of the page:


Then write these questions and refer to them next time you are triggered. You will need these questions in the moment when triggered. Trust me, take this step and write these down, your future self will thank you.

5 Journal Questions to Go Deeper

1. What just happened?

2. What/ how did it make me feel?

3. What deeper memory does that feeling bring to mind? (Travel deep down)

4. What do I want to feel?

5. How can I begin to practice that?

Next, begin to answer them 1 by 1. Don't think too hard