Identifying Emotional Triggers and Coping with Them

Does a certain situation or a particular behaviour by someone – may be your mother, father, sister, friends, colleagues, neighbour or anyone – evoke an intense emotional reaction within you?

It is like someone has found your emotional triggers, scratched the surface, and you either react aggressively, feel hurt, get angry, agitated, fearful, frustrated, or withdraw emotionally. 

For example – In my school days, my mother never encouraged me or my sister, to pursue our interests, to study well or say encouraging words. She just wasn’t interested in that aspect of our lives. 

Due to this kind of behavior, I lacked self-confidence and showed signs of low self-esteem (in my childhood days). The moment, anyone would speak about how encouraging and supportive their parents were, I would feel jealous, sad and irritated. It became my trigger point, and I would emotionally withdraw from that conversation.   

Over the years, I became aware of this trigger point, and as I realised the consequences of it and how it affected me, I worked towards overcoming this feeling and recognising my self-worth. 

There are unhealed parts of us that surfaces and resurfaces when someone behaves in a certain way, and it completely pushes us off balance and takes us on an emotional red alert.   

What happens when you get emotionally triggered?

The moment you feel emotionally triggered, the negative emotions affect our health and our body instantly reacts like our heart starts beating fast, we start sweating, get hot flushes, anxiety strikes or get a panic attack. 

What causes these emotional triggers?

Majority of the time, these triggered emotions are a result of childhood trauma, unresolved emotions, being in abusive relationships, and we carry these experiences with us (in the form of emotional baggage) until it has been dealt with or resolved. This gives rise to thoughts like “I am not good enough,” “I am not worth it,” and so on. However, in reality it is not who we really are, but are only false ‘beliefs’ and ‘perceptions’ that have been ingrained into our psyche due to these experiences. 

Reasons why we get emotionally triggered

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References

Detaching From Emotional Pain
Grounding techniques
Journaling can help in hard times
Cry by Dmity Laudin

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