I’ve noticed that “life” likes to test me when I’m learning to navigate a tricky situation. Especially during an ongoing situation that seems to last weeks or months… possibly years.
The initial situation triggers feelings and emotions – a lack of understanding, frustration, anger, or hurt. It’s that feeling inside that “doesn’t feel right” – we’ve all felt it.
The situation could range from a thoughtless remark, a disagreement, or a traumatic experience. You find out you’ve been lied to, rejected, gossiped about, manipulated, disrespected … or perhaps you are the one who lied, rejected, gossiped, manipulated, or disrespected.
You feel all the “feels”- rage, disappointment, embarassment, frustration, confusion, heartache, and exhaustion.
Eventually (or instantly in some cases) things shift and come into perspective. The tears stop and the rage calms as a friend says something helpful, I receive a heartfelt apology, hear the right song on the radio, or find it within myself to not allow this situation destroy my happiness. Somehow I shift to a new perspective.
Here’s the tricky part – I adopt this newly shifted perspective into every moment (or at least I make an attempt to). Sometimes it sticks and I move forward with life feeling good again. But some shifts in perspective require a lot of practice. It’s like learning to write left-handed when you’ve always been a righty – it’s uncomfortable and takes serious effort.
Fast forward over a year from the initial situation, and I keep getting drawn back to it – triggered. The most recent shift had lasted a few months and I really felt like things were moving forward this time.
Until something came up… again.
Almost as if my life is saying:
“Just testing to see if this perspective will stick. Now, can you handle this?”
And its back to the initial situation. A lesser level of hurt, anger, and misunderstanding, but I’m still not free and clear from it. Time for another shift.
What do you do when you find yourself being triggered again and again?
Would love to hear from you in the comments below.
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