What Is An Emotional Trigger?An emotional trigger is essentially a strong, often negative, emotional response. These triggers can happen anywhere, at anytime, and anything can activate a trigger; it’s unique to each individual and their circumstances. The challenge is that you may possibly be so identified with your emotional triggers that you are either blind to them or possibly even righteously clinging to them even as they hinder you.
Emotional triggers can keep you from being productive and doing the work you are meant to do in the world—a.k.a., your purpose. When you’re working toward a meaningful purpose, emotional triggers are bound to arise. The opportunity is to catch yourself, let it go, and focus back on your vision.
So, how exactly do these insidious triggers show up, and how do you identify and release them and get on with your true path and purpose?
The 10 Most Common Emotional TriggersTo begin, below are the 10 common emotional triggers you may have experienced on your path of purpose:
- Perfectionism (waiting to be “ready”, delaying for the perfect time or situation)
- Anger (at someone or something)
- Defensiveness (clinging to your opinion or reacting to another’s experience)
- Procrastination (wasting time, or being slow or late)
5 Steps to Release Emotional TriggersBelow are five steps to identify and release emotional triggers so that you can better connect with your purpose:
First you must believe the process of healing is worth doing. You must believe that if you give up the emotional trigger, you can get what you want. If you think you are right about the triggers or that you are going to get love or attention from them, this will keep you from believing and changing. It’s vital to first believe that releasing the trigger will actually move you toward your true vision and purpose.
2. Define and Own It
Look at the list of emotional triggers above and think about an area of your life where you are emotionally charged or having a breakdown in some way. Maybe it’s a place you are not so proud about the way you are being or reacting. Can you see where you are responsible for the “drama” of this reaction? When you’re a victim to the drama of an emotional trigger, it becomes easy to want someone else to take care of it or fix the issue at hand, but you can’t outsource your purpose. Define the breakdown and own your responsibility.
3. Release Judgement
If you find yourself judging yourself or others about the area of life you defined, decide to replace judgement with curiosity about the emotional trigger itself. If you believe you are wrong for feeling the trigger or something outside yourself is wrong for creating it, you will miss the opportunity to learn and grow.
4. Focus on Growth
The emotional trigger is where your life is trying to grow. You can use your response as a compass for growth, which the human spirit is innately attracted to. The emotional trigger is giving you a window into something amazing that wants to come through!
5. Release and Receive
Let it go and focus back on your vision. Releasing the trigger gives you control, as you lean into growth. Keep enrolling yourself back into the belief that when you let go of the trigger, you align back with purpose. Ask yourself what you’d have to give up so that you don’t experience this trigger again. Then actually give that thing up. Let it go and allow yourself to receive what’s next for you.
There is always going to be a sacrifice on the path of purpose. Learn to sacrifice the thoughts that are keeping you small, preventing you from moving forward, and delaying your true purpose. Becoming a master at quickly identifying and releasing emotional triggers is one of the most important skills you can cultivate on your path to creating true and meaningful purpose in all you do.
Release the emotional triggers that are holding you back from your true potential, from your purpose, and from staying in service. As soon as you do, you will get more of what you truly desire.
Connect and align with your universal truth and purpose in Journey to Well-being: Purpose, a five-part series with Ismael Cala, available now in the Chopra App.