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Very often we can become triggered by something specific, a person, event, situation, issue or problem, without understanding why. Sometimes our emotional responses baffle us. We’ve become hyper-sensitive. We’re feeling troubled, worried, bothered and much sadder and more anxious than usual. We might experience intense mood swings, along with trouble sleeping and eating. We might have increased conflicts in our relationships and lash out at other people, taking our pain out on them or feeling anger and resentment towards them if they’re the ones triggering us. When we’re feeling these heightened emotions but aren’t sure why, doing some inner healing work to figure out the cause of our triggers is helpful. Let’s begin to ask ourselves, why am I being triggered by this issue, and what can I do about it?

We tend to want to avoid our triggers at all costs because thinking about them and feeling all the emotions they bring with them can be excruciatingly painful. As we begin to heal, though, we learn that we can’t continue to avoid the things that cause us pain. Instead, we have to learn how to face them and confront them directly, otherwise, they’ll only continue to cause us mental and emotional hardship and suffering. Our depression, anxiety and other mental health issues will continue to worsen. We’ll become paralyzed by our grief, shame, fear, and other powerful emotions. We’ll feel unable to move forward, to come to terms with our past in healthy ways, and to forgive ourselves and others.

Our triggers bother us in unique and powerful ways because they’re reflecting specific wounds we have yet to heal. A trigger might cause us to replay certain memories we’ve been trying hard to suppress. It might bring up old hurts we haven’t wanted to address. Our triggers show us exactly where we still need to do healing work, and what issues still need our love, attention, and care. Rather than avoiding our triggers, let’s work to face them head-on. Let’s allow ourselves to move through all of the anxiety and sadness they bring up for us. Let’s sit with the uncomfortable thoughts that come up and all the complex emotions we feel, as well as the physical sensations of pain and discomfort that might arise. Let’s breathe through our fear and remind ourselves that we no longer have to be debilitated by it. We can instead find peace with our fears and come to terms with the pain we’ve experienced. We can affirm to ourselves that we are stronger than our fears and our pain, and we can allow them to be part of what fuels us to continue our healing work and to open us up to profound transformation.

Your new life starts today. Let Riverside Recovery be your support system as you do the work to heal. Call (800) 871-5440 for more information on our addiction recovery treatment programs.