How to dismantle your triggers
If you’re frequently triggered by your teenager and react negatively, that’s something you want to fix.
When we’re triggered, we lose control of our rational brain, and our emotional brain is in complete control. We say and do things we later regret or question. And we increase the chance of our teen getting triggered in response, elevating the drama and conflict.
As you learn your physiological responses to being triggered or “activated,” you’ll have more control over your reaction. You’re using your Frontal Cortex to disrupt the chemical flooding that your primitive brain is creating.
You disrupt it by having a go-to thought that you will focus on.
When I was working on reducing my triggers and not lashing out in anger, my go-to thought was “The most important thing in this moment is stay calm”. This thought created a feeling of determination to take action that would de-escalate the situation.
Your most important goal is to stop “losing it”, because as soon as you do, it’s like placing a burning log next to another log–soon you have a hot fire
Your kids will react to your anger with anger. If you stay calm you have the chance for a new outcome.
And your teen will have the opportunity to respond differently, which introduces a new, healthier pattern of communication.
When and where are you triggered? What thoughts are you having? What thought do you want to focus on instead? How will you help yourself become calm again?