Don’t Shoot the Messenger!
How many of you have that one person or that one behavior that send you over the edge? Show of hands? Everyone? Right? Me too.
Those behaviors are triggers, and aptly named because it’s as though that behavior or person brings out a response in you that bypasses all of the rational, logical process of escalation, and sends you directly into a place of core wounding or vulnerability.
We can spend hours, days, weeks, months and years analyzing, objectifying, discussing and rationalizing our response to those triggers. We can try to look at how to modify our response to those triggers. We can spend an equal amount of time frustrated and angry at the person/people or situations causing them, and throw large amounts of time and energy in trying to change, alter, and educate those people or circumstances until they stop triggering us!
However, when we continue to look at the world through the lens of the trigger, we never really get down to what needs to be addressed, we will never really release our anger, disappointment or fear around that situation. Those triggers are just the messengers.
Those people, or situations, or circumstances trigger a core truth for you.
My dad left when I was very young, and was/is mentally ill. He’s much more than just his illness, but for the sake of this post, know that he was unable to care for himself or others in any way that felt responsible, safe or loving. In my core truth I knew that I was worthy of love, adoration, respect, and care, and at my very young age, couldn’t understand why that wasn’t being provided to me by my own parent. I spent years angry with my father, alternately vying for his attention, and then punishing him for his lack of it. It was an ugly, trying cycle that left me uncertain about how worthy I should feel, and how connected I was allowed to be, if I couldn’t create and maintain a connection to my own father.
It took years, but like all good things, showed up simply, easily, and unexpectedly. I realized, looking at my father and the circumstances he had created in his own life, that he really was doing what he felt capable of doing.
I realized that no matter what I did, I was going to going to go in circles unless I could let this anger out, and hope that it would change him, (hasn’t worked so far), hold on to it, and hope that it would change me (it was, and not for the better) or release the wounding.
This wounding was the violation of my core truth, which was ‘I am worthy of all the love I can maintain and that fulfills me.’ When I began to accept that truth, rather than ‘ No matter what, I don’t get what I need’, my life changed instantly.
When people go against your core truth, it’s easy to turn on them, and to make them the centerpiece of the problem. I am slowly learning that when I get a message from the messenger, especially in the guise of frustration or anger, it is an opportunity for me to say ‘Thank you. Thank you for letting me know that I am worth peace, calm and abundance. Thank you for shining a light where I thought it was dark, so I can remember that my response is always a choice.”
Next time you find yourself going down the rabbit hole of same old-same old angry or frustrated patterns, ask yourself what glorious part of you is going uncelebrated. And then, hold yourself up, give thanks for the reminders that you are worthy, and shine on.