Getting Hooked

Do you experience strong negative emotions to some people?

Do certain topics just "set you off"?

Do you have that knee jerk reaction and feels like you're unable to control yourself?

Why do we get triggered?

What can you do to stop it?

I''m sure you've experienced situations when, even you have been suprised by your own strong emotions or reactions.  Someone says something or perhaps looks at you in a certain way and it starts off a chain reaction which is difficult for you to stop.  It's almost automatic, a knee jerk reaction, we're hooked in and it's a runnaway train. Leaving us embarrassed, shocked and regretting the way in which we behaved.

Being emotionally hooked causes a number of different reactions, some people may become verbally or phsyically aggressive; others may shutdown and disconnect or burst into tears and able to contain yourself.   Being hooked in emotionally will trigger different feelings: Anger, Fear or Sadness.  

The Tibetan term for being triggered or emotionally hooked is "Shepna".   It's important to know - it's completely normal, you're human, we all experience these moments, it's just a part of life.  If your over reactions are destroying your life and self-worth, if it's impacting you in ways which you'd like to change, the good news is YOU CAN!


Break through  I'm the first to admit, It does take effort and willingness to step outside of what you know as comfortable. It will be uneasy to begin with as you begin to remodel and transform what you used to do in the past, no longer taking the easy way out. With the right attitude, the right support and an open heart you can make it change happen and feel suprise yourself regarding what you can achieve.

Four Steps to Freedom


1. Acknowledge it

2. Pause

3. Do something different

4. Repeat

1. Acknowledge it

Become more aware of your physical response, notice where you feel the tension in your body, where is the emotion. No need to ask the question why, instead be curious of WHAT it is your feeling. Most people can learn to pay accute attention to this very quickly and know when they are being triggered.  Sometimes it can help to simply say "triggered" to yourself when you notice it happening.  It's more helpful to notice HOW you are responding in your body - what emotions are present, where are you feeling tension, be aware of your self talk.  It's like being the observer of yourself, instead of letting it "take you over" observe yourself, be curious as you observe what is happening in your body.   Easy right? you could do that.

2. Pause

After acknowledging you've been hooked, along with the Where in your body, What are the emotions and How you body is reacting. This is the time to press Pause, instead of starting a chain reaction of words and actions. Take a moment to step back and pause.  It may only need a 5 - 10 second pause.  Where you can then decide how best to respond... These first two steps are easy to do and will not take too much time to master.  It's important to give yourself a pat on the back, for being more aware and taking a moment to pause, because your stepping in the right direction.  And as with all change, the more you do it, the easier it gets. 

This next step is perhaps the most challenging


3. Do Something Different

This is the tricky one and it may take some time to master this.  Be gentle with yourself and experiment with different actions which you feel might be better for you than the old path you used to take.  Be ok with knowing you won't get it perfect every time, but every time you do something different - give yourself a pat on the back, because again... you're taking another step towards making the changes you want.  This is not about reward and not about punishment.  This is more about you valuing who you are and moving towards the person you want to be.

4. Repeat

This is a life long exercise, not something to just do for 1 month or 2, this is something I encourage you to continue over and over and over again.   Until it gets to a point when you start to respond instead of react, you find ways in which to heal the wounds through doing things differently and creating relationships with yourself and others that reflect the authentic being of who you truly are.

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