You know what I mean. I’m talking about that person who makes you nervous, pokes you, or somehow makes you feel less – less fun, less smart, less cool, less attractive….
It may not happen all of the time. Oh, but when it does, it feels like you can’t even control what comes next – even when you feel prepared for it.
It could be a coworker or your boss, a family member or a friend…it could be well-placed question, expression, or attitude. Whatever it is, it sets off a chain of thoughts in you that leads to the same unhappy place it always does and then ruins your day.
“See? It happens like that EVERY time and now my day is ruined!”
“I should have known you’d say something like that.”
What if you could stop the trigger before it started?
It’s summer and a lot of people are getting more family time, travelling, and socializing more. It’s also hot in most places and that can put people on edge. That kind of close contact gives you the perfect opportunity to recognize and manage your hot buttons so that you can disarm them before they are pushed again!
You know the events that follow the trigger because they have happened so many times before – always a little different but always with the same outcome.
You know the person.
You know the conversation.
You know how it ends (with you feeling bad).
Let’s make some changes so that next time it really IS different…
What is the best-case scenario? If you could change that interaction, what would be different?
If you want the other person to act differently way or change, YOU have to act a differently and change. When you do that, you change the dynamic of the system. And when you have a clear plan for how you want things to go, you will have better control over how you react (or don’t react).
Here is a way you can use tapping to begin disarming your hot buttons:
Start by thinking of the last time someone pushed your hot buttons and made you lose your cool. You can also think of an upcoming encounter with someone who usually pushes your buttons. Imagine it in your mind as vividly as possible.
Tap this protocol out loud.
On your Karate Chop (KC) Point:
Even though I always get triggered when I’m around ____, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
Even though I try so hard not to react but react anyway, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
Even though it feels like my reaction to this person is beyond my control, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
Top of your head (TH): Every time I’m around ___ they do this thing and it just triggers me.
Eye Brow (EB): I even expect it to happen – because it always does.
Outside of the Eye (OE): I always react in the same way and I feel like I can’t even control it
Under Eye (UE): There’s nothing I can do.
Under Nose (UN): I feel like my brain and emotions get hijacked!
Chin (CH): But I do try…
Collarbone (CB): Every time I tell myself that THIS time it will be different.
KC: I’m not going to let them draw me in or get to me THIS time…but they always do.
TH: And the pattern clicks in and I feel like I can’t control my reactions.
EB: It always ends with a stand off.
OE: Later, I always feel bad about the interaction, disappointed, and wishing I’d done something different.
UE: “if only I’d done that…”
UN: “If only I’d said this…”
CH: But the truth is, this interaction is totally predictable.
CB: I know the person.
KC: I know the touchy subject.
TH: I know exactly how the scene unfolds time and again.
EB: I know my part well.
OE: It could be that my expectation of conflict helps keep this pattern alive.
UE: What if I’m triggering them?
UN: What if we’re triggering each other into this?
CH: What if I disarmed my trigger and set an example for them to disarm theirs, too?
CB: But part of me likes the fight.
KC: Part of me really needs to win – to be right.
TH: Part of me needs for them to change – their attitude, beliefs, behaviors…
EB: I wish they would change.
OE: But the truth is, there is only one way for me to change them…
UE: And that is to change me.
UN: Maybe if I let go of the need to be right and truly focused on winning, the whole dynamic will change.
CH: I want to release the need to be right.
CB: But a part of me still wants to be right.
KC: We’ve been in this pattern for so long that I think that being right = winning
TH: But being right and winning are 2 different things!
EB: I choose to redefine winning.
OE: This person can be fun and pleasant to be around.
UE: What if we could enjoy each other’s company without triggering into this old standoff?
UN: That would be winning.
CH: What if I could feel relaxed and happy around them?
CB: That would be winning.
KC: What if I could release the stress of this old conflict forever – and never worry about it again?
TH: That would be winning.
EB: I wonder what our conversations will be like when I focus on truly winning – having a great relationship and fun exchange?
OE: I choose to release the need to change others.
UE: I choose to focus on interacting in a way that makes me feel good about myself and the other person.
UN: I choose focus on a positive outcome for everyone.
CH: I choose to focus on truly winning.
Take a deep breath.
So that was just a short little tapping run to help you deal with the next encounter more easily. You can use that to tune this setup to more closely match your unique situation.
You may also want to go deeper in this work to eliminate other seemingly automatic responses to people and situations so that you can communicate better.
If so, contact me at nancytiltonhand.com and let’s talk about it.