Creative Space Online Counseling and Coaching

bmaulding@csocounseling.hush.com ~ 1 (224) 623-2251

We are an online provider who provides therapy services for individuals suffering from anxiety in the Chicagoland area, mid Illinois, and Southern Illinois. We provide coaching services, anger management, and a tailored anxiety program for individuals living in the United States and Internationally.

What is a Trigger and Why Should I Care?

What is a Trigger and Why Should I Care?

What is a trigger? A trigger is an event or thought that causes an anxious reaction. Triggers are both internal and external. Internal triggers are things like thoughts. External triggers are things like events, days, interactions with people, and other things. Sometimes, the triggers combine to the point where it's hard for you to figure out what came first. 

Triggers Unfolding

Back when we were living in the wild and had no protection from the wilderness, triggers protected us from animals and elements. They also protected us from people that wanted to kill us and taught us to stay away from things that cause us harm. However, not everything is worth the fight or flight response that some of these triggers cause. 

As mentioned before, when triggers combine, it can be hard to untangle them. It may be helpful to talk to someone to figure out what those triggers look like. If nothing else, figuring out your triggers will help to empower you so that you can prepare yourself. 

Understanding what your body does when you become anxious is also a useful tool. Think back to a time when you felt anxiety in your body. Do your hands shake? Does your heart race? Understanding what your body does will help you to figure out what your triggers are. More than likely you will notice your physical symptoms before you notice your thoughts. 

Everybody's triggers are different. Someone may be triggered by something someone says. For example, 'her tone sounded offended. Is she mad at me?' can be a trigger for someone. For others, being in crowds of people can be a trigger. There are a variety of reasons for triggers and most triggers are caused by events that we haven't processed through just yet. 

You don't need to avoid the triggers. You can definitely learn how to get through them. However, I would recommend working with someone in order to learn ways to work through them. I would recommend working with someone in order to learn ways to work through them. Some people aren't able to identify where the triggers are coming from, because the symptoms may come up unexpectedly in a neutral situation, like driving a car or sitting in bed.   

If you decide not to get help with your triggers, they may get worse. You may find that as time goes on, you may become triggered by seemingly normal situations and become more sensitive to situations that wouldn't have bothered you previously. 

Not everybody with anxiety has a trigger or something that is causing the anxiety. Sometimes, your body is continually in the fight or flight response and it is going to take a lot of work to retrain your brain NOT to respond that way to everyday situations. 

Self Exploration

Triggers are the reason that we (counselors/coaches) say that self-exploration is so important. Simply doing some self-exploration is important when trying to figure out what your triggers are. Finding out information about your triggers will help you to learn more about yourself as well. It will tell you things about how you view the world and how you view yourself. 

Still Need Something Extra?

Are you interested in learning more about yourself? Do you need help with that self exploration? Send me an email to get that conversation started. Remember, it's not weakness when you need help.  

Creative Space Online Counseling and Coaching

Barbara Maulding, NCC, LCPC

224-623-2251

Illinois