Triggers, Emotional Flashbacks and PTSD

Triggers suck.

For people into NLP triggers are called NLP anchors. The difference is that NLP anchors can be good or bad. They might be pre- existing from a past trauma or created to ease the effects of trauma.

They can be put into your mind intentionally to bring about a certain mood or mental state. This is a functional or a therapeutical use for them.

Back in the days of Pavlov, triggers were discovered as a tool for behavioral modification. You know…Pavlov’s dog.

Every time Pavlov fed the dog, he rang a bell first. After a while the dog salivated at the sound of the bell even without the food being presented.

This is how our minds create associations between certain triggers and a corresponding emotional response.

I have ring tones that I hate the sound of. There are songs I cannot listen to.

Certain animals are disturbing to me. Certain situations make me have an anxiety attack.

Some triggers are related to incidents and some are related to specific poem. Some triggers are related to time periods or ongoing abuse. Others are related to break ups from our ex.

There are some triggers that we are well aware of where they come. Other ones may be related to trauma from our past from when we were very young or even infants.

There may be triggers that create emotional flashbacks for you that are from periods of time that you have blacked out from your mind…or I should say that your brain blocked them out in order to protect you.

Triggers can come out of nowhere unexpectedly. We can try to avoid certain known triggers such as my not using certain alarms and ring tones on my phone.

Although every so often I am out somewhere and a stranger’s phone rings with the very ring tone that is now taboo on my cell phone.

There are times when we suddenly feel severe anxiety and have no idea what caused the onset. This can sometimes be an emotional flashback to a trigger we are unaware of.

That is a very tricky one to figure out. You would have to write down all the sights, smells and circumstances that were around at the time of the anxiety attack.

You would have to keep a log of those things each time you had an unexpected, unexplainable anxiety attack. Then look for anything in common between them that was never part of your environment when you are calm.

To make it even more complex, triggers can have more than one component to them. It might not be candlelight or the smell of roses individually that triggers you. It could be the combination of the two of them that does it.

Certain emotional triggers can be healed or at least the effect can be lessened through NLP techniques. Other ones may be harder to deal with than others.

The ones that we cannot identify or do not know what they were caused by are the worst ones in a way. At least as far as there being any hope for treatment.

The more severe the trauma, the more severe the pain from being triggered.

I know many other people deal with this on a day to day basis. For some people certain dates or times of the year are triggers for emotional pain, depression and anxiety.

If you have triggers like I have described here then you have some form of PTSD. It could be straight PTSD or Complex PTSD.  People often have both.

Talking about your triggers or unexplained emotional brain attacks is the first step to healing or at least lessoning the feeling of alienation or isolation due to PTSD or Complex PTSD.

Know you are not alone. There are others of us that understand.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. mychildwithin
    Jul 27, 2015 @ 06:50:36

    I have many triggers unfortunately…The worst ones are emotional: when criticised or hearing an angry voice..I also hate loud bangs, loud noises and certain ring tones too..I feel very scared and anxious..I suffer from CPTSD so know all about the complexity of triggers, flashbacks etc..It is such a shame we have to suffer from these..

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

    • gentlekindness
      Jul 29, 2015 @ 04:31:06

      I understand your suffering from these things. PTSD is a terrible thing and it reduces the quality of life that the person could otherwise have.
      I do believe that there are ways to reduce the effect of the old memories and how they trigger our subconscious into causing the alert system to fire off.
      I have been doing a lot of research and studying about NLP and how it can be adapted for PTSD.
      Now that I finally have my computer back, I will working on some audio hypnotic meditative NLP tracks for this.
      I will post about what I have made, when I get some of them done.
      I wish you peace of mind and calm,
      Thank you for sharing with us here.
      Annie ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  2. lifeofmiblog
    Jul 27, 2015 @ 07:40:29

    Sooooo many triggers….and sometimes just a few unkind words can totally leave one crushed! Good comment

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  3. Ben Naga
    Jul 27, 2015 @ 17:58:17

    I think what is most important of all about triggers is that I know from personal experience we can learn to reduce and eventually defuse them of their emotional energy. We are not at their mercy. It is we who created them and it is we who can dismiss them once again.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

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