Updated: May 16, 2019
We are all triggered daily. It becomes a problem when the duration and the intensity of your trigger keeps you from going about and truly enjoying life. Managing your triggers of anxiety can be another problem, as there are so many options and degree of helpfulness. I wanted to share the 3 that I recommend and utilize. Just note that the 3 that I am talking about may not be for you but keep an open mind and try others.
Grounding. Grounding is a technique that can help you become self-aware. Refocusing your attention to the current moment so that you can respond appropriately to your feelings. The grounding technique I recommend is the 5 senses technique. When triggered you focus on 5 things you can see, 4 things you can touch, 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can smell and 1 thing you can taste.
Counting Backwards. So I picked this up from Marsha Linehan at her DBT conference. This is like the extended version of counting backwards. You count from 10 to 0, 9 to 0, 8 to 0, etc. By the time that you reach 1 you will actually be more clear headed to respond rationally to the emotion that is triggering.
Observing your thoughts. Before you make change you have to become aware of your thoughts. This technique is slightly advanced but extremely helpful. You record the next time you are triggered via audio or you write it down and bring it to your session with your therapist. This will allow your therapist to have real time information to further help you improve your anxiety. When you are triggered writer down: Your observation of the situation, your interpretation of the situation, your feelings regarding the situation, and what you said to yourself as the situation happened.
Practice each technique until you are a master before using it when triggered. These techniques will help you manage your anxiety.
We need all emotions. What would you be like if your emotions vanished?