Whenever you find yourself in a relationship you will sooner or later undoubtedly feel hurt. When feeling hurt it is however important to gain awareness over whether this is due to a current situation only or due to accumulated unresolved hurt from your past.
Differentiating current and past
Imagine growing a garden. You plant flowers, trees and shrubs. No matter how well you water and fertilize them, they die after a while. You might investigate whether the plants died from a current problem, for example if they died because of a bug or due to sudden frost. If you encounter the same problem again and again, even after you have planted new plants, you might need to dig a bit deeper and find out whether the soil is the problem or if there is some toxic waste underground that is making the whole ground uninhabitable by plants.
When entering a new relationship we always carry some residual toxic waste with us, [Tweet “What toxic waste are you carrying over from one relationship to the next?”]which will make the ground for the new partnership shaky. In real life you will notice this ‘toxic waste’ if a recurring topic in your relationship(s) is creating havoc.
Differentiating trigger and cause
Another way to look at this is by making a distinction of trigger and cause. Some issue, remark, or situation, for example your partner stonewalling you, might trigger a certain emotional reaction in you however the cause could be lying in your unresolved childhood trauma of abandonment.
Setting healthy boundaries
In order to make yourself less sensitive to emotional reactivity, you need to clear your accumulated toxic waste in you psyche. First of all, it is about setting clear and healthy boundaries about what is appropriate and what is not. As a second step you need to look (dig deep) into potential causes for your current trigger. This is best done by talking to someone professionally trained in helping you deal with repairing and letting go of past hurt.
Conscious and unconscious causes
Some of the causes of emotional reactivity might be very obvious, like having been abandoned by your father in childhood. Other causes might lie hidden in your psyche, unconscious but still stored in your being and acting like silent saboteurs in every new relationship you enter.
Your relationship as a gift
There is nothing like intimate relationships when it comes to being emotionally triggered. The closer a person is to you, the more importance you give them, the more they will show you those places that need attention.
So the decision is yours: planting new plants, trees and shrubs or unearthing the toxic waste and getting rid of it so the next garden you plant will flourish?
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