The process of searching contains a lot of the healing process. You will find that simply the act of making these feelings known to yourself consciously, allows you to let go of a lot of the pain that you have been carrying for so long. That being said there is often still healing work to be done once your triggers have been discovered, recognized, acknowledged and reduced to their simplest form.
At this time I would like to introduce into evidence exhibit 3.0 of my article series on identifying and healing emotional triggers entitled “Part 3: The Final Stage of Healing Emotional Triggers.” Please take note of my previous two articles on this subject, which you may wish to read before this one, if you have not done so already:
- Part 1: What are emotional trigger points and why do we really get triggered
- Part 2: A process for deep healing beyond emotional triggers
Forgiveness is the third and final stage of the process. Forgiveness is how to finally heal your emotional trigger points. Let’s re-visit the example used in the first article of this series:
- “My best example of this comes from the idea of getting over a heartbreak. You know that you are truly over heartbreak when you can think of the person and you no longer have emotions “in the moment” that come up. You may think about how you were sad but you no longer get sad right now when you think of the person/events/triggers.”
To get to this point you need to forgive in three distinctive areas:
- Forgive the other participant(s)
- Forgive yourself for your original role in your pain
- Forgive yourself for perpetuating your pain
Forgive the other participants
Take a look in your heart for all of the pain that you have caused yourself in the name of the other people who participated in your trauma. The people who were there at the past moment that is still hurting you in the present. Allow yourself to let go of the idea that they are responsible for your hurt. Look back into your memory and let them know that you are no longer going to allow them to have this power over you. They may have hurt you long ago, but you are no longer going to allow them to hurt you in the present.
Every moment that you do not forgive them for what they did is a moment where you allow them to hold power over you. You do not have to begin to like them, you do not have to invite them back into your life. But for you, and for you only, it is important to let them know that you understand that the only reason they did the thing they did was because they were in great pain of their own. Let them know that you understand that they have work to do on forgiving themselves so that they can one day be free of the pain that caused them to harm you.
While you speak to them in your memory let them know that you are releasing them of the burden of responsibility for your pain. You are taking all of the responsibility for your pain back from them so that you have full control of your healing. Wish them well and pray for them to one day be free of their pain. Tell them that you know that ultimately, they are a human being just like everyone else, and they too wish to be free from suffering.
Forgive yourself for your original role in your pain
We often unknowingly blame ourselves for the role we played in our own trauma. It is important to seek out this blame and forgive ourselves for what happened. We may be carrying with us thoughts like “I was so stupid for letting that happen”, or “It’s my fault for not telling someone”, or “I deserved what I got”, or “Why did I make them do that to me”?
Do you recognize any of the above thoughts in your own trigger points? Do you have this type of thinking when you are triggered in the moment or when you are recalling times that you were triggered?
Forgive yourself. Let yourself know that what happened back then was not in any way your fault. You did nothing wrong and you did not deserve what happened to you. You reacted and acted the best way you knew how at that time and that is OK. You did your best and have nothing to be ashamed of about that.
Although you may have been victimized back then you are no longer a victim. Its important for you to take all of the responsibility for your pain back from the past version of you who was present during the events. You now know that what happened was not your fault. The only thing in your current power that you need to do is forgive yourself for thinking at one point that you had any part in causing it. Remind yourself of how much love you have for you in the present and for the version of you that was present at that time. That love is why you have come here to heal. That love is why you are pursuing the process of relieving yourself of your pain.
Forgive yourself for perpetuating your pain
We often unknowingly carry around guilt or embarrassment for letting our past traumas affect us for so long. Sometimes we call ourselves ridiculous for caring so much about something so small or silly. Sometimes we think less of ourselves for not “getting over it”.
It is exceptionally important that you know that no trauma is too big or too small. We cannot judge the events in our lives on these terms. If something affected us and/or still affects us then it is just as important as anything that fits that criteria no matter what it is. We are not any less or any more based on what events in our lives have traumatized us.
Allow your current self to know the same things that you have already told the other participants and your past self. Know that it’s not your fault that you have been causing yourself all of this pain for all of these years. You didn’t know of any other way to deal with the trauma.
Your subconscious had been calling out for you to heal this past pain. You reacted the way you did because you hadn’t yet learned the skills to heal and forgive. Now that you are on your way to learning these skills you will continue to do your best to heal yourself and help yourself. You are doing well and what you have been working on is exactly what you have needed. Allow yourself to know that you are on the right track and you always have been. Forgive yourself for not knowing this earlier.
I want to add that this type of forgiveness can be done at any point during the process outlined in these three articles. The deeper the wound (the closer to the common denominator the wound) that you are healing, the more effect it will have on overall healing. That is to say, if you heal the source of the trigger point it will have a domino effect and you will no longer be triggered by incidents that are similar. Healing the common denominator is often a longer and more difficult process. A lot of childhood trauma is exceptionally painful and it’s often not easy to even uncover the childhood trauma as the common denominator. So trying to heal it right at its depth is often too large of an undertaking to tackle at once.
Imagine it like trying to remove a 100 foot Redwood Tree by the roots without first cutting down the tree and then cutting it into sections to be carted off before hauling out the stump. In these situations all you need to do is start further from the roots and forgive the biggest thing that you can handle at this time. Even pruning a few branches moves you towards your ultimate goal of healing these deep wounds.
Forgiveness is one of those things that seems easy but it gets more complicated the more you examine it. Make sure to take a look at as many sources as you can for ideas about forgiveness. Sometimes the same thing explained a few different ways can open your eyes to other methods that work better for you. I’ve already mentioned Don Miguel Ruiz as a great source on this material. Have a read of this essay too by Evita Ochel entitled Forgiveness is the Key that Opens your Heart. Even just a simple Google search on “how to forgive” can yield a lot of great resources and alternate ways of looking at forgiveness that could help you expand your thoughts on the process and give you new methods for forgiving.
Good luck in your search for peace and happiness through healing your emotional trigger points. I thank you for reading and I hope I was able to help further you along your personal journey of healing. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you have about this process.
You can do it.
I believe in you.
I love you.