Earlier this evening I attended a support group meeting. The topic that one of the members brought before the group for discussion involved dealing with flash backs. In the context of the discussion the term flash backs was used in relationship to how the individual reacts to present day events and circumstances. When the time came for me to share how I have dealt with flash backs I shared my experience strength and hope with the group.
In my experience, I found that my flash back (s) were simply memories of events that occurred in my past. Although my flash backs are triggered by present day events, circumstances, or people I discovered that the power of those flash back (s) were connected to the disappointments, resentments and losses from my past. Through my recovery process I discovered that my flash backs could help me to make peace with my past. Through my experience, I discovered that I was being given wonderful learning opportunities to make peace with my past through the way that I reacted to the unresolved losses, resentments and disappointments of my past.
In the process I discovered that my triggers — to present day events, circumstances and people — were in actuality teachers given to me as gifts so that I could stop sabotaging myself and my life.
When I began to recognize that my reactions to present day events and circumstances were given to me for my good and not for my harm, I found a new freedom. Instead of being frustrated by the triggers that reminded me of my unresolved pain, disappointment or loss I started to look for the reasons why I was reacting to various circumstances, events and circumstances. Through my process — my triggers — I discovered that my reactions to people, places and things were more about me than about anyone else. Consequently, I started to be more present for myself.
With my awareness, I made the decision to learn from my reactions — triggers — instead of projecting my irritability, restlessness and discontent on to those triggers. Craig J. Phillips
With my experience, I discovered that I could process and own my discomfort instead of projecting the responsibility for my discomfort onto my triggers. In the process I discovered that I could be accountable to and for my reactions with out absorbing the blame, shame or fault for the way that I reacted to my triggers. I also discovered that I no longer needed to project my reactions — through shame, blame or fault — on to my triggers. Through being accountable to and for my reactions — to my triggers — I have been able to stop reacting to people, places and things and to make peace with my past. In the process, I have been able to change the way in which I relate to my world.
For a plan that has helped me to Make Peace with my Past please read: Second Chance to Live — Action Steps.
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