I have a few triggers: blame, shame and guilt.
It is a challenge for me when those things turn up in my days. In general I can avoid them as I know who comes with what trigger in their bag of tricks – and sometimes there are people in my life who show up with all three!
I remind myself that their issues are not my issues and I do not have to engage. You know that saying, you don’t have to say “yes” to every invitation? Well, I do my best to maintain that attitude. Though, sometimes I feel in order to avoid it I have to hermit myself and not leave the house. That is simply not sustainable – or healthy. I give myself a pep talk, a reminder that I have my own power and I won’t be forced to stay small – or inside – to make someone who doesn’t matter more comfortable.
I can only control me, my actions and reactions. I admit to have lost patience for small talk, gossip and judgment in my 40’s and now, in my mid-50’s, I’m even less inclined to humour anyone and their bad behaviour. The only difference is that now when challenges show up I no longer get angry, I just say what’s on my mind. No apology.