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  • Writer's pictureEmily Eldredge

📺 IWFGG | How Do You Handle Family Triggers?





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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: Hello! Hello! Hello! And welcome as always to Inner Work for Greater Good. My name is Emily Eldredge. I am the founder of ChangeLight and the creator of the ChangeLight System in which we do inner work that accelerates your power to feel good and do good, to make whatever difference. You feel you are here to make.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: So looks like I'm gonna wait this off. I think that might be a little dirty. Okay.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: I hope that's better. so I am recording this on January fourth. So right after what? For? Most of us is a big holiday a couple of weeks


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: the you know, Hanukkah, Christmas New Year's, quanza all the exciting things that happen around the same time of the year, which usually means that we're also spending time with family. I understand some people


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: don't spend much time with family, because but frankly, some families just are not safe emotionally, physically, in any other way. but those of us who do spend time with family Sometimes, even if we come from pretty healthy families, we can still run into some issues. I probably should have recorded this actually before the holidays, just to say, hey, Just so, you know, in case you run into this, you might want to handle it this way or that way. But since I did not think about it


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: i'm! I'm talking about it now, mainly because, as usual, you know, when I got together with my family. There was some interesting dynamics.


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as always, because that's just the way it goes with family. So


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: first of all, let's just establish that families are very complicated organisms. I mean, actually organisms is probably a pretty good work, because it's like they have their own ecosystem. They have their own cultures. They have their own. you know. Sometimes there are certain leaders or people who lead different parts of it, and other parts that are more about You know. People who play different roles and inherent within those systems


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: is, you know, can be there's history.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: There can be trauma, whether it's generational, or, you know, inherited, or whether it's something that happens within the family system. there can be secrets. There can be, you know, conflicts whether they're over a covert. There's a lot that goes on within a family system, and it can be really hard to recognize what? Exactly that is, because for so many of us.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: It's, it's it's so subconscious. And what subconscious can be, what's the conscious within us, but also with subconscious within other people. So not only when we get back in our family units.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: Not only are we dealing with our own reactions to things, our own triggers, our own, you know, default our own behaviors. But we're also dealing with other people. And so what I've noticed for myself. It's been fascinating a lot of the work that I've done for myself has been, you know, healing some of those triggers from my own childhood, from my own


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: family system and dynamics and unconscious


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: you know, reactions that we all have to each other, or sort of the way the family has unconsciously tried to deal with one family, member or another, or not deal with them, as it as it were. And so, firstly, for me, a lot of my work has been around like anytime i'm around my family, or you know, or well anywhere. Frankly, but let's just say in this case, family, you know I notice what's triggering me.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: What am I reacting to? And I spend some time noticing that. And also you know, Why am I reacting that way? And then for myself, processing what's going on with me and healing those rooms that are the cause of my reactions, and that's a lot of what I do with my clients as well, because clients are also having to deal with their family members, and they're often confused like. Why am I having this reaction? I had someone who approached me a few months ago, and she said, you know


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: I I don't understand that every time I spend time around my my parents I just automatically like revert to being a 13 year old, and I don't understand why.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: And I said, Well, there's all these subconscious things that are going on that you're not even aware of. They have to do with it could have to do with.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: You're just sort of falling back into an old pattern, which is just what happens often times the falling back into that old pattern, but also your parents can be falling back into an old pattern as well. That doesn't work for you anymore, and so that's by way of saying that for me personally, I've done a lot of work


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: and myself to heal the cause of the reactions that I have, you know, with my family members, or you know people who've known me, or I've known them for a long time, but also what can happen to? And this is what i'm, noticing more and more for myself, as I feel my own stuff


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: in, we in reaction to my family, and therefore i'm not as reactive to my family, and actually become more observant and more aware of how they react to me, and how sometimes their reactions are based on their old perceptions of me. It's been really interesting now, like. Sometimes I think to myself, you know, I feel like


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I think i'm being treated like the the brandy, 15 year old that I used to be, even though i'm now in my like mid to late forties. And yet i'm still being treated that way.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: And so it's been interesting and less triggering because I do my own work, but nevertheless interesting and a little, sometimes upsetting because i'm like, but i'm not that person anymore. And yet that person keeps still keeps reacting to me that way, even though i'm showing up very differently. And so, my! That's all my way of saying that there are. There's there's such a complex web that we all have inside of us. And between us.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: based on our family history is based on old conflicts based on old triggers based on fears and blocks and wounds, and all kinds of things that that act on a subconsciously causing us to react and behave and feel certain ways, and it it's a really huge issue, obviously, to have to


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: unpack in just a few minutes here. But at the very least what we can do. We can take a few simple steps to help us start to unpack, as it were, start to notice and unpack those things that are going on inside of us.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: because it's really important that we do our own inner work for greater good, because the inner work that we do can actually be for the greater good of the family ultimately, and of course, our own greater good. But it's really important for us to at least be aware of what we are bringing


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: to that family unit our reactions, and also to notice to how sometimes, when we start to do our inner work, it can kind of upset the family's apple cart, as it were. It can kind of set things


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: it. It's like it's like. If you have a a a a system that has sort of found or tried to find, its own balance and equilibrium within it. You know you start to behave a little differently. It kind of can upset that balance even as you're recognizing it's imbalance. There are people who are still used to each other, reacting to one another in a certain way. And so when you start acting differently, it can cause the system to go. What just happened.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: So I mean, and I and i'm thinking of a specific example of. You know I had done my own healing when it came to a certain person in my family, and really had were to stand up for myself and stop being so, you know, feeling victimized and stopped feeling as reactive and really just calmly asserting myself. But here's the funny thing. This shocked the hell out. This is to the point about the fact that it's a whole family system.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: you know. Talk the hell out of me, because, as I started to actually stand up for myself. Somebody else reacted in a way that was upsetting, and with that person got mad at me.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: and I thought, Whoa! This is really like. It was like what


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: but it's because I had started to assert myself and behave differently than the rest of the family typically had learned unconsciously to behave in response to this person. So here I was not playing the game now. No maliciousness among any of these people. This is we're not talking like bad people, or even, but just these unconscious


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: modes of behavior and reactions and ways of coping, in trying to cope with in a family system in response to certain behaviors, you know, but and also based on their even their backgrounds, that they brought into the family. So I mean.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: So it's just really really complicated. But here are the certain things that I find that we can do to at least get started in unpacking


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: the some of these family triggers family reactions. The system. So, for one thing, notice I already use that word. You gotta start first and foremost by noticing just at the very least. Just


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: notice now, how do you notice? Because again so much of this is so unconscious.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: A really good way place to start is with your own body.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: Notice, even before you enter the family system. Are you having any physical reactions? Are you having any mental thoughts? Are you having any ruminations. Are you feeling? Oh, anxious is it that you know, before you have to go, spend time with your family? Do you notice that you're kind of anxious. And you're having trouble sleeping a few days before. That can be an indication that something is upsetting you. Something is getting reactive and triggered even before you go into that


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: situation that part of you is starting to have, or maybe even get defensive. I mean, there are all kinds of reactions that we can have before we even set foot, because this there's this apprehension. There's this anticipatory reactivity that we're having. So first and foremost, you might even start by noticing before you go into the situation, and you know it can come across as like a negative feeling. So it could be that you're feeling defensive or angry or frustrated.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: or scare, upset, or nervous or anxious. You know those kinds of things. But even if it sounds weird, but even like a positive so for me. I notice just a few years ago that I actually would have this kind of


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: overly positive hyper positive


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: energy that I would bring into my own.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: and it took me a while to notice this, but it it was very old, and that I've become, you know not You wouldn't see me looking like that. But internally that's how it felt. I just like this kind of energy.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: and as I noticed, i'm like, Wait a minute. This is a comfortable. It's very familiar for me to feel this way, but it's not comfortable, because i'm noticing that it's, causing me to be sort of in a hyper energized state


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: as opposed to a calm and grounded one and responsive one. Wasn't being responsive, I was being reacted.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: That's what you know, just physiologically. Notice what that's like that's not a healthy, in my opinion. Well, entirely a healthy reaction, and certainly not sustainable, and certainly not that I wasn't fully present in the moment I was we I was behaving from something subconscious, and so then I unpacked that. So you might notice that before you even go into situation, what are the anticipatory reactions that you're having before you even set foot.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: Then, when you get into the situation with your family, notice physiologically what's happening? Notice how your behavior is different in that family unit compared to when you're not in the family unit, you know. Maybe when you're at work, or maybe when you're with your partner. Maybe when you're with your friends, how do you show up differently? That can also be an indicator of something that you're carrying subconsciously, that you're bringing in because of you in fast conflicts or traumas or


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: stories that you're telling yourself


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: So notice that. And then, when it comes to actually reacting to people. Notice how you're reacting to those people that you know. Maybe like Wait, that felt like that was kind of out of my control, or that felt like that was defensive, or that felt like that was, you know, I'm: i'm scared of this person. Okay, what's going on then? So notice just start by noticing because you really it's kind of like, they say. The first step to you know, fixing the problem is acknowledging that you have one. So it's kind of like that. You're always going to start by noticing.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: being aware, and part of that noticing, too. I often want to assert it. Do, Don't, Judge, there's no judgment here


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: just compassion. It's when you notice that you have this trigger, this reaction, this block, this this whatever, just to have compassion and understand that it's there for a reason. It's not as though you're having this reaction for no reason at all, and therefore you should just dismiss it and tell yourself that I don't know i'm over reacting. You know you're having this reaction for a reason. You're having this physiological symptom for a reason. You're you're anticipating this


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: for a reason. And so it's matter, then, of investigating. Okay. So then, what's going on with me now that I notice something's going on. What is it, and what's what inside me is causing me to feel thinking behaved in those ways. And so that's where I say. Sit with it.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: The notice, and you sit with it, and you notice what's coming up.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: And I the way I handle it is obviously because my signature technique is the Drawing Out Process which, by the way, you can learn the first few steps for free in my community go to community that ChangeLight that world. It's all free. but basically to draw out as you sit, if you notice and draw out, or maybe if you don't drive journal it


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: just, but noticing what comes up for you. If you hear voice, you know that thoughts, or feelings, or voices, or parts of you that are showing up and being present with those and understanding again.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: they are there for a reason this is not for you to then dismiss it. Nope, You've got this stuff for a reason, and you may not immediately know the reasons, but this is the beginning of that investigation of coming to understand what's really going on under the surface with you, because the whole intention is to help bring you back to call, bring you back to peace with yourself. And so that's


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: because then, when you're in that more calm center. Present state. Then, rather than reacting to your family, you can respond, and you can respond with wisdom and awareness and greater clarity.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: so that you're not continuing that dynamic. Now that other person may continue that dynamic with you, or they may get upset that you're not. As I said before, that You're not reacting in the same way that you used to react before. But that's not your job. Your job is to take responsibility for you, your own triggers


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: your own things that you're bringing into the family dynamic, whether it's because you learned that you had to be that way, or maybe something that you're bringing in from your wounds that actually happened outside the family. Maybe you're actually bringing that in and making things worse. So it's all about helping you feel more at peace and call within yourself so that you can be more effective


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: when you're facing and dealing with those family triggers, be they yours or be they others.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: Okay, so very simple notice. Sit with it, you know, and then draw it out. Journal. Let the let those thoughts and feelings come up and allow yourself to kind of investigate what's going on inside of you again.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: I, you know, when I talk about, draw out, go to I now offering it for free the first few steps of the drawing up process, so that you can actually do this yourself, and I guide you through it. So I highly recommend you. Take that so that you can start to review some of those parts of you that maybe carrying all blocks and triggers and rooms and traumas and frustrations and beliefs and stories that are contributing to or causing you to feel pain within the family dynamics that you're facing.


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Emily Eldredge | ChangeLight: Okay, I hope, as always, this has been helpful again. My name is Emily Eldridge, with ChangeLight, please please join our community at this interest. You community dot ChangeLight that world. We've got a lot of exciting things lined up for 2023 that I'm really thrilled to share with you. And yeah. In the meantime, I hope this has been helpful, and I will see you next week.


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