Self, Heartbreak

How To Find A Better Way To Manage Your Pet Peeves

Today I want to talk about managing trigger points, a common Life Coach topic.

Can you name a few things that set you off? 

One of my triggers is people who walk down the middle of the sidewalk at a snails pace. The sidewalk is huge, so just move to the right so the people who have places to be can get around you.

I have a friend who will stop anyone from popping his or her gum. I once saw her reach into a stranger’s mouth and remove his gum. As funny of as the incident was I wouldn’t repeat it. A person controlled by their triggers is weak and prone to trouble.

A logical person knows better then to reach into someone mouth. He could have bitten her and transferred a disease. She could have lost a finger. The triggers I’ve described are light. Some people are triggered by cars backfiring, gunfire, smoke, tears … Their triggers take them to a place worst then frustration.

Triggers are difficult for 3 reasons:

1. It’s hard to know what a persons triggers are.

2. Once you’ve triggered a person they are no longer thinking rationally.

3. Apologizing is often the most excruciating part.

Let me give you an example:

My coach, Greg, is probably one of the best coaches I've ever had. He's authentic, real, he's open, he's honest. He's a man of his word. Recently, he's been going through some things with his daughter. Things that I don't need to discuss openly here.

A woman e-mailed him and said she was open for coaching.

Greg runs my entire coaching program. He's worked side-by-side with me for years, and for those of you that have been lucky enough to go through coaching with him, you know about his dedication, and you know about his tenderness.

So, he set up a call with this woman on Saturday.

As he was dialing this woman’s number, his daughter phoned. His daughter kept talking. He didn't want to cut her off for a free consultation. After about 45 minutes of being on the phone with his daughter, he got off, called the woman up, and apologized profusely for running late. He explained about his kid.

She proceeded to lecture him, ball him out, and tell him that he was flaky.

He was shocked. 

Like I said, Greg’s the best and he remained professional throughout the entire discussion. He told her have a nice day, hung up the phone, and sent me this e-mail. 

If you’ve ever worked in customer service you know the game. When you’re in service to others they often forget you are human and have limitations. They expect you to behave like a machine.


This woman probably didn’t even hear Greg. Waiting 45 minutes for a guy with a family issue is no time at all. She didn’t lose any money, she got a call on the same day, within her scheduled hour, and Greg apologized for his tardiness.

At this point there’s nothing Greg could have done or should have done. Nothing could make this woman happy. Greg has triggered something inside her.

Perhaps Greg was the third person to be late with this woman today. Maybe this woman is mad at a friend and taking it out on everyone around her. Either way she’s been triggered.

Triggers come from a place of emotions. When someone goes off they’re devoid of rational thought. This means they can’t be reasoned with. Believe me when I say apologizing can be the most difficult part about setting someone off. Usually they’re so riled you can’t squeeze in an "I’m sorry" out before they’ve snuck out the back door.

The best thing to do is let the person walk out the door. If you’re close with the person or have to be in the immediate vicinity to the person give them a few hours to cool off before bringing up the subject again.

It’s vital that you do talk about it though. You deserve to know why this person snapped so you can protect yourself in the future.

If you’re lucky enough to have nothing to do with the person who snapped on you, walk away. Be content with knowing their meltdown was not about you. You are not responsible and you can’t make it better for them.

The reason I bring this up today is because I feel for this woman. I hope she comes to a meeting, maybe we can figure out what set her off.

Anyone can be set off at any time.

The next time someone triggers you, if they come up with a valid explanation and you're still angry ask yourself what has triggered you. 

Why do you feel this way?

What issues do you still have over people who have disappointed you in the past?

You need to answer these questions for yourself because the person who is standing before you has nothing to do with it. They’ve unknowingly triggered an old emotion that you haven’t yet worked through.

This is why coaching and seminars are so important.

You can't do this on your own.

So, today, be honest with yourself.

What has pissed you off recently?

Who has pissed you off recently?

Ask yourself, is it that person or is it something that is still lingering from the past?

And to find out how to get in touch with myself or Greg for personal coaching, check this out!