You may think the reason you’ve decided to ditch a friend is their fault, but the chances are you’re more responsible than you think. Emotional triggers can be really confronting, especially when it’s our friends that spark them off. But once we understand why we’re triggered we begin to feel differently and our friendships have a much better chance of not only surviving, but thriving!
By Kay Wilson, Intuitive Energy Healer & Empowerment Coach
Every one of us has a dark side; a part of us that we aren’t proud of. Our dark side, or shadow self, consists of our insecurities, envies and self-reproach, all the parts of our personality that we are not so comfortable with. Some of us live in denial of it all our lives, some of us bring it out to play when we drink or do drugs, but in a society that is terrified of external judgment it’s not a part that we are encouraged to share or talk about.
Our Dark Side + Our Friendships
Most of the time we are pretty good at avoiding our dark side, we suppress anything that feels unpleasant and distract ourselves with our ‘light side’- all the parts of ourselves we like and approve of (cue Instagram). However when it comes to our relationships we have no choice… bam! There it is, our dark side, in technicolour. This is because we are attracted to parts of ourselves that we recognize in others and they invariably demonstrate a mix of both our light and dark aspects.
For example you might have a girlfriend you adore, she’s kind, funny and selfless, but equally you get annoyed with her when she talks about work because she never stands up for herself and gets walked over by her boss. She reflects your lack of self worth, which for you shows up in your inability to draw a line with your mother who’s a bit overbearing. You feel too guilty to create healthy boundaries for your own needs, so you don’t stand up to her when she wants to come over every Sunday. See the reflection? It’s not always the exact same scenario but the reflected character trait is always there in some form. The people we spend the most time around are the ones that give us the best reflections of ourselves. That includes our children, our friends and definitely our partners.
So, the brutal truth is when you feel triggered by someone the chances are they demonstrated a quality in yourself you either don’t like or disapprove of so much you wouldn’t dream of doing it yourself. Which is why when they do it you are doubly offended, as you have projected your own disapproval of yourself onto them.
This is a really powerful dynamic to be aware of because it means that you are no longer the ‘victim’ of your triggers, you have control over them. You can change the way you respond to people by changing the way you feel about the characteristic they display – within yourself. By being more accepting of your own dark side you automatically become more forgiving of its qualities when they are demonstrated by others, the question is – can you be more accepting of yourself?
The Law of Attraction
Another interesting energy interplay that affects our relationships is the Law Of Attraction. This refers to the fact that each of us is constantly emitting an energetic frequency or ‘vibe’ all the time, and this vibe attracts others on the same level, it’s as if they are tuned into our frequency and we’re therefore drawn to each other subconsciously. This is why you and I might go to the same party but talk to entirely different people because each of us is offering a different vibration, so we attract different characters. It’s also why you may loose touch with people as your vibe changes and they may or may not change in the same way.
Have you ever noticed that you might see a certain stranger regularly for a few months and then suddenly you don’t see them anymore? You were both on the same vibration, until one or maybe both of you shifted. Look around you, see who’s on a similar vibration to you right now.
Tips For Rekindling Friendship
Make friends with your dark side:
By observing your negative reactions to people you start to gather a sense of your own dark side, this can be a really powerful opportunity for personal growth. Once you have an idea of the nature of your strong triggers ask yourself where those same character traits show up in you, or how strongly you disapprove of them. The amount of dislike you have to that person who triggered you will be in direct correspondence to how much you dislike yourself over the same trait. See if you can start to find acceptance or even forgiveness for yourself and once you do you’ll notice you feel a lot more accepting of the outside ‘offender’.
Let go of the guilt:
If you feel guilty about not having seen someone for a while, maybe consider that in reality your vibration may have shifted and that this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it might be best to wait until you ‘bump into each other’ again. That way you know you’re going to get on, as you’re clearly vibing in the same way once more!
Kay Wilson is an Intuitive Energy Healer & Empowerment Coach, she is a thought leader in personal power and has been featured on Married At First Sight as a Couple Consultant.