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Throwing Fuel on the Fire

Melli O'Brien



Melli O'Brien



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Throwing Fuel on the Fire

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness.

Today, I'm going to talk about

slowing down and stopping reactivity.

So we've probably all experienced times

when we feel that rush of anger rising.

Perhaps someone says something

that triggers us, you know.

And then a thought arises.

How dare they or oh, really,

is that what you think?

Let me tell you.

So if we actually start to fixate on

thoughts like that in those kinds of

moments, we feel upset more and more

because it stokes the emotion, it

stokes more anger, more reactivity.

And then as our anger intensifies, the

mind responds by creating more angry

thoughts, then those thoughts magnify

the emotion, and you can see how this

just kind of creates a vicious cycle.

And we can easily get caught up

in that cycle of kind of throwing

more fuel on the fire of that

original moment of being triggered.

Let's say someone cuts in

front of you in a line.

You know, you feel that initial

flame of annoyance perhaps.

But then you throw fuel on it.

How rude.

You know, now anger's moving all

through the body and you think, what

the hell is wrong with this person?

Doesn't he care about anyone but himself?

So selfish.

Now you're really simmering.

And with every reactive thought,

you feed the fire and fan the flames

until you can barely contain yourself.

You know, we've all been

here at one time or another.

But what we often don't realize

in those moments is that it's our

thoughts that are blowing things up

and making things feel a lot worse.

But if we can learn to recognize in

that first moment of being triggered

that we're triggered, and we take a

mindful pause, we can deescalate things.

We can make the choice not to

throw more fuel on the fire.

It can be helpful here to take a few

deep, slow breaths in that moment

when we're first triggered, and then

mentally note the emotion to ourselves.

You know, ah, okay,

anger's here, or, okay.

I'm being triggered.

Then we can make a conscious choice

not to throw any more fuel on the

fire, not to escalate our anger

with more reactive thoughts so that

they can cool and pass on their own.

This is the invitation for today and

ongoing, whenever you get triggered,

take a pause, breathe deep, and try

not to add any more fuel to the fire.

In this way, you train yourself to

become a non-reactive person and promote

more peace, both within and without.

So I wish you well with this practice.

And as always, thank

you for your practice.

Let's settle in for today's meditation.

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