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Image by Aleksandra Sapozhnikova


"We are never upset for the reason we think."

Written by Sandy Levey-Lunden

How many of us have had a friend suddenly exit our lives? How many of us have argued with a partner? How many of us have had family members turn on us in anger for seemingly no reason? When we have a deep emotional reaction, we are triggered into some unconscious thought, feeling or belief, that is buried in our subconscious.  We may not know what this scene is or belief from this scene, consciously, but we are reactivated into something that is more profoundly passionate than what is happening in front of us in our lives.  We are never upset for the reason we think.”.  Most of us feel when we express frustration, anger, and upset at the person in our lives that we think caused these emotions that this will give us relief or make us feel better. It may not.

It may lead to strong feelings of guilt or upset because at some deep level inside us we know our upset is not about the person in front of us but about something deeper inside us the we need to release from our past, and we will feel this guilt for placing the blame or projecting this emotional reaction on them. It is not about them though, they are merely the cause or the “trigger” of the upset in our subconscious. A joke that people sometimes say is, “Don’t shoot the messenger”, or the shooter or the speaker of the upset, because the upset is actually in your subconscious mind. When this upset happens, it is optimal to use the “watcher” or your “higher self” to witness that you are upset, so the upset must be about something different than what you think it is about.  If you can use the phrase, “I am glad that I can see I’m upset, for a deeper reason than is currently happening,” then we will know that we are using our “watcher”, and are taking responsibility for our deeper subconscious process.  Therefore back to the original quote from acim, you are never upset about what you think you’re upset about.

Expressing frustration and anger without real communication, and both of us triggering each other, is what we normally call a fight, or a conflict in a relationship.  Whenever we’re in a conflict with a friend or loved one, we are into a deeper negative incident in our mind, from the past, buried in our subconscious.  We can go back and forth together with each of us thinking we are right, and no one listening to each other.  One of the ways out of this conflict is for one person to stop in the conflict, listen to the other and take a moment to really hear them.  The tool of listening to someone, and saying back to them what they have heard them say, will lead them out of their upset. This is called the Art of Pacing, from neurolinguistic programing. Most of us feel we have never been heard or seen, and we refer to this listening or being heard as love or caring.  Love heals, therefore the upset will stop in the person being heard and they will feel loved.  In fact, when we are listening to another, it helps us feel heard ourselves and thus we feel like we are being loved by another by hearing another.  We manifest in our experience what we think, feel, and believe we are seeing.  Unfortunately we believe our perception and our perception of what we think, feel and believe, is always experienced by what I call the “negative bag of the past”.  This is all the incidents, traumas, big and small that we have never released out of our past that continuously cause our present upsets.  These incidents can be triggered by something or someone in our present if they exist in our negative bag of the past.  They are not causing the trigger, they are merely stepping on what is already there.  In order to get out of these incidents we must wholly want love or peace, instead of being right.


Our inner emotional peace depends on how we are responding to these triggers. Will you choose to respond with love, or will you choose to attack? Will you choose forgiveness, or will you choose betrayal and fear, guilt and denial, and believe in this?

Cultivate a more peaceful emotional life

In a safe and non-judgemental therapeutic environment, you can explore and process unwanted feelings with the help of a therapist. Learn important self-help tools to assort, examine and manage your recurring triggers.  We can gently and professionally guide you to overcome your traumas and self limiting beliefs. We'll meet you wherever you are at moment-to-moment!

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With a little help, everyone can heal from repeated challengig emotional themes in their lives. I would love to be there for you. 

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