Workplace Communication Tip — Week 4

Do You Know Your Triggers?

The workplace can be a feeding ground for conflict. The difference between a workplace that leaves you triggered and reactive, and one that stimulates outstanding relationships and productivity starts with knowing your triggers.

A trigger can be word, a behavior, or anything that stirs up negative feelings. Instead of reacting to the trigger – with anger, words or behavior we might regret – you can use the trigger as an opportunity to recognize what needs of yours are not being met.

Self-empathy is a great tool to intervene at the moment you’re triggered so you can choose to respond differently. If an interaction just happened, you can use self-empathy and the training wheels sentence to connect to your feelings and needs:

“When I hear/see … I feel … because I need ….”

Without awareness, a trigger leads you into habitual reaction. Perhaps anger, judgment, or stewing quietly – whatever your habitual reaction, chances are it isn’t ultimately meeting your needs.

Mindful Practice for the Week

This week, try to recognize as many of your triggers as possible. Create a running list describing the behavior, language, or experience that left you triggered, building a new awareness of their connection to habitual responses.

Learn more about the many free resources provided by NVC at

http://nvctraining.com/index.php? option=com_content&view=article&id=19&Itemid=224 –