EP 447: Why We Have Such Extremely Different Reactions to Different Situations Even Though We Are Still the Same Person with Jenny

This coaching call is about breaking habitual patterns that are no longer needed. Today’s caller, Jenny, is having completely different reactions to different situations. She asks for guidance on how to be consistent in all areas of her life and change her attachment style. Christine discovers that it is not so much about her attachment styles but about the story she tells herself in different situations.

For those of us who experienced a trauma, or when the worst happened or we got in trouble for something, a neural pathway in our minds created a belief that expecting something bad to happen at any moment prepares us for future traumas and the accompanying shock. The shock is what makes trauma stay in our bodies because when we think everything’s fine, and something happens, our system is surprised. It becomes an imprint in our psyche, subconscious, emotional body, and our nervous system. Neural nets create unconscious patterns. When we are triggered we are hijacked by our subconscious.

As we grow and develop we have to update our survival strategies. So many of our survival strategies were formed when we were young. They are outdated. We have updated almost every other tool we use in our lives, yet we haven’t updated our survival strategies. When you have a habitual reaction to something, interrupt the pattern.

If you have a situation where you are bracing, expecting the worst, or getting nervous, do whatever it takes to regulate your nervous system. Take deep breaths and pause to break the habit.

Consider/Ask Yourself:

  • Do you feel like you’re a different person in different situations?
  • Are your reactions sometimes much bigger than a situation warrants?
  • Do you often prepare yourself for the worst even though usually the worst doesn’t happen?
  • As a kid, was there a part of you that felt like you were in trouble, and that you didn’t get things right?

Jenny’s Question:

Jenny would like guidance about why her reactions are different in different situations.

Jenny’s Key Insights and Ahas:

  • She feels she reacts differently to things at work, in relationships, and when with friends and family.
  • Her relationship with her parents has changed since childhood.
  • She often gets anxious at work and feels that she will be in trouble.
  • She remembers getting in trouble with her father when she didn’t do something right.
  • She wants validation and love from her father.
  • She doesn’t feel good enough at work.

How to Get Over It and On With It:

  • When triggered, regulate her system by putting a hand on her heart and her belly and saying “I’m not in trouble. I didn’t do anything wrong.”
  • Where is she telling herself she isn’t enough?
  • Give herself compassion and commitment. Don’t give up!


  • When you have a habitual reaction to something, interrupt the pattern and update your survival strategy.


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We can have different attachment styles with different triggers. Click To Tweet When we are triggered we are hijacked by our subconscious. Click To Tweet When you have a habitual reaction to something, interrupt the pattern and update your survival strategies. Click To Tweet

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