Thank you for inspiring me to document musings and learnings from the field of leadership, team performance and conscious change. I trust you'll find the exercises, resources and insights useful whether you are a leader, team player, coach/consultant or change agent.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

DISC stressors and triggers

It is said that our greatest strength can be a blessing and a curse. At our best we are choosing the optimal strength for a given situation. Using DISC as a lens, we can apply direct, influencing, steady or conscientious action to achieve a desired result. During challenging times however, something changes in our inner world so a strength may express in an extreme or opposing manner.

When we are triggered by a situation, person or experience our emotional body is no longer being guided by our higher self and so we behave in seemingly confusing ways. Normal stress behaviors such as autocratic (for the D), attack (for the I), acquiesce (for the S) or avoid (for the C) don't provide the relief we seek and so we may apply a more dramatic strategy. We no longer care about our long-term desired result but are focused blindly on self-protection or preservation.

The D who is normally decisive and bold may move beyond the "normal" stress behavior of overbearing and exhibit the S's passive/aggressive tendency. The I who is wants to be involved may not attack but instead clam up like the C stressor tendency. The S who desires harmony may become agressive like the D under stress and the C who values respect and expertise may lash out like the I in stress. It seems that the stronger the trigger, the greater the opposing preference or reaction.

If we recognize that when we are triggered, we are actually in an altered or unconscious state (and in that moment are not able to recognize what is going on or what we really need) we can rely on awareness, understanding and humble pie to get back to center where answers are available and everything is possible.

Thanks to Lyndee for this insight!

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