couple-close-to-one-anotherYou’re going along just fine, walking down a beautiful backwoods trail. The sun is shining. You and your main squeeze are enjoying life and it’s another wonderful day. Then things change, you get the phone call, something has changed that turns your entire life upside down! As you continue your walk, the bugs are biting you, the sun feels too hot and the hand of your main squeeze feels too sweaty to hold!

What Happens in the Brain when Tragic Events Strike

Tragic events can bring out feelings of overwhelm that change the way you feel about everything. You lose touch with your ‘Inner Child’ or your Subconscious Mind. The neurons of your Subconscious Mind are like a five-year-old and exist deep within you. It holds all of your hopes, your dreams and your wisdom. It helps you to see into your partner’s eyes to sense all that exists in her love for you. It also helps you to feel connected to all that exists around you. Given these connections you are able to walk through your life with your eyes open. You make decisions with an inner spaciousness that allows the very best of you to show through.

Feelings of overwhelm, excessive anger or anxiousness, various addictions and judgmentalness are all signs that you have lost these internal connections. They are called the ‘flight, fight or freeze’ mode. This is an emergent mode and works well when you need to make a quick life-saving decision. When a bear comes up behind you, it doesn’t take a lot of mental processing to know that you need to run! As a matter of fact, the time it takes to identify the type of bear and what kind of day it is could cost your life.

We tend to slip into this fight, flight or freeze mode rather easily. This is particularly true when there is a sudden change in your life or tragic events strike. Unfortunately, this often happens when you and your love are together. This quick shift causes you to not fully appreciate each other, at least at first. This leads to disconnected communications that are easily misunderstood. You might become very angry with each other for no apparent reason. This can lead to judging each other when you need each other most. Unfortunately, you will have a tendency to believe something said in anger is “the way they really feel about you.” The truth is that during this time neither of you is deeply in touch with your true feelings. This is true no matter how much you love each other.

What is the truth?

How Tragic Events Affect Our Feelings

Your mind has been given a quite a bit of flexibility allowing you a greater chance of survival in an emergency. It is also involved any time you feel overwhelmed and this state can last for years. When you slip into flight, fight or freeze you are able to survive the situation as an emergent mental circuit takes over. The memories of the immediacy of the moment are often stored in your Subconscious Mind, thus sparing you the thoughts and emotions you aren’t able to process at the time. When the tragic events pass you may be able to revisit what happened. You can feel into each aspect of the situation carefully, learn from it and move on.

When you don’t or can’t look at those moments they are stored for future reference. Although stored they do have Subconscious influence on your thoughts and feelings. These feelings are not fully integrated into the way you truly feel and your relationships. This can create confusion. This is particularly true in your close relationships. Feelings of anger, anxiety and judgement that were never there before may subtly and not so subtly enter the relationship. These feelings may feel as real as any other feeling you have about each other. This can cause distortions and can last a lifetime if not addressed.

So what is a person to do when tragic events strike?

Deepening Relationships Despite Tragic Events

  1. After any situation that feels overwhelming take the time to go over the situation in prayer or meditation so you can integrate all that happened.
  2. If you wish, share what happened with someone else or a trusted group to get further insight into what overwhelmed you, how you responded and how you might deal with similar situations in the future.
  3. If you and your intimate partner went through this situation take the time to do the same together. Discuss things that may have been said in anger and forgive each other.
  4. As you talk with your partner share with them how the relationship, the experience and their essence helped you and encouraged you through the experience.
  5. If it was your partner that experienced the situation first hand, let them know how seeing them go through this actually helped you to learn from the experience.
  6. Share how the entire experience has made the relationship stronger. Discuss how what you have learned may help you in the future.
  7. Finally, thank each other for the gift of their love and the sharing of their life experiences ... and go for a nice walk!


This is the Oneness Approach, where we share the love we feel within us with those around us all for the greater good and the Oneness we feel with all sentient beings.

To learn how you can apply the Oneness Approach in all of your relationship types to create deeper, loving ties with others, sign up risk-free for a Oneness Approach membership.

1 reply
  1. Lucy
    Lucy says:

    Dear Dr.Seng.
    According to The Old Testament, King David danced naked before GOD. Could this be a metaphor for us to let go of our troubles and the world around us, and just be joyful in the life given to us at the moment?


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