A Clean Mind

Blogging about a less stressful way to live…

What Pushes Your Buttons?

We’ve all heard the phrase, “Push my buttons.” This is when we have a strong emotional reaction. Usually we don’t like when our buttons are pushed. We should, though. Really? That sounds like crazy talk! Why on earth should we like when someone or something pushes our buttons? Because if we look deeply and without judgment, it shows something we hate about ourselves and that we secretly believe to be true about ourselves. In other words, our buttons show us what we can work on.

An example is the person who gets irate when his partner interrupts him. Most people don’t like to be interrupted, but if it pushes your buttons, then you really, really, really don’t like it. You get very upset very quickly. If this person looks within, he might see that he tends to interrupt people. This might seem like a stupid example. but it shows the concept. And this person might look and not see anything – he doesn’t think he interrupts people. Maybe a deeper look shows that he disrespects people in others ways and the interruption represents that. And if he looks and finds nothing, that’s fine too.

This is simply a tool you can use to see if there’s anything under the surface that can be exposed. When something we don’t like about ourselves is exposed, then we can do something about it. The first step is always turning the light on to see what’s there. You might think of your buttons as the light switch, because they help turn the light on. As always, there’s no need to try too hard. Be relaxed about it, and always be non-judgmental. That means don’t beat yourself up. Every single one of us has our issues and quirks, so let’s work on them without being in a pressure cooker.

Try this out for yourself when someone or something pushes your buttons. Maybe it reveals something that you weren’t totally aware of. You can work on it, and maybe down the road you’ll notice that the same thing no longer gets the same emotional reaction. It doesn’t push your buttons like it used to. That’s huge progress. And you did that! Good stuff…


All anybody really wants is peace. The good news is that peace can be learned. I’m serious. This should be taught in middle school, but it’s not. So I’m teaching it now.

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