Living with a disability I didn’t know I had, together with my inhibited upbringing and knowing I struggled mentally, emotionally and physically, always made me feel like I was treading water, going nowhere fast.
It was easy for me to lose my perspective on what I was continually having to deal with. I was agitated and angry most of the time.
Dealing with any kind of trauma can make us feel like that. It may be something we blank out for a while, a kind of coping mechanism.
Below are some steps to help deal with trauma:
- Acknowledge what happened to you happened, and give yourself time. You’ll never move past the setbacks if you don’t manage some form of acknowledgment;
- Put your setbacks into context. Although a setback can sometimes reverse progress that you’ve made, something you’ve tried to have a go at but not yet managed to complete; try not to see that as something negative. We learn from our setbacks, that was then, this is now. It can either be an ever-present part of your life, or something that was fixed, but something you can now draw inspiration from. We can always choose to think about our setbacks differently.
- There is always something positive that comes out of something negative. It’s not always clear at the time, but when we look back it can become obvious;
- Sometimes you’re just in the wrong place at the wrong time. If the situation was out of your control and there was nothing you could do, let it go;
- Get out of the house. Going out is a good tool for breaking the habit of exclusion and being in a rut;
- Exercise is known to release a ‘feel good’ hormone, go for walks to clear your head;
- Think about one small change that will help you clamber out of your emotional rut;
- Being proactive helps change your mind-set even if it is only for a short while.
Being mindful allows us to be drawn into understanding our trauma. Once we understand we can begin to quantify the enormity of our situation and deal with it. Once we’re able to deal with it, we can then take back some form of control.
I believe it is only through our understanding that we will find a way to regain our perspective: that allows us to move forward through our trauma experiences.