Managing trauma issues, attachment issues, and triggers resulting from complex and single trauma events is a great challenge, often not understood, and most of the time labeled as ‘unexpected experience’ when from ‘out of nowhere’ (which is never really accurate, there are always reasons for something coming up and for something happening) something comes that can potentially disrupt our lives. Here are some organized and explained tips to use to protect our self or ‘our system’s’ integrity, and the quality of our lives. There is little we can or could have done to prevent certain things from happening and certain outcomes, but how we manage what we are facing – that becomes our responsibility.
- This means increasing attention to our sense of safety and to our safety limits
- Making the commitment to honor our limits
- Incorporating our safety limits in our decision making and the options that we consider
Being kind to ourselves
- This means making the decisions to build and honor a compassionate, kind and respectful stance with ourselves
- Responding with empathy to the thoughts and emotions we have, and to the needs that we are noticing
Allowing me to be “one” and you to be “another one”
- This means acknowledging that others are different from me
- Allowing for my emotions to be my emotions, and for your emotions to be your emotions.
- Allowing for my views to be my views, and for your views to be your views.
- Allowing for another option to emerge from my views meeting your views, and letting that happen if it comes up, but not to decline and eliminate my view because your view is different.
Observing and responding to our emotions
- This means becoming curious about how we feel, about how ‘this’ or ‘that’ impacts us, and taking note of what is observed
- Realizing that how we feel can be followed by “now, what can I do about this? How can I help myself?”
- If action is taken, letting that be a mindful action of acknowledging the emotions identified, what is effective in this situation, and what is the best outcome to be sought for us and for those involved.
Giving myself time for…
- Granting ourselves time to think, to ponder
- Granting ourselves time to acknowledge, to look
- Granting ourselves time to enjoy that which is appreciated and enjoyable
- Granting ourselves time to respond to something that is occurring
- Granting ourselves time to feel (even unwanted feelings) and acknowledge their impact and what is needed
- Granting ourselves time to experience something and work on a resolution
Finding interest in our lives
- This means being curious and engaged in our daily events, in our projects, in our work, and in what we are building
- Attending to what is occurring in our lives with attention, with compassion, with gentleness and interest
- Acknowledging what is being done and what we are part of
- Acknowledging our creativity and us as creators
- This means acknowledging the uniqueness of who we are and what we bring to all that we come in contact with
- Acknowledging and validating our stance, our efforts that we put forth in what we do
- Taking time to observe the impact that we set forth in the world, not being deceived by how small or large our actions or roles are – they are all meaningful
- Being able to validate ourselves from an appreciative stance – which sometimes can only be seen from the observer stance (as if we look at ourselves from the outside)
- Taking time to marvel at ourselves when it is fair to do so; we certainly are to take charge and work on the things that need adjustment, work on change when change is needed; but when validation is due, we can be generous with our validation and self-appreciation
Increasing respectful internal dialogue and privacy
- This means building an internal interaction that is of outmost respect, and not punitive and negative.
- Allowing ourselves to protect our privacy and the inner collaboration/interaction that can be off limits to all except to ourselves
- Allowing to have privacy in our thoughts, in our discernment of our actions and what needs to be done
- Acknowledging that privacy with ourselves includes allowing to observe all our thoughts and our emotions, not just to ‘good ones’, and acting from the highest stance we can take with ourselves and with others.
Noticing and responding to our needs
- This means allowing for our needs to be there – they are there for us and for everyone else, in our own private lives
- Acknowledging for what is needed and respectfully responding to our needs with the intent to help, to improve, to heal, to make better
- This means taking time to celebrate and acknowledge ourselves
- This means taking time to observe and to ponder on what is being done or what was achieved
- This can help build the self-relationship, self-dialogue, self-validation, self-trust, and the acknowledgment and appreciation of who we are.
With the start of the New Year and with the start of every day – let’s make our resolution to improve the self-relationship and increase patience to noticing and acknowledging of what is needed – because, like all relationships and journeys, our personal growth and the self-relating can be a holistic and sacred process. These tips are intended to improve the quality of our lives, and to be applied as they relate to us being mindful of our and others’ wellbeing.
With admiration for your journey, and with best intentions I wish you well on your self-journeys!
Aurora Clark | Director of the General Mental Health program at GenPsych, PC
GenPsych PC Provides Mental Health Services in New Jersey
GenPsych, PC is a NJ outpatient treatment provider with various levels of care. We offer a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP), Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP), and Individual Outpatient services at four different locations across NJ. We treat adults, adolescents and children through such modalities as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Art Therapy, Pet Therapy, Music Therapy and Reality Based Interventions. Diagnoses such as, Depression, Anxiety, Borderline Personality Disorder, Schizophrenia, Oppositional Defiance Disorder, Eating Disorders and Substance abuse are all treated by a highly trained staff in a warm, non-judgmental atmosphere.
Learn more about GenPsych’s mission and Mental Health services in New Jersey, here.