Trauma victims frequently feel uncomfortable in their bodies and interpersonal interactions. Regaining a sense of safety may take days to weeks for those who have been severely traumatized or months to years for those who have been subjected to ongoing/chronic abuse.
It can be hard to let go of the past. People’s attitudes and decision-making might be significantly impacted by traumatic events that occurred in their lives. There is hope if you live with a traumatic childhood’s emotional and psychological consequences. Here are seven ways to heal your childhood trauma and reclaim your life.
Healing from trauma takes time.
Recognize and accept the trauma for what it is
Childhood trauma victims frequently spend years downplaying the incident or disregarding it by acting as though it never happened or giving in to feelings of guilt or self-blame. Recognizing this is the only way you can start mending.
Feelings of helplessness can carry well into adulthood and make you feel and act like a perpetual victim, causing you to make choices based on your past pain. When you’re a victim, the past controls your present. But when you’ve conquered your pain, the gift is owned by you. There may always be a battle between past and present, but as long as you’re willing to let go of the old defenses and crutches you used as a child to navigate your trauma, you will be able to reclaim control of your life now and heal your pain.
Don’t isolate yourself; instead, seek out help.
Many trauma survivors have an instinct to withdraw from others, but this will only worsen things. A big part of the healing process is connecting to other people, so try to maintain your relationships and seek support. Talk to a trusted family member, friend, or counselor and consider joining a support group for survivors of childhood trauma.
Take good care of yourself
Your ability to cope with stress will increase if you are healthy. Establish a daily routine to get plenty of rest, eat a well-balanced diet, and exercise regularly. Most importantly, stay away from alcohol and drugs. These might temporarily relieve but will inevitably increase your feelings of depression, anxiety, and isolation and can worsen your trauma symptoms.
Find out what accepting and letting go mean
Taking something doesn’t mean you’re embracing your trauma or that you like it or agree with it. Acceptance means you’ve decided what you’re going to do with it. You can decide to let it rule your life, or you can choose to let it go. Letting go doesn’t mean “poof!”. It’s magically gone. Letting go means no longer allowing your bad memories and feelings of a bad childhood to rob you of living a good life now.
Bad habits can take many forms, like negativity and always mistrusting others, or turning to alcohol or drugs when feelings become too hard to bear. Bad habits can be hard to break, primarily when used as crutches to help you avoid reliving the pain and trauma of your childhood. A support group or therapist can help you learn the tools necessary to break and replace bad habits with good ones.
Don’t be too hard on yourself
When you’ve been seriously hurt as a child, you develop out-of-control emotions, hopelessness, defense mechanisms, and warped perceptions that are difficult to let go of. Letting go of these feelings will take time and hard work. So instead, be patient with yourself and honor your progress, no matter how small it may seem. The little victories in your recovery will eventually help you win the battle of healing your childhood trauma.
Trauma is a psychological reaction to a terrible event, such as an accident, rape, or natural disaster. After an incident, shock and denial are common emotions. In the long run, reactions can lead to erratic emotions, flashbacks, strained relationships, and even physical discomfort like headaches or nausea. Although these emotions are typical, just let yourself heal. You will get through it!
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