Tag Archives: Adult Survivors of Child Abuse

How to move out of survival and live?

Many of you who have had deep pain and hurt in your younger lives have learned to survive by doing whatever is necessary to get through your day. You work, you smile, you help, you laugh and you hide away at home when you can because that feels safe. In essence you are still expecting attack and you work hard to avoid it. Your focus is on getting through each day without attack, with minimal dnager, conflict and abuse. You collapse at the end of the day exhausted, satisfied to have survived and to have gotten through relatively unscathed.

In doing this you are simply surviving each day, you are not enjoying your life very much or creating what you really want. You are not living your authentic self, you are using a range of cover ups and defense mechanisms to protect your vulnerable, scared child. That feels more important than having fun, socialising. This is true for many of you.

There are others who are also just surviving, but they focus on pleasure and not much else. They have given up trying to achieve anything or to be successful in their chosen path. They have given up on their dreams believing it isn’t worth the effort to pursue them. They settle for comfort food, alcohol, drugs, sex and a simplistic, hedonistic life, without contributing very much to society.

There are many survival patterns, underneath them all is pain, pain waiting to be felt and released, so you can step up and show your true self to the world, so you can enjoy life and contribute to the welfare of all by shining your light brightly.

You do not need to stay hidden, small to be safe. You don’t need to keep yourself small, stuck to feel like you have no control, no choice, no option. You do have options. Every day, every hour, every minute you are making choices affecting your health and wellbeing. You choose to do nothing or to sulk or pout or be angry or disappointed or to feel hopeless, like there’s no point trying. You choose to repeat the same mundane day over and over – go to work, eat, sleep, wake up, repeat over and over. You choose to numb out and watch TV or to eat or drink or whatever method you use to escape your dissatisfaction with your life. You are choosing to be stuck, to be a survivor or victim of life and your experiences.

You could be choosing to do something new, to try a new hobby, to connect with people and do activities, to have fun and socialise. You can choose to do study to work towards a career change or to volunteer at a nursing home or food shelter or other act of service, which not only helps others but results in you feeling better about yourself and your life. There is so much you could choose to do, but you have to choose it. You have to action it, take the risk for things to change.

Don’t let your life slip away. Take charge and live it. Flow with what life brings you, the ups and the downs, and make the most of it. When you get triggered or you get insight into your defense mechanisms, your pain, work through them to heal them and free yourself up. You don’t have to stay stuck in the old patterns and pain – free yourself and live.

It is time to have fun, to be free, to shine your light, to do what you missed out on, to experiment and discover what you enjoy in life. It is time to LIVE, choose it and the Universe will help you do it. CONNECT with nature, with yourself, with others. Let yourself be seen, heard, supported and loved. Let the goodness in, it is all around you, waiting for you to open your arms to receive it. It is time, it is overdue, it is banging on the door hoping you will hear it. Step up, speak up, live your life and let go of the old ways. It’s time to live more fully, not just survive. Blessed BE, Amen.

By Jodi-Anne M Smith (23October 2017).
Further free guidance on healing techniques and self love are available on the Life Insights and Healing from child abuse pages of this website.

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The negative health impacts of loneliness

Love this TED talk about the negative impacts of loneliness on our health. So many of us feel deeply alone, isolating to protect ourselves to avoid rejection or abuse, scared to let people close and risk feeling more loss if that person leaves. This has been and continues to be one of my deepest challenges. For me it has been easier to hide in work and study than risk more loss. I have learned to love any way and to let people close and for that I am eternally grateful. Much love to all who struggle with loneliness, may you take a risk to connect and find your tribe.

How to love your wounded child back to love and innocence.

inner-childYour inner child is your barometer for your alignment with Source and your destiny. She or he tells you what feels good and what doesn’t. She lets you know if there are actions you need to take and being a child she will throw a tantrum if you don’t do them.

Being a child she wants what she wants NOW, and will get angry or sulk when it doesn’t happen. If you ignore her, refuse to listen to her, she will slam a door in your face and go into her room and hide. There she will be forlorn, mope and go into depression. When this occurs your vitality drops, your joy and ability to enjoy life plummets, you feel burdened, over responsible, plodding through life doing what must be done, as each day passes in this way your heart flame dims, your vibration lowers and a coldness and darkness sets in. Life seems less exciting, less vibrant and less meaningful. In the extreme it can feel numb and like a robot going through the motions.

Your inner child while silenced, is still watching and when the opportunity arises she will let you know know how pissed off she is. She will tell you in words if you listen and connect in with your heart. If you don’t, she will take over your body, come to the fore with rage or sadness or fear. You will get triggered by life events and react from a child like space. The mature adult will disappear and you will responded from the wounded child – tantrums, sulking, hurtful words, immature behaviours, because that is the age the child is and it is her energy that has come to the fore.

She can be a drama queen and pout or order that someone’s head be chopped off, metaphorically, for some minor infraction, such as not saying hello and noticing her pretty new dress or not appreciating the unicorn hidden in the garden. “How dare you not notice or care, how dare you ignore something so important to me!” The inner child will stomp and kick and throw stones. She will punish you and others for not doing what she needs most, which is to be loved, to be noticed, to be cared for, played with and held.

The inner child, like all children, just wants to be loved and listened to. She wants the chance to play and do things that make her happy. She will skip through life singing if you let her. She can help you enjoy life so much, but only when you connect with her and come from a heart centred space, operating from love in all you do.

She is your guide back to your heart, back to your innocence. She lets you know what is meaningful to you, what you shouldn’t ignore, what can help you to feel whole and stress to melt away. It may be simple things like patting your cat, admiring your garden, walking in nature, playing with children, painting, cooking speacial food, whatever it is that you truly find as fun, calming and satisfying. Activities that make your heart sing and that when finished, you look up and are suprised at how much time has passed by. These are your passions, your joys and the inner child reminds us that these are what is truly important in life. She doesn’t care about work, chores, deadlines. She hates boredom and apathy. She embraces life, lives it to the full and bubbles over with enthusiasm.

If you are not feeling such joy and vitality, there is a strong likelihood that your connection with your inner child is not strong enough. If she is unhappy, you will be unhappy. Make the effort to connect. Close your eyes and ask inwardly to connect with her or him. Ask and wait patiently. See if you can sense him or her. You may see a door way or a couch that they are hiding behind. You may see a cave or a dungeon that they have been trapped in due to your total neglect of them and your true passion for life.

At first they may not want to connect, not trusting you to care for them or to stay around. They may feel hurt, abandoned and vulnerable. Send love, see loving energy flow towards them and let them know you are there, you are willing to connect and you are sorry you haven’t done so before or regularly. They may come out from their hiding place and take a peek at you or a step towards you, they may come running for a hug, as this is what they truly want. They may start talking a million miles a minute teling you everything they have been waiting to say. It is up to you to earn their trust, to win their heart over, so they feel safe enough to come out of hiding and open up to enjoying life again.

As you build your relationship, you will notice your energy level rises, your joy rises and your sense of peace and satisfaction with life. Instead of looking out and seeing dullness everywhere, you may start to notice the flowers, the colours, the blue sky. You may start to slow down and just BE, taking time to rest and even time to play. This is important, we all need balance between doing and being, so our bodies don’t get exhausted and depleted.

You can build your connection with your inner child by connecting in regularly, it only takes a few minutes to close your eyes, connect with him or her, send love, ask how they are feeling and what they would like you to do. They may want a hug or icecream or to play in the park. You can literally do these things in real life or you can visualise them, giving the inner child an icecream as you walk side by side down the path at a beautiful park. The inner child just wants your time and attention, same as a living child, for that is what the inner child is, a child living within you that holds your pure essence, your Source connection and innocence. Once you help him/her to heal their wounds and to feel loved and peaceful again, then that becomes your experience of life, the energy you get to live from.

When you are facing challenges or have big decisions to make, you can comfort your inner child and let them know it is okay, you the adult will handle this and they can go play. You can ask them how they feel or what their view is on the situation, but make it clear that this is adult business, not child business and they can go play. If they feel threatened by what is occurring in your life, reassure them that they are safe. When you are in a confronting situation, tune into where your inner child is and how they are feeling. You may discover that they feel exposed and scared. In your third eye see them moving behind you for protection or into your heart where they can be held and supported. This is what they need, for you to be the good parent looking after them, meeting their needs, so they feel safe to relax and enjoy life. When they do, you do. It is well worth the effort to build a loving, strong, playful relationship with your inner child, so you can return to a state of peace and happiness within. Blessed BE, Amen.

By Jodi-Anne (15 October 2016).
Further free guidance on healing techniques and self love are available on the Life Insights and Healing from child abuse pages of this website.

Addiction – animated explanation of the science showing the source of addiction

Science now shows that the cause of addiction is not the addictiveness of the drugs themselves, but the underlying reasons for taking the drugs – the emotional pain, trauma, and disconnection/loneliness that users feel. The drugs are simply an escape mechanism to avoid feeling the pain and to feel connected to something. If as a society we help people to heal the pain, to feel connected to others and enjoy life, then the use of drugs will decrease. Love and connection is the answer.

How to let go of disappointment and expect the best?

When a person has suffered many disappointments in life, they learn to switch off from life, from expecting good things or even believing it is possible for their life to work out okay. This is a self defense mechanism aimed to limit the pain received and protect from further disappointments.

But switching off from life, hope, faith is a disasterous thing to do, it is a giving up of life force energy, of joy, of hope, of happiness. It will inevitably lead to judgement, ridicule, low self-esteem, depression and feelings of unworthiness.

If the major traumas occurred when a young child, 0-7 years old, it is highly likely that a pattern of learned helplessness was embedded in the child’s unconscious and as an adult plays out constantly in all aspects of life, leaving the person feeling a victim, feeling unable to change anything and accepting life is always going to be this way.

With such pessimism life becomes drudgery, one boring or scary or threatening and dangerous day after another. It is easy to see why people may self medicate through addictions to avoid the emotional pain and sense of helplessness and hopelessness.

It is a cruel way to exist, it is a numbing out of life, a walking dead scenario, feeling as if there is no point in staying alive or trying to change anything, because it feels like it never works or changes, it never gets better.

This is a very painful place to be in internally, to feel this hurt and broken that you don’t know how to go on, how to survive, how to live. You give up trying and just survive one day at a time. Life is monotonous, bland, boring and suffocating. Sadly this is a common state of being for many people. Gladly, you don’t have to stay stuck in it.

You only feel so helpless because it is younger parts of you that got hurt and disappointed, whose pain is so high, that it is over ruling everything else. If you heal these wounds and help free your inner child or younger selves then that pain will not be your primary emotion or experience of life.

You the adult has every opportunity to make different choices, to have fun, to be positive and enjoy life. It is just hard to do when your vitality, your life force is stuck in the past, playing out a repetitive loop of negativity.

So how do you free yourself of the wounds? There are many ways that help. At this stage it is just important to know you can break free, that you can heal and that life can become better. To let a glimmer of hope exist.

Just because people in your past hurt you or disappointed you, doesn’t mean it has to reoccur over and over. If you heal the wounds you can flourish. You will no longer attract in that treatment as you will no longer be a vibrational match to it. Once you have released the pain, your body can relax, come out of fight or flight and shut down zombie mode. Life force energy can flow freely through your veins again, revitalising you to live life fully, embracing possibility and taking action to live your dreams, your greatest potential while here on Earth.

To achieve this the wounds must be healed, the emotional pain must be released / transmuted and your heart opened back up to allow love in, to trust and take action, to risk changing / trying something new and letting people close.

When people are closed down out of disappointment, it is like they have bolted the door, put up a security fence, have guard dogs snarling, attempting to keep out anything good from occurring, so that they will not be disappointed or hurt further.

People with good intentions attempt to come close and they are faced with snarling dogs, electric fences and machine guns aimed at them, as if they are the enemy, when all they want to do is love you. It takes a strong and determined person to persevere in this situation and say “Let me in, it is okay, you can trust me”.

Many just walk away, they see the wounding in the other, the closed door, so they turn away. Hence the hurt person ends up alone, isolated, desperate for attention, for love, but not allowing it. No wonder they feel so hopeless.

There is a war going on inside, keeping the goodness away. When someone does come close they can over react with anger, feeling like “How dare they expect me to let them in, how dare they expect me to take a risk”. You push the person away so hard.

Depending on how deep the wound will depend on how automatic this rejection process is. It can be so strong that rage is triggered and a feeling that you could set the person on fire because they have threatened you and your safety by daring to enter into your closed kingdom, and it literally feels like a threat to your existence. So sad when really the other is saying “Hello, do you want a friend? Do you want to play?”.

toddler-sulkingIt is like two young children meeting in a playground and the first person has planted their feet, crossed their arms, stomped on the spot and said “NO”, shouted “NO, you will not play with me, go away, leave me alone”. They are totally closed off in their tantrum about how they feel and what has occurred to them in life. Then they sulk, pout, kick and scream about how unfair it all is. Most of us can see this behaviour in toddlers, young children quite easily, but we fail to see that as wounded adults we are doing the same thing.

Life can’t change dramatically for the better unless you uncross your arms, suck in your bottom lip, and you open up to connection, to playing, to having fun. While you are shouting NO nothing much can change. So you have to be willing to lower the defenses, to open up to another way of being and to feeling and releasing the emotional pain underneath the wounds, then it dissolves, then you walk free of it and you can see the blue sky and sunshine and let it in, you can see the beauty in life and let yourself be replenished by it and experience good things and have your life work out more enjoyably.

It is clear that it is up to you to take action to heal the wounds. Noone else can do it for you. Even those brave souls who wear suits of armour and non-flammable overalls who come close wanting to help you move forward. Their efforts can only help if you let them in. If you keep shouting NO energetically or actually saying it through your words and actions, then their efforts can’t help.

It is up to you to take the risk to let life be different. You can do it and it is worth it, so worth it, to walk free from misery and enjoy life, to be pleasantly surprised by the mystery of life and finally see the goodness in all things. You can achieve this, simply by healing the past so it doesn’t cloud your future. It can be done and I and many others can help you do it, if you let us, if you open up and say “YES to life, YES I am willing to move forward and to risk being happy. YES I can do this, I will do this, I choose this”.

Then life will lead you forth to the right people, places, books, courses and whatever else you need that best suits you to help you heal and break free from the pain. It will be different for each person based on their current state of awareness, willingness, and ability to feel and release their pain. Some will need to do self-study at first, before they would be willing to risk seeing a therapist and trusting someone to help them move forward. Some may prefer talk therapy as they don’t yet feel safe enough to go into their bodies and feel what is there. Some may prefer to start with body work modalities to help the body relax and let go, preferring this as they are too scared to voice their concerns or speak the truth that they have tried to hide from their whole lives.

pathThere are many roads home, to healing, to your heart and wholeness. It doesn’t matter which road you take, what matters is your willingness to take a step forward into the unknown, into life being different. If you are willing, the Universe will meet you and guide you forth.

May you learn to run joyously along your path, knowing you are taken care of, and see the beauty of life and love all around you. For it is there just waiting for you to open your arms and embrace it. Life really is good once you heal your pain and can see more clearly. May you obtain inner peace as quickly and as easily as you can. With love, Amen.

By Jodi-Anne (08 October 2016).
Further free guidance on healing techniques and self love are available on the Life Insights and Healing from child abuse pages of this website.

Why are families so disconnected?

Some are and some are close, still maintaining a heart to heart connection between family members. In today’s world people are very busy, achieving, being better than others, obtaining things / material objects. These advances in gadgets, in stuff, are valued more highly than taking the time to BE, to connect with friends and family in real life. It is quicker, easier, more hassle free to just connect on social media and keep your physical distance, to have space for self, to rest and recover after working hard all day or facing your own emotional turmoil.

We are here on the planet to go through our awakening and this requires events to hapen to get us to stop and rethink our choices. It requires events that totally alter what we see as important and valuable in life, that is why the tragedies occur, the near death accidents or illnesses, the loss of relationships, family members or careers, the bankruptcy and crime. It all occurs to get us to stop and feel.

While we are busy living normal life we are often on autopilot, we go about our days the same way, over and over. It is comfortable, relatively easy, we don’t have to expend too much energy. Our comfort zone is stretched if we are asked to do much more and we may resist by shutting out that person and their demands or whatever it is that is asking us to stretch. It is easy to get lazy, to just rest and watch TV, to cuddle your pets or children or partner and to switch off from what is occurring to everyone else and the larger world. This is not callous, not personal, it is just human nature, to care for those you hold dearest and to draw a boundary around them and your way of being and to keep that safe, happy and easy.

Anyone wanting to come into your space may find it hard, if your boundaries are very strong. You simply don’t let them in, there is no time available for catching up or getting to know each other. No time for interaction. This is not necessarily a personal rejection, it is just that the person or people inside the circle are contented with their lives as they are and do not see the need to let anyone else in.

This may change in time, they may become more open and available, a career change, a new child, a special event, starting a hobby, or a loss of some kind may lead them to open the door a little wider. Their circumstances may change and they may need more people to help them, if someone was ill, if there was a new child or if their was unexpected loss in some way, whether that be a death of a loved one, loss of a job, crime and loss of posessions or finances. These losses occur to get people to open up, to step out of their comfort zone and to expand their consciousness. These life changing events kick-start the next phase of your evolutionary growth. They are meant to occur and they serve us. They shake us up and get us moving again.

hurting againIf you are upset that people will not let you in, that the door is closed, their boundaries too high, then look within yourself, look within and see why you are upset. You as an adult don’t need these people, you just want them. You can survive on your own. Any pain you are feeling is a trigger to heal that pain inside.

Many of us in childhood did not get our own needs met. We were left with an emotional deficit and we are hungry, starving for love and acceptance. We try to get it from many places and one of those is our families. We assume that they are our blood and we should be close, together, supporting each other. We should be happy, friendly and caring of each other. But this is just your thinking, your judgement.

You chose to incarnate into your specific family for a reason. If you chose a family that is disconnected, you did so for a reason. Perhaps you wanted to learn independence, self reliance and contentment outside of the family realm. If your family was all loving and kind and life was easy, you would not evolve at the rate you do when life is challenging. The challenges occur to help you go within and heal, to reconnect with your own divine nature and that of Source.

heart wateringAs you heal yourself you find that you don’t need love from others, you realise you are love, that is your true nature, and the nature of the Universe. We are surrounded by love and support all the time, but we don’t see it until we heal all the pain and trauma through which we view the world and those in it. We judge based on what is inside us. Each person, each family is doing exactly what they need for the evolution of its members. In time as they all heal and become one within themselves, love will flow freely throughout that family system. Until then there will be blockages, their will be conflict or separation.

You can’t force people to change, to heal, to let you in. What you can do is choose to love them anyway and to focus on healing your wounds and reconnecting to peace and love in your heart, so energetically love flows from you to everyone, instead of pain and judgement, shaming or blaming of those involved.

Try to be compassionate, try to accept that each is doing what they need to for their evolution and each is awakening at their own speed, evolution cannot occur over night, it takes time, lots of time and different people have different abilities to do so. We need to learn the skills to change our thinking patterns, our subconscious beliefs, our conditioning and emotional density. We need to learn how to take responsibility for our own lives and make the best out of what we have. We need to learn the power of gratitude and positive regard, seeing the best in things, as opposed to the worst.

Life truly can be Heaven on Earth if we do the work to heal ourselves. When we do so we make it easier for others to do the same. Energetically our freedom radiates out into the family system affecting others, making it easier for them to do the same. This is how we can help and make a difference  – by loving everyone as they are and accepting their choices and journey. We can focus on our own healing and evolution and know that when everyone’s hearts open back up love will flow freely between us all and families will be more harmonious. This will all take time and we can’t force it.

Don’t torture yourself by judging your family. Heal yourself instead, enjoy your life as much as you can and the doors will open in time, allowing greater connection to those you love. First you do the work internally, energetically and then it manifests in the outer world. Choose peace and love – that is what the world needs and what you are craving. You have to give it to you. You have to heal your blocks to receiving and to letting people close.

When you are healed and energetically open people will come, some of your blood family and some your Soul family, those who resonate with you, love you and want to be with you. These are your true tribe or family. The ones you birthed into were just the catalysts for your evolution and growth. Know in your heart you are okay, you are loved and you are held dear by all who know you, it may not seem like it, but the love is there, just waiting for you to heal enough so you can feel it. May that day come soon. Blessed BE. Amen.

By Jodi-Anne (27 July 2016).
Further free guidance on healing techniques and self love are available on the Life Insights and Healing from child abuse pages of this website.

How to let life be easy?

amazing-nature-sunrise-hd-wallpaperLife can be easy, very easy, if you don’t fight against what is. Wars happen, corruption exists. This doesn’t mean you ignore it or allow it to continue, it just means you don’t fight against it. You do what you can peacefully to make a difference, to serve the whole, then you let go and surrender.

All is happening as it is for a reason, it is part of the evolutionary process occurring here on Earth. It will take time for violence and hatred to stop. Fighting against it will prolong it. Choosing love and peace, alignment to Source, accepting what is, living peacably wtih love and kindness to all helps reduce it. It is more peace that is needed on the planet. More open hearted, loving people willing to serve  for the benefit of all. Each of you can make that choice and positively impact all those around you.

You don’t have to save the planet or stop a mass murder. All you need to do is love. Open your heart and love, your positive vibration will then travel out making it easier for others to do the same. When you heal your own wounds, you help to heal the wounds of many in the collective who have experienced the same thing as you. That is enough. That is all you need to do.

In healing yourself you become a catalyst for others. Just drop out of your head, into your heart and LOVE.  That is all the world needs, more loving vibrations, then the fighting will stop, the pain will be resolved and peace will reign.

So stop thinking you have to do so much, effort so hard, try to rescue or save anyone. Just flow and BE. Let life guide you where you need to be and bring you who you need to interact with for your and their highest good. It will all come to you, just stay alert to your intuition, your inner guidance and the synchronicities around you.

Trust the process of life to lead you forth, to your greatest unfolding here on Earth, to embody your higher self and shine your light and be of service. That is what life is about, to be authentically you, shining your light for all to see, inspiring them to do the same, to let go of all pretenses and pretending, to let go of hiding and staying small to be safe, to let go of defense mechanisms and armour, to feel and be safe in the arms of the Divine and your fellow man, to love and accept yourself fully as the wonderful child of God that you are, to treat yourself with kindness and tenderness as you grow, as you slip and fall and rise again, as you process each wave of energy, emotion and past density, to come back into your state of innocence and love, birthing your authentic self here on the planet, flowing with ease and grace, wherever life takes you.

That is how you let life be easy, by flowing with it, accepting what comes, what goes and trusting in life to lead you forth. No rigid agenda – surrender and flexibility, allowing what is and what will be to birth in divine timing and divine will. All is as it should be, now and forever more. Amen.

By Jodi-Anne (24 July 2016).
Further free guidance on healing techniques and self love are available on the Life Insights and Healing from child abuse pages of this website.

How bad experiences in childhood lead to adult illlness

Yet another article with the science showing what survivors of child abuse have always known. Abuse in childhood leads to significant physical, emotional and mental difficulties in adulthood. The good news is that more and more people are recognising this and that we can’t simply “get over it”.  Abuse changes the way a child reacts to stress and constant exposure leads to changes in the child’s DNA resulting in the ‘fight or flight’ system being always turned on. The ongoing, chronic stress unfortunately leads to inflammatory and immune responses that damage health as adults.

Joan Kaufman, director of the Child and Adolescent Research and Education (CARE) programme at the Yale School of Medicine, recently analysed DNA in the saliva of happy, healthy children, and of children who had been taken from abusive or neglectful parents. The children who’d experienced chronic childhood stress showed epigenetic changes in almost 3,000 sites on their DNA, and on all 23 chromosomes – altering how appropriately they would be able to respond to and rebound from future stressors.

Likewise, Seth Pollak, professor of psychology and director of the Child Emotion Research Laboratory at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, uncovered startling genetic changes in children with a history of adversity and trauma. Pollak identified damage to a gene responsible for calming the stress response. This particular gene wasn’t working properly; the kids’ bodies weren’t able to reign in their heightened stress response. ‘A crucial set of brakes are off,’ says Pollak.

It is great that science is catching up. They are also recognising that there are many ways to heal which can help survivor’s bodies relax and not be in ‘fight or flight’ all the time.

Science tells us that biology does not have to be destiny. ACEs can last a lifetime, but they don’t have to. Just as physical wounds and bruises heal, just as we can regain our muscle tone, we can recover function in underconnected areas of the brain. If anything, that’s the most important take-away from ACE research: the brain and body are never static; they are always in the process of becoming and changing.

Even if we have been set on high-reactive mode for decades or a lifetime, we can still dial it down. We can respond to life’s inevitable stressors more appropriately and shift away from an overactive inflammatory response. We can become neurobiologically resilient. We can turn bad epigenetics into good epigenetics and rescue ourselves. We have the capacity, within ourselves, to create better health. We might call this brave undertaking ‘the neurobiology of awakening’.

Today, scientists recognise a range of promising approaches to help create new neurons (known as neurogenesis), make new synaptic connections between those neurons (known as synaptogenesis), promote new patterns of thoughts and reactions, bring underconnected areas of the brain back online – and reset our stress response so that we decrease the inflammation that makes us ill.

In the article they specifically mention ‘Meditation, mindfulness, neurofeedback, cognitive therapy, EMDR (eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing) therapy’ as some of the tools that can help survivor’s to calm their bodies and reprogram their minds.

I have found a wide range of techniques helpful including:

  • Energy and body work, such as crystal bed sessions or reiki, to help the body unlock and relax;
  • Psych-K or Lifeline Technique to release trauma and reprogram the subconscious mind so you can change negative beliefs about life and the world into positive ones e.g. so you are not always expecting the worst and you can start to feel safe, so you believe that you do deserve good things and that people can treat you well;
  • Mindfulness and meditation techniques to still the mind and create space to witness what is occurring instead of reacting automatically;
  • Skill development including thought stopping, boundary setting, inner child, and self love skills, so that you no longer allow yourself to be abused by others or by yourself;
  • Family Constellations to heal the trauma in the family system and reconnect with love, thereby allowing greater lifeforce and harmony within.

There is lots that can be done. While adverse childhood trauma does have a massive impact on your life, it can be healed.

Article - bad experiences in childhood lead to adult illness

How childhood trauma affects health across a lifetime

In this short video Nadine Burke Harris explains how adverse childhood experiences impacts the health of the child and continues to do so over the lifetime of the person. She explains in scientific terms why this occurs and ways the impacts can be reduced. She believes that this is a public health issue and should be addressed as such with multidisciplinary teams available to help affected individuals to heal the trauma and reduce the impacts.

Coping with loved ones with addiction or mental illness

The below is a wonderful post by Ally Hamilton explaining how to cope with a loved one who has addiction or mental illness. It is wise advice about not sacrificing your own life trying to rescue someone who does not want to help themselves. Thank you Ally x

drive you crazy

Yogis Anonymous

People can only drive us crazy if we let them. A person can spin his or her web, but we don’t have to fly into the center of it to be stunned, stung, paralyzed and eaten. Remember that your time and your energy are the most precious gifts you have to offer anyone, and that includes those closest to you, and also total strangers. Your energy and your time are also finite, so it’s really important to be mindful about where you’re placing those gifts.

It’s hard not to get caught up when someone we love is suffering, or thrashing around, or in so much pain they don’t know what else to do but lash out. It’s hard not to take that to heart, or to defend yourself, or to try to make things better for them, but you’re not going to walk into a ring and calm a raging bull with your well-thought out dialogue. You’re just going to get kicked in the face, at best, and I use that analogy intentionally. People in pain–whether we’re talking about people with personality disorders or clinical depression, people suffering with addiction, or people who are going through mind-boggling loss–are dealing with deep and serious wounds. They didn’t wake up this way one morning. Whether it’s a chronic issue, or an acute and immediate situation, when you’re dealing with heightened emotions including rage, jealousy, or debilitating fear, you’re not going to help when a person is in the eye of the storm. If someone is irrational, trying to reason with them makes you as irrational as they are; you can’t negotiate with crazy. I’m not using the word as a dagger, I’m saying we’re all crazy sometimes, we’re all beyond reason sometimes. We all have days when we feel everyone is against us, whether that’s based in any kind of reality or not.

You can offer your love, your patience, your kindness and your compassion if someone you care for is suffering. You can try to get them the support they need. You can make them a meal, or show up and just be there to hold their hand, or take them to the window to let in a little light, but if someone is attacking you verbally or otherwise, we’re in a different territory. You are not here to be abused, mistreated, or disrespected. You are not here to defend yourself against someone’s need to make you the villain. You don’t have to give that stuff your energy, and I’d suggest that you don’t. It’s better spent in other places.

We can lose hours and days and weeks getting caught up in drama or someone else’s manipulation. That’s time we’ll never have back. Of course things happen in life; people do and say and want things that can be crushing sometimes, but the real story to examine is always the story of our participation. If someone needs you to be the bad guy, why do you keep trying to prove you’re actually wonderful? Are you wonderful? Brilliant, get back to it. If someone has a mental illness and they are incapable of controlling themselves, keeping their word, or treating you with respect, why do you keep accepting their invitation to rumble? You already know what’s going to happen. Don’t you have a better way to spend your afternoon? My point is, life is too short.

When a person is in the kind of pain that causes them to create pain around them, your job is to create boundaries if it’s someone you want to have in your life. You figure out how to live your life and honor your own well-being, and deal with the other party in a way that creates the least disharmony for you. That means you don’t get in the ring when they put their dukes up. You don’t allow yourself to get sucked in. Do you really think this is the time you’ll finally be heard or seen or understood? People who need to be angry cannot hear you. It doesn’t matter what you do or say, they have a construct they’ve built to support a story about their life that they can live with; it doesn’t have to be based in reality. Not everyone is searching for their own truth or their own peace; some people are clinging to their rage, because that feels easier or more comfortable, or because they really, truly aren’t ready to do anything else yet. You’re not going to solve that, but you can squander your time and energy trying. You can make yourself sick that way. I just don’t recommend it.

You really don’t have to allow other people to steal your peace, whether we’re talking about those closest to you, or people you don’t even know, like the guy who cuts you off on the freeway, or the woman talking loudly on her cellphone at the bank. You don’t have to let this stuff get under your skin and agitate you. You don’t have to let someone’s thoughtless comment or action rob you of a beautiful afternoon. Of course we give our time to people who need us. I’m just saying, don’t get caught up in the drama. Sending you love, Ally Hamilton