Children are born into this world pure and innocent. Babies are open and trusting, expecting all their needs to be met. They move from need to need, want to want and live purely in the moment. As we make our way through childhood, different events, circumstances and experiences shape how we view and experience the world. Hopefully, those events are positive, filled with happiness, joy and satisfaction. Our needs and wants are met and we grow up being happy, well-adjusted human beings.
However, this is not the case for everyone. Some children grow up experiencing abandonment, neglect, violence or abuse. We used to think these circumstances or experiences were the trauma. We even call them traumatic events. But this is not what causes trauma.
How Trauma Occurs
Trauma is not the event or circumstance that occurred. Trauma is what happens inside a person as a result of the events and circumstances that happen to us.
Two people can have the same experiences growing up, be raised by the same parents in the same environment, and only one may experience addiction, PTSD, anxiety or negative patterns, while the other does not. This is because they have internalized and processed the events and circumstances of their childhood differently.
One was able to reconcile it and make sense of it so it had little negative effect, while the other became stuck in the loop of unresolved incidents that she keeps reliving and protecting herself from, so she disconnects from her emotions.
When a small, helpless child experiences something painful, like neglect or abuse, that child can’t do anything about it so she disconnects from her body and her emotions. The pain is unbearable and the child develops a coping mechanism to survive. That pain remains and creates a disconnect. The disconnect from self is the trauma.
The effects of trauma are significant and affect how a person sees herself in the world in relation to others. There are three significant ways trauma affects a person.
How Do We Heal from Trauma?
The first step in healing trauma is by having awareness. Awareness is the key to change.
Developing an understanding that we have these perceptions and beliefs that shape our lives and opens the door to transforming those negative beliefs and what we believe to be true about ourselves. It begins by developing an understanding of those beliefs, where they came from and the circumstances in which they were formed.
Healing is not something that happens overnight. It is a process. It takes time and works to change our negative beliefs and make the world a safe place in which to be vulnerable and take chances.
My Personal Experience with Trauma
Many of us have the belief that we are not good enough. My adoption of this belief happened as a young child. I often got into trouble and was punished for things my brother did. I often heard I was the oldest and should know better. I would try to explain my side and was dismissed.
I did not feel listened to or heard by my parents and therefore developed the belief that I was not good enough and it wasn’t safe to explain. You just don’t “make waves” or stand up for yourself because no one is going to hear you anyway. This showed up in my life in many different ways. I was rarely vulnerable because I did not feel it was safe.
People wouldn’t like me if I shared what I really thought or felt. I stayed in the background because then I wasn’t seen or acknowledged by others. What I said was not important and therefore I was not important or relevant. I stayed safe by not saying much.
I spent a lot of time projecting my past onto my present. When I started healing those wounds and dealing with the traumas, my perception of myself and the world around me started to change. It was no longer a scary place for me to express myself.
Through the process of compassion, Hypnotherapy and Neuro Trauma Healing Process I am healing things I never knew existed within me. I am more able to live in the present moment without being triggered by past events. I can be more vulnerable and have more intimate relationships.
I have closer friendships with women particularly, and share my thoughts and feelings more openly. I am letting myself be seen and taking risks to be in the spotlight instead of the background.
The Next Step
Healing trauma is a scary prospect. Our imagination and expectation of pain can get the better of us. What I have learned is that I'd rather go through the little bit of pain and heal the wound instead of pouring salt on it, feeling the excruciating pain of the patterns and never healing.
When you are interested in taking the leap and healing those wounds, book a discovery session. From my experience, I can tell you, taking the leap was the best thing I ever did.