Thrive After Abuse (Why You Can't Avoid Life Forever)
Sometimes, after a traumatic event or period of ongoing trauma (such as after experiencing family violence or domestic abuse), people sometimes feel unable to cope with life and "other people".
Further more, when people are abused, they often lose their self-respect. Unfortunately, most do not recognize this. Perpetrators strive to make their victims lose respect for themselves, because that way the victim gets in to the mind set of "I deserve it".
After the abuse has ended, while the victim may have "escaped" their abuser, they have not yet escaped the "abuse" (or the effects of it). Many do not realize that the "leaving" step is only the start of their journey, and that the bulk of their journey will involve healing from the abuse.
The "healing" they need to achieve involves many things:
- They have to learn to trust again - themselves and others.
- They still have to learn to live again - for themselves and not for others.
- They still have to learn to love again - themselves as well as others.
- They need to learn to respect
themselves again - instead of trying to earn the respect of others.
"I walk slowly, but I never walk backward. " - Abraham Lincoln
Funnily enough, it is the self respect thing that is most often over-looked. Even those who do realize they have lost respect for themselves often do not realize that regaining their self-respect can be the key to healing themselves completely. And further more, those who do recognize this often have no idea how to go about rectifying it.
Once they realize that at some stage they stopped respecting themselves, they can feel lost and not know how to get it back. Instead, they "lay low" or go in to self imposed social isolation (I did). They may attempt to "avoid life" and its challenges. Some may only need to do this for a while, but others may find themselves "stuck", and even feel a wish to avoid life forever.This is where it goes from having "time out" to being a problem.
You see, there is nothing wrong with avoiding "life" TEMPORARILY - after all, everybody needs time out at some stage in their life - but you cannot avoid life forever - that would not be living. That would be existing.
"It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light." - Aristotle Onassis
If you are simply existing, you need to find a reason to start LIVING again. You need to find inner peace so that you can live your life and find fulfillment. And believe it or not, it IS possible! If you are someone who has inadvertently misplaced your self-respect, I have a message for you:
The self respect that you seek cannot be found anywhere but in your own heart. It cannot be given to you, only you can find it. Self respect comes from within, from the satisfaction of achievement, from knowing you have something to offer, from inspiring others to greater things, from giving of yourself for the greater good, from providing people with an insight that will foster empathy, from sharing your knowledge with those who seek enlightenment, from the pride felt with each small success, from having a sense of purpose that gives you direction, from forgiving yourself for your mistakes, from gaining wisdom from your experiences, and from never giving in to failure, but always having courage to try again.
"FREEDOM IS WHAT YOU DO WITH WHAT'S BEEN DONE TO YOU" - Jean Paul Sartre
Self respect will increase with self love, and by believing in and trusting yourself, instead of waiting for others to do so. Love and believe in yourself, and then the love and warmth you seek will be able to find you. Find the Light, and add your own to its brilliance! Let it shine!!!
True inner peace, real fulfillment, real living, all of that involves getting involved: experiencing, participating, engaging, finding, losing, grieving, celebrating, giving, receiving, sharing, failing, succeeding, learning, teaching, working, playing, liking, loving...
Yes, all that involves risk, but the gamble is worth it. Life is too short to wake up with regrets, so love the people who treat you right, & forget about the ones who don't. If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands. Believe that everything happens for a reason: if something changes your life, so be it. After all, nobody said life would be easy, they only promised that it would be worth it...
"Are you a victim of abuse? Make a D.E.A.L. with yourself to become a survivor!
D - Discover, Decide, Disclose, Devise, Develop, Discuss, Design, Dare, Dream!
E - Evolve, Engage, Educate, Empathize, Enlighten, Encourage, Enable!
A - Act, Aspire, Accommodate, Advance, Advocate, Aid, Achieve, Amaze!
L - Look, Listen, Learn, Laugh, Live, Lead into the LIGHT, Love!"
"A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein
Inspiring Quotes to get you on your way:
"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning." - Albert Einstein
"I know where I'm going and I know the truth, and I don't have to be what you want me to be. I'm free to be what I want." - Muhammad Ali
"Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it. " - Bill Cosby
"With realization of one's own potential and self-confidence in one's ability, one can build a better world." - Dalai Lama
"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts. " - Winston Churchill
"Be the change that you want to see in the world. " - Mohandas Gandhi
"Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon." - Dalai Lama
"There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle." - Albert Einstein
"Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!" - Audrey Hepburn
"Give light and people will find the way." - Ella Baker
"Your present circumstances don't determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start." - Nido Qubein
"Never, never, never give up!" - Winston Churchill
What is Life - to YOU?
"What is the Meaning of Life? Whatever you want it to be!" - James Frey
That said, take your pick from my version of "What is Life?", (inspired by the original, which was written by Mother Theresa):
What is Life?
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a gift, accept it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is a sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a duty, perform it.
Life is a tragedy, face it.
Life is a road, build it.
Life is a treat, share it.
Life is a gamble, bet on it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a mystery, unfold it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a thirst, quench it.
Life is an experience, enjoy it.
Life is a book, write it.
Life is a journey, complete it.
Life is a blessing, praise it.
Life is an event, participate in it.
Life is a race, run it.
Life is a tale, tell it.
Life is a vision, see it.
Life is a symphony, hear it.
Life is a play, act in it.
Life is an elixir, drink it.
Life is an opportunity, recognize it.
Life is a statement, make it.
Life is a quest, undertake it.
Life is a picture, paint it.
Life is a promise, keep it.
Life is a struggle, strive for it.
Life is a risk, take it.
Life is a goal, achieve it.
Life is a puzzle, solve it.
Life is a possibility, create it.
Life is a lesson, learn from it.
Life is a blank canvas, fill it.
Life is a choice, choose it.
Life is a right, stand up for it.
Life is hard as rock, sculpt it.
Life is costly, work for it.
Life is beautiful, appreciate it.
Life is precious, cherish it.
Life is tenuous, fight for it.
Life is awesome, admire it.
Life is real, believe in it.
Life is exquisite, savor it.
Life is knowledge, know it.
Life is incredible, be inspired by it.
Life is alive, feel it.
Life is love, live it.
Life is life, love it.
Life is Light, LET IT SHINE!
Please join me on FaceBook
- STOP the Violence Against Women & Children
Organize to Resist! Together we can take on the Predators! Let's Break the Silence to End the Violence by working together to make our voices a Resounding SHOUT!!! Perpetrators BEWARE - you don't stand a chance!
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Copyright © 2010 Mel Stewart, "safe-at-last", of Perth, Western Australia. All rights reserved.
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Copyright © 2010 Mel Stewart, "safe-at-last" and Licensors Nodtronics Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.