Tag: aftermath of narcissistic abuse
Aftermath of an Abusive Relationship – Self Care
Colors Guided Meditation
Relax your body
Feel your shloulders and neck muscles relaxing
Feel the muscles in you face release and allow all facial expression to rest
Especially those small muscles around your mouth, lips and jaw
Relax your chest and feel the beating of your heart become slower and more even
Like a soft drum ever so gently thumping a rhythm for your ears to hear
Notice as your nervous system begins to respond sympathetically to the slow beating of your heart
As you begin to relax even deeper, you can begin to recognize the beautiful energy fields flowing all around you
As you feel the weight of your body sinking deeper towards the ground, you realize that you can breath in the lavendar, indigo or gold colored energies around you
As you notice that you are sinking deeper into a state of trance, you can breath deeply the color of the energy field that best supports you
Draw that color into your body and notice the feeling of that energy filling you all the way to the tips of your toes and fingertips
Draw the color into you and you will notice the energy is calming you and energizing you at the same time
Exhale a different color
This is the color of negative feelings and any bad energies that others have put into you
As you feel your toes tingle from the positive energies on the inhale…
Draw all the negative energies from inside of your body and exhale them to send them out of you
You can see the color of this negative energy and notice that the color varies on the exhales
As your body becomes even more relaxed, you realize these bad energies are no longer serving you
And it is okay to let them leave
You notice tngling energy in your shoulders, neck and you begin to have a deeper sensation of the calming , healing energies that are drawn into your body with each breath
And you feel safe letting the negative, bad energies leave you
As you become filled with the beautiful color that you feel all around you, you realize that these energies are always around you
You just have to relax and notice and observe them
Breath in the energizing colors
And exhale the negative ones
Inhale through your nose
Exhale through your mouth , releasing these sick energy build ups from your chest
You can continue until you feel you have released everything you needed to
My Top Favorite Self Care Behaviors
Self care is part of self parenting. If you have C-PTSD from childhood abuse, emotional trauma, or neglect, then you were probably not taught to care for yourself.
If your emotional needs were regularly discounted then you were trained to ignore your feelings about being uncomfortable, and taught to hide those feelings. You were not able to get what you needed to make your environment feel safe and comfortable.
If your parents did not make an effort to care for your need to feel safe and comfortable, then you were programmed into discounting your own comfort needs.
Everone has the need to feel comfort, safety and pleasure. It is not selfish to have these needs. It is normal and it is part of the survival instinct.
As an adult who came from a narcissistic pareny or otherwise dysfunctional family, you have to learn how to parent yourself now. …Not in the same way you were parented as a child. But in a nurturing, compassionate way.
Learning thow to care for yourself will allow you to have more energy and patience ti share your love with other people.
Love the loving. Maintain behaviors of self love and then show compassion to people who have the capacity for love and empathy. Do not waste energy trying to change unloving people.
So here is a list of my top 10 favorite self care ideas. Please share your own favorite ideas in the comments below.
1. Wrap up in hot towels from the dryer. You don’t have to be doing wash at the time. Just toss 2 or 3 nice towels in the dryer and dry them on high, for 10 or 15 minutes. Then wrap up in them.
2. Cover yourself in soft blankets. Buy one special blanket that has your favorite texture. Running your hands over pleasing textures can calm the nervous system, similar to petting a soft furred animal.
3. Take a warm shower or bath. You don’t have to wait until you need to bathe. Hot steamy showers have a healing effect and calm the nervous system. Submersing yourself in a bath of warm water will help you be mindful of the present moment.
4. Listen to music that makes you feel empowered. Your favorite music has a direct effect on your nervous system and will generate dopamine and feel-good chemical responses.
5. Petting and playing with your favorite kind of animals. Animals are living spiritual beings. Different people are drawn to different animals for different emotional and spiritual energies that these animals have.
6. Water has healing properties. Drinking clean water…swimming in water… and being near the ocean, stream… or a beautiful sparkling lake…all have spiritually uplifting possibilities.
7. Creating your perfect sleep space. Your sleeping area needs to be a calm haven of nurturing and soothing quality. Alter your lighting with red or other colored light bulbs in a table lamp. Add soothing sounds and textureus. The colors should be ones that are important to you and have an affect on your nervous system.
8. Uplifting words. Read or watch videos by people who inspre you. Your self esteem should feel boosted after spending time with a message that energizes and validates you.
9. Learn to say NO, without feeling obligated to make them agree that your reasons are valid. Being afraid to say NO to people will cause you to be forced into situations that deplete your energy and your self esteem.
10. Create things that are inventive, artistic, authentic or unique. Draw, color, craft, write a poem, sing in your unique voice, write, create a new yoga routine, rearrange items in a unique way, decorate a box, add fringe to your lampshade with a hot glue gun, change the laces in your sneakers to colored ones, make a beaded bracelet, plant some flowers, choose your favorite material at JoAnne fabrics and lay it on your table for a table cloth, buy a bag of buttons at the craft store and sew them onto your tops and jackets, add some coloful garnishes to your dinner plate….explore….create…don’t worry about comparing your creativity to others….be yourself!
Shame Holds us Back from Our Possibilities
This is a great talk by Brene Brown.
She describes the difference between shame and guilt very elegantly here. She has done extensive research about shame, and states that it is a cause of depression, anxiety and suicide in most cultures.
She talks about shame as an epidemic in our culture and how the media and society program us for shame. The ads that tell us how we “should be,”
and what we “should be doing.” …to the people in our lives that expect us to live up to unreasonable standards.
Shame can come from abuse and emotional trauma in our childhoods, and in our adulthood experiences. Shame is programmed into us by others. You can re-wire the brain with thought patterns that are more supportive for you. Shame is a destroyer.
I believe that many mental disorders are based in shame. I work with abuse survivors that carry loads of shame from their past. Even when people come to the realization that they were abused, the shame does not just go away. In fact sometimes it becomes worse, during the healing process because old wounds are being opened up.
Walking through the programs that are in your brain is important, to be able to find the truth about yourself. You are a special, unique person.
You do not have to carry toxic shame with you.
You cannot change the past, but you can change the meaning of the memories that you carry of it.
The people that planted those seeds were just trying to meet their own agenda by keeping you down, and unsure of your value and place in the world.
Brene Brown makes the point that creativity, inventiveness, and change come from a place of vulnerability. Doing things that are different, and uniquely you means you have to be somewhat vulnerable.
The greatest minds of the world came up with original ideas and creations and discoveries. They were not always met with acceptance.
You do not have to follow the crowd. You have your own voice…you just have to find it and differentiate that authentic voice from the programs that were implanted into your brain. Shame is one of those programs that is no longer serving you.
Love the Loving
Love the loving people. Share your kindness and love with people who are able to love and care for people. Waste not your loving energies on people who cannot love others.
Show compassion for those who have compassion and are capable of empathy with others. Loving people will fill your energies, rather than drain them.
The energy exchange between two loving people will raise both of them up to a higher consciousness level. You will feel like a part of them has been added to you. This will not cause them to lose anything.
Being kind and loving to another person who have love and compassion, will add part of yourself to them. They will carry part of you with them, but this will not cause you to lose anything.
If you feel you are being drained bu someone, be careful not to lose yourself in them. If this is a person incapable of empathy and compassion, then they will take from you and not give anything back.
Share your kindness and your special spiritual gifts with other who are special. It will uplift you and you will feel your love for all living things growing inside you.
Holding resentment for someone who abused you can be like a dark hole inside of you. Sharing love with loving people can help to fill this darkness with light. The more light you carry with you, the more it will surround you. Others will feel the warmth of this light that is being generated by your spirit.
Coping with PTSD and Anxiety Disorders
If you have PTSD or an anxiety disorder, some days you have to take breaks between your tasks. Different people are triggered by different things and becoming overloaded can result in a complete meltdown or panic attack.
Pushing through your day without a break to calm yourself will drain you. It can take a lot of energy to do errands and activities, when you are being exposed to triggers in your environment.
Being sleep deprived can add to your anxiety. It is important to find ways to get enough rest and sleep. If anxiety keeps you from sleeping well at night, your body and your brain may require naps during the day. Self care is important.
If you need breaks between doing things, try to think ahead to plan enough time to take them. Be gentle and adaptable with yourself.
You are your own best advocate. Draw boundaries when you need them. Think of how you would treat a friend in circumstances like the ones you are in at the time, if your friend also suffered from PTSD.
Sometimes it gives some perspective to think of what allowances and flexibility you would offer someone else. Looking at yourself from an observer point of view can help you gain some perspective and design coping methods for yourself.
Sending love and healing energies,
Emotophobia and Being Manipulated by Others
Emotophobia is the fear of unpleasant emotions, not to be confused with emetophobia, the fear of vomiting.
There is little online about emotophobia.
The few articles I found offered the suggestion to “stop treating negative emotions as if they are your enemies and can harm you.”
This is somewhat condescending and implies that emotions themselves cannot harm you.
The person offering this advice clearly has never been in a situation where showing negative emotions could harm them.
So, they think it is rather ridiculous that someone would associate their negative emotions with danger.
The problem with this thinking is that there are situations where someone’s emotions can cause them harm.
This advise shows a complete misunderstanding of emotophobia and its root causes.
People with emotophobia are not “treating” emotions as if they are the enemy.
For people that have emotophobia, emotions were the enemy and they were followed by consequences.
People that grew up in mentally abusive childhoods were not permitted to have emotions like other people are.
The expression of emotion, which represents being an individual, is often punished by abusive parents.
Even children who were not physically abused, could have had their right to individual ideas and feelings violated.
Narcissistic parents and other overbearing, maniplulative parents do not want their children to develop independent thoughts and ideas.
They do not want their children thinking in terms of their own needs at all. When their children expressed feelings, the parents retaliated.
Punishments from the silent treatment to aggressive verbal abuse of the child are used.
Physical consequences may also follow as a matter of course, when a child showed anything resembling disobedience, including not feeling what they were told to feel.
These mentally abusive parents, want the focus on themselves and their needs. They demand for the child to cater to their ever changing desires and demands.
In order to survive in this type of environment, the child must learn to constantly read the parent’s body language and tone of voice.
They must anticipate the desires and moods of the parent. If they fail to do so, it is met with negative consequences.
If the child expresses disagreement, or unhappiness with the parent, they will likely invoke the anger and wrath of the parent.
Even a facial expression of disagreement with the parent can bring out their anger.
For their own protection, these children and teenagers learn to disguise their feelings and push them down.
They do not want the parent to see their feelings because it will be used against them.
If you grew up in this type of environment, then feeling negative emotions was the enemy. It is not something we have suddenly developed an irrational fear of as adults.
This environment causes C-PTSD, which is Complex Post Traumatic Stess Disorder, in many people. This is carried over into adulthood.
So, the advice to “stop treating emotions as if they were the enemy” and to tell people that feeling emotions is safe, does not make sense to someone with C-PTSD from childhood mental abuse.
Adults can also develop emotophobia from ongoing abusive relationships with a partner. Women become afraid to disagree with their partner because they fear his anger.
Abusive people do not tolerate independence from their partner. When the partner asserts the fact that they are an individual person, it is met with extreme resistance or anger from the narcissist.
Again, the brain rewires the neural connections to avoid showing negative feelings. This is a necessary survival tactic at the time.
It is not easily undone. The brain considers it necessary in order to protect the safety of the person.
It takes years to develop this survival tactic and to detach from and avoid negative emotions. The brain becomes wired to discourage entering into situations that may cause negative emotions.
To undo what was a learned survival skill takes a lot of work in re-wiring the brain.
Telling someone “emotions are your friends” does not work, especially without any idea why the person feels such anxiety about emotions like anger and sadness.
The problem with emotophobia is that having it makes you easier for people to manipulate. People that want their way all the time, can use emotional manipulation to make you want to comply, rather than experiencing the pain of the emotophobia symptoms.
Realizing that you allow people to have their way, in order to avoid upsetting them is the first step to healing. Then you can understand that people get upset sometimes and unless you are in danger from them in some way, you can endure the feelings you will go through when they react to you.
You can begin to recognize when someone is trying to emotionally manipulate you. They will not take no for an answer. They use shame and guilt to get you to do things. Another sign is that their reactions to things will be far out of proportion to the “slight” they should be perceiving.
You have just as much of a right to your boundaries as anyone else does. People should not get their way just because they play on your fear of upsetting them.
**for information about coaching, hypnosis, and NLP for people with C-PTSD and emotophobia see my web site HERE or follow the gentlekindness facebook page HERE
Setting Boundaries with Manipulative People
- Other people do not get to decide what upsets you and what does not.
- Other people have no frame of reference about your life, to be able to decide if you are being “too sensitive” or “hyper sensitive” . No…they just don’t get to!
- Shaming someone is not love or support in any way, no matter how they attempt to twist things around to convince you. No shaming! Don’t accept it!
- People do not have the right to tell you how to perceive reality or to question you perception of reality. No they don’t! Just say NO !
- You are completely entitled to your feelings and to feel hurt when someone is….. mean, disrespectful, inconsiderate, selfish, sarcastic, deceitful, dishonest, disappointing, exploitative, condescending or minimizing to your reality. (image from Pinterest link HERE)
- Someone insisting you perceive things the way they tell you to all the time is gaslighting you.
- You have the right to a conversation with a loved one about abusive or hurtful behavior. You are not being abusive to them when you point out behavior that hurts you and express your feelings about that behavior!!!
- Conversations about your feelings that always turn around somehow to be about their feelings, is a red flag of narcissistic abuse.
- No demeaning behavior, embarrassing you, disrespectful behavior or condescending attitudes have to be tolerated. It does not prove that you love them…it is just evidence that you have been desensitized to that kind of treatment.
- Excuses for their behavior that make you the cause of it, are UNACCEPTABE !
*PLEASE NOTE **If you are in an abusive relationship with someone that you fear may become violent, then please do not provoke them ! …. Get help, and carefully plan your escape from them. …..Do not risk violence to yourself or your children….. Pathological people can suddenly become much more violent when confronted by a partner.
Re-framing Traumatic Memories and Re-Wiring False Beliefs
As children we are taught how to see the world. The meanings of incidents and events are programmed into us, along with false beliefs that we carry into adulthood.
We have held onto certain beliefs for a long time and cannot always see that we need to re-assess them.
All beliefs that we were taught are not true. Believing and following along blindly is not something you have to do.
Respect your intuition and prioritize your gut feelings.
Trauma can cause the brain to hold those memories in a way that they are integrated properly, thus causing emotional flashbacks. Emotional flashbacks are triggered by things that remind our subconscious of the memory.
We can learn to re-frame memories, using NLP techniques.
This way we can attach new meaning to those memories, rather than holding onto the meaning that other people out into our brain.
We can also re-wire false beliefs that we are holding to, that are no longer serving us, or that were never serving us in a healthy way.
It is your brain and you have the right to frame the memories the way that supports you best. Truth and reality are dependent upon many things.
Enjoy this video and learn some NLP techniques that you can use. For more information about NLP, hypnosis for trauma, and coaching for overcoming narcissistic abuse, and abusive relationships, you can visit the gentlekindness face book page and also the web site.
Also follow the YouTube channel for more videos about overcoming abuse, and dealing with pathological people.
Facebook page Gentlekindnesscoaching Facebook
Gentle Kindness Coaching gentlekindnesscoaching.com