“Hearing about other people’s trauma is particularly difficult if you’ve experienced a lot of trauma yourself. Your nervous system isn’t starting from neutral, and you may not have the hardiness of those for whom hearing about such events slide right off their back.” – Jasmin Lee Cori in “Healing from Trauma: A survivor’s guide to understanding your symptoms and reclaiming your life”.
I just started reading through another self improvement book, and within the first few pages, I realized this is literary gold. I come across a few of these books from time to time where I learn so much within just a few sentences. This particular book is a good one for me specifically because the author doesn’t recount her memories, traumas, or tell stories about specific events. She teaches you some tools to use in your recovery, no matter what the trauma. The above quote is from the introduction section of this new book and hits close to home. I just recently learned how to ‘start from neutral’ when faced with a trigger conversation or event. The two tools the author teaches first are conversation and journaling. Which I do a lot of both when I’m healing. One of the tools I’m learning how to do know is take perspective. I mentally take steps backwards and observe the situation. I stop focusing on my story and listen. I breathe. I don’t recoil, freeze, or get upset. It’s not my story, I’m there to listen and help support others. I don’t pass judgment on anything anyone ever tells me. Again, it’s not my story, we all have our skeletons and mistakes. I just choose to be a clean slate and think about everything in it’s entirety.
“We take in our traumatic histories in layers, and the denial and dissociation that helps us originally may still be at work as we learn about trauma. This denial and dissociation try to protect us from painful truths by blocking them out or not staying present to take in what is happening.”
This is so incredibly true. Some people distract themselves, others claim they are fine, and others avoid it entirely. Learning to handle the trauma is not something that can be learned though a step program. Seems like common sense, right? The human brain is a complicated place, and you can’t just rewire how things work overnight. But ‘how do I get over ___?’ or ‘how to become balanced’ google searches aren’t going to tell you. They say ‘time heals all wounds’… that’s not true. It’s knowledge that is gained over time. Maximize the knowledge by teaching yourself how to observe, learn, and act on the information you now possess.
Shit happens. No matter who you are talking to, everyone everywhere has suffered a trauma of some kind. These skills can help anyone with dealing with a trauma. I recommend giving this book a try to anyone who has ever felt pain from some shit that has happened to them in their life. This is a gold mine of information, and it’s incredibly powerful if you can absorb the information being given. Take the time to read and understand the message being taught in this one.