SILENCE and SOLITUDE as SELF CARE and SELF COMPASSION
The past week has been emotionally-charged. My mind and heart seek refuge in silence and solitude. As a survivor of trauma and a life coach for survivors of childhood sexual abuse as well as other forms of abuse and torture, I know to be aware of my past trauma experiences possibly affecting my present daily life. This awareness helps. Retreating into silence and solitude when needed is a form of self care and self compassion.
A question I ask myself is, “Would a person who has not suffered serious trauma react similarly?” In other words, is my reaction a “normal” one? As my healing process progressed and the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms lessened, I discovered I reacted and acted in a healthier manner. In fact, I handled last week’s emotionally-charged challenges with calmness and finesse. Oh, I was not perfect! That is okay.
I am grateful for my reactions and actions to last weeks’ stressors. It shows me how I am thriving! Life’s difficult experiences occurred to those around me. I, as a witness and team member, supported others. My strength and calmness benefitted them. It was a pleasure to have the opportunity to be a giver and to serve my coworkers. I have received so much support from so many individuals over the years. To survive, to heal, and to thrive is a gift I am now able to share with others in small and not so small ways. Immense gratitude fills my heart.
As I write this post, I am sitting in my favorite coffee shop. A few college students have shared with me that it is easier for them to study (alone) in a coffee shop. I can relate to that! Although there is noise here, there is silence within me. As I sit here in inner solitude, there are no demands or desires to connect with others in conversations or to perform other activities. I am alone and not alone. I’m sitting in a comfortable and safe environment. Many times I enter into the zone or the flow as I write; and, all my surroundings fade away. What a gift it is.
As a trauma life coach, I cannot help but ask you a few questions.
When do you experience the zone or flow?
Where do you focus so deeply and intensely that you lose yourself (in a positive way)?
What positive results do you experience after being in the zone or the flow?
Does the experience of flow occur when you create? Run? Write? Pray/meditate? Enjoy time with family?
Take a few moments today. Sit. Relax. Breathe. What fulfills you on a deep level?
As I write this, “Lean on Me” played. It is amazing how I tune out most of the music; and yet, I perk up when certain familiar songs play. The words are appropriate here. “Lean on me” —– “Swallow your pride.” —— “I just might have a problem that you’ll understand.”
Friends are great. Seek out your friends for support and to offer support. When a therapist, a doctor, spiritual mentor, or a life coach is needed or desired, seek that person also. As Americans especially, most of us are raised to be independent and with a do it myself attitude. There are times when a person in a support role can not only support you, but also speed up your process.
My experiences of terrible abuse – childhood sexual abuse, clergy abuse, domestic violence, extreme abuse (ritual abuse), and torture – did not kill me. These horrendous experiences did not destroy me. I am a trauma survivor! I thrive!!
As a trauma life coach, you might have a problem I understand! I understand because I have experienced trauma (most likely similar to yours). I have walked through the pain and the healing process. Therapists, spiritual mentors, friends, and so many others supported me on this journey.
I see success as being more than material. A career that fulfills you is very important. Too many people spend many hours in jobs they dread or detest. The depth of relationships with your friends, family, and yourself matter. If you lean toward the spiritual, thriving in the spiritual arena is rewarding in a way that words cannot fully explain. There is always further to travel on the spiritual path!
I continue to be amazed by life. There is so much GOODNESS in the world! My eyes are open. My heart is open.
Joy was part of my emotionally-charged week. Unexpected joy appeared at the end of my week of challenges. A last box of my personal belongings left with a friend in Spokane arrived at my door. Five years ago, I left it with her. This box contains items of special meaning to my daughter, Megan, and I. The joy filled me. The memories of Megan and I flowed. Good memories. LOVE filled the room where I sat on the floor unpacking the box. Life … items of personal value not lost … The love was never lost. One day Megan will experience true freedom, deep inner peace, and joy. In the meantime, I love my daughter, Megan Ellen … as always.
If you choose, scroll up to the photo at the top of the post. Look at the bench in the photo. Imagine walking toward the bench and then sitting. Sit in silence and solitude for as long as you desire ……
What do you see? Do you hear any sounds of nature? Are you interested in touching the water to see how warm or cold it is?
Are you peaceful?
Is joy in your heart?
Do you sense love?
I am here … as a trauma life coach … to support you as you reach your desires. Connect with me.
Take gentle care of yourself!