Not everyone’s childhood has been a happy one. Growing up and being raised on toxic experiences could include many forms of abuse coming from an overbearing parent, deep grief, or emotional distance. These terrible memories may scar us for life but they don’t have to.
Recovering from a toxic childhood is hard but totally possible. It may take some time as it takes you on a journey to self-discovery as you unleash your own personal strengths and potential to live your best life.
Here are some of the most effective ways to help you overcome a tough childhood.
Allow yourself to be close to people
As your childhood trauma forced you to live your life in survival mode, you may find it challenging to get close to people. This leads to isolation as you grow up. So, in order to combat this, you need to allow yourself to get close to people and to let them see you as you are. Being your authentic self is the fastest way to get rid of shame and to remind yourself that you’re lovable.
Look after your physical and mental health
When you’ve been through childhood trauma, it’s common to subconsciously feel undeserving of care or to covertly keep yourself in a state of self-rejection. No matter what you believe, always treat yourself as you’d treat your best friend. Look after your health by investing in quality sleep, a good diet, and exercise. For good mental health, you need to make time for emotional release — you can consult a therapist to guide you through it.
Here, you need to do something entirely different than what your fear-based and protective self would do. For instance, if you always keep your guard up, bring it down and allow people to get close to you. If you’re short-tempered, take a deep breath and act with compassion. If you do everything yourself, let others help you. This allows you to grow and transform.
Allow yourself to trust people and be supported
This is one of the best ways to get rid of guilt, shame, and blame. All you need to do is find a group of friends who will love and support you. This may take a tad bit of effort, but it will be helpful in the long run if you do it right. No matter where you are right now, you need to allow yourself to seek out others, ask for support if you need it, and reach out if you want to be heard. It’s worth it.
Learn to accept and let go
Accepting your trauma doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to embrace it, like it, or agree with it. Acceptance is more about how you deal with it. You have 2 options: either let it rule your life or let it go. Letting go doesn’t mean it completely vanishes, it just means that you disallow your bad memories to stop you from living a good life today.
Be gentle on yourself
When you’ve had a tough childhood, you may feel like your life and habits are totally out of your control. We understand that it takes a lot of time to let go of those heart-wrenching feelings. So, be patient with yourself, honour where you are right now, and trust the process. There will be many little victories as you recover that will help you win the war of healing from your childhood trauma.
So, pull yourself together and let the heavy stuff go. Life is too short to be miserable.
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