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Archive for October 8th, 2007

Handbags (c) Lynda Bernhardt

What activities do you enjoy doing? Do you engage in those activities on a regular basis? If your answer is no, then why not?

Survivors of childhood abuse often “punish” themselves by not engaging in activities that they enjoy. They feel guilty about taking time for themselves when they could be spending that time exhausting themselves while doing things for others. What you enjoy doing deserves to make it onto your calendar on a regular basis.

I love watching movies, but it is hard for me to go to a movie theater with a young child at home. So, I joined Netflix and now watch movies at home on a regular basis. I used to feel guilty about spending both the money and the time on this leisure activity, but I have grown to realize that I need to do this for myself. I cannot give to my family when I am running on empty. Investing some time in myself energizes me enough to do for others.

Playing a musical instrument can be a particularly powerful healing tool because it nurtures the body, soul, and spirit. When I play the piano, there is no past to work through nor a future to fret about: I exist in the now. If you do not know how to play a musical instrument, now is a great time to learn. I always wanted to play the piano, but I suffered abuse at the hands of my piano teacher as a little girl and quit. Buying myself a digital piano and learning how to play it in my thirties has been very healing and has helped me to reclaim a part of myself that I thought was lost forever.

Whatever you enjoy doing, do it!! Set aside an hour or two a week to do something that you truly enjoy. Having a men’s or women’s night out counts, too. Sitting at a restaurant laughing with your friends over a leisurely dinner can be just what the doctor ordered.

Related Topic:

Positive Coping Tools for Healing from Childhood Abuse

Photo credit: Lynda Bernhardt

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