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Archive for October 15th, 2007

Purple Flowers (c) Lynda Bernhardt

Simplifying your life goes hand in hand with my last post about setting boundaries. Many adult survivors of childhood abuse have given others the impression that they are either Superman or Superwoman and can handle anything. Now that you are in crisis as you deal with your past, you cannot do all that you used to do. You need to simplify your life.

When I was dealing with flashbacks and facing my past, I resisted simplifying my life. I believed that I had to complete any commitment I had made, and because I could not say no, I had a lot on my plate. After having an anxiety attack, I realized that I had to slow down, but I did not know how to do it. Each time I thought about dropping a commitment, I thought of all the reasons that I could not do it. So, I came at it from a different direction – I could keep three activities, and the rest had to go. I wound up quitting over a dozen activities, some as small as moderating a message board and some as large as a volunteer committee position with my church. Healing became much easier when I was no longer spread so thin.

Healing from childhood abuse is a fulltime job, so you need to keep the rest of your life as simple as possible. There are some responsibilities that you cannot drop, but take a vacation from the optional ones. You will need all of your energy to focus on healing, so try not to spread that energy out in too many directions.

Accept help from others. Let them baby-sit your children or cook you a meal. Take a year off from volunteer obligations. If you can afford it, cut down to part-time at your job. Stop hosting gatherings and organizing family get-togethers. Simplify your life for a while so you can focus on healing.

Related Topic:

Positive Coping Tools for Healing from Childhood Abuse

Photo credit: Lynda Bernhardt

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