I was asked to suggest ways of handling a particular problem. I became frustrated when every solution I offered was immediately dismissed as being impossible or undesirable.
I addressed the negativity directly, suggesting it was the root of the problem.
The client agreed the negativity was an ongoing problem. The negativity was a product of very difficult trauma, which, the client had already assured me, was no longer a problem – the healing, in the client’s opinion, was complete.
“I am sorry I am so negative, but it’s just who I am right now, and I have to be who I am.”
I mention this story, not because it’s unique – it’s not. I mention it because it’s common.
We all suffer trauma, depression, anxiety, fear and heartache. It’s unavoidable.
Many of us work hard to heal from our trauma and heartache, and many of us underestimate just how much more healing there is to do.
The fact is this. Healing, for all of us, is a primary goal in this lifetime. On a spiritual level, our healing path defines our personal journey.
That is very different from letting our trauma define us.
“No, you are not a negative person, far from it.” I said to my client. “Your trauma makes you anxious, and that makes you feel negative. The negativity is simply you giving voice to your trauma.”
We need to give voice to our trauma in order to heal. When we confuse the voice of our trauma for our own, authentic voice, we make a grave error.
What can you do when this happens to you?
First, accept that the path to healing can be life-long, and that’s OK.
Next, recognize if you wait to be fully healed to move forward, you’ll be stuck where you are for a really long time.
Then, understand that fear and anxiety born of past trauma can never be an excuse not to move forward.
Finally, see your trauma, anxiety and fear as an entity separate from yourself. You can give it a voice. But don’t give it your voice.
Trauma, anxiety and heartbreak will shape you, and become part of who you are. That’s ok.
Never let trauma, anxiety and heartbreak define you, or become the whole of who you are.