Steps to Healing – Step 3 – Healing the roots.

Posted by on Nov 1, 2014 in adult survivor of child abuse, childhood trauma, healing, Resources, self-care, self-healing | 0 comments


In my first two posts, I covered steps for healing current personal issues, caused by an abusive childhood.  As I’ve stated before, the process can closely resemble peeling back the layers of an onion. Some of the layers will bring tears to the eyes but can be healed quickly, while some are more intense, requiring tools that help us break free and move on.  This last post of this series may be a little longer than the other two so get comfortable. Make your coffee or tea, have a seat, and get ready to learn some powerful tools.

The first post, “Step 1 – Asking the Right Questions”, shares how I learned to do exactly that.  I use a technique called the Brainstorm Bubble Chart, that helps to discover any questions that may be causing a current issue.  Once you gather all of the questions that you discover, you then identify your core questions.

The second post, “Step 2 – Getting the Right Answers”, shows the steps that I use to dig down deep and get the real answers to the core questions.

The example issue I’m using was my overwhelming fear of talking to men.

After completing the first step, my questions were:

1)  Why do men scare me?
2)  Why do men intimidate me?
3)  Why can’t I communicate the way I want to?
4)  What are the base emotions that I’m feeling when this happens?

In completing the second step, my answers were:

1) Men scare me at a base, survivalist level because I was abused by one in the most detrimental way.
2) Men intimidate me. I lose my ability to be eloquent, deep, and thoughtful in my communication because my voice was silenced when it mattered most.
3) Men make me feel flustered. I felt ashamed and lower about myself because, once again, I didn’t make any sense, acted extremely awkward, or I literally tripped over my words while unable to think straight.

Now it was time to take the next step. I looked at it all from a place of calm and looked for the emotional roots. I personally use meditation to achieve the place of calm needed for 15-20 minutes while focusing on my breathing. Meditation has been scientifically proven to be majorly effective in so many ways for our brains, and our bodies. There’s a video that was done by Dan Harris, News Anchor for ABC News 24, called  “Hack Your Brain’s Default Mode with Mediation”, which explains the neuroscience in a concise and quick way.

There are three sites that I highly recommend if you’ve never tried meditation, or you are in the beginner’s club.

  • Headspace –  It’s a fantastic site that helps teach how to meditate. It’s simple, the videos are educational, adorably entertaining, and it works. The first level is free, and by the end, you will be meditating for 10 minutes with complete ease. It is a paid subscription if you choose to continue, but I have found it to be highly worth the yearly investment in myself. Plus, you get to listen to a soothing British accent, and who can’t benefit from that?
  • Omvana –  This site offers up a lot of free background sound and music tracks, as well as guided meditations. There are a ton of great paid tracks as well. The reason I recommend this site above any of the others is because they have a Preview option. You can check it out and see if you dig it first before you download.  They also have a wide variety to choose from.
  • Insight Timer – This is a free app that’s available on both the apple and google play platforms. When you have flexed your mediation muscles enough and you are feeling a little more confident, this app has thousands of meditation tracks available for you to peruse. They break them down into different playlist categories to make it easier for searching, such as nature, mindfulness, and acceptance. Some neat perks with this are that you can keep track of your own stats and bookmark the tracks that you really dig.

Now on to the final step – healing those roots.


After I use meditation to get to a calm place, I focused on the feelings that came up when I thought about my fear of talking to men. I noticed that they were all deeply rooted:  Fear, stress, shame, and embarrassment. My next step was then to do a tapping process called a Psychological Reversal (PR) Triangle, daily.  This takes about 2 minutes, it’s very easy, and you can quickly learn how to do it yourself by clicking here.

While doing the PR Triangle, I used the following statements:

“I want to be confident in myself and my voice when speaking to men.
I can be confident in myself and my voice when speaking to men.
I will be confident in myself and my voice when speaking to men.
I am going to be confident in myself and my voice when speaking to men.
I am confident in myself and my voice when speaking to men.
I’m okay.

I want to be even more confident.
I can be even more confident.
I will be even more confident.
I am going to be even more confident.
I am more confident.
I’m okay.
I’m in control.”

I did this for a two week period, first thing in the morning.  During that time, I started to notice things changing.  I was interacting with men in a more confident and self-assured manner, as well as communicating more confidently with women, too.  I found myself feeling stronger, and I had the ability to state my thoughts or how I felt, without any of the emotional hiccups or issues.

I found my voice. 

Now, I’m embracing this new aspect of myself.  I am boldly going where I’ve never gone before:  I’m talking to men at Home Depot, at the car dealership, doctors, teachers, and men in positions of authority.   To be clear, I’m not going out and challenging the men in blue, randomly going up to them and yelling “No!”.  Something tells me that wouldn’t go over very well.

I am, however, confidently discussing my children’s needs with the principal of their school, whereas before, I would remain silent and pray that the situation would improve itself over time.  I am gaining confidence in myself daily in my ability to say “No!”.  Perhaps without the exclamation and extremity of a toddler, but I’m able to step back, knowing that I can choose to say no to a situation if it doesn’t feel right, for whatever reason.

Now to peel back another layer of that onion. I’m happy to say though – my onion is now considerably much smaller than it used to be.

Blessings to you,
Heather Durling, The Phoenix Gathering
“One Starfish at a Time”

copyright 2014 The Phoenix Gathering.  All rights reserved.

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