Trauma, whether it was a one-time event or an ongoing stressor, can significantly impact your life. Distressing flashbacks, nightmares and constant feelings of being on edge are disruptive. If the long-lasting effects of trauma are preventing you from being happy and fulfilled, what can you do to move past them?
Understanding Trauma Triggers
Triggers can come in many forms, and can arise when you least expect them. In reality, however, these triggers aren’t as spontaneous as they might seem. Though you might not be consciously aware of all the thoughts, emotions, sensations and environmental cues you experience throughout your day, you can work to increase your awareness of these triggers and improve your response to them.
Trauma triggers can be either internal or external. Internal triggers include things like dreams, memories and feelings, while external triggers can relate to specific people, locations or occasions. In an ideal world, you’d be able to avoid triggering events and stimuli, but since that’s impossible, start by cataloging all your known triggers and how they make you feel. This step can help put you in the driver’s seat by making you more aware of your emotions in the moment.
Healthy Ways to Cope With Trauma
Though you can’t shield yourself from all negative triggers, you can learn to manage and control your response to them. Strategies to try include:
- Practicing self-care
- Eating a balanced diet, including foods that improve your mood
- Getting enough sleep each night
- Reaching out to others – friends, family and your therapist
- Listening to your body
- Playing with pets
- Meditation and yoga
- Creative pursuits like photography or painting
Many trauma survivors try to find temporary solace in substance use. But drugs and alcohol are a crutch that only makes it harder to address the underlying problems. Over time, a burgeoning addiction will put genuine healing further and further out of reach. Integrated, professional trauma treatment that combines psychotherapy and experiential therapies is the only practical solution for improving your long-term mental health and achieving balance and equanimity.
Trauma-Focused Treatment in Prescott, Arizona
Trauma’s effects can resonate throughout your life. You might find it difficult to talk about the circumstances surrounding your trauma, or be unwilling to express or describe what happened to you and how it made you feel. You need an environment where you can liberate yourself from this heavy burden and form bonds with other women who have had similar experiences.
At Canyon Crossing, we have developed our trauma-focused treatment program as a safe place where women can begin healing. Many women feel intense shame or guilt stemming from their traumatic experiences. Often, they come to us lacking self-confidence and feeling like they’ve lost control of their lives. We aim to help you successfully navigate those hurdles with comprehensive solutions. Reach out to learn more about how to find a fresh start.