No one is ever ready for a traumatic experience. Even those who fear something bad happening aren't necessarily prepared when it does.
When people experience a painful or life-threatening event, like a car accident, terrorist attack, or natural disaster, they usually develop severe anxiety or PTSD. As a result, many develop ongoing relationship and self-esteem problems.
Everybody deals with trauma in their own way. There is no right or wrong way to react to a tragic or frightening event. So don't let anybody, not even yourself, tell you that you should react in a certain way. Still, there are measures you can take to start to heal and recover control of your life.
Disregarding your feelings of dread, shock, outrage, panic, bewilderment, or shame will only delay your recovery. At the moment, you might feel like you need to avoid your feelings. But, whether you acknowledge or push them away, your emotions are real, and experiencing them is required for healing. The good news is even drastic feelings will pass if you allow yourself to experience them.
After encountering a traumatic event, it is normal to feel helpless and out of control. However, to completely recover from the trauma, it is essential that you ultimately reframe your identity and question your sense of helplessness. You can accomplish this by taking action. Being proactive – even in minor ways – will help you crush feelings of dread and helplessness.
Consider volunteering for a cause that's meaningful to you. If that is too much of a time obligation, you could simply concentrate on supporting a friend or neighbor. This helps you feel more robust and in command of your environment.
It is normal for people to withdraw from loved ones and social activities after a tragic event. However, bonding with others is crucial for recovery. Though you might not feel up to participating in massive gatherings like you once did, a simple face-to-face discussion with a close friend or relative can initiate hormones that alleviate stress.
You don't have to talk about the event with loved ones. Just spending time with them will make you feel more normal. Of course, if you need to talk about your emotions, reach out to people you know love and support you. Look into support groups in your area to be around others who understand what you are going through.
And finally, you may want to seek advice from a professional therapist trained in helping people who have encountered a traumatic event. They can help you navigate your feelings and give you tools to get back on your feet.
If you have encountered a traumatic event and could use some advice on your journey back to peace and joy, please reach out for trauma or individual counseling in Orlando. We'll help you locate a therapist who will be a perfect fit. You don't need to suffer from the burden alone. You deserve to feel like you again. Trauma therapy can free you from your past. When you're inclined to begin your healing journey, we're here for you!
Heather Oller is the owner and founder of Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching, and Counseling. She is a licensed counselor and a family mediator who has over 23 years of dedicated work as a professional in the mental health field. Through her company's mission, she continues to pave the way for future therapists, and their clients, who want a higher quality of life....and who want to thrive, rather than just survive. You can contact Orlando Thrive Therapy at (407) 592-8997 for more information.