Healing And Growth Made Simple: A Roadmap

Have you ever stopped to ponder why you are the way you are? Why does worry consume your thoughts, causing you to overthink every situation in your life? Do you find yourself exhausted from perpetually living in a state of fight or flight? Ruminating about past events, expending energy on circumstances that can no longer be altered? Perhaps you’ve wondered if there’s a better way of living. If you’ve answered yes, then that makes two of us.  For so long, fear has played a major role in my life. Countless sleepless nights lost to overthinking, declining social invitations due to feelings of inadequacy, and doubting my own capacity to overcome challenges. The list is endless. If, like me, you’re weary of living each day as if it’s just another stress-filled ordeal, overwhelmed and drained, then I hope you find value in this blog: Healing And Growth Made Simple – A Roadmap.

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Acknowledging and Accepting My Unhealed Trauma

Acknowledging my own trauma was the first step in my healing journey. Denial and avoidance were no longer an option for me. Acceptance was key towards healing and growth.

In 2023, my life underwent a significant transformation. According to my family and friends, it was a complete 180-degree change. By the end of 2022, I realised that to live my best life, I needed to heal.  And by healing, I don’t just mean overcoming physical ailments; I needed to address the wounds that had altered my soul and mind. Not an easy task, but I was determined to make the necessary changes that would ultimately lead me to achieve inner peace.

 Whether it’s big or small trauma, we all carry remnants of past events that have somehow made an impact on our current mental health. 

I’d already acknowledged the trauma from my young adulthood years as playing a significant role in my declining mental health. Now it was time to explore my childhood to uncover the root of my fears. Did an occurrence in my early years trigger the immense anxiety and apprehension that plagued me for most of my life?

It did. Nothing big though. It was something so small, that had I not sought professional help to assist me on my journey, I would have never realised its significance. I won’t delve into details, as some things are best kept private.  All I know is that my fear stemmed from a combination of seemingly insignificant circumstances that, when combined, resulted in a fearful, high-strung individual – me.

For others, taking this first step might not be easy. While my trauma was relatively minor and never made me feel unsafe, the same cannot be said for everyone.

Seek Professional Help

Trauma can be complex and deeply rooted. Consulting with a therapist or counsellor trained in trauma-informed care can provide invaluable support and guidance throughout the healing process.

I am certain that the universe aligned my path, almost to perfection. The professional help that I myself sought, came in the form of a friend, who happens to be a qualified therapist. My friend Brenda, who I have mentioned numerous times on other blogs, was instrumental in my healing journey. We have spent many hours discussing the intricacies of life, especially my life and my journey. From our coffee dates, I have gained not only a lifelong friendship but also, essential tools that have allowed me to embark on my quest for inner peace. 

With Brenda’s guidance, I managed to identify areas of my life that required acknowledgement and subsequent healing. It wasn’t easy; it demanded copious amounts of self-awareness for me to confront them and find peace.

However, this wasn’t the first time I had sought professional help. In 2010, I saw a counsellor, and although I found it therapeutic, it didn’t enable me at the time, to reevaluate my life. Why? Because I wasn’t ready to break free from the cycle of fear and self-doubt that gripped me.

There is no shame in seeking help; we all need a push in the right direction occasionally. While I respect the desire for privacy, it’s important to recognise that professionals are trained to ask the right questions at the right time. This enables you to delve deep into the issues holding you back from healing and living your best life.

Practice Self-Compassion

Healing requires both time and effort. There’s no quick formula for achieving it. Being kind to oneself may not come naturally, as we often set unrealistic expectations for ourselves. However, practising self-compassion is crucial. Just as you wouldn’t rush someone you love through a rough time, you shouldn’t rush yourself. Nurture yourself, be patient with your progress, and forgive yourself for setbacks. Remember, healing is a journey, and sometimes you might take steps backwards before moving forward. That’s okay; The journey and what you learn along the way are imperative to your healing.

We wrote a fantastic blog that explores this topic in depth – 10 Ways To Show Up For Yourself 

Embrace Mindfulness

Introducing mindfulness into my life was a game changer. It offered me the opportunity to cultivate self-awareness and emotional resilience.

When I initially began meditating, I believed I had to clear my mind immediately. However, I’ve since learned that a successful meditation session involves acknowledging thoughts and then releasing them—no judgment, no rumination. Simply observe them and let them pass. The more you practice this, the stronger your mind becomes, making it easier over time.

Like a muscle, the mind requires training to grow stronger.

Nowadays, meditation has become my go-to tool when I am feeling anxious. When I feel overwhelmed and in need of quieting my mind, I meditate. However, there are so many other ways to embrace mindfulness that have nothing to do with meditation. 

Check out our blog post – What is mindfulness and why does it matter and delve deeper into the magic of mindfulness. 

Healing And Growth Made Simple - A Roadmap
Healing And Growth Made Simple – A Roadmap

Journaling

Journaling is a beautiful way of expressing yourself within a safe place. It allows you to express, process and reflect on your experiences. Through writing, you can authentically voice your emotions and thoughts, fostering a deeper understanding and validation of your trauma. 

For years I’ve been documenting my thoughts on paper through journaling. This practice has granted me profound insights into my behaviours, identity patterns, triggers, and coping mechanisms. Ultimately, it has allowed me to cultivate self-awareness and facilitate personal growth.

Journaling has offered me a therapeutic avenue to navigate the complexities of my trauma, and, at the same time, it has helped me heal, build resilience and empower me along the way. 

Incorporating a journaling habit into your daily routine will serve as a potent outlet for releasing pent-up emotions, enabling you to learn emotional regulation. Most significantly, it will empower you to regain control over your narrative and identity.

Build A Supportive Network

Studies show that connection with others is essential for healing and improving mental health. Even as a self-proclaimed introvert, I found that surrounding myself with like-minded people was an integral part of my healing and growth journey.

In the past, I have been labelled as anti-social, mainly by those close to me, on occasion by my own family. Without knowing any better, I believed them. The Spanish word ‘antipatica’ (unfriendly) was often thrown my way.  However, I now know I was suffering from a severe case of social anxiety.

Since embarking on my healing journey, I’ve come to realize that my absence from social gatherings wasn’t due to being anti-social, but rather because anxiety often ruled my life. While a part of me desired to attend, feelings of inadequacy would often prevail in the internal battle. The only way to correct that was to step outside of my comfort zone and allow those close to me to see the real me. Allow them the opportunity to love and support me. 

Surround yourself with supportive friends, family members, or support groups capable of offering empathy, encouragement, and understanding. Remember there is always someone willing to help and listen, even if you don’t realize it.

Establish Healthy Habits

Taking care of your physical well-being can feel impossible when you’re stuck in a rut, unable to move forward. Trust me, I’ve been there. Breaking free from habits that hold you back is incredibly tough. Day after day, it feels like you’re going through the motions, almost as if your body is programmed to stay in that cycle. Negative thoughts seem to always win the battle.

After extensive research for a blog post I published towards the end of 2023 on healthy habits for better living, I came to understand the connection between mental and physical health. So, when January arrived, I was determined not only to implement the habits I had written about but also to prioritize activities like regular exercise, nutritious eating, and, most importantly, getting enough sleep. Let me tell you, it was no walk in the park. Trying to exercise regularly while resisting the temptation to indulge in tea and biscuits was a constant struggle.

However, the most difficult part was getting started. That first workout felt excruciating (although that might just be my inner drama queen speaking). And facing my first day without my beloved cup of tea and chocolate biscuits seemed like absolute torture. But deep down, I knew it was necessary. I had to prioritise my health and well-being, even if it meant enduring some discomfort at the beginning.

We’re all aware of the direct impact physical health has on mental and emotional well-being. However, the real challenge lies in establishing healthy habits. That’s why we’ve created free printables to assist you in getting organized and tracking your daily habits until they become second nature to you.

Healing And Growth

Set Healthy Boundaries – Learn To Say No

Putting others’ needs ahead of your own, simply because you’re a people pleaser, doesn’t benefit you. When you start saying no to those who expect more from you than what you’re comfortable giving, you’re prioritising yourself. Cultivating self-love is crucial on your healing journey, and saying no is the initial step towards achieving it.

I used to prioritise pleasing others above all else, until, I realised the importance of prioritising myself. Recognising that putting myself first isn’t selfish, but necessary for my growth and healing, was a transformative moment. By prioritising self-care and self-love, I learned to accept that I matter too, deserving of the same love and attention I freely give to others.

We published a blog post exclusively dedicated to this very important step – Learn To Say No. If you are a people pleaser, then this blog post is the perfect guide to breaking the bonds that tie you down to others’ expectations and reclaiming your autonomy. Say yes to yourself and your well-being by learning the power of saying no. 

Explore our blog to uncover ways to embark on a journey of self-empowerment and fulfillment, while also adding another tool to your healing journey.

Introduce Self-Care Habits

There is a common misconception when it comes to self-care. Society has made women believe that such a habit is selfish. As if, God forbid we as women had time to ourselves and enjoyed some good old fashioned me time. 

Let me call bollocks on that. Plain and simple. Self-care is pivotal on the journey towards healing and growth. By prioritizing self-care, you cultivate resilience, enhance well-being, and foster personal development. 

Self-care isn’t just about having a lazy day and feeling guilty about it. No. It’s about finding the stuff that brings you joy and doing more of it. For me, it’s immersing myself in a good book, attending a MumDance class, visiting the spa with friends, time in nature…..anything that allows me to disconnect from my ever-growing to-do list. Anything and everything that will send a message to my subconscious that says, I matter, I love myself. 

By incorporating self-care habits into your daily routine, you can create a solid foundation for healing, enabling you to navigate life’s challenges with greater ease and vitality. This will all ultimately facilitate your journey toward healing and growth. Additionally, engaging in activities that bring joy, relaxation, and fulfilment can replenish energy reserves and reduce stress. Sounds good? What are you waiting for?

If you require self-care ideas, we have you covered. Check out our most popular self-care blog posts below:

Sign-Up To Well-Being Workshops

This year I found the courage to finally attend workshops that would provide me with extra tools on my healing and growth journey. 

Taking part in well-being workshops is a proactive step towards healing your trauma. These workshops offer valuable insights, tools and techniques to enhance various aspects of well-being, including physical, emotional, and mental health. 

As a participant, you can learn strategies for managing stress, improving resilience, enhancing self-awareness, and cultivating positive relationships. 

Whether it’s exploring mindfulness, practising self-care, or developing communication skills, well-being workshops provide a structured pathway for you to embark on your journey toward holistic healing and growth.

While there is an abundance of online workshops available, it’s crucial to conduct thorough research before committing. In my personal experience, the workshops I’ve attended have been nothing short of extraordinary. Every time, I’ve emerged feeling empowered and with a heightened sense of self-love. Which, is why, I cannot recommend them enough.

Challenge Yourself To Do The HARD STUFF

You cultivate resilience, adaptability, and a growth mindset by consistently stepping out of your comfort zone. Over time, you become more confident in your abilities to handle adversity and navigate uncertainty, leading to greater self-assurance and fulfilment. Embracing discomfort also fosters personal growth and development, as you continuously push yourself to learn, evolve, and pursue new opportunities. Ultimately, by embracing discomfort as a catalyst for growth, you unlock your full potential and embrace a life filled with possibility and purpose.

For too long I’ve remained on the sidelines, observing others taking chances while fear held me back. Fear of failure, judgment, and the unknown overwhelmed me. Then, about two years ago, I stumbled upon a podcast episode featuring Ed Mylett. During the interview, Ed shared something profound that resonated deeply with me. He emphasised the importance of doing the hard stuff and stepping out of one’s comfort zone to build confidence and self-worth. By pushing beyond our perceived limits, we honour ourselves and demonstrate belief in our own abilities.

Since hearing that podcast, I’ve wholeheartedly embraced Ed’s advice. I committed myself to saying yes to uncomfortable situations, those that would have previously sent me running for the hills. From challenging myself to design and create a website to signing up for a writers workshop, to openly speaking about my desire to become a published author, I’ve continuously stepped into new territory.

One of my latest achievements was joining Mum-Dance by Nicole (a fitness class and the first one I attended in over 25 years). Encouraged by my good friend Gillaine, I walked in on my first day feeling nervous and scared of making a fool out of myself. However, I walked out feeling like a freaking Goddess. I can’t say how proud I was of myself, and how much stepping out of my comfort zone healed the parts of me that felt insecure and lost. Three months later, MumDance has become the highlight of my week. 

Read Self-Development Books

As the bookworm that I am, I will always recommend reading, practically in every blog post I write. I understand that reading isn’t for everyone (let’s be honest I don’t understand, not really). Still, there is always the option of audiobooks, especially when it comes to self-development books. 

Such books can offer you a multitude of benefits for healing and growth. They provide valuable insights, practical strategies, and actionable advice for overcoming challenges, building resilience, and fostering personal development. 

Immersing yourself in the wisdom and experiences of others, provides you with insights to perspectives, aiding you to expand your knowledge, and acquire valuable tools for navigating life’s obstacles. 

Self-development books also inspire introspection and self-reflection, empowering individuals to identify areas for improvement and set meaningful goals. Furthermore, the act of reading itself can be therapeutic. Reading offers you a sense of escape, relaxation, and inspiration. 

If you need some recommendations, we have you covered. Check out our latest blog post on self-development books – 15 Books To Guide You On Your Healing Journey.

Practice Forgiveness

Whilst forgiveness does not condone the actions of others, it will however release you from the burden of resentment and anger. These two emotions can have a profound effect on both your mental and physical health. They can lead to increased stress, anxiety, and depression. Furthermore, it can also negatively impact your self-esteem and overall outlook on life, leading to hopelessness and despair. Who wants to carry all that? Not me, and hopefully not you either.

That’s just the mental side. Physically, chronic anger and resentment have been linked to a variety of health problems. High blood pressure, heart disease, weakened immune system, digestive issues, chronic pain, and the cherry on top, disruptive sleeping patterns. No thanks.

Then there’s self-forgiveness, which in my opinion is harder to achieve. Letting go of the weight of guilt and shame that often accompanies past mistakes, is not an easy task. It requires a copious amount of work, involving tons of self-awareness and walking into your past wearing an armour of steel. Uncomfortable, but necessary.

Acknowledging your humanity and inherent imperfections, allows you to cultivate self-compassion and acceptance. Essential for healing and personal growth. 

Dwelling on past failures is pointless. Wasted energy on a past event which cannot be altered. Your wasted energy, may I add. Self-forgiveness allows you to learn from past mistakes, using them as opportunities for growth and self-improvement. It frees you from the cycle of self-criticism and negative self-talk, (without forgetting, what you think you become, but that’s a topic for a future blog post), creating space for positive change and transformation. 

Work on self-forgiveness and start enjoying emotional freedom, peace of mind, and improved overall health.

Cultivate Gratitude and Positivity

I saved the best for last, or rather, what in my opinion have been the most important factors in my healing and growth journey.

The moment I stopped focusing on what was lacking, to what was abundant in my life, it opened up a whole new level of self-awareness. Instead, I focused on the present moment, embracing gratitude for all the blessings in my life, no matter how small. 

In the past, when I encountered challenges, I would solely focus on the ‘why me’ mentality. Now, when faced with hardships, I centre my thoughts around gratitude and positivity. I seek out moments of joy and fulfilment, I give thanks for all my blessings, my family, friends, and my job. Once I start ticking off all the things I have in my life to be grateful for, the list becomes endless. Automatically I will have shifted my victim/negative mindset to one of gratitude and positivity. And yes, in case you are wondering, I have faced my fair share of hardships. Life hasn’t been a walk in the park, but…….it could have been worse and for that I am grateful. 

Final Thoughts

Needless to say, this blog holds a special place in my heart. As I embarked on uncovering my unhealed trauma and finding ways to heal, I made a promise to share the tools and insights I gained with others. I’ve experienced plenty of dark days in my life, along with hopelessness and despair.  I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. That’s why I had set my mind up to writing a blog post about it, in the hope that somewhere within this blog, others would find comfort or, better yet, discover a new mindset and commit to a brighter way of living.

Please remember that healing from trauma is a journey that requires patience, courage, and commitment.

Never forget, that you are resilient, capable, and deserving of happiness and fulfilment. Embrace it.

Much love always,

Milly xx

Want to find out more about my own healing journey? Check out this raw and honest blog I wrote last year: Healing Amidst Life’s Challenges

Valuable Resources To Support Your Healing And Growth Journey

  • Brenda Guilliano – Counselling, Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), Havening, Ho’oponopono, Law Of Attraction, Positive Thinking, Mindfulness – Email: brenguilli@gmail.com
  • Mind Body Soul – Self-Healing & Wellness Coach – Monique Grambow – Holistic Healing, Silent Counselling (Training & Consultations), Online programs and services (Children, adults and corporate).
  • Daisy’s Mindful Moments – Transformational Life Coach, Mindfulness and Meditation Teacher, NLP Practitioner, Hypnotherapist – Email: Mindfulnessgib@gmail.com
  • Louise Goncalves – Sports & Holistic Massage Therapist, Pre & Postnatal Massage Therapist, CORE Fascial Release Therapist, Reiki Master, Pranic Healer – www.lgmassagetherapy.com
  • Geraldine Canepa – Profemme Practitioner – Email: geraldinecanepa@gmail.com
  • Mum-Dance – https://mum-dance.co.uk/ – To book a class with Mum-Dance By Nicole follow her on Instagram or Facebook.

Disclaimer: While this advice draws from my personal experience, it’s important to note that it’s not a substitute for seeking professional counselling tailored to your individual needs and circumstances.

Discover the Faces Behind The Opinionated Magpies: Meet The Magpies for an Intriguing Insight into Our Journey, Vision, and Future!

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