No Time For Trauma
You’re in pain and have no time for this. Life is happening, and you’re sick of this crap hurting you and slowing you down, taking all your joy away. If you’re beginning trauma therapy, you probably want this to be over yesterday. By this, I mean your body symptoms, bad thoughts, anxiety, self-hatred, or whatever else you experience. I want that for you, too. That means you need to stop everything right now.
The fastest way to address your trauma is to SLOW DOWN. That’s it. There is no quick fix or cutting corners. Everyone comes to trauma therapy like college kids to a get-rich-quick scheme. You may get some temporary results, but cutting corners will not create lasting wealth (healing). Not being traumatized anymore is a learned skill. There is no magic wand that will make you a champion skier, nor is there one that works for trauma.
"I've tried to slow down, and I can't." Totally, I get it. I've been there. The first scary steps of the process take about six months on average. These first six months are all about decelerating the chaos train. It feels scary. Part of you thinks going fast is what you need. "I've lost so much time! I can't afford more time lost." Then hurry up and stop. Your current mode of operating got you this far, but it won’t get you where you need to go.
Stop everything. Eliminate as much complexity from your life as possible but, more importantly, learn to stop your inner processes. This is sometimes called "thought-stopping." Stop explaining, understanding, worrying, scheming, searching, complaining,... Just stop everything and hear the silence within.
Trauma is essentially a habit (called procedural learning). You don’t intend to do the habit. The habit happens when you’re not paying attention. That is why your symptoms seem to happen out of nowhere and why they seem out of proportion to situations you find yourself in. If you can stop, you can begin to track your trauma habits.
Learning to stop is not the “answer.” It is the beginning of a long, strange trip to freedom.