You are on your way. The time is now to take another step towards healing after a toxic relationship. My hope is that these recovery components speak to you and support you in your journey.
You Can Start Today
Breaking your emotional addiction to your ex is a biggie. If you stayed in an abusive, toxic, controlling relationship for a long period of time it is similar to having an addiction. Brain research supports this. It is physically painful. You may still “feel sorry” for him or “guilty” -which of course does not serve your recovery and is not true. He may try all sort of lies to keep you hooked. You must resist. You will need folks to support you when you feel weak. A supportive, trusting group of loved ones and professionals is key. No contact with the toxic other.
We need to make sense of what happened. This is critically important. After any type of traumatic event, it is critical to be validated and witnessed. We need to look at the patterns and come to a clear understanding of what happened to us. One note of caution – there does reach a point where reading about narcissists, sociopaths, psychopaths no longer serves. In the end, only our attention to ourselves and our recovery matters.
We need to reach and hold onto our hope. We need to take micro-steps toward reaching manageable goals to heal ourselves. Without taking steps toward action, we spend time thinking, rethinking, analyzing, and spinning ourselves into a downward spiral. This involves moving beyond the outer focusing on “him” and moving more into the inner focusing on “US”- our growth and our journey back to us. There is a life beyond all this pain. As Nathanial Brandon, the leading pioneer in the field of self-esteem stated, “No one is coming.” Meaning no one is coming to save our precious lives but ourselves.
Learn and practice boundary setting and assertive communication. It is critical component.
Exercise. This could be a walk in nature. You don’t have to exhaust yourself in an intense exercise session to get the benefits.
Learn how to be still and breathe. This will begin to support clear attention to habitual patterns and conscious choices.
We need to learn why it happened, the reasons we stayed, our responsibility to ourselves and learn who we really are. Rediscovering who you are at the core. Only in this way, can we truly live a healthy authentic life. This is all that matters.
Peace is possible. You are not alone.