Remembering Trauma

How we use are minds to go through the remembering process of trauma can be a powerful tool to help launch us forward, or a cruel weapon to keep us down. What many don’t understand is the choice is ours. Our perception is our power. We can use it to lift ourselves up or to beat ourselves down. We get to choose thoughts of love or fear as we travel back in time. This is no easy task when the trauma is severe. Processing through the lens of love doesn’t mean that the memories won’t make us cry. The difference is when we process the memories through a lens of love—the tears ignite our souls. When we process the trauma through fear—we run into our darkness. 

How We Live is How We Remember

When we choose to live in our darkness (fear), we immerse ourselves in the fear, anger, rage, hate, resentment, greed, envy, and separation within us and in the world around us. Our energy attracts like energy, so we are drawn to seeing the darkness in others. We act as magnets because we need to keep pulling in examples of why the stories are valid. We live in a place of separation from ourselves, others, and the Universe. 

When we choose to live in our light (love), we immerse ourselves in the love, compassion, empathy, joy, forgiveness, wholeness, and inclusion within us and in the world. We connect to the best in humanity. We attract the light in others. We are making the stories we are telling ourselves valid and we are connected to ourselves, others, and the Universe. 

Can we fake it? On the outside, yes, but our magnetic pull comes from deep inside us. When we are not honest about seeing our own darkness, we may attract the wolves in sheep’s clothing (narcissists, abusers, sociopaths, etc.). We are running and we will be handed lesson after hard lesson to try to help us to move into the light, but as long as we keep telling ourselves to live in the fear, we stay in the dark.  

Why is How We Remember Trauma Important?  

The stories that play in our heads about our past experiences are more powerful than most people realize. Our memory of trauma can ignite buried feelings of shame, guilt, and fear that internally contribute to feelings of unworthiness, abandonment, and separation. There is a piece of us that may feel completely unlovable from the shame attached to an unhealed trauma. When we engage and swim in those feelings, they will permeate into our everyday lives and affect everything we touch. One unhealed trauma can lead to a life filled with resentment and separation, which often times leads to unhealthy addictions. Remember, like attracts like. When we hide from our own darkness, we are living in our shadow. We are caught in that dark tunnel of our minds. 

Here’s the awesome part, all it takes is one seed of light to come in and spread in order to help us start lighting our pathway out. That seed can come from a person, book, posting, place, event, video, story, meditation, therapy session, church service, tree, flower, etc.? That one thing can help us see more light. Eventually if we keep taking one step at a time out of our own mental prison, we become the light.

When we can look back at trauma without feeling the dread and hopelessness, but instead see what we learned from experiencing the trauma without the blame, guilt, and shame—we stop paying the steep price of living in the dark. We start finding hope in what was once madness. We see the strength in the survival. We begin realizing that we are not the traumas we survived. Our worth was there before learning the important lesson in life that the trauma taught us. Now, WE RISE in LOVE. This is where the best solutions come from. Remembering the trauma becomes a tool to help us live better and wiser. With that, we become the light. 

Getting Help

This isn’t an overnight process, and some of us may need a lot more help than others. There are plenty of tools and people out there to help. If remembering past traumas feels like a weight, here’s my suggestion to you:

Get out a Post-It, 3×5 card, or a piece a paper. Write down: “How do I become the best version of me?” Keep this question close to you, and be open to see, feel, and hear the answers. If you hear the same advice multiple times, you can guarantee the Universe is trying to help you.  Pay attention if people recommend specific books, therapists, practices, exercises, videos, articles, meditations, mindfulness practices, gratitude journals, courses, church services, foods, etc.  Just be open! Our worst enemy is a mind living in fear. Our greatest ally is a mind living in love. Be conscious of where your mind is. 

With Love and Gratitude, 

Rachael Wolff ©2019

How Do I Make Them Stop?

If anyone has ever had an addict, abuser, narcissist, or someone with mental illness in your lives, you may have asked, prayed, and cried over this question. If the person above is you, you may have asked, “How can I stop…?” Then, “How do I make them stop?” can be the question that follows trying to make the problem someone else’s. Either way, How do I make them stop, is a trap that weaves us into an unhealthy spiral. The answer is, we can’t change another person. We can only better ourselves so we stop making ourselves responsible for others and making them responsible for what is going on inside of us. 

Is This Person Capable of Changing the Way I want them to?

Understand that the person may not be capable of helping himself/ herself without getting intensive support from trained professionals, and that can only happen if he/she is open and willing to receive it. No one can force another person to change. A person can’t get better for another person. I know his is a VERY hard pill to swallow. I’ve been down this road time and time again, and I stayed sick because of it. We can’t MAKE, threaten, or condemn a person to change for us. A person’s unhealthy patterns could have started from the moment they were brought into this world. The willpower a person has to have in order to change behavior and thought patterns that feel normal to their reality and survival isn’t easy. These thoughts and behaviors can be so imbedded that they have created neural pathways to support the unhealthy behaviors.  It takes intensive work to change any neural pathways and when your thoughts are fighting to keep what feels normal alive, it is a very long and painful process.

How Easy Is it to Change What Isn’t Good for ME?

I want you to think about all the things you tell yourself you should do to live a healthier life:

  • I need to exercise more.
  • I need to eat better.
  • I need to stop attaching myself to unhealthy people.
  • I need to drink more water.
  • I need to get out of my head. 
  • I need to spend more time with my family. 
  • I need to spend more time on self-care.
  • I need to make time for meditation.
  • I need to drink less. 

Those are just a few examples. Can you instantly add/do everything that is good for you? Do you still choose to do things that aren’t benefitting your mental, spiritual, and physical health? Let’s just make sure we keep that in mind when we are expecting someone else to change. In order to make lifestyle changes, we have to fully commit. If any of us are struggling with ANY kind of low self-esteem, self-image, and/or self-worth, like I’ve mentioned in my previous posts, we will sabotage ourselves and our progress. Take time to imagine the person who is so imbedded in their unhealthy patterns, we don’t get that way if we are positive and healthy individuals. Healthy people who have a healthy self-concept, along with healthy patterns of thought and behavior, don’t hurt others or themselves intentionally.  Most of us at one point or another let our own unhealthy patterns take control. If we are willing to look and take responsibility for our thoughts and behaviors, we have the power to get better. Some people with severe mental illness aren’t psychologically capable of taking responsibility and/or they don’t have the willpower it takes to make the changes we want to see in them at the moment we want to see them. If we are dealing with people in extreme cases, they may not be capable of making the changes we want to see. The best thing we can do for ourselves and them is not blame them for this, but make the necessary changes in our lives to put our self-care first. We are the ones we will live and die with.

How Am I Choosing to Live My Life?

If we are under the assumption that it will take someone else changing in order for us to be happy and healthy, we have our own work to do. We aren’t capable of rescuing someone else from his/ her own unhealthy patterns, but we are capable of rescuing ourselves. Just like them, we have to be willing and open to see and take responsibility for our own unhealthy thought and behavior patterns. Some of our own patterns have been imbedded since birth, so it can take some intensive work to see them. Just the expectation of someone else needing to change for us to be happy, is a thought pattern that we use to hurt ourselves. We put the power in their hands, just like they may be doing to us, when they use us as an excuse to behave like they are. We can’t make them act and think like they do, and we can’t make them responsible for thinking and acting like we do.

How am I (Rachael Wolff) Qualified to Talk About This?

People who know the dark place I was in ask me how I got better, and the answer is that I invested in myself. I fixed the one person that I could. I’m not a do as I say, not as I do kind of person. I’ve spent thirty years working on breaking my unhealthy patterns. I’ve gone down some long treacherous rabbit holes in search of feeling lovable and happy and I came out on the other side of my own darkness.  I write about how I got myself out of toxic situations, how my education in psychology, human development, sociology, and cultural anthropology have assisted me in being able to put my experiences down on paper in away that can assist others on their paths. I’ve tried and failed at so many attempts to change myself and others, until after a myriad of lessons, I found the path that changed my life—The path to me. I’ve had plenty of help along the way.

The Path of Self-Discovery

When we stop asking and praying for the answer to “How do I change them?” and start asking, “How do I become the best version of me?”— We gain the power to transform our lives. 

We get sent sign after sign of ways to better ourselves. How do I know this will happen? How do I know that this works? Because it’s the path I took and still take daily. Here are just a few of the AMAZING benefits of taking the path of self-discovery: 

  • I learned to say, NO, without needing to apologize for it. 
  • I’ve established healthy boundaries with unhealthy individuals.
  • I’ve learned how to assess when and how long to stay in relationships and situations in order to learn what I need to learn.
  • I’ve learned that the people who wander onto my path are supposed to teach me something or learn something from me.
  • I found my authentic joy in nature.
  • I’ve found what grounds me, inspires me, and lifts my spirits.
  • I’ve learned how to live connected to Divine love. 
  • I learned that the only person that NEEDS to love me—Is me!

Do I Want to Help or Enable?

You are free to keep asking questions like:

  • How do I make them stop?
  • How do I make them happy?

It took me at least fifteen years on the path to begin to stop going to these questions, because they were my autopilot response to other people’s unhealthy choices. I can still slip into asking myself these questions when it comes to my kids.  From time to time, when I see them suffering from things out of my control, it hurts and I want to make it better. It’s still not the right questions. What I learned is the best thing we can do for anyone else is to be our best selves, so that is what we project onto others. Our positive energy that we exude may be what helps them to make better choices for themselves. It’s not about preaching or telling them what they aren’t doing right. We simply show them what it looks like to make positive choices for ourselves. I’m amazed how quickly someone who is trapped in their own unhealthy patterns can spot us in ours. The opposite is true too. When we are healthy and another person is trapped in their own darkness, they will either be attracted to us because they are seeking to change, or they will feel a force driving them away from us because they don’t want to or are not capable of making healthy changes in that moment. I’ve talked about this before in previous posts.

When we do things for the wrong reasons, we will start enabling instead of really helping someone else be responsible and accountable if they are capable of doing so. Most us are capable and are just stuck in unhealthy patterns.  We can’t make anyone else feel, think, or do anything. How they respond to us is based on the messages that are swirling around in their heads. What we can change is what is swirling around in ours.

Self-Discovery Is Not a Quick Fix

Self-discovery is not the easy path. There is no pill or quick fix on this path that will help us. We have to be willing to dive deep. We can’t hide from ourselves if we want to discover how to heal ourselves. We can’t numb our guilt and shame. We have to face it and heal from it. The path of self-discovery is worth the challenges we will face. One of the greatest rewards is we question our thinking when we ask the unanswerable questions and start getting solutions from a healthy place. We gain the power to stop the unhealthy thought and behavior patterns as we make better choices. 

With Love and Gratitude, 

Rachael Wolff ©2019

If you are ready to dive in, check out the FREE 90-Day A Better Me Series

If you are a woman and want a book specifically for you, Letters from A Better Me: How Becoming an Empowered Woman Transforms the World is available to pre-order (click on the link over the title to find out more on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, or Indiebound.org).

3 Ways to Remove the Clutter that Self-Abuse Creates

3 Ways to Remove the Clutter that Self-Abuse Creates

Self-abuse is one of the many ways our self-hate, low self-esteem, lack of worth, and negative self-image manifest themselves. We create clutter both inwardly and outwardly when we don’t become self-aware of how we are treating ourselves. This doesn’t help us lead productive lives. This doesn’t help us stay away from the chaos and drama that surrounds us. The more we hate ourselves and treat ourselves with disrespect, the more chaos and drama we will attract to our lives. The clutter in our minds is fuel for the fear, hate, shame, guilt, and violence that is spreading in and around us.

If we want things to get better around us, we have to start within us. Our energy that we put into the world comes from the energy we are feeding ourselves daily. If we want to stop the abuse, we have to stop creating a space where we are apart of the problem. Self-abuse is not helping us or anyone else! When we self-abuse we are showing others that it’s okay to disrespect us, walk on us, and treat us as if we have no value. Many times people don’t even know that that is the way we feel, because our own behaviors have led them to believe that what they are doing is acceptable.

For years, I wanted to be the victim of my own thinking. I found a sick pleasure in being the doormat, but what I didn’t want to see is that I laid down in front of the person who chose to walk across my back. I was trying to find my value because I hated myself so much that I just gave myself away over and over expecting someone to see what I couldn’t. Our lack of value clutters our minds and distorts our realities into believing that we are trapped and that we can’t stop what is happening to us. Just the thought is self-sabotaging and attracts more of what we don’t want.

When my mind is cluttered, it spreads into my personal spaces. I’ve had my bed so covered in stuff that I have barely been able to fit on it to sleep. That’s when I know I have some real cleaning to do. The last time my bed was like that I dove head-first into figuring out how and why I kept sabotaging myself. It was time for me to look at how I was treating myself.

Here are three ways you can help yourself:

1. Become Aware of the Clutter —INVENTORY NEGATIVE MESSAGES

  • How do you talk to yourself when you are looking in the mirror?
  • What do you think about all your features?
  • What do you think about the person you are?
  • How do you feel about how your life looks to you when you look in the mirror?
  • How do you talk to yourself when you make a mistake for the first time?
  • How do you talk to yourself when you’ve repeated a mistake?

This inventory won’t be done in one sitting. As life situations come up, see how you are talking to yourself:

  • Are you calling yourself names?
  • Are you criticizing yourself?
  • Are you beating yourself with an emotional 2×4?

Just to give you an idea, life situations can still hit me off-guard from time to time and I go back through these steps in order to keep my headspace clean and clutter free.

2. Cleaning out the Clutter—INSIDE AND OUT

  • Start a self-love Journal —Pick a number of days you will commit 35, 45, and/or 90 days. Each day write a minimum of three things you like about yourself. Here’s a hint, if you spot certain positive qualities in others it’s usually because you have them yourself. Do your best not to repeat, especially in the beginning. As you see more and more things you like about yourself, then you can start reusing ones that you are really connecting to.
  • Clean up your physical clutter—Start with a drawer and just keep going. Throw away what you don’t need. Pitch, sell, or donate the things that are just taking up space in your life. Make space for what you want more of in your life. Remember, clear space is peaceful space.

3. Keep the Space Clean—STAY AWARE OF WHERE YOUR MIND GOES

  • Living in gratitude is the best way to keep your space clean. Anytime our minds go to lack, deprivation, fear, hate, blame, etc. we are creating more clutter.
  • Watch your reactions to people. I find this one entertaining. If  a person’s actions work you up: First question your own thinking about what is happening to see if you are fully aware of where your reaction is coming from. Second, I imagine the person saying or doing whatever it is to themselves. Our negative behaviors start from how we are treating ourselves, so we can gain clarity about the situation if we are not taking the person personally. This doesn’t mean we have to accept unacceptable behavior. We just don’t add our own clutter. How someone treats us shows us their love or fear that they are internally dealing with. How we respond to them shows us where we are.
  • Stop the Cycle of abuse. If you see, hear, or feel abusive thoughts about yourself come up, correct them and clean up your self-talk. Treat yourself with love, respect, loyalty, honesty, and compassion. We have to have it inside us before we have a chance of cleaning up what’s around us.
  • Give from a Loving Place. This means you are giving because you want to, not because you think it will make you worthy of someone else’s time, affection, love, respect, etc.

Side effects of these steps are: sleep better, eat healthier, enjoy self-care, kinder thoughts, less judgmental towards others, more compassionate, attract healthier people to our personal and professional lives, more opportunities to do good in the world, appreciate peace, and so many more. 

With Love and Gratitude,

Rachael Wolff

Did what you just read resonate with you? I hope you will explore FromALovingPlace.com and keep reading. I’ll be bringing a new series to the blog starting September 1, 2019. If you are not following along, make sure to sign-up below.

For my female readers, I have EXCITING news! Letters from A Better Me: How Becoming an Empowered Woman Transforms the World is available for pre-order! Click the link to order your copy today!

90-Day Series Updates

Dear Readers,

I’m excited to inform you that I’ve been through each day of the FREE  90-Day A Better Me Series and the 90-Day A Better Me Letters Series and now BOTH series are fully available on FromALovingPlace.com. I provided links on each day for easy navigation through every piece of the series. Now that the series is complete, it makes it easier to read like you would a book. Whether you are reading the series again, like some of you have told me you are, or you are new to the 90-Day A Better Me journey, I hope you enjoy it. It was a pleasure to write it and an even greater pleasure to talk with the followers of both series.

Now, I need to go and focus on the editing my book coming out at the end of 2019. If you want to stay in the loop, make sure to subscribe to e-mails. Thank you for all the readers, followers, and commenters. I appreciate each and every one of you!!

Here at the direct links to both series:

90-Day A Better Me Series

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series

 

Happy reading!

 

With Love and Gratitude,

Rachael Wolff ©2019

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series: Day 45 – Releasing Perspectives that Don’t Serve Me

Letters from A Better Me

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series

Part II: A Journey of Perspective

What Launches Us Forward: The Stable Foundation

 

Day 45: Releasing Perspectives that Don’t Serve Me

Dear Universe,

I’m ready to release perspectives that don’t serve me anymore. Many of my perspectives of truth came from a place of fear. Some weren’t even my fears. They were fears of family before me. Others came from past circumstances that are no longer the case. I also have those perspectives of truth that started as a small fear and developed into life altering nightmares. I really don’t see the need to keep them alive in my life anymore. They are definitely not serving the person I want to be.

I don’t see any reason to keep perspectives of truth that keep me in the place of lack. Whether it’s lack of friends, family, romance, finances, love, direction, profession, adventure, etc.— I don’t need to see the world through eyes of lack and/or not enough. When I believe life is this way I put expectations on others and myself that are damaging. This perspective keeps me from living in the moment and enjoying what this moment has to offer me. This perspective keeps me worrying about the future and feeling anxious that I’m never doing enough. It makes me work harder, but not smarter. It makes me sabotage relationships over fears of what the future looks like. It keeps me from experiencing more. I don’t see a reason to keep this perspective of truth.

I also want to release the perspectives of truth that tell me I’m too nice, too sensitive, too caring, and too compassionate. These beliefs keep me from enjoying the person I am. I sabotage myself by not creating healthy boundaries and not taking personal responsibility for my feelings, thoughts, beliefs, actions, and reactions. When I believe this I’m blaming someone else for not being who I’m expecting them to be when they are just being who they are. Sometimes I begin doing things for others that they can do with themselves. They can take that as me saying I don’t have faith in them or their abilities. Believing these thoughts keeps me manifesting more examples of situations where I let myself be taken advantage of, but it’s not because I’m too anything, it’s because I’ve created these situations by not being conscious of how these beliefs are affecting me. I’m giving my power away instead of empowering myself.

I’m ready to release the perspective of truth that tells me I’m not good enough. When I treat myself like I’m not good enough, I project to the world that I’m not good enough. I sabotage what I do to prove that I’m not good enough. I take failures as proof instead of things to learn from. I feel unworthy of God’s love because I believe I’m not good enough (Day 6 of the 90-Day A Better Me Series). This contributes to me giving myself away time and time again to try to fill the endless hole that I created by believing the perspective of truth that tells me I’m not good enough. I find no reason to keep this perspective. It’s definitely not serving the life I want to be living.

Finally, I’m releasing the perspective of truth that I’m a victim of others feelings, thoughts, actions, and reactions. This belief has created major chaos, sadness, depression, grief, fear, anxiety, resentment, rage, and anger in my life, amongst other things. I have sabotaged my relationships in all areas of my life by taking on the victim role (Day 41 of the 90-Day A Better Me Series). I’ve ripped myself of the power to change myself and the situation I’m in. I keep seeing others as personally attacking me when their views are different then my own. I carry around a tightness in my body and I feel like I’m constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop. I think everything is too good to be true, so if I can’t blame someone else for hurting me, I start taking on the blame myself becoming the victim of self-abuse (Day 29 of the 90-Day A Better Me Series). I have absolutely no reason to hold onto this belief. I see the trail of damage this belief has caused in my life. It was a perspective of truth I once thought I needed to survive, but I see no good reason to hold onto this belief that is literally destroying every good thing in my life.

Today, these are the perspectives of truth I’m looking to release. Divine Spirit, please lead me to new thoughts and ideas that will help me find healthier perspectives of truth. Please allow the perspectives to serve the love within my heart, so that I can serve the love within others hearts. Open me up to see perspectives of truth that shine light in even the darkest of places.

 

With Love and Gratitude,

 

A Better Me

 

Rachael Wolff ©2019

Did you read today’s companion piece? 90-Day A Better Me Series: Day 45 – Releasing Perspectives that Don’t Serve Us

If you are new to the 90-Day A Better Me Letters Series and the 90-Day A Better Me Series, you picked a perfect day to start. The transformation is at your fingertips. Read today’s Installment of the 90-Day A Better Me Series “Releasing Perspectives that Don’t Serve Us”. What are the perspectives of truth keeping you from living the life you want to be living? Welcome to the Journey of Perspective!

 

 

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series: Day 29 – How I Abuse Myself

Letters from A Better Me

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series

Part I: A Journey of Awareness

What Holds Us Back: The Unstable Foundation

Day 29: How I Abuse Myself

Dear Self,

Looking in the mirror, I’ve never met someone as cruel to me as I am to myself. I couldn’t imagine talking to a friend like I talk to me. I can’t believe I never noticed how bad I abuse myself.

I abuse myself physically by not taking care of my body and internal health. I make everyone else more important than making sure I’m in the best possible health. I don’t give myself any time to properly take care of my body. I spend money on things that contribute to the abuse of my body inside instead of investing in my health. I push myself to the point of crashing and my body pays the price.

I abuse myself emotionally by choosing belief systems and behavior patterns that contribute to my suffering. I push myself with my cruel and hurtful self-talk.  Then I go out and attract people to my life that reflect how bad I feel about myself. Then I blame them for the way I feel. Really…I’m the one responsible for me suffering.

I abuse myself mentally by blaming myself for things I can’t control. I don’t accept myself exactly the way I am and my mental well-being suffers for it. I know I’m responsible for my feelings, thoughts, actions, and reactions, so abusing myself for not being more than I am is mentally exhausting. My fuse is short because I’m constantly attacking myself, so I end up attacking others either passive aggressively or aggressively, but I don’t attack anyone more than I attack me.

I’ve carried such guilt with all the blame I’ve been holding onto. It’s time to let it all go and start treating myself with the love and respect that I deserve. It’s time for me to stop abusing the one person that I AM responsible for. I know that this will take some time to change patterns that I’ve been holding onto for so long. I will commit to being patient with myself and do the best I can.

I’m ready to become aware of how I’m abusing myself on a regular basis. My hope is that with my awareness I will be able to spot what’s not working and start picking up new healthier patterns that do. I’m grateful that I can see myself, so that I can heal myself.

With Love and Gratitude,

 

A Better Me

 

Rachael Wolff ©2019

Did you read today’s companion piece? 90-Day A Better Me Series: Day 29 – Self-Abuse

Don’t miss a day of the 90-Day A Better Me Letters Series and 90-Day A Better Me Series. Catch yourself up by exploring FromALovingPlace.com, Facebook, and/or Twitter.

 

 

 

 

 

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series: Day 19 – Using Judgment to Act Against Myself

Letters From A Better Me

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series

Part I: A Journey of Awareness

What Holds Us Back: The Unstable Foundation

Day 19: Using Judgment to Act Against Myself

Dear Self,

I now see how I’ve been using judgment both towards myself and towards others to tear myself down. I see where the energy of judging has kept me trapped in a place I’ve been struggling to get out of. I see that my judgments don’t change anything. They just make my problems bigger.

I can’t fight other people’s judgments about me. That is their own issue. I can simply be and do the best I can to lead the life I want to live. I don’t have to take any of their judgments personally, because how they see me is a reflection on them. If they are a person who is meant to be in my life, they will appreciate my value. If they don’t, they won’t. That’s okay! They are doing me a favor by showing me who they are. That way I can decide what place they will have in our out of my life without letting their views affect my inner world.

I’m committed to putting out the energy that will lead me to being the best version of myself. This means I need to be aware of how I’m using my judgments at all times.

If I’m not, I can easily slip back into unhealthy thought cycles. I know the power is in my hands to change.

I’m grateful I’ve seen my choice in this situation, so that I have space to come up with solutions that will work in and for my life. I’m so grateful for the understanding that nobody has the power of my thoughts, feelings, actions, and reactions except for me. This gives me a sense of freedom that no one will be able to take away from me.

With Love and Gratitude,

A Better Me

Rachael Wolff ©2019

Are you keeping up with the daily letters and messages? If not, simply explore the blog and go back through. You can start at Day 1 or pick and choose topics based on what you want to focus on. Enjoy the journey any way you want to! Don’t you love having choices??

Today’s companion piece: 90-Day A Better Me Series: Day 19 – Being Judgmental is an Act Against Ourselves

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series: Day 1 – Welcome to the Journey

Letters From A Better Me

90-Day A Better Me Letters Series

Day 1: Welcome to the Journey

Dear Readers,

Welcome to the journey of A Better Me. This letters piece of the journey is about connecting to the material in the 90-Day A Better Me Series. One of the things I’ve learned in my experience is that if I can’t make the journey personal, it’s not my journey. I won’t absorb the material in the same way as I do if I’m truly connected to it.

Since I’ve re-written my own story again and again using letters, I wanted to pass on one of the most essential tools in my own tool box. I’ve been amazed at what writing letters has done in my life. This helped me more than just journaling because writing a letter to myself or someone else gets me to engage deeper. The letters become personal contracts to live better.  I fully commit to feeling through whatever is going on inside of me at the time. I found that to be an AMAZING healing and transformative tool. Writing letters helps me to remember that I’m writing my own story. I need to commit to being the leading role.

Part I of the series is meant to stir up your emotions. If the program is working, you will get triggered. You will see yourself more openly. You will have opportunities to make better choices today. This journey is a process. In Part I, I’m peeling back the layers to expose the toxic muck that is keeping you from living your best life. In Part II, I help you to heal and strengthen. In Part III, you will get tools galore on how to grow and expand y to be the best version of yourself. Your relationships will shift and change as you take this journey. Trust the path!

I hope that if you stick to this journey, you will get what you need to become the best version of yourself, the program opens you up to see signs, guidance, teachers, and/or students. This is just the beginning. If you need extra guidance, I have a program that acts as a supplement to any personal development program you are using and/or want to start using. You will see a little more about that throughout the series. For now, enjoy this 90-Day journey. You can read it daily, like a book, or pick and choose what you need. This journey is yours. Just go to CATEGORIES to have direct access to both series.

Remember each day comes with a companion piece on the 90-Day A Better Me Series. Don’t forget to read and follow on long in order to get the most out of the experience. Read today’s here: 90-Day A Better Me Series: Day 1-A Commitment for 2019

 

With Love and Gratitude,

A Better Me

Rachael Wolff ©2019

 

 

 

Social Media: A Narcissist’s Playground

How did we get here?

How did we become easy targets to allow narcissists to abuse their victims?

How is it possible for good people to become perpetrators of narcissist abuse?

How do we open the door unknowingly to be the next victim of narcissist abuse?

Come on, most of us are good people. We are not capable of being perfect. We don’t want to believe that we are capable of perpetuating the abuse of another person. We want to believe what we read. We want to believe that no one would post or say something harmful about someone else if it wasn’t true. We struggle to put ourselves in a narcissist’s mind because we can’t possibly think of calculating such a horrible attack on a person if it wasn’t (in our own minds) deserved.

Rule number one of a malignant narcissist is that they NEVER do ANYTHING wrong. They are the victims of their families, friends, romantic partners, business associates, and communities. You would think that we would be able to spot narcissists easily. Yet, according to the professionals who specialize in the field of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), it’s not as easy as one would hope.  That being said: There can be narcissists in all forms of business (even non-profits), in our communities, on our friend lists, in politics, and sometimes even in our homes.

What Makes Social Media a Narcissist’s Playground?

We are trained to focus on hate, fear, shame, blame, and overall judgment. Of course, a narcissist would love this playground. If you have ever read anything about how a narcissist operates, you know that they calculate turning people against their victim. They attempt to isolate their victim to make the victim become the alleged perpetrator. Social media makes this so easy. We can’t put it past a narcissist to record sections of an argument where the victim is reacting to their abuse, so it comes off sounding like the victim is the crazy one. They find pictures that show the victim not in a good light and without social media knowing the background of that particular moment, get people to engage in commentary bashing the actual victim of the abuse. They can say how innocent they are and how a “CRAZY” mom, dad, sister, brother, girlfriend, boyfriend, wife, husband, ex-lover, child, friend, co-worker, boss, employee, and the list goes on an on, DID THIS TO THEM! Wait, you may be thinking we have all done this at some point. The difference, a narcissist has done it to everyone on that list that pertains to his or her lifestyle. Everyex is the crazy one. Everyemployer is in the wrong. Everyemployee is to blame.  Everyfriend has abandoned them or used them. I think you get the point.

Narcissists also use social media to hunt for their next victim. The instant they break up with someone, lose a job, have a fall-out with family, etc. they come to social media to prowl. You might start seeing them everywhere when before the interaction was limited. They look for people to comment on their “poor me” posts and all the sudden instant messages start popping up from them because you understand them and “nobody else understands them.” You are the only one who can rescue them and all the sudden you are on a giant super hero sized pedestal. Then they systematically will destroy your relationships with others and then—

Bang! THEY ARE IN! They prey on people-pleasers, empaths, and caring individuals who have problems with self-worth, self-image, self-esteem, and self-respect. The people who do things for others to gain their own personal value are their perfect targets. We may think we are helping or rescuing them. They act like they care and try to get you to reveal as much personal information as possible so they will be able to use it against you later. A narcissist will attack using anything you possibly have guilt or shame around. If you are a people-pleaser, social media is the perfect grounds for attack because their victim is mortified that people could think that they are anything like the image the narcissist is portraying.

Don’t forget, narcissists can be VERY charming. They act one way when they want something from you and a whole other way when you aren’t there. The question becomes how do we see through this and know when we are contributing to a narcissist’s abuse and/or opening the door to become their next victim?

The answer is we have to become vigilant and really aware of what we are doing on social media. We have to INVESTIGATE! If you don’t have enough time to investigate:

  • Don’t engage
  • Don’t perpetuate in hate, fear, or negative commentary when you don’t know the whole story
  • Don’t JUDGE based on a simple post
  • Don’t like or comment before you know facts
  • If a person is ALWAYS blaming other people…question your connection with the person.
  • If you don’t want to be involved in any potential hate, abuse, or fear tactics edit your friend list and LIKE and FOLLOW pages that don’t engage in it. Only have friends on your list that you truly want IN your life.
  • If you lack self-worth, self-respect, self-esteem, and/or are a people-pleaser, work on you so that you don’t become a victim.

Let’s not contribute to letting narcissists use us to hurt others. If you see abuses that can be reported—report them. If you see someone endlessly blaming and shaming others—block them. If you don’t want to perpetuate the hate—stop contributing to it. Be self-aware and vigilant. We are all capable of being fooled on social media. Research before you post or comment.

I hope you will read the companion piece to this one on https://lettersfromabetterme.blogspot.com. Let’s start spreading more love and stop contributing to the energy that gives narcissists a perfect playground.

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With Love and Gratitude,

Rachael Wolff ©2018

 

#NarcissisticAbuse

#Abuse

#SocialMedia

#TAKEACTION

 

 

How Researching Narcissistic Personality Disorder Opened My Eyes

I was once asked to write a piece on Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) by another website. My stomach instantly got tied up in knots. A numbing feeling permeated through me. I didn’t promise, but I figured I would try. I didn’t know what the research on the topic would bring to the surface; too close to home. I read article after article trying to figure out how to write a piece that would be different from what was already out there.

I used the research library from the college I attended and read countless peer-reviewed literature and research. When I would sit down to write; nothing flowed. This is not like me. Usually by the time I have done this amount of research, the words fly out onto the computer.

At one point, I decided to approach the NPD with a compassionate eye. Truthfully, the disorder completely sucks! All the people around a person with this disorder pay a steep price. The sad part, we have no idea how calculated it all is when we are in it. The really sad part is if people don’t get a lot, and I mean a lot, of help after being abused by someone with this disorder, it can lead to so many psychological long-term psychoses. Not all people with NPD are abusers, but the ones that are do more damage than any layman could ever understand.img_2901

If the person with NPD has a genuine intent not to hurt a person and does the work to fight the internal urges, it is possible they will have areas of trouble, but they won’t abuse. Others will go so far into it, then actually brag about their accomplishment to their next partner, yet the ex is not off the hook. No, an abuser with NPD will try to get the ex’s involved in triangles with the current love interest. The outreach is not genuine, it is about power and control.

As more and more information about NPD and NPD abusers kept coming in, I realized that I couldn’t write the kind of piece that one of these bigger established websites would want. I couldn’t five or ten step this one away. This one is too complex for that. The research alone stirred something very uncomfortable inside of me. The verbal, emotional, and psychological abuse that this disorder exhibits is the scariest I’ve ever seen. It defies all my thoughts about people and their ability to be better.

I’m not saying there are not people who make this work for them in a productive way without hurting anyone. My focus is on the ones who do; the ones that decide that they like the feeling of power over someone else. This is about the NPD abusers that keep people hostage. They strip them down until the person doesn’t even recognize what is going on anymore. Men and women can be played with in ways that an average human never could have thought of. The psychological scars can be and most times are long term. A fear lies right under the surface waiting to be ignited.

Even as self-aware as I am, I still get caught up in the anxiety and fear sometimes, but it is less and less as I work on bettering myself and my self-worth. I know what is happening now, so I can face it. I don’t do this alone. I have a team of people that help me to face truth about being faced with this kind of abuse. NPD abusers stop at nothing and they don’t care who they hurt in order to get to their targets. There are a lot of signs, but NPD abusers are very good at their game. They often fool talk therapists and others to believe their games. Here is a list of red flags that you could be dealing with an abusive person with NPD or worse. A person having one or a few might not be one. A Malignant narcissist has all of them:

  • Like the game of turning people against each other
  • Say phrases similar too: “You won’t believe what she/he did to me”, “My ex is psycho”, and “You’re the only one who can…”
  • Puts people on pedestals then enjoys tearing them down
  • Romantic partners/victims have to walk on egg shells in the relationship
  • Constantly caught in lies, but defends them to the end
  • Blames everyone and everything other than themselves (No personal responsibility)
  • Goes from being full of love to emotionally and verbally abusive
  • Brags about how they have hurt others.
  • Feels superior to others
  • Keeps their ex-girlfriends/boyfriends around and makes triangles with current romantic victim
  • They go into a relationship strong and needs instant reciprocation
  • Doesn’t like to be interrupted but will interrupt constantly
  • The world revolves around them
  • They use people around them as a means to an end
  • Expresses great interest in accomplishments then tears them down
  • Uses people’s insecurities against them
  • Their ex-partners were always the crazy ones
  • Competes with everyone all the time and is a sore loser
  • Lots of promises and little follow through
  • SOOOOO much manipulation and lies

Here’s the worst part about Narcissistic abuse, the victim gets sucked into this tornado and it is very hard to get out. People around them will have no idea why they are staying and they have no idea why they can’t leave, but there are so many psychological components going on inside that keep the person hostage in the relationship. Plus, they are getting threats of being destroyed. Some Abusers will even start a fight then video tape the victim reacting to the abuse and sell it as they were the ones being abused. It is all just a giant game to win in their sick minds. Victims are told how different they were, and how they are the only ones who could help abuser be the person they want to be (can I puke now?). I know how real it feels because I’ve been there. Even with all the research I’ve done on the subject, I am still wounded. I still am traumatized by the memories and fight for control of my life.

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I’m reading a book now called, Power: Surviving and Thriving After Narcissistic Abuse by Shahida Arabi (click here for book info). All the research I’ve done in the past is finally getting put together. All the mixed feelings I’ve had over the years are making sense now. I had no idea I was using many of the tools to get out of the relationship without looking back. I couldn’t see before how all my hard work on building myself back up has taken me through countless obstacles with the abuser. I highly recommend this book to anyone who thinks they were or are victim of narcissistic abuse or loves someone who is being abused. The great thing about this book is it is available in audiobook that you can listen to on a phone or tablet. I remember having to hide everything good I did for myself or it would be thrown in my face. He would even say I was being brainwashed. I say, yes, my brain needed washing. NPD is thrown around pretty heavily now days. The information out there can be confusing, believe me, I know. Some articles out there aren’t written by people who understand the whole picture. They may know a piece of the puzzle, but unless you truly invest the time in reading books by professionals and doing true research, you still won’t fully understand what happens during the abusive process and the after affects.

Narcissistic abusers will do their best to get people on their side. Don’t do it! They will use anyone on their path to hurt their intended victim. Sometimes we unknowingly become apart of the abuse cycle by engaging the abuser. The best professional advice given to people who have suffered this kind of the abuse is no contact or as little as possible.

This piece doesn’t even scratch the surface of what it is like for the victim and how incredibly calculated the abuser is during the courtship and afterwards. If you want to see the whole picture, read the book listed above. I will warn you if you are being or have been abused by someone with NPD, you will be baffled at how calculated these games are. The fact that a book would say exact quotes and tell exact stories says more than I could possibly ever imagined possible. If you are a friend or family member reading the book, whether you know the victim or the abuser, it will be eye opening and help you reach a better understanding of what it’s like to live under these circumstances. Hopefully it will help victims not feel so alone, and help outsiders to be more compassionate and less judgmental to the person staying in this abusive relationship.

To the victims: There is a lot of help out there. It is possible to lead an amazing life even after being verbally, emotionally, psychologically, and sometimes physically abused like this. I learned a lot from my experiences and I got the help I needed to lead a life I love. This doesn’t have to take you down.

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From A Loving Place,

Rachael Wolff