I'm blogging my learning and insights on trauma, CPTSD, mental health in business and the road to wellbeing. I am doing this for a few personal reasons:
1. Writing is learning
I'm pursuing a PhD in childhood trauma in business, writing my way through that helps me better understand my own material, and provide a platform I can use to share helpful insights that my younger self would have loved to have accessed years ago.
2. Hope and a spotlight!
I didn't have much hope for the first 40-odd years of my life. I didn't have any hope even as I was beginning to see progress in my own recovery. And then my world started to change so much through practices that repair and rewire the brain and central nervous system, that one morning I awoke, calm.
I remember that first day waking up to an overall feeling of calm. It was the first day in 35 years, maybe longer, that I woke up without adrenaline pumping through me and a rigid, tight body braced for the worst.
That feeling was simply my 'normal' and I got good at managing it, hiding it, so I could appear normal. However, each morning, I would wake, grimace and spend 1o to 15 minutes talking myself off a cliff as I self soothed my body from full on alarm, to "OK, now we can make coffee and get dressed.".
The progress I've experienced since then, has restored my physical body to such a degree, that my automatic trauma responses to everyday life have diminished considerably. Not only do I have a persistent feeling in my body of calm, I no longer experience the 'ruptures' throughout my days that would have triggered fear based reactions in the body that interrupt my work, my social life, or my desire to get out of bed.
As I look back on those manic years I can also see how important it was for me to hide my mental health challenges. There was so much shame, fear, and feelings of failure, From time to time, when the latest books, courses workshops weren't creating the change I was after, I would reside myself to the fact that I was too damaged to fix. I wasn't. I just didn't have any access to the tools and resources that could help.
So putting a light on mental health in business is both personal and important. I'm also privileged to have been able to run a successful business (I still do today), to have interviewed 1-to-1, more than 2000 professionals in the area of growth that would have them acknowledging their own mental health struggles, along with the desire that nobody knows they're struggling, because surely, they must be the only one.
I'm not selling therapy or coaching.
It may be worth noting, that I'm not selling or offering CPTSD support. I highly recommend a licensed practitioner for that. I do have a series of awesome colouring books that are designed to support the recovery of the brain and central nervous system. They are fun, and informative, and practical tools that could make up part of the practices one uses to rewire and repair the trauma effected physiology. I'm writing mostly to support my learning as I return to school and to promote my 15+ luxury adult colouring books. I love them. They are awesome. ;) Buy them worldwide on Amazon, or the instant download in PDF format here on this site.
Right, back to the CPTSD basement...
I imagine that CPTSD is the next level of more explicit feedback from our (unconscious) human, in an effort to get our conscious self to address the desired integration our human seeks.
Clearly we have disregarded all previous forms of feedback prompting us to resolve, heal and shift into higher quality states of living. And because we ignored earlier feedback, we are now landed with these next level shenanigans, that we may even be calling 'fate'. In my case, "too damaged to fix", was what I was inferring was my fate.
So, if this CPTSD feedback we are experiencing now, doesn’t get our attention with deliberate action to do the work to resolve the unresolved, then brace yourselves!
Because the next level of more intense feedback will show up. We might call what's coming next, as "Life Lessons".
I sense it is our (unconscious) human firing off all of this feedback, because it is our human that wants to get a better view of the world.
Our human is full of all this unused potential.
It has this innate need for integration, wholeness and balance. Unused potential has to go somewhere. So while our human still has; options, health and the ability to recover, it is waving and pointing (with triggers, fear, shame, overwhelm and letting life literally unravel) to get our attention.
Why? I think it’s because…
…the view from the basement of the ‘CPTSD building’ is terrible. You know the one; that little window in the back corner, looking out at the side street full of garbage. If you noticed the sign over the door to the basement area, it read: survival station.
Now compare that with the view from the rooftop bar of that same CPTSD building. panoramic views of the coast, castles dotting the horizon, sail boats heading into harbour, and a few seals lounging on someone's surf board. The roof top bar has great food, great cocktails, good music and everyone in there is longing for you to arrive.
That rooftop bar features its' own sign; Thrive Central.
Leaving the basement for the rooftop takes two things;
2. or better yet, want-hope.
When the pain of staying as you are down in that basement, becomes too great, the pain of finding the keys, opening the door, and walking out feels like a small price to pay.
I found keys, opened locks and walked out with the needs-must vibe going on. I wasn’t all that hopeful. And yet, I didn’t see any other options but to give this other thing a go.
3ish years on, marked progress is still happening.
My point is this.
Resolve or repeat!
For some practical ways to address CPTSD Recovery, this blog may be worth a read > My colouring books are also most excellent.