How has Trauma Changed your Life?

  • Published on:
    April 7, 2018
  • Reading time by:
    4 minutes

There is no one way to recover and heal from any trauma. Each survivor chooses their own path or stumbles across it.”

~Laurie Matthew

Can you look back and remember an event that changed your life? I can. I can think of a few. We all have that one big story that we carry with us that formed us into the person we are today. It may have prompted us to step forward and take action or it may have caused us to retreat and fear it’s very existence. Our reactions to experiences are all different. I may reflect back at a traumatic event and see that specific event as a catalyst for growth, while others look back and see that as the beginning of a downward spiral.  We have all heard of survivor’s guilt or post-traumatic stress but have we ever thought about post-traumatic growth.

The truth is post-traumatic growth occurs every day.  All across the world, there are people who face near-death experiences, survive one in a billion odds and have lost those closest to them and they somehow come out of these events stronger then they were when they first went in. Trauma can be the worst thing that can happen to someone but how they react to it and ultimately who they become can be life-changing.

On a personal note, the sudden loss of my best friend, my father was a catalyst for growth for me. The growth was not something that occurred overnight. There were months possibly years of agony and hatred that came with it. Wondering why it happened so fast and when was the last time I had said I love you. Replaying his voice over and over in my head fearing that I would forget what it had sounded like. I was a mess and I honestly never thought I would be able to face a day without having in my life.

But with time, I was able to work through the pain that is associated with loss. I was able to see that while my father was gone I was still alive. I began to see that I had opportunities that I was ignoring and that I needed to take advantage of. There was still life for me to live. My only goal became to live life to its fullest. To be sure, that when that day would come, that I would be reunited with my father that I would have a beautiful story to meet him with.

My goal in telling you about post-traumatic growth is not to scare you or shame you. It is not my job to judge. It is no one else’s job either. As stated above we all have different reactions to the same experiences but there is a possibility that when it’s all said or done you can see the positive side.

Of course, if given the decision I would want to have my father back immediately but I can’t change the past. And the more I look back thinking that I can the less time I spend living today.

 

So stop looking back and blaming your life for what happened yesterday. This is your life to live and now is your chance.

Through the pain of it all, there are a few important things that I have learned.

Gratitude

Don’t ever focus on what you don’t have. If you do you will never have enough. But if you focus on everything that you have, the big and the little, I promise you that you will continue to be met with more. The key is to be grateful for every person, every opportunity and every possession that you are lucky enough to be blessed with.

Chase after your Dreams

Don’t waste another moment wondering what if. Live the life of your dreams by taking risks and wholeheartedly believing in yourself. Some of the chances that you take may not work the way you envisioned them but you’ll only know when you take the chance. This is your life to live and you only have one to go after whatever it is your heart desires before you lose the chance.

Say I Love You

And mean it. Tell your family, spouses, partners, and friends that you care for them with your words and actions. Let go of the pettiness. I ask you to close your eyes and imagine how life would change if you lost some of the people who are closest to you. Say I love you. I’m sorry. I forgive you. I miss you. Say whatever it is that needs to be said and don’t wait for the right time to say it. If you wait for the right time the likelihood is that it will never come.

The key to post-traumatic growth is all in the mind. Can you take events that have happened to you and see how they have affected your life positively today?

Melissa Fino

Melissa Fino is a defiant high school dropout who went on to receive her Master’s of Social Work from the University of Southern California. Melissa applies her life experience with unexpected challenges and numerous insecurities to empower women to let go of the negative in their lives and embrace the positive. Currently, she is the CEO of LoveYourLife Community, a conscious life change coach for women, writer, blogger and speaker.

You might also enjoy..

by Deborah Hartung

Getting Through the Holidays like a Pro

It’s barely been a week since the Halloween decorations came down and suddenly, every store I go into looks like Santa’s workshop exploded all over aisle 12. Most of us may be stressed about Christmas, but our poor sisters in the US still have Thanksgiving to get through, first. So let’s spare a thought for them and let’s all take a deep breath and
by Sheinna Mungroo

How To Boss Motivate Yourself On Off Days

Yes, we have all been there. We have all experienced some form of demotivation in our lives. However, this is normal. Sometimes life throws us that curveball and things can get tough or we wind up faced with a difficult challenge. We might find ourselves questioning why we even started in the first place.
by Radhika Chhabria

Emotional Intelligence – A tool of excellence!

As an aspiring leader, we always seek to identify that one specific skill, which differentiates the best from the rest! Emotional Intelligence is the ability to become cognizant of and manage ones’own emotions and the emotions of others, understanding the signals that emotions transmit about relationships.
by Deborah Hartung

How to Communicate like a Freakin’ BOSS

One of the most crucial skills any leader needs to develop is their communication skills and their ability to motivate and inspire people through difficult times or to have really tough conversations without ruining the relationship in the long term.  For as long as I can remember,
by Sheinna Mungroo

Don’t Just Show Up – Be Present

It’s said that Happiness can only be found in the present moment, that’s where it lives, that’s its home. When we live in the past or in the future, we are missing out on the freedom and peace that is in the now. With all the craziness that is associated with being a boss woman, we often forget to stop, relax and live in the moment. 
by Deborah Hartung

Banish Imposter Syndrome & Claim Your Greatness

No matter how talented and inspiring you are, or what levels of success you reach in your career and your life, chances are that you find yourself questioning your own abilities and feeling like a fraud – like somehow you’re faking it all and someone is going to find out that you really don’t have the faintest idea of what you’re doing.
by Chiccorra Connor

Why Rejection is Worth Embracing

As painful as rejection may be, it can prove essential to success. Those who let the fear of rejection rule their lives stay stuck. Don’t let that be your case. It’s one of the simplest challenges to overcome. Dive into opportunities head on, take the hits, and come out a winner. Those who won’t allow the sting of no stop them from moving forward a

Join the discussion!

3 thoughts on “How has Trauma Changed your Life?

  1. Dear Melissa,

    Thank you for such a beautiful, honest and personal piece of writing.

    Your work has given me a new sense of inspiration to live life meaningful and a positive view on trauma experienced in my life.

    I would love to read more of your work. Thanks again.

    Kindest,
    Caroline

    1. Caroline-

      I just saw this post and wanted to say thank you for your kind words. As of late I have been spending more time thinking about this topic and how people’s reactions to life’s experiences are different.

      I will be discussing it again in my weekly newsletter that goes out on Friday. Please head over to my personal website http://www.loveyourlifecommunity.com to sign up. I would love to have you as a member of my community.
      Love and light your way.

      Melissa

  2. Great read! Funny thing this morning I asked God to talk to me and I went on instragram to see this article.
    ☺️

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.