Today I will share a little more of my story and how Mindfulness has helped me recover from a traumatic event. So, let's get to it!
After I completed my Master of Arts in counselling at university, I went on to read social science on a PhD level. I was working full time and opted to study for my PhD part-time for six years. My dream was to earn the postgraduate award in my 60th year. It was an achievable goal and a great birthday present to me.
I was three years into research and could no longer endure my abusive marriage after I spent time in hospital. Against advice, I decided to put my studies on hold and took a long break from work so I could try to salvage what was left of my marriage. I hope things would change for the better, however, they didn’t. Over the next couple of years, the abuse would worsen, despite a series of reconciliation meetings, counselling sessions so eventually for my safety, a divorce ensued.
All this left me to burn out, feeling hopeless, defeated, and helpless. I did not want to face the future, so I extended the deferral of my studies.
Even without the relationship problems, if you forget to schedule time for activities that care for to nurture you - then you may be at risk of burnout. Eventually, when I felt stronger, using mindfulness to recover, I attempted to enrol to continue my studies but sadly, the limit of deferment had been reached, therefore I lost all my scores. Three whole years of hard study, tuition, and research all came to nothing. I had to start from the beginning if I wanted to earn a PhD. However, the fees increased dramatically, and I could not afford 6 years of study. Through all this, I was left completely burnt out – yet again. I was now over 60s and my cherished goal faded into the distance. I felt as if I was in a desert wandering around aimlessly with nowhere to go. My dream of a PhD had vanished. My marriage which held so much promise of happiness, love and hope at one time, was now a thing of the past.
Your Mindfulness Well- habits
If you are recovering from a traumatic event or if you’re a hyper-focused, motivated, achiever, then I know you can successfully apply yourself to create a better balance in your life. At times, life sucks and isn’t fair or kind. However, there is hope on the horizon. Mindfulness living is a wonderful tool to help you to succeed on your journey. However, to live mindfully, you must develop what I call- Well-Habits.
Unlearning bad habits and learning new ones – Well-Habits- is not so easy. We know this because most of us fail to keep our New Year’s resolutions. Usually, it’s because most of us start off far too big. We decide to launch into a whole new lifestyle all at once- it's all or nothing! We think we’re just going to get there by the sheer exercise of willpower and come up disappointed. To avoid disappointment, Well-Habits are formed bit by bit, day by day through disciplining yourself to put them in place and practice them. Right now, get out your calendar and schedule a daily slot of time to spend on your health and happiness – carve out some Me Time! Learn to build systems into your lifestyle to prevent further burn-out. I have found that by scheduling my well-being as a priority in my diary, by promoting my personal well-ness activities at a regular time each week, I’m building healthy habits for wellness (well-habits).
The more you purpose to create good habits, you increase your answerability to yourself for your behaviour. It will be easier for you to improve your work-life balance while recovering from trauma. It will give you a structure that will help to make you feel secure and that you are progressing forward positively.
Mindfulness is about intention, to enable meaning and purpose in you everyday life. Intentionally planning and organising your daily activities will give you a reason to get up in the morning and to live purposefully throughout your day. If you are following me, you will know that this is not the whole story of course, but a snippet from my new book about Holistic Living, which features Mindfulness and issues around mental health that I am in the process of writing. It will be published and made available to you later in the year – so keep a lookout for that! Also, If you want to learn more about making self-care a priority or do not know how to start your mindfulness journey, check out my course, which will be available in the Summer of 2021- subscribe to this blog to get updates on this!
For your personal development, build a growth mindset rather than a goal orientated one. Don’t get stuck in the false idea that it all far too late for you- you have spent a lifetime caring for others, now it your turn to receive the TLC you need. You are not a project; you are a human being with multifaceted feelings. You need to be nourished like we would nurture plants for them to successfully grow. You are no different. Like a plant you are organic and need to treat yourself with a little TLC. Pushing your personal growth by hitting goals is reducing yourself to one of your business projects- you are of more human value than that! You can grow as a person, change, and improve the way that you want to, if you allow yourself to GROW! It means that you are not born successful, but you become successful as you work through ‘stuff’ that has stuck itself to you over the years.
As part of your Well- Habit development, ensure that you also practise self-acceptance and self-compassion – stop being so hard on yourself. Remember, no one should make you feel bad about who you are – not even you!
It’s important to establish boundaries. What does this mean? It means that you decide what is acceptable to your growth, goals, values, and lifestyle. Once you establish what is acceptable for you, you must be assertive in upholding those needs - Because no one else will.
Thank you for visiting me here and being part of the community Moon Rose Mindfulness is a community women courageously learning to create an independent, meaningful, and healthy lifestyle. If this post was helpful to you, I would love to hear from you. Feel free to contact me if you need support or share any thoughts you may have. I look forward to your next visit here and remember. Your Best Life is Yet to Come!