Artwork © 2015 Jocelyn Patrick
Ways of Supporting Yourself
Its important to take care of yourself, especially when your healing. Here are some things that you might
try that can help you.
- Acknowledge your strengths, including: your desire to overcome what happened, your willpower, your
initiative, your intelligence, your capacity to care for others, and your wish to grow as a person.
- Build your sense of hope about your recovery. You can start this by becoming more aware of the process
of treatment, reading about the experience of other survivors, talking with other survivors, and identifying
goals for yourself beyond your survival of trauma.
- Develop your support system. Reach out and build new relationships with persons who have something to
offer you. Move old relationships to a deeper, more meaningful level. Set boundaries on unhealthy relationships.
- Adopt an attitude of openess about facing the process of your treatment, what it might or might not involve,
the concerns you may have.
- Respect the pacing of your own recovery.
- Move towards an attitude of self-respect for your own dignity, an understanding and compassion for the wounds
you have endured,and a valuing of yourself for just being yourself with all your own unique strengths and weaknesses
- Begin to listen to yourself, observe your actions, experience your feelings. Don't be judgemental.
- Develop a list of gentle words of encouragement to tell yourself when your treatment seems difficult or frightening.
Use positive self-statements and self-affirmations.
- Create healing images for yourself such as safe place scenes. Practice your safeplace scenes daily.
- Create imagery for containing poisonous memories, thoughts, and images.
- Develop the ability to calm and soothe yourself. One way to begin this is to imagine the experience of someone who
has gone through similar traumatic events. Ask yourself how is what happened to you any different from what happened
to this person. Ask yourself how you might counsel or comfort this person. Imagine treating yourself in a similar
- Develop you ability to be alone without being lonely. Find creative things to do with your time alone, such as
journaling and writing, listening to music, painting and drawing, reading, writing poems. Practice your safe place
scenes and recall supportive images of other persons.
- List your strengths and remind yourself of them regularly. Recall experiences of accomplishment you have had in
the past. Remember the good feelings associated with those events. Return to them frequently to build internal
feelings of self-confidence.