5 Ways to Cope With Trauma

May 6, 2021

We develop trauma as an emotional response to a negative life-changing event. Trauma can form from occurrences like an accident, death, sexual assault, natural disaster, or any other type of disturbing experience. Before we can learn how to cope with trauma, it’s important to know what trauma can look like. Here are a few common symptoms that the American Psychological Association points out:

  • Deep sadness
  • Irritable or angry
  • Feeling nervous, jumpy or on high alert
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Relationship problems
  • Intrusive thoughts, flashbacks, nightmares

If these emotions persist, trauma can manifest as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Trauma can bring about an extremely painful range of emotions, but there are things that can help us to cope better. Here are five of our tips:

1- Lean on Your Loved Ones

This is a time to lean on your support system. If you feel ready and comfortable talking about how you feel or your experience with the people you love and trust, this can be a source of comfort. Or if you’re not quite ready for that yet, you can also see how your loved ones can help out, whether that’s with everyday household tasks or other stressful obligations.

2- Try to Maintain a Routine

Routines can help us feel a sense of normalcy and security. Try to establish a loose routine during this time that will help give you reliable structure. It helps to have a set time for waking up and going to sleep, as well as going through simple daily tasks.

3- Be Patient With Yourself

Remember that it’s normal to have a strong reaction to a distressing event. It’s more than okay to take things one day at a time. Be gentle with yourself and validate your own experience. Healing is a gradual process, that is not linear and looks different for each individual.

4- Practice Self-Care

Taking care of yourself during this time is the most important thing. This includes making sure you get enough sleep, a healthy diet and regular exercise. Try to carve out time to take part in activities you enjoy, like creating art, listening to music or reading. You might also try to learn some relaxation or mindfulness techniques that are specifically targeted at helping with trauma.

5- Go to Therapy

Lastly, seek out professional help. While these first four tips can certainly help us as we cope with trauma, sometimes we might require more counseling services to truly work through and it know how to manage it.

At Eugene Therapy, our compassionate therapists will listen to your story to better understand how trauma has impacted your life. Our therapists will be there as you explore your trauma, come to accept it and heal from it.

Another method we sometimes use for trauma and PTSD treatment is EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing). EMDR can help you see disturbing material in a less distressing way. Ultimately, Eugene Therapy’s goal is to help you work through and heal from your trauma so that you can live a more peaceful, fulfilling life.

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