Psychiatrist Carl Jung coined the terms shadow work, which in lay person’s term is accepting all traits of oneself. There’s no good, nor bad parts to us, just One. When we are whole, we love and accept what many would see as negative traits. For most of us who experienced a form of childhood trauma, fear, insecurity and doubt, are undoubtedly going to exist in our lives. I’ve learned that the hard way of struggling to accept my past.
Shame is the most debilitating feeling we all carry inside of us. It’s the underlying feeling that we’re most afraid to tap into because shame tells us that we’re not good enough, we’re unworthy or we are failures
Is it even possible? How does one regain their self-esteem lost from childhood abuse and trauma?
What I’ve learned over the years is that low self-esteem in social situations can be common for childhood abuse and trauma survivors.
I feel judged and begin analyzing what others might be thinking of me. I feel a discomfort in my breathing and suddenly my mind no longer pays attention to the social interactions going on, but rather on what my exit strategy is going to be. Perhaps it’s a mild case of agoraphobia, the fear of feeling unsafe and trapped. Or maybe it’s a trigger from my past.
If anyone is struggling in their relationships, family or work life, assess your history growing up and ask yourself how the environment may have shaped your present belief system. Did you grow up with a lot family violence, arguments and shaming? Were you violated as a child and put down often? Were there major transitions such as divorce of your parents, moving to a different region or the sudden loss of a loved one? Dig deep and learn more about how childhood events such as trauma and abuse impacted you.
Those who experienced childhood abuse will go through a different journey than those who didn’t. It can be sometimes difficult to explain this journey to someone who’s never experienced it before. At the end of the day, it’s your journey and your life to own. And finding peace with your journey opens doors to so many great things that you didn’t even realize before.