How do you know when you are healed? What exactly is the meaning of “healing?”
A cut heals into a scar. We say the cut is “healed,” but the reminder is there in the form of a scar. Is a scar a form of healing? Physical scars are usually a tear in the skin – whether a big tear or as a knife wound, or a small tear – a prick of the finger with a pin.
Our bodies have an amazing capacity to rejuvenate and grow. Growth is one of the requirements of a living organism. Growth and reproduction.
Green you grow – ripe you rot.
(Old Chinese Proverb)
A scar is a cicatrix – connective tissue that results from oxidation in the healing process. The air causes bacteria which causes scarring.
What then causes emotional scars? How does a body heal emotionally? Do we possess the same healing capacity in our minds as we have in our bodies?
Yes, we do. The mind is a healer by itself. We tend to ignore the mighty physician residing in our bodies – if minds are a part of our bodies. The secret to having a healthy mind is to have a healthy body.
When you have problems with depression or a cloudy brain, look first inside to see how your body is doing. Do you have an illness, and inflammation, a physical problem you’ve let go? This will affect your mindset. Even though you numb your mind to feeling lousy, and carry on with your day, you are affecting your mindset. The longer you ignore what is going on within you, the harder it is to get back on a healthy path.
Healing takes time, and we want things to be instant. We go to the doctor and expect the pill he prescribes to take away our malady. Unfortunately, all the pill does is mask the problem. Does the doctor ask you why you are depressed? Does he take care to correct your social situation that is causing the depression?
No, he does not. “Take this pill and you should begin to feel better.” Your life is the same, the problems are the same, but the pills makes everything “all better.”
three truths about healing
- Healing comes from the mind, even physical healing. If you do not believe you will be well, then you won’t be. “When I see the doctor, he will make me well.” The powerful suggestions of the mind.
- Healing is not instant. It took a while to get to where you are, it will take a while to get your strength back.
- Healing is a daily endeavor. It is natural to “jump off the wagon,” so to speak, to eat the wrong foods and think the wrong thoughts. Some days are just difficult to get through, let alone feel like doing the healing thing. If a day goes bad, so be it. Make an effort to do better tomorrow.
The action “to be healed,” is purely personal – you decide when you are healthy – but there are some things that facilitate healing that is common to all healing.
1. Do not pick your scab.
2. The pus of the infection must be released.
3. Do not reinjure the wound.
4. Use measures to prevent future injury.
This is common sense when treating a physical injury. “If it hurts, don’t do it.” Not too much thought is required. If we use common sense to heal and prevent further physical injury, why then do we not do the same with our emotional damage?
EMOTIONAL SCAB PICKERS
1. Do not pick at the scab. Ruminating, staying stuck on a scene from the past, worrying about the future. These are all scab pickers.
2. The pus of the infection must be released. Whether with antibiotics or lancing, the infection must be released and allowed to run its course. But until the foreign body that is causing the infection is removed, the injury will continue to be inflamed and sore.
We usually cover up our emotional injury with words like: “I’m fine.” “Sorry to bother you. “Lost control for a minute.” We never let the pus out.
Determined to be staunch and stoic, we learn to tamp down our feelings and let them fester, until over time, the pus does erupt, but not in a pretty fashion. Anger, arguing, blaming. Releases for the resentments (the pus) that stagnate in our bodies and minds.
Why do they build up? Because we leave these negative emotions unattended. We refuse to recognize what they are and why they are there, and the “pus” of these toxic emotions keep building and building until there is no room for them to go but out our mouth. Torrential words.
3. Do not reinjure the wound. In order to heal, the trauma or trigger must be removed. This is not easy. Since trauma deals with relationships, more than likely there are people in your life causing your upset.
4. Use measures to prevent future injury. Most of the time, accidents can be prevented. What do we do to protect our emotional side from being damaged?
Healing can only completely occur when the antagonist is removed. Whether a small, annoying sliver, or an abusive boss or mate, the “cause” of the “infection” must be eliminated.
Some emotional scars will never disappear. Old traumas from childhood come around and remind us when we least want them to. Staying busy during the day brings some relief, but nighttime – the dreams. The mind just won’t shut itself off, will it?
How, you ask, is it possible to put these thoughts to rest? Here are a few suggestions:
Neurofeedback, EMDR are two excellent therapies for calming the brain and taking off the burn and rushing thoughts.
These two therapies are not always accessible, and what do you do, run to your therapist every time you have a flashback? Or if you cannot find a therapist to help you, what do you do?
Here are things you can do to help yourself.
- Let your flashback overcome you. See it in its richness, the bright colors, the smells, the sounds. Remind yourself this isn’t really happening, it is just a memory. Immerse yourself, for the last time, in these awful memories. Then, shrink it down. Make the memory less colorful, not so brightly colored. Continue reducing the image until it is just a spot in your consciousness.
- Put the memories in a box and tie it with a bow. Put it on a shelf (in your mind) and forget about it. Compartmentalization is a great tool, your train accepts that it is no longer a problem. You can build a room in your mind filled with shelves. Build a huge house if you have to, and fill with shelves containing little boxes with their bows.
- Experience the emotion and then let it go. Realize your feelings really are not you. Feelings are an expression, a thought.
This is my favorite guided meditation. Ten minutes a day is all it takes.
Release your emotions here.
Now, you are on your way.
As life will have it, there are many obstacles to steer you from your course. Ups and downs – that’s life!
When you can weather the downs, then you will know you are healing. No one takes a measure, there is no test that says you are healed, but inside you will know. The change is so gradual you do not notice it. Like any good habit, a new routine takes time.
It is for you to decide when you are healed. The secret is to believe you can heal, and to have patience and compassion for yourself while going through the journey.
Good luck, I know you can do it. Leave a comment below and let us know how you are doing.