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Personal Rituals Can Protect Trauma Survivors from Stress

Personal Rituals Can Protect Trauma Survivors from Stress

You can create personal rituals that protect you from traumatic memories often triggered by holiday stress. Discover why personal rituals can be powerful.

Seasonal holidays involve many inherent rituals, but have you considered creating your own personal rituals to protect you from holiday stress and anxiety? I had the opportunity to discuss rituals–both helpful and harmful ones–with psychologist Stanton Peele while researching an article about addiction for Vice.1 He describes the ways in which some rituals actually protect people from developing addictions–such as Jewish customs of drinking wine only during certain occasions. He finds that Jews who associate wine in that religious context often find it odd to think of alcohol as a “party drug.” This conversation made me think of the routine rituals we encounter during the holidays. Can trauma survivors intentionally create personal rituals as a means of coping with some of the extra stress associated with holidays?

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What Does Depersonalization with PTSD Feel Like?

What Does Depersonalization with PTSD Feel Like?

Depersonalization is a possible symptom of PTSD that makes you feel disconnected from your thoughts, emotions, body and/or others. Discover more about it here.

Depersonalization is one of the potential dissociative symptoms experienced by a person with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Individuals frequently describe depersonalization as repeated instances of feeling a disconnect between one’s thoughts and physical self. Some also describe it as watching the world through a dreamlike state or watching events from outside one’s body. It is one of the most challenging to define sensations I have ever experienced. Following are some examples of depersonalization symptoms in PTSD and how I experienced them.

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Change the Stigma Around PTSD by Changing Self-Perception

Change the Stigma Around PTSD by Changing Self-Perception

The stigma around PTSD makes many people with PTSD keep their PTSD and symptoms secret. This video explains one way to change the stigma around PTSD.

To avoid the stigma around posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), many people keep their PTSD symptoms secret. How others perceive people with PTSD creates the stigma. Yet, there is another form of derision at play here –that of self-stigma. Identifying, understanding and correcting self-stigma can significantly impact us and the stigma around PTSD as well.

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How to Appreciate Success, Even When It’s Scary

How to Appreciate Success, Even When It’s Scary

Success is wonderful, but for those of us with posttraumatic stress disorder, it can also be terrifying. Learn how to appreciate success while living with PTSD.

Do you appreciate your successes, or does pausing to appreciate success scare you? Even though success is a very normal aspiration, feeling happy about a success (or feeling happy for any reason) can be scary for trauma survivors. The definition of success varies greatly between individuals and can even change during different stages of the same person’s life. However, for those of us living with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the experience of success is sometimes a little extra complicated, even scary. I’m slowly learning to appreciate success in my life with PTSD.

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Finding the Right Level of Self-Care with PTSD

Finding the Right Level of Self-Care with PTSD

Managing self-care with PTSD can be a balancing act between making excuses and doing too much. Here is how the author approaches self-care decisions.

Finding the right level of self-care for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) shouldn’t be that hard considering that self-care is a concept I read or hear about daily. The Internet is replete with self-care checklists and ideas for busy parents, overloaded students, and almost every mental health condition ever diagnosed. However, balancing my level of self-care with PTSD becomes lopsided because self-care frequently presents as an activity or item that is considered to be a treat. Manicures, chocolates, long baths, and time to read are common self-care suggestions. Personally, I find self-care to be more complicated, as it is not always about taking it easy on myself. Here is why I balance my indulgence level of self-care with PTSD against challenges.

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Introduction to Elizabeth Brico, Author of ‘Trauma! A PTSD Blog’

Introduction to Elizabeth Brico, Author of ‘Trauma! A PTSD Blog’

Elizabeth Brico, author of "Trauma! A PTSD Blog" talks about her experience with PTSD and the role of support and community in recovery.Hi, my name is Elizabeth Brico and I’m the new author of Trauma! A PTSD Blog. You can also call me Betty if you prefer. I’ve been diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) for almost a decade. I developed it in response to domestic violence, which occurred when I was a teenager. HealthyPlace has been a long time refuge for me. I’ve enjoyed reading the various blogs and articles, especially those pertaining to PTSD. You can imagine, then, that I’m thrilled to be joining the team as one of the authors of Trauma! A PTSD Blog.

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My PTSD Brain Won’t Be Quiet–Constant Thinking Protected Me

My PTSD Brain Won’t Be Quiet–Constant Thinking Protected Me

PTSD brains protect us in many ways. One way my PTSD brain does that is through constant thinking. Learn why my PTSD brain's way of helping isn't the best way.

My posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) brain keeps me busy to avoid pain. Your PTSD brain could help you avoid pain in a very different way. The diversity found in the coping mechanisms people develop in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) continues to surprise me. In my case, constant thinking was one way my PTSD brain protected me.

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PTSD-Related Avoidance Avoided With This Coping Technique

PTSD-Related Avoidance Avoided With This Coping Technique

You can minimize PTSD-related avoidance by breaking outings into small steps. Learn how this PTSD-related avoidance coping skill can save your vacation. Watch.

I have a bad habit and it’s about posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)-related avoidance. I make plans with the best of intentions, only to cancel them at the last minute. Does this sound familiar to you? As many times as this has happened, I continue to experience a disconnect between the willingness to participate in an event when I make plans, and the utter desire to avoid leaving my room when it is time to go. However, I have found that breaking outings into steps reduces PTSD-related avoidance.

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My Parent Has PTSD — A Teenager’s Perspective

My Parent Has PTSD — A Teenager’s Perspective

When a parent experiences posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), it is important to understand the potential impact this can have on the children, including the possibility of secondary-traumatic stress. While children can have negative reactions when a parent suffers from PTSD, they can also thrive and develop unique strengths (A Parent with PTSD Can Affect the Whole Family). Watch as my oldest son offers his unique perspective on growing up when a parent has PTSD. 

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Introduction to Tia Hollowood, Author of ‘Trauma! A PTSD Blog’

Introduction to Tia Hollowood, Author of ‘Trauma! A PTSD Blog’

Hi, my name is Tia Hollowood, and I am pleased to be joining the HealthyPlace blogging community as a writer for Trauma! A PTSD Blog. My trauma started early on in life, but now I can say I’m in PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder) recovery and I believe that sharing our experiences can help us all (Telling Your Trauma Story: Why You Really Should).

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