When I look back on my life 17 months ago. It looked very different than it does now. Life then was stressful, agonizing, and troubling. I was a shattered, broken existence of myself. Wondering what I could do to quiet the constant voices I was having of not being enough, doing enough or providing enough. My attempts at decompressing with exercise was never enough to get away from the feelings I was experiencing from the day to day abuse. Nothing deadened those voices; nothing took away the emptiness, and the loneliness I had every day.
Being with an abusive partner literally sucks the life out of you. You don’t ever have a break from stress. You are constantly on high alert, leaving you little room to breathe; to feel normal; that it is okay to just be still. When I was in this abusive relationship I always wondered if I would ever get to just breathe again to truly enjoy life in all its joy and beauty.
Life now is happy, peaceful, and relaxed. I have re-learned how to take a breath and just be still. This was no easy feat. Resetting how you react after 5 years of high constant stress takes awareness and intention. You have to learn new ways of coping and handling stress, so when you’re faced with it you are able to cope in a healthy and productive manner. Instead of destructive ways, like drinking, using narcotics, or being addicted to things that will make you feel even worse about yourself.
Everyone has different ways of handling stress, for me, running, hiking and strength training have been great ways for me to work through the levels of stress that I have faced in my new life. I actually feel whole, content and complete where I’m at in my life right now. Are there still bad days, of course, life is still life in or out of an abusive relationship. Yet the difference lies in how you are able to cope and handle the stress you have.
If your circumstances allow you to identify the stressors in your life, and you know there has been no reprieve. I challenge you to find healthy ways to manage your stress, such as yoga, meditation, walks, or even finding a local self-defense class that will empower you to take back your own breath and just be still.
Back to Blog >>