Depression and Past Trauma - 6 Ways To Accept The Past and Let Go
How to move past things and traumatic events that can be holding you back and harming you mentally.
Depression is one of the most common health issues in America, which is highlighted by the fact that Major Depressive Disorder affects over 16 million American adults. While we all feel down from time to time, depression counselling from a mental health coach could be pivotal for anyone who experiences long-term symptoms of depression.
While several tactics may be needed to help you manage your depression, learning how to let go of past trauma can be one of the most critical steps on the journey. Here's all you need to know about accepting the past and moving on.
Depression & Past Trauma
The likelihood of falling victim to depression is significantly increased when you have a life-threatening illness or live in particularly stressful situations, which is why taking steps to manage general mental health can play a significant role in your progress.
Meanwhile, it may be possible to reduce the severity or frequency of symptoms with medication and other treatments. However, these do not get to the bottom of why you feel depressed. In many cases, it is linked to a past trauma. The most frequent examples are;
- Abusive relationships or childhood abuse,
- Family bereavement,
- Giving birth (postnatal depression)
- Physical trauma and the repercussions,
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder,
- Witnessing horrific situations.
Whether consciously or subconsciously, trauma often causes (or at least contributes to depression), But it's not your fault. Furthermore, the right mental health coach can identify the trauma and understand how it affects your psychological and emotional wellness - it is a key step towards finding the right counselling strategies.
Accepting the Past
Making peace with the past is an essential step on the road to building a brighter future. While it is an idea that extends to everyone, its impact on patients with depression can be huge.
Learning to accept the past is about refusing to dwell on experiences and situations that you cannot change in order to live in the present and future. By achieving this, you will finally break free from the shackles that the trauma has previously placed on your life. Aside from boosting your mental health, it can actively support you in the bid to unlock your full potential.
Some of the direct benefits gained from truly accepting your past include but are not limited to;
- Gain a deeper understanding of why you have been depressed,
- Reduce or remove your reliance on medication for depression,
- Experience bouts of depression far less frequently,
- Stop feeling trapped by people or past experiences,
- Position yourself to find a treatment or strategy for long-term success,
- Feel capable of giving your best in careers, relationships, and more.
Until you accept the past and learn how to let go of past trauma, you'll never see the full benefits of positive steps in other aspects of your life. Likewise, it'll continue to impact your self-confidence. This is something a caring and experienced mental health coach like Dr Christine can support you through.
The truth is that the source of your depression has probably held you back, even if it was just growing deep inside you for many years. Now is the time to regain control through dedicated depression counselling.
How to Let Go of Past Trauma
If you wish to let go of past trauma, there has to be a conscious effort on your behalf. After all, learning to accept the past is a personal journey. On a brighter note, you do not have to face the process alone. The guidance of a mental health coach will help unlock the best results.
Here are six of the best tips that will help you finally let go of past trauma, including those that have harmed your mental wellness for decades.
#1. Stop Keeping Negative Feelings Bottled Up
Many people fear negative emotions, which is why they never let them out. Sadly, the trauma locked inside will continue to pose a threat to your mental wellness. Opening the door to let negative emotions flow will finally put you in a position to process them, either alone or with the help of a mental health coach.
#2. Accept That You Won't Always Get An Apology
When someone else has caused your emotional trauma, it's only natural that you want them to apologize. Sadly, you could be waiting a lifetime while even a late apology isn't actually going to have much of an impact on your sparkle. Stop wishing for an apology, and you can finally draw a line under that trauma.
#3. Talk And Forgive
As well as processing the trauma internally, you should give yourself permission to discuss it. For starters, speaking it through your mouth lets it leave your body. Perhaps more crucially, you need to forgive. This could mean forgiving someone who hasn't apologized or forgiving yourself for past mistakes. You don't need to be defined by the past.
#4. Be Kind To Yourself
Even when the trauma was not your fault, it is easy to fall into a trap of self-criticism and beating yourself up. This does you no good. Showing compassion to yourself as you would show to a friend can bring a shift of mindset. It can also help you move on by realizing that the trauma doesn't have to be as big as you've made out.
#5. Create distance
It's not uncommon to feel burdened by circumstances. If there is a situation, person, or issue that triggers your depression, you must address it. Creating psychological or physical distance is a very effective step. However, this can only occur after the triggers have been identified with help from your mental health coach.
#6. Focus On Positives
Sometimes in life, the best way to stop thinking about a negative is to distract yourself with a positive. This could mean focusing on your career, enjoying hobbies, or practising mindfulness and self-care. Either way, the "out of sight, out of mind" mantra can make a world of difference.
Learning to let go of the past doesn't necessarily mean that you'll never experience symptoms of depression again. Nonetheless, it will have a hugely positive influence on your life. When the past no longer holds you back, you can finally lead the future you deserve.