3 Signs You Are Healing From Trauma: What True Healing Feels Like
Navigating the complex journey of healing, especially when grappling with past traumas, is a challenging yet crucial process that many face. This article covers a couple of pervasive questions that people have when they start working with us: What is healing? What are the signs you are healing from trauma?
If you’ve been employing various self-help exercises, such as mindfulness practices or journaling, but still find yourself seeking a transformative breakthrough, this article is for you. By the end, you will know if you are genuinely healing, or if you are bypassing your wounds, past trauma, and inner child work.
What does “healing” really mean? And what are the three signs of true healing?
Before I dive in, I want to let you know that we are currently offering a free, detailed Nervous System Profile.
This is perfect for you if you are experiencing…
- A sense of overwhelm, increased alertness, and underlying anxiety.
- Feeling irritable, overly reactive, and easily frustrated.
- Signs of chronic stress or embodied trauma (e.g., trouble sleeping, hypersensitivity to sounds and smells, pain in the neck and shoulders, back pain, tension.)
Nervous system dysregulation is REAL. And healing IS entirely possible without having to give up your life, your dreams, and your drive.
People ask me all the time: How can I tell if I’m genuinely healing? They usually ask this at the beginning of their healing journey before working with us to heal their nervous system. Those who come to us have often tried many things. Maybe they have done some mindfulness practices or journaling. Sometimes they have done years of therapy, or years of yoga, and still cannot see results that stick. They don’t experience profound transformation.
So what makes a difference? How can you identify the signs you are healing from trauma?
Our Client’s Story of True Healing
We have a client who is a wellness coach. When she came to work with us, she had resorted to typical practices such as journaling and meditation – with minimal success. While these practices were helpful in bringing her to the present moment or sitting with negative emotions, they weren’t healing her past wounds. It wasn’t rejuvenating enough to cause any significant effect on her healing. The results were not sticking long enough to cause any real change in her life.
As she started her regulation journey with us, she started seeing how this transitioned into her body. She started seeing a significant change in her body: Her heart rate became more regular, and her vagal tone completely changed in a matter of weeks. That translated into more profound rejuvenation, more groundedness, less emotional reactivity, and completely different energy.
3 Signs You are Healing from Trauma: What Highly Driven Women Know About Healing Their Nervous System
1. Profound Effects on the Body
Your body is letting go of layers and layers of chronic stress and trauma. All these layers of tension are stored in the body at the level of your connective tissue, fascia, and other areas deep inside the body.
To heal, you have to go deep enough to release all these lumps of stored pain. If done in the right way, you might experience some significant sensations and physical discomfort. But slowly, and with the support of an experienced team, you will start to reap the benefits.
You will start notice:
- A better heart rate as you experience a different level of rejuvenation
- Your chronic conditions beginning to ease
- Better performance in sports
- A difference in your body: more sleep, less physical pain, more pleasure, and more vitality
You will also notice that you are more attuned to how you feel in your body and that you can better integrate your body in everything you do.
2. More Emotional Flexibility and Less Emotional Reactivity
Women say that when they are going through deep healing, they experience a new way of relating to the people around them. Their vagal tone allows them to remain flexible and adaptive through whatever emotional stress they are going through. And they are better able to respond with a new level of resilience.
For example, one of our clients reported being able to laugh at multiple shows that she used to interpret as very serious. They were not previously funny to her. A new level of playfulness and enjoyment are signs of a more flexible nervous system.
This client also went through a recent loss. While her grief still felt heavy, she was able to move through it. This resiliency, this ability to move more flexibly through both joy and pain, is the backbone of a resilient, healed nervous system. This resiliency is at the core of healing and preventing trauma both in yourself and the people around you.
3. Speaking to Yourself in a Different Tone
One of the core elements of a healed nervous system is your vagal tone. The vagus nerve is considered the nerve of compassion. When you start healing, you’re going to develop a new way of talking to yourself. You will lend yourself more understanding, more support, more love, less judgment, and less shame. You’ll start feeling a sense of belonging and of deep inner peace.
When women go through our protocols and programs, they quickly bring their nervous system from a state of being triggered continuously to a state of regulation. With this healing, it becomes possible to tap into a completely different level of healing and growth.
Frequently Asked Questions about Trauma
What is trauma?
Trauma is a type of psychological stress or distress that arises from emotional, physical, or sexual trauma. A traumatic experience can come in many forms, anything from a car accident to physical abuse to natural disasters can cause emotional trauma. It can manifest in the form of feelings of fear and helplessness, overwhelm, shock and dread after experiencing an event that has either caused emotional distress or threatened one’s safety. Trauma can lead to mental health issues such as depression, PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), anxiety disorders, substance abuse disorder and other long-term effects that impair one’s ability to live a healthy life.
What are the signs of trauma?
The signs and symptoms of trauma can vary depending on the type of traumatic event experienced, but some common signs include intense fear or panic, difficulty sleeping or concentrating, feeling emotionally numb or disconnected from others, flashbacks or intrusive memories of the traumatic event, and physical reactions such as sweating and heart racing. Other symptoms may manifest in self-destructive behaviors (e.g., substance use), relationship problems, emotional instability and irritability, depression and anxiety.
What is a “trauma response”?
A trauma response is the body’s natural reaction to a traumatic event. It can include physical, emotional and cognitive responses such as increased heart rate, sweating, freezing or feeling disconnected from others. It is an instinctive coping mechanism that can be triggered in any type of traumatic situation – whether that be actual or perceived danger – and it’s important to acknowledge this response in order to facilitate healing and recovery.
How long does it take to recover from trauma?
The time it takes to recover from past traumas can vary and is largely dependent on the individual. It’s important to note that the trauma recovery process is not linear, and can take weeks, months, or even years depending on the severity of the traumatic event. It’s important to create a safe environment for trauma victims in order to support their physical and emotional well-being. Creating a sense of safety within the body is the foundation of nervous system regulation.
Does counseling help in treating trauma?
Yes, counseling can be a very helpful and effective tool in treating unresolved trauma. However, while talk therapy can help us process our emotional wounds, or teach us what healthy boundaries and healthy relationships look like, it often cannot get to the root of symptoms in the physical body, which are caused by years of nervous system dysregulation. Our goal with regulating the nervous system is to get to the root of the symptoms you are experiencing and to build a new foundation for a thriving nervous system.
Trauma can have a lasting and damaging effect on our lives, but it is possible to heal from past traumas with the right support. Nervous system regulation is an important part of this healing process, as it helps us create safety within ourselves and deal with physical symptoms caused by years of trauma-related dysregulation.
Want to find clarity on the cause of your trauma and see fast and powerful changes towards feeling safe and more regulated?
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Dr. Linnea Passaler
Dr. Linnea Passaler has dedicated 20+ years to serving patients, first to a small number of individuals as a successful surgeon and then to thousands of people worldwide as the CEO of a digital health startup. After overcoming her own struggles with a dysregulated nervous system, she created Heal Your Nervous System (HYNS) to empower others in their healing journey. Her combination of neuroscience and somatic work helps those struggling with overwhelm, trauma, burnout, and anxiety to heal their dysregulated nervous systems and thrive.