Dare to Create – Recovery isn’t a linear experience


ebf57993-7435-4c32-8a5f-a6e61cc3fd88.jpeg– pixabay.com

Hello survivors, and welcome to another Dare to Create article from #ProjectLifeQuality. Your creative corner, where we discuss our topic of the week and you are provided with a suggestion to take away with you.

This will be something designed to encourage, and motivate you to explore your thoughts through the use of the arts. PLQ continues to explore the topic of emotional abuse this week. Today’s article focuses on the impact and aftermath of abuse, and we look at how we can help ourselves recover. You’ll find more about this below the challenge.

Dare to Create – the challenge

This week I would like us to gently explore our personal abuse timelines.

Challenges like PTSD have a tendency to raise their ugly head unexpectedly, so just remember to look after yourself, take as long as you need to do this challenge and do only what you feel ready for. I hope you find great healing through this.

18626D0B-1153-47C9-8C03-E55891698A17Image source top and bottom left – typorama.com

The challenge – Paint a timeline of your emotions

* Consider your emotional journey of abuse
–  Before the abuse
–  During abuse
–  The present time

Now Consider the phrase

“Recovery isn’t a linear experience.”

It is neither a straight line nor the same as the next survivors,

so what does your timeline look like?

Think of methods and unusual tools with which to your draw lines.
(Cotton buds, your fingertips, fingerprints, your feet, a chopstick or cocktail stick, a garden twig… The list of options is limitless! Can you use something specific to your story? Whatever it is, remember self-love first and foremost.)

Use words in your artwork                                                                                                                                                                            – these could be significant dates,

– feelings or a specific memory,

– a poem you’ve written about abuse.

This is about YOU and YOUR journey, so what does yours look like?

Please share with us. Don’t forget to tag @projectlifequality #plq.


B57AC9E0-A89E-4773-8246-154C6C7BB2F8.jpegSource of background – Typorama.com

The impact and aftermaths of emotional abuse

“We can’t heal within the same environment that made us sick.” It sounds pretty simple when put like that, doesn’t it? But when in the abusive environment, it’s easy for us to not see it – or not wish to see it. I certainly identify with both, and perhaps you do too.

For me to grow and heal I needed to remove myself from the person. An analogy I think of when I revisit this experience, is gardening. Plants give me a lot of pleasure and orchids are one of my favorites. But orchids are fussy eaters and if I feed them with… Let’s say, tomato ketchup, I am certain they would rebel! They won’t even tolerate tap water! For them to look their best and flower their little hearts out, they must be happy and cared for – just like us. For me, that meant no contact followed by finding my true identity and confidence again.

The damaging effects of emotional and verbal abuse

Staying in an emotionally or verbally abusive relationship can have long-lasting effects on your physical and mental health.


So how do we move forward?

The benefit of healing affirmations for victims of abuse

The attack on a person’s character, appearance, interests, job, friends/family… and everything else of importance to them, can emotionally break a person down so that they no longer trust their own judgment or perspective. The consequence if this is that they can find themselves trapped by the lack of confidence. After all, if told frequently that “No one else would put up with, what I do.” or “You can’t even cook, so how on earth would you survive without me?” it will eventually make a person so confused that they may start to believe the lies they hear.

How do we combat those voices that still live in our head?

Last week’s article explored emotional abuse looks and feels like, plus a little about how science has proven the arts can heal trauma. (If you missed it, click the link at the bottom.) And this is a fundamental reason behind Dare to Create challenges. Healing affirmations is another tool we can use to assist our healing.

Considering this week’s creative challenge, I’d like you to read the following. It’s from an article called 7 Healing Affirmations For Victims of Narcissistic Abuse. Link to their page

2DE62860-8187-467E-A6BC-5FE42CF117D8– 7 Healing Affirmations For Victims of Narcissistic Abuse – http://www.aconsciousrethink.com

It is important to remind yourself that the healing process is a continual one. Depending on how long a narcissist was a part of your life, it can take months years, or even a lifetime to fully come to terms with it.

What’s more, the path is not always a straightforward one; you may take forward steps, backward steps, and even sideways steps. Just remember that every step is a part of the journey and that it is neither a waste or a failure to have setbacks.

This simple confirmation that you are healing can provide the energy and impetus to get you through the challenges you’ll face along the way.”

~ A Conscious Rethink

If you found this useful, try saying the affirmation out loud daily. Visit the website for six more.

Further reading

Dare To Create – The benefits of Recovery Through Arts

Be the person you want to be!


Rebecca Goldthorpe
PLQ Creative Coach and Journalist

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