How to Process Trauma on Your own


Trauma can be a challenging experience to overcome and can have lasting effects on your overall functioning and well-being. After experiencing trauma, you may struggle to find yourself again or become completely overwhelmed by the emotional wreckage that trauma has caused in your life. It is important to gain support by speaking with friends, loved ones, or a professional therapist if your trauma feels too intense to process alone. Below are some helpful tips to help you reduce the negative effects of trauma on your own until you are ready to take the next step to get help from others.

Define What You Want to be Different

This is a great first step because it helps you identify what is wrong and hurting along with setting goals of what you want to see in you and your life in the future. When you are suffering from trauma, this task can seem almost impossible to do by yourself. However, if you are able to do this you can find tremendous benefits. If you are not then you may find yourself in the almost impossible position of trying to hit a target when you don’t know where it is or what it looks like.

Identify Your Triggers

Another step in processing trauma is to identify your triggers. An example of a trigger is a sound, smell, environment, or any other outside stimuli that wreaks havoc on your nervous system and takes you back to a traumatic place. Triggers elicit intense emotional reactions and can be difficult to cope with. Maybe a certain person causes your mind to go back to a horrible accident, or you hear a song that completely enmeshes your senses with fear and dread because it reminds you of your traumatic experience. Triggers are unique to everyone, so the way you choose to cope with yours is a personal decision. Once you have identified your triggers, you can begin to learn healthy coping skills and set plans for times when you are experiencing severe emotional distress.

Engage in Physical Activities

Exercise helps to reduce stress levels and activates the release of endorphins in the body, which improve mood and overall functioning. Regular physical activity such as walking, jogging, or yoga can help you relax and process negative emotions and thoughts. Just thirty minutes of exercise daily can markedly reduce your symptoms and help you create a healthier outlook for both your inner thought life and your outward perception of experiences. Things may seem hopeless, but getting fresh air or taking your dog on a walk are scientifically proven ways to boost your resiliency.

Dealing With Trauma

Learn Relaxation Techniques

Relaxation techniques can help reduce the amount of distress you experience when you are triggered by your trauma. This can be achieved by listening to relaxing music, practicing deep breathing exercises, meditating, or engaging in progressive muscle relaxation. Another great way to help you feel supported is to spend time with your pet. Knowing they are there to cuddle and accept you exactly as you are can be comforting and calming. When overwhelming thoughts and sensations take over your mind and body, remember that you are in control and you have the power to bring yourself back to reality. It can be scary and overwhelming, but over time, these techniques help reduce the intensity of your negative side effects.

Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness exercises help you remain present and avoid negative thoughts about the past or future. Focusing on sensations such as your breathing pattern, the sound of your heartbeat, or feeling the wind on your skin can help focus and calm your mind. Traumatic triggers can transfer your body and mind back into a dangerous place, but you have the power to bring your mind back into a safe place. Initially, it can be difficult for your mind to focus, but you will eventually learn to control your thoughts and remain present in the moment rather than thinking of your past traumatic experiences.

Trauma Counseling

Educate Yourself

Traumatic experiences not only change the way you process memories, emotions, and experiences but can also cause abnormal physiological effects on the mind, body, and soul. Brain scans of individuals who have experienced trauma show a remarkable difference in activity and chemistry in various regions of the brain. Understanding how serious trauma can be and how it affects your life is an important step to begin processing trauma on your own. Give yourself grace in these moments and realize that your trauma is a real thing that your body and mind have endured. Becoming educated in trauma aftermath can help you gain insight into why you are feeling the way you do. Reading books or articles that focus on healing can help prepare you for restoration.

Next Steps

If you find this message beneficial but realize you need professional help processing and working through your trauma, New Vision Counseling and Consulting is here to help guide you through your healing journey. Our compassionate and empathetic team of therapists is specifically trained to process trauma and will help you develop ways of coping and working through the pain that are right for you. We are here to provide a helping hand when you are hurting. We individualize treatment plans and goals based on your personal needs and lifestyle. We will provide the tools that are necessary for a healthy future full of healing and the ability to create a life with relationships that you want to be a part of. If you are ready to have someone who cares and is trained to help you then we are here for you and can be reached at (405) 921-7776

Trauma – Helping Friends and Family

Knowing how to support someone you love and care for after they have had a traumatic or terrifying experience can be challenging.

Although it’s normal to want to help someone you care about feel better, it’s crucial to accept the painful reality of what happened. Nothing you say or do in the moment can take away their suffering. However, with enough processing, grieving, and healing over time things can get better. Show compassion, sit with them in their pain without giving unsolicited advice. Your loving presence can comfort them in ways words never could.


Offering Support

Asking a family member or friend who has gone through a traumatic event in what specific ways you can support them. There are countless ways to give support. Here are a few ideas.

  • Spend time with your loved ones experiencing trauma. Let them know you are there for them and sit with them as they grieve.
  • Refuse the urge to give unsolicited advice.
  • Don’t take any negative responses to the trauma personally. Their mood can be inconsistent and even aggressive at times. A helpful way to be supportive in these moments is through empathy and trying to understand how stressful such a traumatic experience must be for them.
  • Offer assistance in practical ways that are useful to them such as household tasks, helping with any children such as supervision or school pick-ups/drop-offs and providing meals.
  • Don’t be afraid to prioritize self-care, such as reminding them to drink water, eat or shower. In the same breath, it’s just as important to assist them in avoiding self-destruction, such as engaging in excessive substance use or abuse.
  • One way to provide support is by giving your loved one(s) some space to be alone. This can be challenging but helpful depending on what they need.

How to Talk about Trauma

  • Allow your loved one to talk about what happened, even if they become upset. Focus on listening and validating them. Refuse the urge to jump in and give your opinion.
  • Refuse the urge to pressure them to open up and talk about it. Reassure them that you are there to listen whenever they are ready to open up.
  • If they are not willing to open up to you then ask if there is someone else they may like to talk to. Refuse the urge to take this personally. Remember, you are there to help so try to keep giving them what they need the goal.
  • If time sensitive decisions must be made following a traumatic event, offer help to your loved one. If they accept your help; do your best to guide them to make decisions that reflect their best interest. And make those decisions in a way you feel they would if they were in a different mental state.

Things to Keep in Mind

  • It is highly valuable to do your own research on trauma, distress, and depression. It Is important to understand not only what to expect from your loved one during this time, but also to understand what they may be expecting from you.
  • Allow them to talk when they are ready without added pressure or judgment. Make sure to empathize and allow them to see your tears, your anger in ways that let them know you care and are in this with them. Do not allow yourself to get to the point where they feel the need to care for you. If this happens then it would be good for you to seek help so you can process how the trauma is impacting you.
  • You know your person. Don’t be afraid to offer them support in ways that you know how; in ways that you think they need it. You can do all this remaining respectful to their stated desires and their healing process.

If you have found this to be helpful and would like more help, then there is hope. New Vision Counseling and Consulting is here to help you. We are a team of highly trained therapists who care and will meet you where you are and help you heal and move forward. We start by making your therapy sessions safe and non-judgmental. We walk with you and give you the encouragement and resources to heal and start living again. The natural next step is to reach out by calling (405) 921-7776. We look forward to hearing from you and hope to meet you soon.

How to Heal from Trauma

What is Trauma?

Trauma is the emotional distress that remains after a devastating event occurs in your life. Trauma can stem from one major event, or several events occurring over a span of time, resulting in complex trauma. Experiencing events such as the sudden loss of a loved one, the end of a relationship, or witnessing something that is emotionally disturbing can leave you feeling unsafe and affect your ability to function in everyday life. Trauma can also be a deep wound that you have carried with you for years from adverse childhood experiences. Memories from trauma can invade your mental space and make it hard to cope with the resulting emotions. The depth of trauma results from the level of negative feelings you hold about the event. These negative emotions can cause you to feel numb, anxious, and fearful. The good news is that we are here to help you cope and heal from your trauma. The following are steps you can begin now.


God formed us to be relational beings and He desires that we stay in close communion with Him and those around us. When you experience a traumatic event, you are not meant to face it alone. Attending support groups or reaching out to a trusted loved one can help you feel connected so that you are not alone in your experience. One of the first things many do is isolate themselves and shut down. This coping mechanism builds walls around your heart and prevents God from taking your broken pieces and making you whole again. To begin recovery, a good initial step is to invite God to help you heal your emotional scars. As Isaiah 41:10 NIV reminds us, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”


Getting creative is another way to cope and heal from trauma. When you experience numbness or dissociation in your body due to your emotional distress, your body takes note. Art is a great way to help you feel safe in your own skin again and release the negative tension stored in your body. Painting, journaling, or writing poetry helps you express your emotions in a calming way. When trauma occurs, your mind can obsess over the event which may cause uncontrollable flashbacks. Spilling these emotions on paper helps the mind release the need to focus on the traumatic event and can provide you with some solace.


Prioritize your needs and focus on your recovery. This will look different for each person, but focusing on calming and soothing activities can create an outlet for your soul to release tension and feel comforted. Things to keep in mind are taking a hot bath, eating a comfort meal, watching your favorite movie, reading a good book, or listening to music. Exercise is also a great way to relieve stress. When you go through a traumatic event, your nervous system can remain trapped in a constant state of hyperarousal. Exercising burns off adrenaline and releases endorphins which will improve your mood.

Next Steps

Trauma never truly leaves us. It changes who you are and forces you to carry pieces of it throughout your life. The choice is how you carry what has happened to you. For many, you need so much more help than this blog can offer. Walking through trauma is a tough journey but you do not have to walk through the storm alone. At New Vision Counseling and Consulting, we have trauma trained therapists with a faith-based foundation who will guide you in your journey to healing and restoration. We will meet you with compassion and create a safe place for you to heal. The next step is to reach out by calling (405) 921-7776 or learn more about trauma counseling. We hope to hear from you soon!