As you know, my blog usually focuses on business related topics, and mostly around relationships building and sales. However, since October 7th, 2023 all of my mental and emotional resources are focused on trying to regulate my emotions.
The horrific terror attack by Hamas, that led to the murder of 1500 people, thousands of injured and 239 hostages, hit me with an overwhelming feeling of despair. In the past 46 days I’ve been finding myself shifting between extreme emotions, from being hopeful to feeling like I want to vanish due to the power of the pain.
Inbal Sason, a dear friend of mine, shared with me the podcast of Matan Hakimi, where he hosts Dr. Oz Guterman discussing how to grow from trauma .
I’ve found this podcast so valuable for me and decided to summarize the main takeaways I learned from it.
I am positive those 4 takeaways will help me, both on the personal and professional aspects.
How can you grow from trauma?
1. Be active - one of the typical effects of trauma is the feeling of despair and paralysis. Keeping yourself active builds a path in the brain that converts the feeling of despair into the feeling of control. Even if we talk about the smallest action, just do it: drink a glass of water, go for a walk, call someone.
If you manage to keep a routine of working out, that's another level of self care and will help significantly, as sports are great in regulating anxiety.
Again, you make a choice and follow it: create control in the chaos.
2. Help others - it might sound like a highlight of the Osho/Dalai Lama speech, however when we help others we immediately feel better with ourselves because we did something meaningful for others. It could be something small like a message of checking in and asking a friend "how are you?" or helping with children who are away from school etc.
The main point is to move from our thoughts and focus on doing good for others. The immediate result is the help with and the outcome is moving away from our fears and thoughts.
3. Knowledge and awareness - watching the news and painful content in endless scrolling creates the illusion of being up to date, while in reality that makes our Cortisol level spike through the roof. This increases the stress in our body and makes us feel even worse, looking for relief. Moreover, the current focus is on terms like “trauma”, “post trauma”, “anxiety” but one hardly hears about resilience, growing from trauma, practical tips to cope with these difficult times.
I’ve found that the more I focus on content that provides me with practical tools and tips on how to navigate these times, the better I feel.
Also, I removed the social media apps from my main screen of the cell phone. If I have to take more steps to find them, Immediately I use them less.
4. Write 3 things you are grateful for - This is a tool I learned from Yael Negrea. When everything is so chaotic and dark, being able to see the small rays of light, creates hope.
One of the things which I have found profoundly inspiring and touching is the collective help and assistance in Israel.
Despite the fact that I’m abroad, sensing this togetherness and volunteering force reminded me how proud I am to be an Israeli.
Writing down 3 things I’m grateful for every night helps me end my day with a clear mind that there are good things happening in the world even if most of the time I feel sad and helpless.
My 2 cents moving forward
I’m far from feeling happy and jolly. The tips I’ve shared with you are a personal goal I set for myself and I have a daily struggle to keep them. I’ve found that the more I focus on what I can control, the less anxious I become. As the famous quote from The Serenity Prayer: "God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."