#VoicesOfTherapy: Finding myself through therapy

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Finding Myself in a Rut

Before I became a therapist, I was struggling with recovery from co-dependency, sexual trauma, poor self-esteem, and depression. At the time, I worked at community mental health agencies which had me overworked and underpaid. I did not know how to honor and love myself. Moreover, I was a “yes” girl and did not set boundaries in social, romantic, familial, or work relationships. I kept attracting narcissistic men (a pattern learned from childhood) as potential partners. I was seeing life through a depressive lens. This lens kept me stuck in unsuccessful life patterns, though I didn’t realize it then.

At one point, after a really hard breakup in which the young man “ghosted me”, I hit a rock bottom like I’d never experienced before. As a result, I checked myself into a psychiatric hospital and realized I needed to try something completely different. I burnt out from every area of my life, so it seemed.

The Healing Process

Later, I decided to become a flight attendant, something I never thought I’d do; I needed to try something completely different and out of my comfort zone. It wasn’t until I started doing my own work with a therapist that I began to awaken to a new truth: Who I am is not any of that depression or fear or trauma. I was seeing through a TRAUMA lens of past hurts, hang-ups, and habits, and it was truly up to ME to make a shift in my life.

Today, I can honestly say if not for those challenges and finding an excellent therapist, I would not be the person or therapist I am today. I needed a wake-up call and boy did I get one, actually several!

The process of finding myself with therapy helped me to see that I am not defined by the “parts” of myself I that I previously thought. I truly have an “Eight C’s” personality! I am Compassionate, Curious, Calm, Clear, Courageous, Connected, Confident, and Creative! And you are too!

Starting my own private practice, SolRiver Counseling LLC and joining Mental Health Match, has empowered me. I’ve been on a mission to get the message out and help women to feel heard, understood, and empowered because I didn’t feel that way for so long. And when I doubt myself, I remind myself of the tools I learned in therapy; now it’s your turn!

Nicole E.

Want to help others by sharing your therapy story? You can do so anonymously at http://bit.ly/voicesoftherapy.

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