I've always been criticized for being a dreamer, an idealist, and too big for my britches. Between these relentless criticisms and sexual violations throughout my life by multiple people it's been hard to stay gritty and foster the fighter in me so I can keep going.
In this video, I discuss how I've begun dating again after being single for the past two years. Dating has caused me to reflect on what's important to me in a life partner, and really any significant relationship in my life. One thing I've determined is that it's essential to find a partner who's supportive of my goals and has goals of his own. I'm very ambitious and it's important for me to also be with someone who's ambitious, even if it's in different ways than I am. It's difficult for someone to understand others who have passion and drive to pursue a goal when they don't have passion and drive themselves.
I also discuss how problematic the need for external validation can be, especially when you're looking to get it...
I was recently cleaning my windows and I was shocked to see the difference between the two in front of my kitchen sink when I was done cleaning the first one (image shown in the video below). It was amazing the clarity, detail, and beauty I could see through the now clear glass. It has made me reflect on all the times the ways I was looking at myself, another person, a situation, or my past may have been clouded and I didn't realize there was residue altering my ability to see the situation or person clearly. It has caused me to reflect on how my life has changed every time I've shifted my perspective or how I've remained stuck when I refused to change my perspective.
In this video, I discuss the relationship between these windows, reframing (shifting perspective), and trauma healing. I also read a section of my book, Reclaim Your Life After Trauma, where I discuss reframing and how it allows us to look at ourselves and circumstances through a different set of glasses.
As I often tell my clients, "Trauma doesn't disappear when you ignore it." Of course they don't want to hear this. I can always tell they know it's true, but they don't want to give up the hope that ignoring their pain will make it disappear.
We all do this; we just have different ways of pushing our pain aside. Some of us overwork, overexercise, overeat, overconsume TV or social media, indulge in idle chit-chat and gossip, use drugs, drink alcohol, or smoke cigarettes and sometimes we engage in multiple forms of distractions and numbing to push our pain aside. But it never works. We may get relief for a moment, but our pain is always there to tap us on our shoulder and remind us that it hasn't gone anywhere. So, we continue to try to push it away, often to the point when multiple aspects of our life begin to suffer (e.g., health, finances, career, relationships).
It's understandable why we avoid our pain. As the name implies, it hurts. However, moving beyond our pain requires moving...
Recently I've been reflecting on something Denzel Washington says: “Ease is a greater threat to progress than hardship.” I didn't realize the truth in that statement until recently.
In this video, I discuss some difficulties I've been facing with my full-time job and regrets I have about not working harder on my exit plan before I became trapped by golden handcuffs. I'm hopeful that by listening to my story you'll be encouraged to reflect on the progress you're making, or the lack thereof, in the areas of your life you're wanting to change.
Just like I've created plans in the past to escape suffering and I'm creating a plan now to escape the unbearable situation I'm currently in, I would love to also help you create a plan to make a change in your life. Learn more about how I can help you in a 2-hour strategy session: serotinouslife.com/strategy-session
With how broken I used to feel, I was honored to share how I began to think unbroken on the Think Unbroken podcast.
Experiencing trauma is hard enough but trying to figure out how to move past your trauma can seem like an impossible task. It's why many people want to give up because they feel like their suffering will only end in death.
The host, Michael Unbroken, and I discussed how important it is to leverage the small wins you have along the way so you can build momentum. As you continue to progress and experience small wins it'll build your confidence and the belief that you can move through and beyond your pain.
You can find our episode on Apple Podcasts, Audible, Spotify, and other major podcast platforms. The title of our episode is, "E374: Stephanie M. Hutchins, Ph.D. - The power of nature in healing trauma | Trauma Healing Coach."
I'd love to help you take back control of your life! Learn more: serotinouslife.com/coaching-programs
Setting boundaries is the ultimate form of self-care. There is no greater way to show yourself love and respect than by saying, "I will not tolerate being hurt in this way."
In this video, I discuss my recent experiences with setting boundaries with two people in my life and what I learned. I hope it will encourage you to also decide where you'll draw a line in the sand and say, "No more!"
If you have boundaries you'd like to set, but you don't know where to begin or you're scared to set boundaries, I'd love to help you devise a plan to draw a line in the sand in a 2-hour strategy session: serotinouslife.com/strategy-session
I'm developing another course on trauma recovery. The section I've been working on is about replacing negative coping strategies. This clip is from the video pertaining to that topic in the course. I'm hopeful that this video will help you feel more empathy and compassion toward yourself for the ways you've tried to survive in the aftermath of your trauma.
It's obvious from this video that I don't appreciate the times that I've been judged harshly by others for the ways I've tried to survive. If you've also been judged harshly, please try not to turn on yourself. When we are berated by others it's easy to internalize that language and start using harsh words to condemn ourselves.
Yes, it's important to find ways to stop harming ourselves. But it isn't as simple as using logical reasoning to stop. I knew that having sex with random strangers, binging and purging 8 to 12 times per day, and drinking until I blacked out was bad for me. I didn't need anyone to tell me that....
There is no better reminder of how fleeting our time is on Earth than a cemetery. Cemeteries are filled with opportunities for introspection. They are the perfect place to reflect on the lessons you can take from your past and the improvements you can make to the way you're currently experiencing life.
A cemetery reminds us to continually ask ourselves whether we are spending our days in ways that enrich our lives or detract from the short amount of time we have here on Earth. It's so easy to get caught up in the stresses of daily living and just getting from one day to the next that we can easily forget that those days that we don't live purposefully will build up into weeks, months, and years and could culminate into a life filled with regrets.
If you're tired of merely surviving, if you're tired of the day-to-day grind chipping away at your life, or if you're tired of your painful past stealing more of your life from you, I encourage you to develop a plan to break out of that...
As I said in my book, Transformation After Trauma, "My greatest power struggle is with food. It’s my one great love and my preferred form of self-destruction. Food has always been my go-to pseudo-remedy to relieve any kind of uncomfortable feelings. I use food to celebrate and to push away difficult thoughts, feelings, and emotions."
Between struggling with an eating disorder for many years and using food as a coping mechanism for any difficult circumstance for most of my life, I've had to use a variety of strategies to reach and maintain a healthy weight. In this video, I discuss the most important strategies I've used, particularly mindful eating and intermittent fasting.
If you want to learn more about how to incorporate mindful eating and other self-care practices into your life, I recommend that you read or listen to my book, Transformation After Trauma: Embracing Post-Traumatic Growth, where I detail the tools I used in my healing journey. Sign up here to begin reading...
I'm on a mission to have my health span match my lifespan, but that can be super challenging when remnants of my past eating disorder start rearing their ugly head.
I always end up being filled with a mixture of feelings when I experience this internal battle. Part of me gets so frustrated that there's this constant battle of wills happening inside of me. Part of me wants to be healthy, but one part of me continues to want to use food to push away all my discomfort and to also fill me with happiness. Part of me also feels ashamed that I'm not strong enough at times to resist the temptations and shame over the fact that sometimes I just don't want to resist the temptations.
Then there's the part of me that wants to practice compassion for me doing the very best I can to survive in the moment. Thankfully, this part usually wins out in the long run.
If you struggle with similar internal battles, I encourage you to watch this video:
If you're looking for alternate ways to cope, I...