Tag Archive | happiest

Part 1: Opening the doors on narcissistic Personality Disorder and narcissistic abuse

Handsome narcissistic young man looking in a mirror

Narcissism is an evil that masquerades as good. Like a Pied Piper this master illusionist can lead you to Hell all while making you feel flattered to be chosen to go there. Only when you wake up in Hell do you realize the real evil that existed in his fluted song. By then it’s too late; not only have you fallen victim, but most likely you have paid for the flute, as well. Tigress Luv

October marks Domestic Violence Awareness Month and Mental Health Awareness Month so to mark these occasions Happiness Weekly will release a mini post series about narcissistic abuse, which often leads to domestic violence with physical abuse and also tell you a bit about Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) to draw your attention to a condition that can cause you to lose all control and power to someone else and all the while, the person with the disorder struggles to put into words why they’re getting such immense satisfaction from trying to destroy their target.

Throughout this mini post series you will learn:

Day 1 – All about Narcissistic Personality Disorder

  • Where narcissism began
  • What a narcissist is
  • How someone with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) affects others
  • How to tell if you have NPD
  • How does a narcissist continue their path of destruction
  • Why did they develop NPD?
  • The narcissist as the perfect person
  • Lies and manipulation of a narcissist

Day 2 – I’m re-posting some of my bizarre experience which led to equally bizarre consequences – consequences that could affect me for the rest of my life, but also consequences that inspired my passion for exposing narcissistic abuse, and working in the area I do. I am also in the process of writing an eBook to show how such a painful situation became so impossible to break away from.

  • Owning it – why I’m not ashamed that I was served with an AVO

Day 3 – No one wins from narcissistic abuse

  • Signs and symptoms of narcissistic abuse
  • Understanding trauma bonding
  • After narcissistic abuse
  • Are you at risk of narcissistic abuse
  • Recovering from narcissistic abuse
  • Moving on after narcissistic abuse
  • How you can protect yourself

Day 4 – Understanding someone with NPD

  • Life through a narcissist’s eyes
  • Why you may attract narcissists

Day 5 – Fun memes about narcissism

  • Laughing at narcissistic abuse to aid recovery


Through raising awareness of the disorder, I hope more people are able to recognise NPD before getting involved with someone who has it, or can understand how being involved with someone with this condition can be detrimental to their health and their life, and seek help before it gets out of control. While someone with NPD may threaten you will lose out financially, by reputation or in any other way if you leave them and/or don’t do exactly as they say, they may even carry this threat out – as in my case – and ensure you ‘lose’ … but I can guarantee that all you have to gain by staying is a longer and more complicated journey to recovery.

Both men and women can be narcissistic, however 75% of narcissists are male. NPD expert Dr Sam Vaknin says there is little difference between a male and female narcissist. For the purpose of my posts regarding NPD, narcissism and narcissistic abuse I will refer to the narcissist as male to align with my examples and personal experiences with a narcissist.

But first, let’s face it, ‘narcissist’ seems to have become a buzzword at the moment! People are very quick to throw it around and diagnose people who don’t actually have the disorder but merely just acted because they’re a jerk or an arsehole. It is possible to be a jerk or an arsehole without having NPD – people with NPD just happen to be the kings of this behaviour! What we’re talking about today is narcissism in its true form – if everyone who threw diagnosis around was correct, every second person would have NPD! The scary truth is there are no conclusive studies detailing how many people have NPD or how many suffer from narcissistic abuse.

Also, before I begin, as seen in my post Why labels are destructive, I generally find labels unhelpful, however when you’re recovering from narcissistic abuse it can be empowering to see the situation for what it was and helpful when you’re looking for further support. In this case, labels can be helpful where they are correctly diagnosed. I can be confident my case study suffers NPD after having a confirmed diagnosis from a psychologist and a psychiatrist – not just from the story alone, but also from the evidence I presented. They didn’t hesitate in saying this person had NPD. Ironically I came across someone who worked with him and his wife years ago, and I broke down – not expecting to ever be in that situation – before I said anything, she said the words “He’s a narcissist – I can tell, I’ve been with narcissistic men”. #reassured


Where it all began

Greek mythology introduced the term and this is where we’ll start:


Once upon a time…

In ancient Greece there was a hunter who was renowned for his beauty – called Narcissus. The son of a river god and nymph, he was exceptionally proud of what he did to those who loved him. One day Nemesis – the spirit of divine retribution against those who succumb to arrogance – lead him to a pool, where he saw his reflection for the first time. Narcissus instantly fell in love with it – not realising it was his image or merely an image itself. Unable to leave the beauty of his reflection, Narcissus died.

In the myth, Narcissus fell in love with his own reflection – but if we look deeper what he really fell in love with was his reflection – this reflection was not his true self. This is a very key principle to understand when learning about Narcissistic Personality Disorder, because as far-fetched as the myth may appear, this is actually the case with NPD in reality today. We talk a lot more about a narcissist’s true and false self in our fourth post in this series – stay tuned!

“The very fact he fell in love with the illusionary part of himself meant he was not capable of loving his true self,” said Melanie Tonia Evans, who offers the Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Program.


Defining narcissism

A narcissist put simply is someone who loves themselves – these people are actually entirely fixated on themselves, but the fact is, it’s not their true self they love. Just as in this Greek myth, they are actually in love with the false self which is the version of themselves that they project.

Truth be told, we all have a bit of narcissism in us, but it’s not necessarily unhealthy or be a fully-fledged personality disorder. A healthy narcissist, according to Simon Crompton, is someone who has a self-esteem that can enable them to leave their imprint on the world, but also share in the emotional life of others.

However, when it becomes a personality disorder the individual is described as being excessively preoccupied with issues of personal adequacy, power, prestige and vanity. Psychology Today says it involves arrogant behaviour, a lack of empathy for others and a need for admiration. It’s this description which compliments Sophia J. Wien’s MA Drs theory that the name Narcissus derives from the Greek word “narce” which means “to be numb”. Someone with NPD is incapable of feeling empathy – they are numb.

Jeni Mawter very aptly describes the narcissist as “a soul without footprints”. If you experience a turbulent ending to a relationship with someone who has NPD, this may be one of the first things you can identify with. They are the original hallow man – and to fill their voice, they literally try to get their lifeblood from destroying the souls of their targets.


How does Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) affect others?

Roberta Cone defines a narcissist as “a person who deprives their partners of the ability to feel joy and love as a separate person in relationships. They deliberately attempt to destroy or compromise the separate identity of another. The longer the relationship continues, the narcissist not only becomes less considerate, but more actively cruel.”

Throughout my post series, I will refer to a person with NPD as a narcissist and I want to note here that a relationship with someone who has this personality type is not toxic – it’s abusive – and that’s why it’s called narcissistic abuse. So if you’re questioning why you’re so hurt from it, take peace in knowing this is why and it’s understandable you’re hurting! It’s not you, it’s this person deliberately hurting you.

According to Andrea Schneider a narcissist markets themselves in attractive, deceptive packages presenting with false bravado/charm, intense seduction, swift pacing of the relationship into commitment, intense sexual chemistry, love-bombing (repetitive texting, email, phone calls) and/or romancing excessively with flowers, gifts, fine dining etc. These are the initial warning bells and red flags that a narcissistic is targeting you, when you’re caught up in it, it’s the hardest to accept and let go of. Everyone loves to be loved!

Simply for the challenge, narcissists often target intelligent, self-sufficient, empathetic and generally highly attractive people. The person they are targeting may already be in a relationship and/or express a sense of vulnerability such as relationship troubles, grief, depression or other experiences that the narcissist will pretend to relate to. They set their sights on these people for the challenge to bring them down and they deliberately use their vulnerability to get inside their target’s head, heart and soul.


How can I tell if I have NPD?

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, says a patient must exhibit five or more of the following traits to be diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder:

- Shows arrogant, haughty behaviours or attitudes

- Grandiose sense of self-importance

- Preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love

- Belief that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)

- Need for excessive admiration

- Sense of entitlement

- Takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends

- Lacks empathy

- Often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her


What scares me when I read through that list is the person who left me with nasty scars and trauma that still wakes me in the dead of the night, actually checked every one of these, and it was shown in his texts. I wish I knew sooner. Please be honest with yourself, if this sounds like your partner, and identify this EARLY. Save yourself from the unfathomable outcomes that come with these relationships.

If you think you have NPD, I strongly suggest seeking psychiatric assistance to help delve into why hurting others brings you the satisfaction it does and how you can change your behaviour in order to have healthy relationships. Although Relationship Free assists people in all relationship situations, I will not assist someone who is narcissistic or has NPD – I will immediately refer these clients on. However it is unlikely I will ever have these clients because unfortunately the problem with narcissism and the reason for my mini post series is that a narcissist won’t seek professional help for their condition because it doesn’t fit with their perfect image of themselves. Their perfect image would never need help, and so they continue to destroy people – knowing that’s what they do, but not understanding why. My abuser was very conscious that he hurts people, he even said “I only ever hurt the people I love”, but he was so caught up, he couldn’t see why and too selfish to seek the help he needed before hurting me as well. For the record – it wasn’t love! Thank God!

If you can recognise these NPD traits in someone currently in your life, remove yourself from the person and cease contact where you can. No contact is the only way forward from a narcissist and that includes you checking up on them. I also recommend seeing a mental health professional for more advice and strongly recommend Kim Saeed’s coaching services to assist you in moving forward and the resources on her website to help rebuild your strength following narcissistic abuse. Life coaches and psychotherapists are a highly beneficial resource to keep in mind for narcissistic abuse recovery – I personally found them a lot more useful than a psychologist and a psychiatrist because they concentrate more on soul healing. I was in such a bad place, I didn’t care what qualifications people had, as long as I knew they could help me and bring me the peace I needed. And they did, which is why I’ve also chosen to go into this field!

If you are currently in a relationship with someone who has NPD or have recently left a relationship where someone exhibited these symptoms – you are not alone! I strongly advise seeking assistance, and join a support group or forum online get more advice from others who are experiencing it. I built some of my strongest friendships here and next year, I’m travelling the world to meet them! It’s extremely difficult for people who haven’t experienced it to understand what it’s like and how it feels. Have you ever had a nightmare where you’re being chased – and no matter how fast you go, where you hide or how much strength you use, the person catches you? That’s what narcissistic abuse is like – only you can’t wake up to escape it. I have more information to help you heal will be available in the third part of this post series.


Why did they develop NPD?

People aren’t born with NPD – it’s is a psychiatric condition that is developed. Sophia J. Wien MA Drs says NPD is manifested in childhood and fuelled by their dysfunctional upbringing.

“The pathological narcissist grew up with parents who lacked in attunement. The parental figures were not aware of the child’s needs and failed to properly support the child in developmental tasks like weaning, separation, rapprochement (the reunion with the mother after separation and the establishment of harmonious relations) and individuation. Instead they demanded the child fit their ideal, live up to particular expectations or please their needs,” said Sophia.

“Desperate not to disappoint his parents and to keep their love and attention, the child learns to abandon who he is, forfeit his vitality and becomes a master in performing – often playing a role, acting as-if and developing a false persona prescribed by the parental ideal. This means he is not able to emerge from the symbiotic stage, outgrow his legitimate self-absorbedness and become an autonomous and secure individual,” she said.

“Arrested in his development and crippled in his authenticity and independence, the child will continue to see the world as his oyster, into adulthood, and in more than one way,” said Sophia.

Did you know 73% of male abusers in domestic violence situations are known to have been abused as children?

So I want to touch on my experience:

The narcissist I fell in love with had severe NPD, which is why my case is so extreme, and the narcissistic abuse that I endured was almost incomprehensible. One day we were driving from Sydney to Melbourne so I could start training for a new job and during that ten hour road trip in his luxury car he told me about his dysfunctional upbringing. Ironically, it was this story that got me hooked in the first place because I wanted to take the pain from his past by helping him to have a loving and harmonious future. This information is from the description the narcissist gave me of his upbringing only a couple of weeks into our relationship because he “trusted me”:

The narcissist told me how his father would lock him in the laundry for hours as a young child until he stood in darkness. He would be screaming to get out the entire time, banging on the locked door. Scared. His father would eventually return and open the door, drunk, and he would torture him for making so much noise. One time he got whipped with a belt so badly his legs were “completely black from the bruising”. He then wet himself from the fear caused by the abuse to which his father grew further abusive towards him “for making a mess”. The narcissist’s mother wouldn’t intervene because of his father’s alcoholism, and he was known to turn on her as well. Everyone knew about his abusive nature. He said people noticed in his school but he covered it up. According to the narcissist, despite having a twin brother and a younger sister, he was singled out and the only sibling to suffer abuse.

Eventually his father got arrested for abuse following a confrontation which involved the narcissist attempting to defend his mother’s life. He was hero! A very common trait of a narcissist is that they often tell stories that make them out to be the hero, but will always omit any responsibility. As a young adult (about 17 years old), he watched the police take his father away with his girlfriend by his side (now his wife of 25 years who he was “separated” from), and he went to jail for two years. During this time the narcissist cut off contact with him completely – he refused to call or visit. Meanwhile, the narcissist’s mother drained the bank account she shared jointly with her abusive husband in a bid to escape the abuse and move on.

“When his father was released from jail, the narcissist quickly forgave him, but he cut his mother off for her crime – going as far as to go and see the solicitors about it himself, and piece together that she had forged his father’s signature in order to have the money released to her. For seven years he refused to communicate with her at all because of her actions. She would go to his workplace and try to talk to him and he would continue working, ignoring her. She would just stand there and try to be with him, but still he wouldn’t even look at her. It went on like that for years.

In hearing his story that day in the car my immediate thought was: Don’t do anything wrong by him because he will cut you off cold and you’ll never hear from him again. Unfortunately I wasn’t that lucky!


How does a narcissist continue their path of destruction?

In order to continue as a narcissist they need a source of “supply” – just like a vampire with blood and a zombie with brains, a narcissist will latch onto things that become their supply until they exhaust them and move onto another source – generally another person. Savannah Grey appropriately describes the narcissist as being similar to a “psychological parasite”.

The narcissistic supply preserves a narcissist’s fragile ego – according to Christine Louis de Canonville narcissistic supply can be “anything that shields the narcissist from feeling a sense of shame or abandonment, and this is an integral part of narcissism”.

Unlike zombies and vampires, there are two sources of supply for narcissists:

Primary: it provides all the attention that the narcissist addict craves which can be public (such as fame, celebrity, notoriety) or private (admiration, flattery, acclaim, fear, repulsion etc);

Secondary: it alludes to those people or things that provide supply on a regular basis (such as children, spouse, friends, colleagues, partners, clients etc.). This form of supply enables the narcissist to lead a more normal existence and provides them with pride, financial safety, social distinction and the alliance they need.

“Narcissistic supply is not confined to people only, it can be applied to any inanimate object that has the ability to attract attention and admiration to the narcissist, (for example, a flash car, property, clothes, being a member of a church, cult, club, or a business).  In short, anything that acts as status symbols for the narcissist is ‘narcissistic supply’,” Christine says.


The narcissist as the perfect person

Sophia J Wein says the narcissist wants you to see him as he wants to be seen, not as he truly is, so he stays attached to the prescribed ideal. Generally they are extreme perfectionists and an expert in controlling perception and manipulation. If you come close to lifting the mask and revealing their true self, you will suffer the consequences.

A relationship with a narcissist generally remains superficial because they’re scared you’ll look too closely at them. They see others and the world as a means to an end and they feel they need to make up for everything they missed out on when they were growing up. They generally demand that their partner is unconditionally loving and adoring towards them.

In my experience everything was rituals and routine. The narcissist’s family home was spotless, which he blamed on his wife’s obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) the whole reason he couldn’t stand to be there (note: OCD is a common response to narcissistic abuse, and the inability to take responsibility is typical of NPD). When he moved into his own apartment, it was also always spotless, the bed had to be made to creaseless perfection each morning, he spent exactly forty-five minutes in the bathroom each morning preparing for work – his hair was always gelled, his shirts ironed to perfection, he was always exceptionally punctual. Soon I was making meals for him and I still have photographs of his bowls of cereal so I could get the portion size exactly right, if I got it wrong the abuse would begin. In my post tomorrow I reveal a couple of very telling examples of NPD behaviours: the Crunchy Nut cornflakes and the threat over a “lovelock” – a padlock with our names on it and the date we started seeing each other. When I continued to receive those threats, I started to realise how sick he was.


A narcissist’s lies and manipulation

“He re-writes the flow of information, with gusto that often borders on calculated abuse or outright propaganda,” Sophia J Wein said. The lies and manipulation can literally leave you winded.

“The narcissist firmly believes in the reality of his distortions and the truth of his lies, and that is exactly what makes him so certain and convincing in his fraud. He will sacrifice anyone for the sake of the perfect image, just like the addict will sacrifice anyone in the way of getting his fix. The narcissist is fully prepared to give up on human morals and human integrity for the comfort of the masquerade,” Sophia said.

The way they carry pain and rage is concealed and disconnected. According to Sophia, is this state of detachment that makes the narcissist feel desperately alone and they are perpetually fleeing from this sense of emptiness. This is another reason a narcissist will have multiple affairs to try to escape their pain by distracting themselves from it and in the process they will play people off against each other, which keeps them well entertained.

“Completely insatiable and insecure, there is never enough success, money or love to fill the void. Inevitably the narcissist is so busy surviving that life is never truly lived as winning becomes everything, while fairness and justice becomes irrelevant. Diplomacy and negotiation are abandoned for the power struggle, the war, the right to be right and the demand to surrender,” Sophia said.

Tomorrow I’m reposting a couple of posts that rehash fragments from my torture and suffering during my experience with narcissistic abuse. Although I am still traumatised from my experience, and I still suffer complex post traumatic stress disorder, I work every day to help educate others and create an environment where I heal others while healing myself.


Recommended reading

For coaching and the best in narcissistic abuse education check out: Let Me Reach with Kim Saeed

Melanie Tonia Evans – Narcissistic Abuse Recovery and Relationship Expert

Overcoming the narcissist by Sophia J. Wien M.A. Drs

Healthy narcissism by Wikipedia

Narcissistic Personality Disorder by Psychology Today

Why do I feel so crazy? Recovering from a narcissistic relationship by Roberta Cone Psy.D

Recovering from Narcissistic abuse by Andrea Schneider, LCSW

Moving on fro narcissistic abuse due to narcissistic personality disorder by Jeni Mawter

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders by Wikipedia

Breaking free – why breaking up with a narcissist is not your average break up by Savannah Grey

Narcissistic Victim Syndrome – what the heck is that? By Christine Louis de Canonville

All about toxic relationships and how to let go

Domestic violence: how to stop someone controlling you

Identifying emotional manipulation before it hurts you

Breaking free of love addiction – it’s hard to comprehend but you can actually get addicted to the toxicity in a relationship with a narcissist.




Tips to completely transform yourself


Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose. Lyndon B. Johnson

Over the years I have become a walking Madonna. I’m a chameleon. I’ve been fat, I’ve been skinny, I’ve been pretty, I’ve been ugly, I’ve been blonde, I’ve been brunette, I’ve been kind, I’ve been mean… I’ve been through about a hundred transformations – but at least three of them have been really noticeable to myself and others. This photo on the left is how it looks – yup, that’s all me! As you may have noticed, I kind of held onto the girl-next-door look over the past few years. So this week, Happiness Weekly looks at how YOU can transform yourself.

1. Set the bar

I don’t advise this often, but look at all your wonderful awesome friends around you and consider what it is about each of them that you love. Imagine life has become PhotoShop and what you can do is copy pieces from each person and put them back onto you. Make a strong mental note about what you like about them. Even go onto your Facebook and have a look at who you admire and work out what it is that you admire about them – how do they portray themselves? (Take a look at their Facebook page if you’re not sure.) What do they have in their life that you don’t? More importantly, what don’t they have in their life that you do? Who do they have in their life? How are they treated? How do they treat people?

2. Set the goal

Fantastic! Now we know what we want, we need to set the goal. Just with any goal-setting, look at yourself in the mirror and decide what you want to change about yourself. Do some deep soul searching – is it just an attitude adjustment? Are you unhappy with your hair? Do you have chipped nails? Do you want to lose weight – how much weight? Work out exactly what you want to change. In one positive sentence, state exactly what you want. Write it down. You can make a collage around your goal statement to remind you what you’re aiming for.

  1. Prepare to change

It’s important to emotionally prepare yourself for what’s to come because change isn’t easy – and it can be frustrating! For example, you won’t lose weight overnight like the Hollywood stars, unless you have their kind of money. Change can be a slow process – and when you’re angling for a full transformation you need to keep your eye on the prize and be realistic. Now you have set the bar and you’ve set your ultimate goal, start looking at the steps you’re going to take to achieve your goal for a full transformation.

  1. Transform yourself!

Now put everything into action. While you’re setting the goals (which is the hard part), also set some rewards (manicures, fake tan, new phone etc) that will be given when you achieve your milestones. As you achieve your goal, you will notice you physically and emotionally upgrade as well, because you start surrounding yourself with nicer things and better things than you currently have. It’s important to change your behaviour as well as aiming to change your physical appearance – this will help to maintain your change.

  1. Keep yourself accountable

A complete transformation is easy to give up on, but if you work hard to keep yourself accountable to the transformation, you’ll notice you also stay motivated and on track. Ways to keep yourself accountable may be to do a before and after photo – or select the photo that best represents everything you want to change at the moment (this is why those Facebook tags are so great) and use that as your before photo. This photo should also be used to remind you what you want to change when you feel you are going off track.

  1. Get coaching

If you get stuck, I highly recommend life coaching to help you achieve your transformation. A coach will work with you to work out what you want and help you find ways to achieve it. I am currently offering one pro bono coaching session valued at AUD$110, in exchange for you to provide a testimonial after the session. Claim this by contact me: sarah@relationshipfree.com – it will be held over Skype and we’ll arrange a time via email. Be quick – I only have one to give away!

I’m celebrating!


The greatest accomplishment is not in never falling, but in rising again after you fall. Vince Lombardi

Today I’m celebrating! (And it’s not just because it’s Google’s birthday – although, wishing you a very happy birthday today, Google – you have been a fantastic source of information and a great friend to me!)

So … how’s your year going?

Are you still on track with your new years resolutions?

OK, so you probably forgot them by New Years Day … let me guess, too much alcohol? Great excuse!

Anyone who knows me knows my level of self-motivation and determination and this year I’m achieving everything I set out to achieve. I’m checking each and every one of my New Years Resolutions … it’s been one hell of a busy year, let me tell you!

As of this week Happiness Weekly has reached 100,000 people! I don’t advertise, I just blog and every now and then check in with a Facebook page. So I just wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone who is reading Happiness Weekly, or has read Happiness Weekly, and particularly to those of you who stumbled across my page and stayed or the ones who return time and time again without signing up just to see what I’m saying. After almost two years of consistent blogging, this is a fantastic achievement and I couldn’t have done it without YOU! The truth is in the statistics!

Thank you for joining my journey, for accepting me exactly as I am and allowing me to speak my truth. I’m dedicated to Happiness Weekly in a way that you would don’t see – I’m either writing for a blog or I’m thinking what to write next, and it’s one of the best aspects of my life. Happiness Weekly allows me to take every situation that comes at me and turn it into that positive and then enables those sunshine light rays to bounce off me onto the universe and directly onto each of you who are following.

A couple of weeks ago, I did two surveys for Relationship Free, my new venture, as part of a major research assignment. This week I’m opening a survey for you – my dedicated Happiness Weekly readers and followers as I try to get this community a little more active and involved and it’ll help me to deliver more of what you want … and need!

The survey is available here – thank you to everyone who participates: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/TR8TKN6

How to transform yourself into a leader


Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them. John Maxwell

Leadership – it’s the quality everyone wants and a lot of the wrong people think they have. One of the keys to leadership is leading by example and moving in the clear, concise direction you want to go. These two characteristics, leading and moving, can also categorise the difference between a good leader and a bad leader. Not everyone has leadership skills, which is why there are hundreds of courses you can do to develop these skills, or you can just read this post and get started on your own – the good news is: leadership is something you can develop. This week Happiness Weekly looks at how YOU can transform yourself into a leader.

Be passionate

Be passionate about whatever area you’re trying to lead in. If you’re passionate, you will naturally want to know more about it, and in knowing more about it you’ll become an expert, and as you become an expert people will look up to you, as people look up to you they’ll come to you for guidance and before you know it, you’ll find yourself in a leadership position! Leadership can almost be a natural progression stemming from passion – which is why it is almost essential to be passionate in the area you are leading.

Be confident

Confidence in the area you’re leading in is essential. One of the most important leadership qualities you can have is confidence in your decisions, confidence in your knowledge of the topic and confident in the areas you need to grow and develop so you can actively seek that growth for yourself to strengthen your leadership abilities.


Choosing the right direction or the best direction that leads to the most positive outcomes is also important for a leader because it builds trust among the people who are following you. If a leader is unsure about the direction or demonstrates uncertainty by regularly changing the direction they want to go, it loses trust and rapport among peers. A leader should seek clarification and research the pros and cons of every direction before a decision is made so they can move in any chosen direction with confidence and clarity.


A leader must be able to know how and when to delegate. If a leader is constantly doing all the work, they will become overloaded and won’t be able to achieve tasks. Overloaded and overwhelmed, the leader won’t have time to see ahead of their own activities in order to lead people anywhere. Delegation is a critical quality in leadership.


It is important that leaders communicate transparently where they can. If people feel a leader is hiding something or not telling the full truth, it breaks rapport and the followers won’t continue to contribute to the best of their ability. Clear concise communication with all followers is a fantastic asset for any good leader to have.


Be the change you seek and set an example as you motivate your followers. Inspiration can come from witnessing the miracle. Be passionate in the area you’re leading and demonstrate reasons why others should be passionate about it too. Openly share your knowledge and encourage others to grow in your field as well.

Dress well

A good leader always dresses well. The way you look impacts the way you do your work, the way other people relate to you and the way you are viewed as a leader. Top leaders often wear “power suits” that show their authority. You rarely see a leader of a country wondering down the supermarket in a tracksuit for milk. Dress your best and look the part!

Following these tips, you will be well on your way to being a leader. Want more? Enrol yourself in a leadership course through your local community centre or university and go forth with confidence!

My petition: How I’m going to try to save lives


Every week at least one woman dies at the hands of domestic violence. Talking to a police officer recently, that statistic isn’t complete because more men die at the hands of women in domestic violence situations. At first I couldn’t believe it and then I thought more on it, and I do believe it –these women may have been defending themselves or so traumatised by the violence they encountered that it lead them to it – and it’s classified as domestic violence no matter what the situation is, because of that partnership. Not to say that women can’t be the abuser as well – but this certainly puts perspective on the statistics.

My story, Owning it – why I’m not ashamed that I was served with an AVO, may bring a greater understanding about my passion for the topic and why I’m so determined to change these laws. Because they’re not protecting anyone!

Last week I received a response to my plea for help in changing this from my MP and the Attorney General, at first I was comfortable with it – and I was going to let it drop: accept it, get on with life. But these articles were released:

Kate Malonyay murdered by compulsive liar ex-boyfriend Elliott Coulson NSW Coroner finds

The make-believe world of Elliott Coulson which says: “She had spoken to police about taking out an AVO against him after he sent her abusive text messages. She didn’t go through with it”.

These articles PISSED ME OFF! “Redressing the power balance” by seeking an AVO. And what happens in the case that they (police and authorities) get it wrong – does that redress anything? Should it be an eye for an eye? Does it matter who has power and who doesn’t, so long as both people are SAFE?? Well – as long as they can keep communicating with each other, right? Thank God for that!

The fact Kate didn’t go through with getting an AVO wasn’t careless. Let me tell you what that’s like: You go in to get the AVO and the first thing they tell you is you need to stand up in court and give evidence. Imagine how intimidating that sounds when you’re recently out of your relationship, you’re scared for your wellbeing if you go ahead with something like that, you know with their level of lies and manipulation – how this could come back on you AND you’re riddled with self doubt: “OK, maybe it wasn’t that bad,” you tell yourself. You just want it to go away. Seeing them again – in court or out of court – doesn’t sound very appealing.

PLUS! At the end of the day what protection is this little piece of paper – when you can still communicate? It doesn’t even attempt to stop the abuse cycle! So what is its purpose?

And then there was this: Call to end domestic violence against women and children: Beyond Blue mental health approach will be the blueprint for national campaign – which is great because our domestic violence laws do need to be applicable and consistent AT LEAST nationally, if not globally!

If these laws were different and no contact clauses (directly or indirectly) were added in on an AVO and let’s say she did go ahead with getting it because it was serving as an intervention, would Kate Malonyay have been murdered? Keep in mind as you read this article: Kate Malonyay murdered by Elliot Coulson after uncovering web of lies: coroner. It’s not her fault that she was seeking the truth and closure, but hopefully education and a change in laws may prevent this happening.

The article says:

“The coroner said it appeared Coulson became aware in early April 2013 that Ms Malonyay was “making inquiries about him and talking about his lies with his family”.

On April 3, 2013, she reportedly sent a text message to Mr Coulson’s sister that read “Elliott might be suss we’ve been in contact and treading carefully”.

If Kate knew legally she couldn’t have done that, if the opportunity for gaining closure was shut down before it got to this, would she still be alive?

So … I wrote a petition to change the AVO laws at CHANGE.ORG Campaign. Here’s what it says and it really is about getting serious and tightening up our laws:


Dear The Hon. Brad Hazzard,

As it stands our Apprehended Domestic Violence Order (AVO) laws DO NOT include contact clauses unless the magistrate decides it’s necessary. It is a myth that an AVO automatically means you can’t be within a certain distance of someone, when in fact you can still COMMUNICATE with an abusive person under our current law. So long as no one harasses, assaults, stalks or molests anyone.

So what I want to know is: with these “abuse cycles” in place – WHY would our systems would leave such a gaping hole to allow for this to continue particularly while an AVO is in place?? This isn’t protection.

Recent articles were realed about Kate Malonyay’s murder. One went as far to say: “She had spoken to police about taking out an AVO against him after he sent her abusive text messages. She didn’t go through with it”.

It also spoke about “redressing the power balance”. What happens when police get it wrong at the moment? Does that redress it too? And should it be an eye for an eye? Is that not what we’re trying to move away from? Does it matter who has power and who doesn’t, so long as both people are SAFE??

Why would either party be able to communicate with the other when abuse has been clearly identified? How would allowing that communication stop the abuse and ongoing harassment, torment and torture that is found within domestic violence?

The fact Kate didn’t go through with getting an AVO wasn’t careless. Let me tell you what that’s like: You go in to get the AVO and the first thing the police tell you is you need to stand up in court and give evidence. Imagine how intimidating that sounds when you’re recently out of your relationship, you’re scared for your wellbeing if you “pull a stunt like that”, you know with their level of lies and manipulation – how this could come back on you AND you’re riddled with self doubt, you used to LOVE this person – so your brain says: “OK, maybe it wasn’t that bad, you can handle it”. As the victim of domestic violence, you just want it to stop. You just want it to go away, so you can move on and forget it. Seeing that person again – in court or out of court – doesn’t sound very appealing. Whether you get an AVO at the end of it or not. Besides, what EXACTLY does an AVO do if it doesn’t put no-contact clauses between these two people? How can that be classified as intervention or protection? If it’s not addressing or attempting to stop the domestic violence abuse cycle then please explain it’s purpose!

The fact is: the only way for an AVO to serve as a form of protection or intervention is to have compulsory NO CONTACT CLAUSES for BOTH parties, and penalties if they are not adhered to, yes for BOTH parties. At the moment our system is a complete joke, police are running in circles, magistrates are constantly dealing with the same case over the same issues: it doesn’t make sense!

Further to this, why is counselling not mandatory for both parties as well? Surely the person served should have to undergo an intense anger management program if they are threatening someone’s wellbeing and survival? As for the victim, domestic violence is traumatic – this person is dealing with the most trauma someone can attempt to recover from because it’s cause is intentional human – should they not be put into at least a six week program to ensure they are emotionally ok and stable? Particularly when they need to get this piece of paper. Stuff their regular commitments, this should take precidence over everything as they try to recover, early intervention into PTSD is essential.

As it currently stands, our system serves a piece of paper and both people involved just return to their daily lives … where they can still communicate. It’s time we started taking this seriously and change it to make it that way!

Married? Communicate through lawyers and get a divorce. Children? Communicate through friends or family members. There are ways to get around it so these two people DON’T communicate and the abuse cycle STOPS. Completely! These laws have potential to be the powerful intervention that people in domestic violence situations need, but as they currently stand, they’re anything but that!

Children are being murdered nearly as often as the targets of the abuse – because abusers have no hesitation in using these children as tools to further harass, intimidate, threaten and abuse their target. Why would you put them in the firing line, or enable for this to happen? Where people are terrified their partner will hurt their children as a way of getting back at them, they need to check the box that says “SUPERVISED VISITS ONLY” and there needs to be a process, with a mental health professional involved deeming if this is necessary or not, based on the evidence. And it should be in place until that child is 18 and old enough to seek their own help and defend  themselves.


Mandatory contact clauses would mean these people can’t contact each other directly (in person, phone call or text, email, Facebook, blog comment etc) or indirectly (blog post, through family or friends etc. unless through a lawyer or nominated and mutually-agreed parties – such as family where children are involved). This means neither person can contact the other person’s family or friends whether they are the “victim” or the “accused”. This would mean a very defined break and the abuse cycle STOPS completely.

Enforcing mandatory no contact clauses for BOTH the “accused” and the “victim” will mean:

- Only people who SERIOUSLY need this protection would be willing to sign off on it

- It would deter narcissists using it to abuse (because they won’t want to lose their source of supply) and a smear campaign won’t be possible because they and those surrounding them won’t be able to contact the person their abusing

- Police won’t have the headache of dealing with the same people and the same cases over and over, because legally, the victims can’t go back while it’s in place, and if they do, then there is some level of punishment for breaking it because it’s for their protection that the do NOT continue the abuse cycle

- Less people will die because they won’t be contacting their abuser or anyone around them because they legally can’t, it removes the temptation to further provoke. It will stop homicides AND suicides

- Our legal system saves time on serving one person and then serving the other, because it’s already covering BOTH people. It’s protecting BOTH people. As it should!

Domestic violence is a serious problem. Our systems are anything but keeping people safe. It may not encourage communication, but it’s not stopping it either.

An AVO, with these essential clauses for BOTH parties PROTECTS both people involved. Enforcing this is enforcing protection and intervention when it comes to domestic violence by stopping the abuse cycle.


Sarah Webb.

Why I absolutely loved Eat Pray Love


Every man dies, but not every man really lives. Braveheart

So many people have begged me to watch this movie – Eat Pray Love – starring Julia Roberts, and I never seemed to get around to it. Now I’ve seen it, I’m not sure what took me so long. I guess I thought it’d be one of those movies you’d see on a rainy day – maybe I was scared it would change me – maybe I was worried I’d find it boring… But of course I can’t tell you how many terrible movies I’ve seen in the 1,480 days since its release date.

One day, while in the midst of despair, it was raining outside. I was falling apart in my apartment. I’d pushed everyone away who was checking in on me – I turned my phone off. I was crying uncontrollably from the worst hurt I’ve ever experienced. By this stage I was ready to give up – I wanted to quit my job, I couldn’t concentrate on anything, I wanted to move away – who knows where to, and I wanted to be alone. I shut down my social media accounts and stopped looking at my email. I couldn’t find any inner strength to keep going.

So, I turned to my computer. I wanted to switch off, even if I just sat there and did nothing. I scrolled down a list of movies I hadn’t seen and there it was. Eat Pray Love.

In a tracksuit, having not left my apartment in days, I sat on the couch, numbed in my pain, curled in the foetal position. I couldn’t tell you the last time I ate – but I had no appetite. I felt like a shell, like there was nothing left. I was all out of hope and I was definitely all out of happiness. In fact, as I sat there and watched in my morbid trance-like state, I felt as though I was watching myself. As it got to the scene where Liz was explaining leaving a toxic relationship and the stages you go through, I started to sit up and listen. I identified so strongly with the character, that within the first hour of watching, I was convinced I should buy a ticket to Italy and Bali and take off.

Just like Liz, every day since I was 13 years old, I have either been in a relationship with someone or ending one. It’s been a constant treadmill. Now I’m off that treadmill and I’m trying to find peace and just like Richard said to Liz, it’s up to me to do the work to achieve that.

This is the greatest healing movie I have ever come across. Although I sobbed helplessly intermittently throughout it and my concentration often took me away, walking to the kitchen, walking to my bedroom, walking to the bathroom … even sitting crying in another room but still listening – the messages it brought to me were so powerful. So here I am sharing it with you – through my experience of it.

First … if you have no appetite, it’s almost impossible to watch this movie and not feel hungry. Though I didn’t rush out to buy a margherita pizza – it did encourage me nibble at bits and pieces. The only reason I was scared to regain the weight I lost from stress was that I didn’t want it to restore me to the person I was – having said that, I couldn’t help but have a giggle when they discussed the “muffin top” – Liz was right – just go out and buy some new jeans.

There were many quotes in this movie that truly hit home for me but two of them were – “That’s what you do, not what you are” and “I don’t need to love you in order to prove that I love myself!”

So here I am – at 31 years old, I’m single. Completely single.

Not exactly where I was hoping to be in life at this age – but it is what it is. I would rather be happy and single than with someone and miserable. While I wouldn’t call myself happy right now – particularly given the above descriptions, I am at least on a journey towards it and it’s no comparison to the misery I felt in the abusive relationship.

I’ve been single for exactly 150 days today. My last relationship robbed me of everything I was and it took all my courage, against some truly ridiculous threats, to get out. And now? Just like Liz, I’m on a journey to find myself again.

As soon as I got out of that relationship I regretted ever knowing that person – a natural reaction after everything I’d been through? And while I don’t want to acknowledge him in any kind of positive light – and I don’t believe in soul mates – I identified with this:

“People think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that’s what everyone wants. But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life.
A true soul mate is probably the most important person you’ll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. But to live with a soul mate forever? Nah. Too painful. Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then leave.
A soul mates purpose is to shake you up, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life, then introduce you to your spiritual master…”

Overall, Eat Pray Love inspired me to embrace my freedom. Why aren’t I on a jet plane right now?

The quotes littered throughout this movie are just beautiful, but this quote really stood out for me because it symbolised how I’m feeling inside and what may come:

“A friend took me to the most amazing place the other day. It’s called the Augusteum. Octavian Augustus built it to house his remains. When the barbarians came they trashed it a long with everything else. The great Augustus, Rome’s first true great emperor. How could he have imagined that Rome, the whole world as far as he was concerned, would be in ruins? It’s one of the quietest, loneliest places in Rome. The city has grown up around it over the centuries. It feels like a precious wound, a heartbreak you won’t let go of because it hurts too good. We all want things to stay the same. Settle for living in misery because we’re afraid of change, of things crumbling to ruins. Then I looked at around to this place, at the chaos it has endured – the way it has been adapted, burned, pillaged and found a way to build itself back up again. And I was reassured, maybe my life hasn’t been so chaotic, it’s just the world that is, and the real trap is getting attached to any of it. Ruin is a gift. Ruin is the road to transformation.”

Liz is right: “Ruin is a gift. Ruin is the road to transformation”. As soon as it was spoken, it was like my inner light flicked on again. I could almost say with certainty this movie and the entire story actually stopped me from giving up.

The story itself is so raw, so true.

Watching this movie has been so significant in my healing journey and the universe delivered it in perfect time. I always think of watching a movie as a present to myself, because I’m usually so busy between work and study that I just don’t have time to stop. I was craving for: “Dolce far niente – the sweetness of doing nothing.”

And towards the end of the movie we are left with another insightful quote:
“If you’re brave enough to leave behind everything familiar and comforting and set out on a truth seeking journey either internally or externally, and if you are truly willing to regard everything that happens to you on that journey as a clue and if you accept everyone you meet along the way as a teacher and if you are prepared most of all to face and forgive some of the most difficult realities about yourself, then the truth will not be withheld from you.”

As I mentioned, I am currently studying and there are lots of changes ahead – including for Happiness Weekly. If you recognise any of the changes and feel my passion for Happiness Weekly is slipping – Liz said it best: “I am not checking out. I need to change.”

This is all part of my journey.

You can check out more great movie quotes about life here.

I need your help! Please?

10450603_779759202068888_5640128791927399981_nHey guys,

I know the whole purpose of Happiness Weekly is you guys come here to get help, but this week I was kind of hoping you may be able to assist me?

OK so here’s the thing…

As you know I’m trying to finish off my studies, with the goal in mind of having five positive certificates achieved by New Years Eve, and one of those is an entire new career direction and part of opening Relationship Free.

I have created a survey to form evidence for my Major Research Assessment. And I now just need as many people as I can to participate with their thoughts about relationships. I’m trying to establish if a life coach would be beneficial for someone suffering a relationship-related trauma or issue.

The survey is available here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Y8B7W3V

And it closes on Friday, 26 September at 5pm (Sydney, Australia time). Please share it with your Facebook friends and family etc. The more people who participate, the more people I will be able to assist ultimately.

It’ll take about two minutes of your time.

BIG thank you in advance to everyone who helps me. Love makes the world go around! xx

Lessons from adversity, lessons from my recovery


Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity. Hippocrates

Sometimes even the flight of an angel hits turbulence. Terri Guillemets

This year I have very openly and very slowly worked to recover from the breakdown of my relationship with who I thought was my dream man … who not only intentionally hurt me, but trapped me with domestic violence and persistent threats. He then went on to continue to torture me slowly as he carried out ever threat.

The damage that person caused to me emotionally and mentally caused such inner annihilation and destruction, I’m not sure I’ll ever be the same. After I used the last of my strength to get me away from that relationship, and parted with thousands of dollars to keep me out of harm’s way, there was literally nothing that wasn’t wiped out inside. It felt like a bushfire had gone through and torched every living cell within me. The pain was indescribable.

“When the Japanese mend broken objects they aggrandize the damage by filling the cracks with gold, because they believe that when something’s suffered damage and has a history it becomes more beautiful,” Barbara Bloom.

I recently learned about Kintsugi – the Japanese art of broken pottery, where they fill cracks to make the shattered ceramic more beautiful … and possibly more valuable. And there’s a lesson in Post-Traumatic Growth with that, I have made the decision to become more valuable to people as a result of my experience.

When you love someone and you trust them, and it doesn’t work out, it’s heartbreaking – but to become consciously aware that the same person you love unconditionally is deliberately hurting you and getting off on the power, it’s the hardest thing to comprehend. My situation was particularly painful as I had to come to terms with the fact that I was never loved, I was just a pawn in a narcissist’s game. So, after receiving plenty of feedback that people are enjoying reading the lessons I get from my experiences (which is what Happiness Weekly is all about – taking something positive from times of adversity), today I want to share what I have learned as I ventured into the greatest adventure of my entire life – my healing journey:

If you think you can’t – you more than likely can and at some point the universe will prove it to you

You are emotionally stronger than you think at any one time, and smarter than you know

There are positives in everything that feels negative and in every negative or disappointing experience we endure – sometimes you just need to look harder to find it

Every event is just an event until we add perception to it – it’s up to us to decide if it is positive or negative

Nothing – NOTHING – in the world matters more than what you think of yourself and what happens to you. No one cares about your story as much as you do and no one will care about what happens to you, as much as you will

Don’t let someone control how you feel about yourself – whatever you don’t like, you have the power to change

Until you forgive, you can’t move forward – start by forgiving yourself

Release the guilt – you didn’t allow it to happen

Let go of the shame – you don’t need it and it’s never helpful

It’s up to you if you let people continue to hurt you or not

Laugh! If you laugh at a situation, your recovery has begun. If you can’t laugh at it, find someone who will. If they can shift your perspective, this person is an angel – make sure you tell them.

Don’t let a situation hold you back – as soon as you take a step forward, you have started your healing journey.

Try it! Even if you’re scared – try it – it won’t be as bad as you expect

Don’t let fear trap you – keep doing things until you have overcome your fear. Don’t allow fear to develop into a phobia. Don’t be ashamed to seek help

Don’t regret anything – you’ll have good days and bad, but have faith that your pain will eventually bring you strength

Force yourself to go out – even if you don’t feel like it, go – even just for a little while – it’ll get easier

Fact: Psychopaths, Narcissists and Sociopaths exist, even if you’re like me and you don’t want to believe it – and they look human – accept it and learn how you can protect yourself from them moving forward

Choose to be around positive people. If the conversation gets too serious or your stop enjoying the company, drop it and/or leave

Be selfish – no one felt what you felt, no one experienced what you experienced, do what you need to do in order to step forward

Share your joys with others – even the little joys. As you recover you will be more mindful and appreciative of smaller blessings, share whatever you find

New beginnings really do disguise themselves as painful endings – hang in there

This Buddhist chant brought me a lot of strength: “The lotus is a flower that grows in the mud. The thicker and deeper the mud, the more beautiful the lotus blooms”

Abusive people isolate their victims – nothing keeps you stronger than friends and family – treasure them always, reconnect as soon as you can

There are no positives to sleeping away a sunny afternoon, get out and enjoy it!

Strangers sometimes have a greater impact on you than your friends, be open to their kindness

Once the traumatic event has happened to us – it is done – you can’t undo it – don’t go over it

If people judge you – shrug it off, they don’t know any better

Everything happens for a reason – think where you would be if whatever traumatic event you went through didn’t happen to you. Could it have protected you from something much worse?

If you’re trying to take down someone’s reputation, be prepared to draw attention to your own. I can promise you, people won’t just look at the person you’re assassinating but they’ll also look directly at you

Normal people don’t go around intentionally hurting others. Pain caused by others means you’re still alive – use that to fuel you – and going forward, surround yourself with normal people

Use trauma to change the world so it doesn’t happen to others – write to politicians, raise the voice of what happened, get qualified to help others if you’re passionate about letting it shape you

You’re never too old, too smart, too educated, too rich, too anything, to learn. Always be open to learning and your challenges will turn to opportunities. Turn your painful lessons into pathways for growth and your life will continue to evolve even through adversity

Our intuition shows us all the red flags we need, if we choose to ignore it, it’s up to us to take responsibility for any consequences that follow

NEVER look back – unless you’re looking to see how far you’ve come

Revel in the bliss of ignorance. When we go through something traumatic, we often look over our shoulders this only opens us to more pain – shut down your curiosity unless it’s moving you forward

Education is the best way to true self-empowerment. Don’t put up with what happened to you, learn about it, understand it and empower yourself so you’re equipped to move forward

Always, always, always do the right thing by yourself – you’re the one who has to live with whatever happens next

Some people want you to be miserable and they will go out of their way to achieve this. These people are miserable. You will only be miserable if you let them in and allow them to disturb your inner peace

If someone abuses you, cut them out – if they find a way to seep back in, cut them out again

Moving forward is challenging but it’s a lot more rewarding than stepping back. Stepping back only repeats old patterns, particularly where a narcissist is involved – never surrender to being a source of supply more than twice or you’ll be prisoner for life

Give yourself time. Be patient. It took two and a half months for me to start seeing and appreciating these lessons. Before then: darkness. There’s no time limit on your healing journey and recovery – it won’t be immediate and it won’t be easy, but it will be worth it

Fairy tales aren’t real. The knight in shining armour doesn’t exist – don’t wait – muster up your courage and be your own hero: save yourself

Ignore judgements – narcissists can’t pretend events happened for long periods of time – but a victim will suffer genuine trauma. It’s clear when someone is genuinely suffering

Find a buddy who has been through a similar experience. Share the lessons you have learned and support each other when one is feeling they’ve reached their wits end

Let go – be prepared to lose everything because it is only then you can fully move forward

Alternative and natural therapies can sometimes heal you better and faster than modern traditional therapies – be open to them, even if your doctors aren’t

If someone is truly a victim, they won’t need to tell the story – you’ll see it

Smear campaigns are spread by abuser’s minions – don’t take offence, just think of them as those little yellow cartoon characters from Despicable Me and at the end of the day they’re manipulated victims just as you may have been

“Nothing can dim the light which shines from within,” Maya Angelou – keep your light shining

You can and will survive. If you made it out alive – be grateful for your life and your freedom, embrace it

Embrace work – a job gets you up in the morning and adds purpose to your day. Don’t quit!

When you feel bad – and you will feel bad as you recover – look at the areas in life you’re excelling at despite what you’re going through, concentrate on what you’ve achieved and where you’re heading

Life’s Plan B can be even better than how Plan A was ever going to turn out

No matter how much you try, some people don’t want to be helped. That’s their choice.

Don’t think negatively towards someone. No matter how much they hurt you, don’t wish anyone bad fate. If you’re not feeling bad enough from being hurt, you’re only going to feel worse by having negative, spiteful and malicious thoughts about someone. Don’t give your abuser any more power or satisfaction – always wish them well even if it’s just to set yourself free

Nothing is coincidence when someone is abusing you – they’ll make it look that way, but they intend on every fine detail

Love the people surrounding you. If they love you back, don’t take them for granted. If you do and you lose them, that’s your loss. Learn from your mistakes

SAY IT STRAIGHT! If you don’t agree with something, say it. If someone’s wasting your time, tell them. Life’s too short for bullshit

Don’t wait for anyone. If you get feelings for someone and they don’t feel the same way about you, but suggest “maybe later” – keep looking forward to the “what’s next” because it’s not them

If your instinct says no: the answer is always NO! Trust your inner voice

Remember your values. They’ll flick up in your mind when someone does something that you don’t agree with. These flashes are easy to ignore. Don’t deny the things you truly want because you’re trying to please someone. Instead, find someone who shares your values

When you feel shut off from the world, the real angels will appear in your life. Hold on to faith. I have established multiple friendships in the past six months that are stronger than friendships I’ve held onto for several decades

Be who you want to be!

Nothing screams Carpe Diem or YOLO (You Only Live Once) as loudly as a healing journey. Embrace it! Learn from it. Use it. Do everything you want to do. Be whatever you want to be

If someone makes you happy – happier than you feel when you’re alone – figure out what it is about that person that makes you feel that way. Now try to figure out how you can replicate it to make yourself feel that way. Once you’ve replicated that feeling, date them again – if you’re still into them, they’re probably good for you. This is a lesson in a healing journey: DO NOT depend on people for your happiness because you will be disappointed

Time doesn’t heal all wounds, sometimes we just learn to cope – and that’s ok too

Self-trust is the most important trust you can have

Self-forgiveness is the hardest thing to do – avoid putting yourself in a situation where you need to exercise it

And all I have left to say is this… WHAT DOESN’T KILL YOU MAKES YOU STRONGER!


I’d now like to invite you to share with me – it doesn’t have to be big – what lessons have you learned while recovering from a traumatic event?


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