The power to change
Many callers who contact SupportLine are survivors of abuse - emotional,
mental, physical and/or sexual and are struggling with low self esteem,
lack of confidence and sense of worth. We hope that this section may
be of help to anyone who is working towards recovery and healing and
also for anyone suffering from depression, anxiety, anyone feeling
they have no control over their own life and anyone who wants to change
their life for the better and live a more peaceful, content and happier
The Power to Change
SupportLine tries to empower and encourage callers to be responsible
for their own choices, decisions and actions, thereby regaining some
control and enabling them to develop or improve their sense of self
worth and self esteem and an inner feeling of strength. We aim to help
callers develop more positive coping strategies.
Sometimes it is too easy to blame past experiences on our current
situation and to stay stuck in a situation we feel unhappy about. Unfortunately
nobody can come along and wave a magic wand and make things happen
and change or make bad memories and traumas vanish. It takes a lot
of hard work from the individual to turn their life around and to change
anything which he/she is unhappy about. Life is too short to waste
years and years being unhappy and blaming the past for the unhappiness.
Yes the past may well be a reason for where you are at now but focusing
on the past won't help you to move on with your life.
If you feel you are unable to move on with the past it may well be
because you have been blocking off past traumas, ignoring past issues
and hoping it will go away. Invariably it means facing up to whatever
unhappiness and trauma you experienced in the past, to accept what
happened, to accept you may have had no control over what happened,
to express in a healthy way and get out all the emotions you have and
to let go of them rather than hang onto them. I know this is easier
said than done and if you are having difficulty in letting the past
go then try and do something about that.
The memories will always be there but don't allow them to control
your life. Focus on the solution to the problem rather than the problem
itself i.e. what can I do to try and heal from my past and to let go
of the feelings I may be holding onto which are keeping me unhappy
and preventing me from moving on with my life:-
- Talk to someone you trust who will listen in an empathic and non
- Think about talking to a counsellor and having therapy sessions
to help you let go of the past.
- Look at websites written by and for survivors and the whole host
of information on the internet which may help you to heal and move
- Read books written by survivors to see how they have been able
to let go of the past and move on with their lives.
- Just as you devote time to doing the chores, going to work, going
out socialising etc. devote time to sorting your life out - that
should be the priority and important enough to you to actively spend
time on your personal development and healing to help you to lead
a happier and more fulfilling life.
- If you are unhappy at work - and this is causing you stress and
depression - then try to do something about it. Look at changing
jobs, even if it means taking a cut in pay it may be worth trying
to cut back on expenditure and do a job you feel happier doing and
a job with less pressure and less stress.
- If you are out of work and finding it difficult to get a job maybe
think about voluntary work - this can help you to try new things
and will give you different skills and this will all help in looking
for a job as employers will be impressed to see that you have been
actively doing something with your time. Voluntary work can help
you to build up your confidence and also may give you different ideas
about what areas of work you would like to do.
- If you are unhappy with your relationship - again life is too short
to stay in an unhappy relationship. Try and sort things out - don't
allow this unhappiness to go on and on year after year. Try and work
things out together - if you can't, consider couple counselling -
and it is better to be happier and healthier on your own than staying
in a relationship which is making you unhappy and destroying your
- If you are depressed it is not going to help your depression by
staying at home day after day watching television. You need to try
and do something which will help your depression i.e. regular exercise,
fresh air, eat the right foods, keep active, look for a new interest,
seek counselling etc. You need to do something to actively help yourself
to get out of the depression.
- You need to remember you cannot change other people - you can only
change yourself and how you react to other people. If you feel someone
is winding you up you have a choice how to react - you can choose
to get upset and angry or you can choose to ignore them and walk
- You can choose to stay a victim or you can choose to become a survivor.
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If you find you constantly worry about things and are anxious try
to develop techniques to deal with this and seek out things which will
actively help you with your anxiety:-
- Look at information in websites and books.
- Train yourself whenever you start worrying to say 'no, stop, I
will worry about that when the time comes, not now' - you can worry
yourself sick for days and days about a future event and when the
time comes you often find that you coped with it a lot better than
you thought and it wasn't nearly as bad as you thought - all the
worry in the world is not going to change anything or make it better
and all that energy and time you could be devoting to doing something
- If you find that worrying thoughts keep coming into your mind during
the day and stop you from getting on with your work or jobs then
give yourself a worry hour at a certain time of the day when you
allow yourself to sit down and worry about whatever you want to worry
about for an hour - so when thoughts come into your mind at other
times train yourself to say 'no, stop, I'll worry about that later
in my worry hour, now I am going to put it out of my mind and get
on with my work'.
- Take time out each day to do relaxation exercises, relax in a warm
bath, listen to relaxing music - even twenty minutes a day to unwind,
not answer the phone or the door but time for you to empty
your mind of worries and thoughts and just chill out.
Learn To Like and Love Yourself
Learn to accept yourself for who you are and to like and love yourself.
You accept others with their imperfections and habits you may not like
- that doesn't stop you liking and/or loving them - stop being so hard
on yourself - nobody is perfect, everyone messes up sometimes, everyone
does things they wish they hadn't done, everyone makes mistakes - that
is being human'!
Learn from your mistakes and move on. Everyone is unique, you don't
have to be like everyone else, you are you, see yourself in a realistic
light - don't focus on all the negative things about yourself and all
the things you don't like - start trying to focus on all the good points
you have and the parts of you that you do like. Learn to congratulate
yourself when you do things well, when you cope with things - don't
keep putting yourself down and giving yourself negative talk - give
yourself positive talk and keep doing it until it becomes natural to
talk to yourself in a positive way.
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You have the power and strength within you to make changes to your
life and any aspect of your life you are unhappy about - you can start
by making a list of anything you want to change and work out what you
can do to actively make changes in your life. You can choose to stay
where you are in your unhappiness or you can choose to try and do something
to change your situation for yourself.
By looking through the other pages on this website you can see that
there is help out there and people who can be there for you and support
you in your journey to healing, recovery and a happier, calmer and
more peaceful life.
Positive and Healthy Statements
- See yourself as a Survivor and not a Victim. Victim conjures up
weakness, helplessness, not in control - Survivor conjures up strength,
in control of your own life.
- Talk to yourself as you would talk to a friend.
- Change a negative thought into a positive thought.
- Habits and behaviour may be bad, - that doesn't make you a bad
person - just a person with bad habits or behaviour.
- By loving yourself you are opening up the possibility for others
to love you too.
- Focus on the solution to the problem - not the problem itself.
- Refuse to let problems control you or your emotions. Disregard
the factors you have no control over and focus on what you can influence.
- Recognise your own value, skills, talents, qualities, see yourself
and life in a realistic way.
- Love yourself unconditionally just as you would those closest to
you despite their faults.
- Don't put off until tomorrow what you could do today.
- Use the strength within you in a positive way and not a negative
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