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  • Writer's pictureLon Lao

How Survivors of Abuse can Plan Out 2021

Planning for the next year has never crossed my mind before the end of 2020. I realized how important it is to believe in something I can do and put it in tangible terms, no matter what my circumstances are.

People traditionally make New Year’s resolutions at the beginning of the new year. But since New Year’s resolutions are often seen as fleeting, I think it’s better to call it a plan instead. What might be easy for others, might be difficult for the abused and survivors of abuse. April did a YouTube video on that topic called “How to Grow from Trauma”. There are good suggestions for victims and survivors of how to best live in this new year.

Here are a few other suggestions to consider doing in 2021:

1. Learn about Your Rights.

International Violence Against Women Act from the 113th Congress provides concrete tools to prevent violence against women and girls worldwide. Gaining knowledge and wisdom gets us to a place where we can be advocates and increase awareness. Take time to read and take time to reach out to people who can be resources on this topic.

2. Learn a Self-Defence Tactic

It is protection in itself because life is unpredictable. However, if you are ready at any given moment, you will feel stronger and more in control of your own life. It will increase your self-confidence and your self-esteem.

3. Reach Out and Give of Your Time

Find a local domestic violence shelter or a related non-profit and volunteer. Serving others will help take your mind off of yourself and your own problems. It will feel good to help others, especially those whose pain you can relate to. Choosing to be a helper and not a victim will also give you some control in your own life. You might also volunteer to be a speaker on the topic of personal violence, making you an advocate.

4. Seek Counsel

Sometimes healing our insides requires help from the outside. Consider that the life situations you’ve been in were based on what you knew at the time. If you don’t learn and grow, how can you expect to get anywhere new? Counselors know skills that you need to know and have perspectives that you need to adopt. There are many organizations that provide free counsel. If you are working, then you can ask your HR if counseling is something that’s provided by the company. Self healing should be prioritized this year.

5. Keep a Journal

April recommends keeping a gratitude journal. Whether you keep a gratitude journal or a doodle anything type of journal, it is important that you document what you feel and your progress. What you went through is not a walk in the park. Research says that the act of writing things out is helpful, even if you need to write it down and then destroy it immediately after.

You may also choose digital platforms such as free blogs. In this way, you are also being an instrument of awareness.

6. Be the Change You Want to See. (It may take more effort but it is one good plan indeed.)

- If you are in a relationship, strive for a healthy one.

- Try to avoid triggers and learn how to deal with them so that you’re prepared.

- Learn how to choose the right people to trust, ones who will honor your trust in them.

- Show people the respect that you have not experienced in the past.

Creating the list above was helpful to me personally. I hope that you can take at least one idea from it as you plan out how to have an empowering 2021!

~ Lon





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