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Self-care for narcissistic abuse survivors is an important part of the healing process. You stop taking care of yourself during romantic relationships with people who have narcissistic personality disorder.

Survivors of narcissistic abuse have a difficult time taking care of their needs. Implementing self-care into your daily routine can be a powerful healing method to help you recover from low self-esteem.

If you are a survivor of narcissistic abuse you need a daily self-care routine to make the most of your healing journey. Self-care can be used to help you get through a tough situation and build a strong foundation and inner self to stand on in hard times.

I will explain the two different types of self-care plans you need, how to put one together, and most importantly, how to remember to use it when you are triggered.

Self-Care for Narcissistic Abuse Survivors

If you are a survivor of narcissistic abuse or have been in an abusive relationship you need a self-care plan. After being in any type of abusive relationship your sense of self suffers. You will need to spend some time remembering who you are and taking good care of yourself so you can begin to live well again.

Your self-care plan is a powerful tool for healing. It’s important to take time daily to check in with yourself and see what you need. Taking care of yourself every day even if it is just sitting quietly for a few minutes will help you build strength and resilience.

Self-care tip – setting strong boundaries is a healthy way to keep you safe from further abusive behavior and emotional abuse by taking back your personal power.

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Your Daily Self-Care Plan to Rebuild Emotional Well-Being

When you include self-care in your daily routine it helps you build the foundation you need for healing. It provides a higher level of emotional, psychological, and physical balance to pull from when times get tough.

You are strengthening your nervous system with your self-care practice. It’s similar to eating a healthy diet and exercising for your physical health. As you grow stronger your self-care plan may change and will become more automatic and easier to implement.

When you have a list of items to choose from it makes it easier to implement daily care. As a survivor sometimes it is too much work to think of what you need and then do it. When you start by setting a daily habit of self-care you take some of the work out of making a decision and following through.

Your plan should remain flexible. You can drop items that you don’t like or that no longer serve you and add in new items. Use curiosity when you are making your plan. If you hear of something to try add it in and see if you like it. Make self-care a way of getting to know yourself and to explore new things.

You can keep your self-care plan handy as a list near your bed or desk or make a list on your phone to look at each day. Extra points if you make it your background on your phone or computer.

Have An Emergency Self-Care Plan to Use When Your Nervous System is Activated

You may struggle with panic attacks, traumatic memories, or triggers that make life unpredictable. Your emergency self-care plan is the tool full of healthy coping mechanisms you will reach for to help you return to a normal baseline as soon as possible.

To set this plan up you will have to take some time to think through what triggers you, causes a panic attack, or brings up difficult memories. Take note of different situations, people, sounds, smells, etc that may have caused you distress in the past.

Next, you will dig into those situations and see not only what may lessen your discomfort but what may keep it from occurring in the first place.

Ideas for your emergency plan – breathing exercises, mantras, affirmations, using pressure points, calling a helper, getting to a safe space, etc

Practice your emergency plan before you need it. You can imagine the scenario and how you would use your plan. Try it out a few times to see if you need to make any changes. The more easily you remember your emergency plan the easier it will be to use when you need it.

It can be helpful to take notes or write a journal entry after an episode so you can learn what soothes you the most and include those items in your emergency plan. As you practice your emergency self-care plan you may find ways to work through the energy before it becomes something that takes over.

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Putting Together Your Daily Self-Care Plan

Your daily self-care plan is where you can experiment with different ideas and techniques. You can use physical movement, thought work, pressure points(EFT), or simply think about your favorite mantra.

Include a few things that have comforted you in the past along with some new ideas to try. You want to have at least one item on your list that you can rely on to help you feel better even on the worst day.

Here are a few categories and ideas from each to get your creativity going:

Physical movement – dance, walk, exercise, clean

Thought exercises – use affirmations and mantras, journaling, prayer, meditation, and reflection on the compliments of trusted friends.

Seek community by building your support network – have someone you can call or message, become involved in your community, volunteer, join and interact in a survivors group on Facebook, try support groups in-person or online

A creative outlet – craft projects, try a new recipe, write a story, make up a silly song, practice your art

Professional help – a crisis line, therapist, or coach

Something fun – sing, hum, listen to your favorite playlist

Something relaxing – learn different breathing techniques to use, get hugs from your favorite person, child, or pet, watch a favorite show or movie, listen to calming music, eat comfort food at your next meal, appreciate a beautiful view, watch the sunset

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Using Your Self-Care Practices

Now we get to the fun part. You get to implement your self-care plan. May I suggest you start small so you don’t become overwhelmed?

You can set a goal to choose an item off your self-care plan to try once a week. Over time you can add more days and eventually build a daily habit of self-care.

Find the best times to spend a few minutes checking in with yourself daily to see what you need.

If you work a full-time job you can take some time on your lunch break to rest and take a few deep breaths, read a book, or pray. Some neat self-care apps make it fun to complete your daily goals.

If you commute you can choose a podcast episode to listen to, your favorite music to sing along with, or listen to an audiobook.

As you intentionally implement your plan you may realize how much self-care you already include in your daily life.

Weekends are a great opportunity to schedule more time to relax and renew. It can be fun to do a spa at-home day to take care of your physical body. As you are doing your treatments incorporate items from your self-care plan.

If you can it would be wonderful to have a dedicated self-care day once a month or even quarterly.

When you take time to care for yourself you can live your life with more energy and appreciation. You may also find you have more energy to give to others.

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Professional Help

If you are struggling beyond the help your plan provides please seek professional help from mental health professionals such as a therapist or trauma recovery coach.

Mental health services may be covered by your health plan. If so, this is a wonderful way to truly care for yourself even if life is already going well. I believe we should live in a world where mental health check-ups are as normal as yearly physicals.

If your insurance doesn’t cover mental health care check locally for providers who will see you at a sliding scale rate. You may even be able to find pro-bono care.

You can check with local religious organizations, your local domestic violence organization, and any place that helps with services for low-income people for resources.

I hope you have fun putting together a self-care plan and an emergency plan. The more you use your plan the more it becomes a daily habit to serve you in your healing journey.

Self-care for narcissistic abuse survivors is so important. Learning to take better care of yourself can lead to healthier relationships, inner peace, and a stronger sense of self-worth. All good things.

Remember you deserve to live in freedom and peace.

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