People are often less than thrilled with facing unpleasant things, such as emotional healing. It’s quite understandable, really. Emotional work isn’t fun! It’s very hard, very draining work. It’s also very necessary.
I’ve caught myself many times distracting myself from the emotional work at hand. There have been plenty of times I’ve had a flashback at a very inconvenient time, & couldn’t deal with it right then. Times like this, I don’t think distracting yourself for a short time is a bad idea at all. In fact, it may be absolutely necessary, such as when I had a flashback while driving.
There have been plenty of other times when a flashback has happened or a repressed memory pops back into my mind that I distract myself even when I have the time & ability to focus on it. I’m just tired of things that happened 10, 20, or 30 years ago still affecting my life at 45. It’s exhausting & maddening, so sometimes I ignore the flashback or memory & try to avoid thinking about it.
I’ve noticed many others who have survived narcissistic abuse do the same thing.
This isn’t good though! I’ve come to realize that most of these things come to me when I have the time & I believe that is for a reason- so these awful things can be dealt with right then.
Avoiding facing issues only postpones the problem, it doesn’t make it go away. It is best to deal with things as soon as possible. After all, God allowed it to come to mind for a reason. He must know you are able to deal with it & need to do so. He wouldn’t allow this memory to return to your mind if coping with it wasn’t going to help you in some way.
Don’t get me wrong- there are plenty of times we need to distract ourselves from the work of recovery. If you’ve been focusing on narcissism & narcissistic abuse for a long time, it’s time for a break. If you have the awful experience of having a flashback behind the wheel like I did, you definitely don’t need to think about it then- you need to focus on driving! If you write about the topic like I do, frequent distractions are a must to keep your sanity.
I believe the key is using wisdom. I know in my heart when I should focus & when it’s time for a break. Granted, I don’t always pay attention, but I do know. When I ignore those “knowings,” I feel it. The memory that came back won’t leave me alone, I get angry, moodier than usual, tired mentally & physically.
I realize I need to ask God to help me in this area, to do His will. To face things as needed & to take breaks when needed. I would encourage you to do the same, Dear Reader. It will be good for your mental health!