Self inflicted mental wounds are wounds that add to mental illness, trapping people inside their head and creating social barriers which, in turn, prevents them from overcoming their illness. There are a number of causes for someone to self inflict mental hurt upon themselves: traumatic memory, low self esteem, grief, anxiety or depression, or even being bullied.
Traumatic memory of past events can cause someone to inflict mental wounds that prevent mental healing or make present mental illnesses worse. Some reasons that someone would cause themselves mental pain due to past trauma are feelings of low self worth and difficulty in social situations. These are detrimental to a person’s mental wellbeing because negative self talk and lack of confidence while in social situations only lowers the person’s standard of how they allow themselves to be treated and viewed by others. Negative self talk is especially harmful because it establishes habits in daily life that only hinder the healing process and creates a deeper sense of low self worth.
Self inflicted mental pain can be due to low self esteem, as well; these feelings about one’s self can come from a number of places, such as: an unhappy childhood with critical adults, learning difficulties in school, relationship problems, or financial problems. Along with low self worth, low self esteem is an abnormal view of self that is harmful to the person and it can often create a mental struggle inside the mind that causes the persons mental self abuse (because of feelings of inadequacy or inferiority). Low self esteem can also lead to the formation of destructive habits and can even allow the person to accept less than respectable behavior from others.
Mental self abuse could also be caused by extreme grief. Loss of a loved one can affect a person in many ways, and one of them is to cause suicidal thoughts; this is a mental battle that tears at the mind of the person in very impactful ways. The mental torment of a person grieving is bad, but coupled with suicidal thoughts which can accompany it, it makes the mental pain an urgent level that is in need of immediate intervention.
Anxiety or depression are other reasons that a person might self inflict mental hurt. Like low self esteem, anxiety and depression cause the person to suffer feelings of low self worth, low level of desire to care for themselves in day to day life, and feelings of inferiority. It causes the sufferer to struggle socially, and can cause the person to isolate themselves totally. Again, this type of mental self abuse will often lead to habits (like lack of self care) that are destructive to the day to day life and can hinder the persons ability to demand honorable treatment from others.
One of the biggest causes of mental self hurt is being bullied. The sufferer can become depressed, suffer from low self esteem, self isolate, and the very worst cases can lead to suicidal thoughts or attempts. Like grief, the suicidal thoughts and/or attempts that can accompany being bullied are an urgent need for intervention! If you are or know of anyone who is being bullied, please direct them to the anti bullying advocacy website: https://cheriewhite.blog/
Now that I have described some of the various reasons for mental self inflicted wounds and ways that they affect the person, I would like to discuss ways that sufferers can begin to heal in these areas and reverse the mental illnesses that have caused problems.
Self hurt is the enemy and habits that are built out of years of self neglect can be changed. Self care is the best way to destress and remove unwanted emotions from the front of the mind. It may not seem that it is the most important thing to focus on while battling with mental poison, but taking the time to give love to your self and put the focus on your worth and importance builds inner strength. It can become a daily habit with time and effort.
Finding someone who can listen is a great solution, and it can be beneficial to find a licensed therapist who can not only listen but can help build a arsenal of skills to combat the issues at hand. There are even apps and phone services available now that do not require you to meet in person. Some of the apps offer 24 hour text services for crisis times.
Journaling can be a way to put your thoughts onto paper; this is very helpful for emptying your mind of emotions that are overwhelming and memories that you battle often. Some prefer to journal in pictures, while others choose written words, and multi media collages are a great way to express thought about feelings in a creative way. However the expressions are made, the outpouring of emotions into a tangible form can be a healing and therapeutic way to remove the burden from your mind.
The most important thing in this journey is changing the habit of inflicting mental self hurt to building a better self care routine. Every journey begins with a single step. Noticing the times and situations that cause the most self harm and changing the reactions to them can redirect the thoughts and build a better habit each day. One day at a time, one situation at a time, and one reaction at a time. I hope that this post has helped someone!