So I was guest on @JulesTV_films live tweetchat, yesterday, where the discussion was on being Abuse Proof, with the hashtag – #Haltdomesticviolence If you missed the tweetchat session, see my submission on the topic below:
Is being abuse proof possible? Yes. I think one can be abuse proof but not immune to abuse. Considering that a large number of cases of abuse comes from the people we love and how we can be very vulnerable when we are attached to a person, your proof can be infected or penetrated.
When it comes to abuse, we pay most attention to physical abuse while ignoring verbal and emotional abuse. Blaming, shaming, and name calling are a few identifiers of verbal abuse which can affect a victim emotionally. An emotionally abused person’s self-worth and emotional wellbeing are altered and even diminished by the verbal abuse, and the result is an emotionally abused victim. The victim may experience severe psychological effects. The abuser is not just the man who hits a woman or a woman who hits a man, but anyone who intentionally hurts the feelings of anyone.
The effects of physical abuse are obvious – a black eye, a cut or a bruise – but the effects of emotional abuse may be harder to spot. But Make no mistake about it; the effects of emotional abuse can be just as severe as those from physical. However, victims of emotional abuse tend to blame themselves, or downplay its effect, saying that it was “only” emotional and “at least he/she didn’t hit me.”
So while I emphasize on ways you can possibly be abuse proof? Please note that this mainly places focus on emotional abuse as we really cannot tell when the heavy blow will be landing on that pretty/handsome face. And most of the time, asides being a clear road to depression, physical abuse is as a result of ignored and tolerated emotional abuse.
Being abuse proof is basically being in a state of mind where one cannot be abused because they have a height of enlightenment, understanding, self-awareness, emotional intelligence and above all, SELF LOVE.
Here are 6 basic steps to be abuse proof:
1. Identify and own your identity
“Identity is about positive traits; it also can be negative traits. It’s a combination of things that you do; it’s your talents, it’s your strengths, it’s your passions, it’s what you love, it’s what you care about.
“What we try to do is teach people how to develop a positive identity of themselves so they can self-actualize their potential as a human being.” – Stedman Graham
Owning your identity is an important step to being abuse proof. Find all the traits and own them. Abusers usually start by assaulting your identity. If you can own it, you cannot be pushed around
2. Set standards
Let no one tell you your standards are too high. Your standards are valid. Most especially, set a standard on how you want to be treated and live the example. Treat yourself as royalty, that way, you won’t accept anybody treating you less.
3. Love yourself
Self-love is important to living well. It influences who you allow into your personal space, the image you project at work, and how you cope with the problems in your life.
Self-love is defined by Deborah Khoshaba Psy.D., as a state of appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our physical, psychological and spiritual growth.
You cannot claim to love yourself and not want to grow and improve. If you don’t love yourself, if you don’t treat yourself good, how would you know how another person should treat you?
4. Live intentionally
Live for self – the pressure to fit into the idea of what society accepts will push you into settling for abuse. Don’t settle. Your emotional wants and needs are not impossible.
You deserve love and respect. Forget society, does it make you happy? Does it bring you peace? Do it.
5. Set boundaries
You’ll love yourself more when you set limits or say no to work, love, or activities you are not comfortable with physically, emotionally and spiritually, or express poorly who you are.
Bring the right people into your life. Get rid of the wrong crowd! There isn’t enough time to waste on people who want to take away your shine. Genuinely love and respect yourself.
6. Become empowered
One of your greatest tool will be the fact that you are independent. Work hard enough to cater to your basic needs. It’s a power you will love and come to adore.
Finally, I will say don’t remain where you are not appreciated for too long. Take a walk. Your happiness comes first always. #Haltdomesticviolence
Feature Image Source – whyisthishappening.org
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