By: Marilyn L. Davis


Too Damaged to Heal?

from addict 2 advocate marilyn l davis Affirmations Help Us Heal in our Recovery


No one reading this is so damaged that some healing cannot occur. I have worked with survivors of extreme sexual abuse, starting as young as age three. Each experienced the following:

  • In and out of mental institutions
  • Multiple addictions
  • Repeated failed relationships

Some of these individuals now have over 20 years of abstinence-based recovery, as well as having a stable, healthy, and loving relationship. 

While these life events may sound extreme to some, that is precisely the point.


Healing Through Recovery


I found their courage to come to terms with, and no longer let their past dictate their adult behaviors, feelings, and thoughts to be inspirational. 

We all admire the person who pulls themselves up by their bootstraps, overcomes extreme adversity, or who do not give up. These people are exactly that type of person.


Repairing the Damage


Each of these people had a desire to live a better life. They also understood that they deserved a better life, so they created one through their recovery. They took steps, started relying on safe people in recovery, and began a new dialogue with themselves. 

One effective way to begin healing is to create Positive Affirmations, which, if authentic for you, can help reinforce a new perception of you. Click To Tweet

Base your affirmations on who you are today, not the person you were in your addiction, the role, or the messages you heard about you that were negative.

When you begin to see yourself from a new perspective, it often motivates you to continue making positive changes in your life.


How Do Affirmations Work? 


from addict 2 advocate marilyn l davis Affirmations Help Us Heal in our Recovery


To imagine how affirmations work, think of a field. Old plants represent the old labels, messages, and roles.

Yet, even after uprooting the plants, the ground may keep some vestige of the old. The farmer still has to till the soil in preparation for the new crop. 

You are pulling up or out the old messages, and preparing yourself to plant new thoughts and beliefs. And they will take root and help you heal. 


Changing the Mindset


Repeating the new messages is vital for Positive Affirmations to work. Writing your Positive Affirmation 10 times a day for 30 days is a good beginning. Click To Tweet

Depending on how entrenched you are in your old belief, it may take longer than this for the new thought to override the former opinion.

Most important is that the affirmation must be faithful to your beliefs about you.


Affirmations Must Speak Your Truth


Affirmations have to resonate, vibrate, or echo your desire. If not, there is a block created, as it is unbelievable. 

For instance, I could create one stating: I am perfect, just as I am now! Even as I write it, I know it is untrue, therefore, no matter how many times I wrote it, I would not internalize this as a valid affirmation. 

I also am not a person who responds positively to exclamation marks. I think if I have to purposefully over-hype it, then it’s not true. Therefore, I would change it to, “I have many positive qualities, and I am operating from them more in my behaviors and receiving better outcomes.” Now it is believable, reinforcing, and validating.


from addict 2 advocate marilyn l davisYou, however, may respond favorably to this type of emphasis and should add it to your affirmation if it reinforces it for you, so add an exclamation mark to the affirmations above and see if they don’t help you change the way you think about yourself.


What is True for You?


What you are attempting to change has probably been your thinking for years. Therefore it is unrealistic to think that it is not going to take some work to change it. I am not advocating magical thinking here, but implementing new thoughts.

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson


Healing with Specific Words


I would recommend writing your affirmations out on paper and not on your computer when you first start writing affirmations. 

Something physically, emotionally, and mentally connects us to paper and pen that does not happen on the computer. This is especially true if you are one of those who type using just two fingers.

Some excellent healing words are:

  • Capable
  • Caring
  • Clever
  • Competent
  • Confident
  • Honest
  • Important
  • Lovable
  • Talented
  • Valuable
  • Worthwhile

When you begin to heal and start believing in your potential and right to have a better life, you need to create affirmations that reinforce and confirm these new viewpoints. Choose statements that are realistic for you.

As your thoughts are changing, add actions that show you that the affirmation is real. This table represents affirmations and actions for the six dysfunctional family roles as an example.

from addict 2 advocate marilyn l davis Affirmations Help Us Heal in our Recovery

It is always important that you choose actions that are attainable for you. Over time, affirmations and positive actions will move you from damaged to more whole.


Do Not Maintain the Status Quo


Working on yourself is the most rewarding unpaid job you will ever have. When you change, other people in your life may not react favorably. It is much safer, although toxic, if everyone plays their assigned roles, we understand them and have gotten used to them. 

“It was so much more comfortable to be able to divide people into heroes and villains and expect them to play their allotted part.” ― Mary Balogh

Do not let others stop you from making positive changes in your life.

  • You deserve to heal. So, change.
  • Grow into the person you were meant to be.
  • Get the love and attention you missed.

You deserve to heal, change, and become the best you. No one is so damaged that healing can't occur. Click To Tweet

Begin by understanding that you accept, give, and receive the love you think you deserve. In your addiction, you weren’t lovable, now you’re changing, and you are. It’s your choice to heal the damage, and affirmations help that. If you were harmed by others, it’s time to heal yourself, and affirmations will help you. 




Writing, and recovery heals the heart.



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