Read This When You Know What You Need To Heal, But Don’t Know How

Thought Catalog
4 min readSep 30, 2022



By Brianna Wiest

If you know that you need to heal but don’t know where to begin, you will need to trust the process.

You will need to trust the people around you who have your best interest at heart, the ones who can see clearly through your situation. You will need to trust the sound advice of the people who have been where you are, and have found their way out. You will need to trust the process of healing, even when it isn’t comfortable or linear.

You will need to trust this because when we need to heal, we can’t always trust ourselves.

When our nervous systems are wrecked and we’re traumatized and suffering, we can’t think or feel clearly. We have thoughts that are negative and untrue; our feelings want to lead us toward comfort when healing isn’t always comfortable.

If you know that you need to heal but don’t know where to begin, you will need to start with the basics.

Start with the most fundamental parts of your life, the ones that are always within your control.

Start to build rituals around the things that you can do no matter where you are or who you’re with. A hot bath, a bedtime routine, a cup of coffee in the morning.

Start by moving your body, even in the smallest and simplest ways.

Get fresh air and change your clothes.

Take a shower and answer a text.

You don’t have to do a lot, but do something.

Start to slowly reset your nervous system by taking it out of fight-or-flight. Breathe deeply and meditate, walk and run. Talk to the friends you can trust, and if you don’t have even one, talk to yourself, write in a journal.

If you know that you need to heal but you don’t know where to begin, you will need to let go of your attachment to results.

There’s nothing that’s going to hold you back more than getting discouraged because your entire life doesn’t change in a week.

Sure, it might be disappointing to think that this is going to take a long time, but what’s the alternative? You either heal this now or you show up in a year from now exactly where you are today.

Even when you don’t see immediate outcomes, you have to trust that committing to the right behaviors and routines will slowly, move time, readjust your comfort zone to a new normal.

Even when you don’t get everything you want right away, you will need to revel in the small victories, allow the success to be the completion of the task, not what it might mean down the line.

You have to stay present, as much as you can.

If you know that you need to heal but you don’t know where to begin, you will need to build a new life.

This is the piece that most people miss.

You cannot go back to what you knew before, and trying to is only making you suffer.

You’re standing in the ruins of what was, instead of building a new city in its place.

You will need to redesign your entire existence, one piece at a time.

You will need to do this because if you do not, you will exist revolving around the open spaces, the empty gaps, the failures and disappointments.

You will need to let go of the life you chose for a person you no longer are.

You will need to understand that it is not a failure to give up on dreams that don’t make sense for you anymore.

You will need to take your time, and you will need to know that no matter what has happened, you still get the final say in your story.

You still get to decide if the heartbreak was the unhappy ending, or the beginning where the hero is introduced in the worst and most hopeless circumstances.

You still get to decide what you tell yourself about yourself, even if those little pieces of hope are crowded by all those other, negative thoughts.

You still get to decide what happens next, and what happens in the end.

If you know that you need to heal but you don’t know where to begin, you will need to begin right now.

Start right here.

Do one thing today that can move your life forward.

Strive to be just 1% better than you were before.

Growth, like love or sleep, happens to us slowly at first, and then all at once.

Stay the course, and trust the process.

You are always closer than you think.

Brianna Wiest is a writer, poet, and best-selling author.



Thought Catalog

We’re a community of creators based in NYC. We publish a digital magazine and limited edition books. //