Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Survivors Speak: Having A Survivors Instinct














I love to hear the strong, resilient voice of a survivor who's determined not to let fate get the best of her. Donna Allen has such a voice. The victim of child abuse - and then the survivor of a plane crash - Donna Allen's voice is clear, committed, proactive and full of self-determination and belief. Bravo!


When I was an abused teenager, I felt victimized, helpless, and overwhelmed and I shut down, got angry, and lashed out. When I was a young adult, my life was disrupted when I was paralyzed in an airplane crash. I wanted to be able to cope with disruptive change, tap into the will to survive, and gain strength from the adversity in my life. I wanted to have strong self-confidence, know what to do, and be in control. And something stopped me from regaining stability, gaining strength, and attaining what I desire.

I learned that some people are better survivors when they are born survivors. They have a natural coping ability . They are natural players in the game of life. Other people need to work consciously to develop their abilities. They have to work at learning to handle pressure, negative situations, and disruptive change. I learned that the best survivors are those who find ways to cope with adversity by reaching within themselves for answers. They succeed by gaining strength from their adversity. They are determined to walk through the fear of physically challenging conditions like polio, head injury, or cancer and life-disrupting events like abuse, job loss, and bankruptcy. I tap into the abusive life that I endured when I was a child to draw out the important life lessons that helped me to handle pressure, negative situations and disruptive change. I learned that if you learn something from an experience there can be no such thing as failure. It is the way that you cope with failure that shapes you, not the failure itself.

After escaping my childhood home of abuse at eighteen I never wanted to be in an abusive situation again. I had fear of being caught in a cycle of abuse and pain for the rest of my life and I was willing to do anything to avoid that outcome.

I was unhappy in my personal relationship with my mate, but I made excuses for staying, perhaps because of the baggage that I carried from my past. I was afraid to leave, afraid of what might happen if I had to depend on myself, afraid of what to do next, and afraid of being rejected by a new potential mate.

My own fear kept me from stretching beyond my comfort zone. As a child abuse/airplane crash survivor, I learned that I can allow myself to feel fear, but I don't have to allow fear to get in my way of attaining my dreams. I directed my attention toward my fear, started trusting my instincts and I walked through the fear to attain the personal success that I wanted.

All of the events in my life were being controlled by my inner mind which housed all of my memories, attitudes, emotions, beliefs and habits. These things had been impressed strongly in my inner mind and it formed the conditions and experiences of my entire life. Through the motivational books and audio recordings I studied, I cleared my mind of negative ideas and was able to make lasting, positive changes in my life.

After surviving the aircraft crash, I was told that I would never walk again. Yet coming out of the darkness of hopelessness and moving into the light of determination, I was able to turn my disaster into a gift; from pain and desperateness to happiness and personal success. Instead of reacting like a victim, I converted the disaster into one of the best things that has ever happened to me and I walked through my fear and overcame the resistance in my life.

I realized that my emotional disconnection had prevented me from finding my own personal strength to stand up for myself. It was about me compromising my own inner instincts. I realized that when I listened to my inner self, I was led down the right path. When I didn't listen, and instead, listened to someone else, I was led down the wrong path.

Yet coming from a place of hopelessness, I was able to transform my life of lack, limitations, and difficulties into one of courage and personal achievement. How? By listening to my instincts and walking through my fear.


For more Donna Allen insights, visit www.DonnaAllenLive.com.