July 11

Behavior & Mindset


The 5 Stages from Betrayal to Breakthrough: Your Roadmap to Healing

Healing from betrayal is a complex and challenging process that affects us physically, mentally, and emotionally. However, not only is healing hopeful, it’s predictable. Through extensive research along with my own personal experience, The Five Stages from Betrayal to Breakthrough have been identified.

Why is this great news?

Most people stop and stay stuck at Stage three (which you’ll learn more about). Transformation begins at Stage four so if you’ve been stuck for years, possibly decades, transformation is waiting for you when you move through the Stages.

Understanding the Stages

Understanding these Stages and the transformation they bring can empower you to navigate your healing journey with confidence. In this post, we’ll dive into the profound journey of healing from betrayal, providing insights into each Stage and highlighting the importance of embracing the transformative power of healing.

Stage One

The Set: Prioritizing Physical and Mental over Emotional and Spiritual

Up At the initial stage, we find ourselves leaning heavily on the physical and mental aspects of ourselves, neglecting the emotional and spiritual dimensions. This imbalance creates a vulnerability. That’s not to say that if you’re only focusing on the mental and physical (thinking and doing) aspects of life you’re bound to be betrayed. It’s just that when we’re focused heavily on the thinking and doing, while neglecting the emotional and spiritual aspects of ourselves (the feeling and being), we’re not as grounded as we can be. Like a table with only two legs, the table is likely to topple over without the other legs in place. Similar to us, if we’re only focusing on certain areas, we’re not as strong as we can be.

Stage Two

The Breakdown of the Body, Mind and Worldview

In Stage two, we’re shocked, blindsided, it feels as if we’ve just gotten the wind knocked out of us and our foundation has just been shattered. We receive the earth shattering news that changes life as we’ve known it. We start to question everything we’ve come to know…along with our own worth, value and sanity. Commonly known as “D-Day” or Discovery Day, marks the shattering of our existing reality. The shocking news or revelation shakes us physically, mentally, and emotionally. Physiologically, our bodies react to the stress response, and mentally, we struggle to comprehend the magnitude of what we’ve just learned. The collapse of our worldview leaves us feeling lost, confused, and desperate for relief.

Stage Three

Survival Instincts Emerge

Survival instincts emerge as we navigate the practical aspects of our healing journey. Questions regarding our survival, trust, and next steps dominate our thoughts. However, Stage three can become a challenging Stage to move past. Despite its inherent difficulties, we often settle for survival mode, believing it to be the best possible outcome. This mindset leads to detrimental patterns, including self-blame, small self-benefits, and a cycle of numbing or avoidance.

Stage three is THE most common Stage we get stuck in and the longer we stay there, the harder it is to leave. Here’s where we will find confirming evidence to support our growing belief that this is where we belong, the best we can hope for, and the life we’re destined to live. With these beliefs in place, we find groups, relationships, activities and more to support what we’re believing. Here’s also where we  may seek support from counselors or therapists. While well meaning, if they’re not highly skilled in betrayal, or in helping you move through the Stages, we continually “unpack” our experience. Yes, you may feel supported in that you’re being heard, but if there’s no strategic plan to move you to the next Stage…here’s where you stay.

Adding to it, here’s where we have lots of symptoms of Post Betrayal Syndrome; a collection of physical, mental and emotional symptoms common to betrayal. We look for ways to suppress the symptoms and find relief. So, between conversations that keep us stuck, looking for help in finding “symptom relief” without getting to the root of why the symptoms are showing up in the first place (the betrayal), Stage three is like quicksand. We slowly figure out how to “manage” ourselves here, without getting to the other side of our betrayal which BEGINS as we enter Stage four.

Stage Four

Finding and Adjusting to a New Normal 

In Stage four, we come to recognize that our old normal no longer exists. While we can’t undo the betrayal, we regain a sense of control over our lives. Acceptance, acknowledgment, and adaptation become key as we adjust to our new reality. It is during this Stage that we start to implement boundaries, establish new rules, and prioritize our own well-being. This shift paves the way for further growth and transformation. Here’s where transformation begins as you start to use your experience as a catalyst for your growth. Deliberately and intentionally, you begin to create your 2.0 version of yourself.

Stage Five

Healing, Rebirth and a New Worldview

The final Stage of healing is a testament to our resilience and personal growth. Here, our bodies begin to heal, and we prioritize self-care as a fundamental aspect of our journey. Mentally, we develop new perspectives and make conscious choices based on our newfound wisdom. By embracing this Stage, we experience healing, rebirth, and a profound shift in our worldview. We recognize the progress we have made and the immense potential for a fulfilling future. We become healthy, healed, whole, confident and happy as we realize our strength and resilience.

Wrapping it Up

Healing from betrayal is a predictable journey consisting of The Five Stages from Betrayal to Breakthrough. By understanding and embracing each Stage, we empower ourselves to navigate the complexities of healing with purpose and intention. From setting the foundation for healing to experiencing transformation and rebirth, we can emerge stronger, wiser, and more resilient. Remember, healing is not only possible but also predictable and within reach. Embrace the Stages, trust the process, and embark on a transformative journey towards healing and a brighter future.

Dr. Debi-A Trusted Resource in an Untrusting Niche

Dr. Debi Silber, Founder and CEO of The PBT (Post Betrayal Transformation) Institute is an award-winning speaker, bestselling author, holistic psychologist, a health, mindset and personal development expert who helps (along with her incredibly gifted Certified PBT-Post Betrayal Transformation Coaches and Practitioners) a predictable, proven multi-pronged approach to help people heal (physically, mentally and emotionally) from the trauma of betrayal.

About the author 

Dr. Debi

A Trusted Resource in an Untrusting Niche

Dr. Debi Silber, founder of The PBT (Post Betrayal Transformation) Institute https://thepbtinstitute.com is an award-winning speaker, bestselling author, holistic psychologist, a health, mindset and personal development expert who’s created a proven multi-pronged approach to help people heal (physically, mentally and emotionally) from the trauma of betrayal.

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