Undoing Our Fears and Triggers Lying Down

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While exposed to the sociopath’s crazy-making highs and lows, we compromised our intuition and ability to instinctively distinguish right action from wrong action.

One day, the sociopath declared that right action was wrong action, and the next day, the sociopath declared that wrong action was right action.

No amount of logic or deep thought could bring us clarity and focus to the life we were being conned and controlled into living and accepting under the sociopath’s spell.

Many refer to this as cognitive dissonance, living in the fog and/or being emotionally unstable. Much of what we experience in the aftermath through triggers and anxiety was born from this place of uncertainty and fear about ourselves and our surroundings. This fear and uncertainty, which the sociopath manifested in us, rendered us dependent and reliant upon the sociopath for clarity and approval.

Even outside the toxic relationship, we find ourselves frozen and in search of outside validity and approval. The fear of being judged and not accepted and viewed as unworthy is very real and keeps us from expanding and growing.

Regardless of how deep and for how long we were in this state of paralysis, I believe we can repair what was damaged and improve how we relate to ourselves and others moving forward.

It’s no secret that yoga and meditation have helped me find myself these past 3 years. One meditation technique I believe has been most profound for me is Yoga Nidra.

During the practice of Yoga Nidra, you relax in a quiet space either reclined and outstretched on the floor or mat or in a comfortable seated position.

A Yoga Nidra instructor guides you into a quiet and relaxed state in which you are guided through sensing your body to sensing your feelings and emotions to sensing your thoughts and beliefs and finally to sensing your natural state of being.

Yoga Nidra does not require you to move your body or to be flexible. It’s not a religion but is a profound spiritual experience. Many practice Yoga Nidra to release stress and anxiety and to improve sleep patterns and fight restlessness.

The following excerpt taken from the book “Yoga Nidra: A Meditation Practice for Deep Relaxation and Healing” by Richard Miller, PhD, sums up why I practice and teach Yoga Nidra to others:

“You possess an innate intelligence that knows exactly what to do in every situation that life brings to your table. When you are wiling to be with “this” moment “now,” your intrinsic resources are always nearby, ready to acknowledge and engage right action. Fear is always about the future, and reactivity is about the past. Right action resides in the “now.” Yoga Nidra is a practice that reveals and teaches you how to live in the now so that you can access your native intelligence and inborn ability to respond appropriately to every situation.”

If you have questions about Yoga Nidra, please ask in the comment section below.

Namaste!
Paula Carrasquillo
yogi. author. advocate.

Take Back the Love the Sociopath Stole from You

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Sociopaths have zero sense of identity, which is why they target individuals with strong beliefs, values and a moral compass, all of which sociopaths steal and wear as their own.

Keeping this in mind, it’s easy to see that when you fell in love with the sociopath, what you really fell in love with were your best qualities mirrored and reflected back at you.

So the love you thought you lost and wasted on the sociopath is still inside of you. You just need to redirect it back to yourself, the original and intended recipient.

Take back the love the sociopath stole and hoarded as his/her own. It was never meant for the sociopath in the first place. It was always meant for you.

Namaste!
Paula Carrasquillo
yogi. author. advocate.

“Unashamed Voices” will expose sociopaths in our midst #ebook #preorder

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The ebook collection of survivor stories is available for pre-order!

Last year, nearly 50 readers and survivors submitted their survivor stories to me. Last month, I edited and published a story a day to my Communities Digital Column. This month, I compiled all of the edited and previously-published stories (plus two previously unpublished stories) into a working draft for an ebook. Yesterday, I designed the cover and uploaded the draft to Kindle Direct Publishing for pre-order status review. Today, the pre-order status was approved, and now everyone can pre-order their copy before the release date of December 31, 2014.

As promised, the book will also be available for FREE upon release next month. The purpose of the pre-order period is to generate interest and profit in hopes of being afforded the opportunity to also make the book available in soft copy.

I thank everyone who visits this blog for giving me the strength, courage and determination I needed to dedicate to this project, which has consumed me for nearly the past 20 months. Our voices would not be able to build the stength and momentum they have without the support we give to eachother. XOXO

Book Description:

“Unashamed Voices: True Stories Written by Survivors of Domestic Violence, Rape and Fraud – Exposing Sociopaths in Our Midst”

Not everyone moves from a place of care and respect for themselves and others, because not everyone has (1) a conscience; (2) the ability to feel remorse; and (3) the ability to tap into affective empathy–the type of empathy that allows one to see and feel a situation from another’s perspective. People lacking these qualities are referred to as sociopaths, psychopaths and narcissists. They exist everywhere in society, including our homes where their toxic and parasitic lifestyles are destroying families, children and communities every single day.

This collection of 33 true stories from across the globe written by survivors of toxic and abusive relationships sets out to expose the unchallenged pathological personalities and behaviors of psychopaths, sociopaths and narcissists. These personal accounts will dispel the myths surrounding domestic violence and intimate partner abuse and have you questioning what you thought you knew about crimes being committed behind closed doors. You will also understand the impact to victims and survivors and start gaining an understanding of why so many remain silent and that most, if not all survivors, are walking around undiagnosed and/or under diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression and other debilitating conditions resulting from the physical, emotional and spiritual abuse they endured and continue to relive in the aftermath.

With greater awareness and education, victims and survivors of pathological abuse at the hands of sociopaths, psychopaths and narcissists will have a greater chance of experiencing justice and a greater chance of protecting potential victims who are the future targets of these manipulative and malignant criminals hiding behind the false and delusional facade of moral righteousness and victimization.

If you are interested in being a part of the solution to one day see an end to domestic violence, rape and fraud, read this book and pass it on to anyone and everyone you know who has been or is currently being impacted by a sociopath, psychopath or narcissist. With 1 in 25 people estimated to be a sociopath, the chance that you know someone affected by an individual with a pathological personality disorder is extremely high. Allow the many voices of truth in these pages open your eyes to the answers behind the senseless acts committed against you, your loved ones and/or your friends.

Paula Carrasquillo, MA
November 18, 2014

http://www.amazon.com/Unashamed-Voices-Survivors-Domestic-Sociopaths-ebook/dp/B00PUMN6HW/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1416430397&sr=1-2&pebp=1416430399152

Inspired by IIN’s Health Coach conference in NYC #recovery #healing #transformation

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With fellow and future Integrative Nutrition Health Coaches at IIN’s conference in NYC – November 2014

Last weekend, I traveled to New York City to attend a conference held by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN). The 2-day conference was held at The Jazz at Lincoln Center and attended by over 1000 current students and graduates of IIN. The experience proved to be motivational, inspirational, and educational.

I enrolled in the 12-month IIN health coach certification program in June 2014. As part of the curriculum, I am studying dietary theories and nutrition while learning how to be a better coach and mentor. In addition to my degrees in communication and adult education and my yoga teaching certification, I hope to gain additional and valuable knowledge, skills, and insight through IIN to increase the effectiveness and thoroughness of the support and assistance I offer survivors of abuse.

While attending the conference, I was honored to hear talks from several intelligent, successful, and knowledgeable individuals in the fields of integrative medicine, nutrition, yoga, sports, entertainment, and coaching, including:

Dr. William Davis, author of “Wheat Belly”

Nina Planck, author of “Real Food”

Venus Williams, tennis pro and designer

Dr. Andrew Weil, pioneer of Integrative Medicine

Jennifer Esposito, actress and founder of Jennifer’s Way

Daniel Vitalis, author of “Rewild Yourself”

Catherine Collautt, Ph.D., metaphysician and manifesting consultant

I was also honored to meet and be surrounded by other IIN students and graduates interested in helping their current and future clients enhance and increase the energy surrounding their mental, emotional, physical, relational, financial, and spiritual well-being. I found myself  immersed in a sea of people with a collective passion to serve and give back compassionately to their fellow human beings. It was incredibly empowering to experience such energy in one room.

At one point during the conference, students and graduates who recently published books through IIN’s “Launch Your Dream Book” course were asked to come to the stage and introduce themselves and their books. I cannot recall the exact number who packed the stage, but it must have been close to 75.

My curiosity was piqued for two reasons when Jeanine Finelli took the mike: (1) Her name is nearly identical to my step sister’s name; and (2) Her book is titled, “Love Yourself to Health…with Gusto! – ABC Guide for Surviving a Toxic Relationship”.

Once all of the authors left the stage, I ran out to the book display table in the lobby in hopes of meeting her. Despite the dense crowd, I was able to find her and connect. Wow! I this was no coincidence. Jeanine is a 2008 IIN graduate and has been offering her coaching services for several years. I immediately asked her if she would be interested in becoming a guest on the BlogTalk Radio show, From Hurt to Healed: Conversations with Kim and Paula. She is definitely interested.

The next day, I met current student Madeline Eyer during lunch. The first things I noticed about Madeline were her clear blue eyes and her shiny silver hair. Stunning. She shared her book title, “Essential Green Smoothies”, which is filled with recipes that incorporate essential oils. Not coincidentally, I had just purchased a plug-in essential oil diffuser before the NYC trip and was in need of more information. Madeline mentioned that she was a distributor of a particular brand of oils and offered me her card and contact information. Soon I’ll be Skyping with her and learning more about essential oils in preparation for a smoothie party I’d like to have for friends and family. I may even suggest to the owner of Bethesda Salt Cave, where I teach meditation, to carry Madeline’s book. It’s beautifully illustrated and accessible to all, even newbies to essential oils like myself.

While in New York City, I also met a blog reader and survivor with whom I have been corresponding since July. This was our first face-to-face meeting and hope it won’t be our last. She is young, vibrant, and filled with a passion to give back too.

On my return bus trip to DC Sunday night, I sat next to my good friend and fellow IIN student and accountability coach, Ladan. We shared our reflections, ginger gum, and chocolate. Although we both agreed that a printed program would have been nice and that the venue would have been better if we had been allowed to drink water while in the auditorium, overall, we both enjoyed and were energized by our experiences at the conference.

I graduate in June 2015 as a certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. Upon graduation, I will automatically become a member of the International Association for Health Coaches (IAHC), the world’s largest collection of health coaches. I cannot wait to start putting my newly acquired skills and education to work on my blog and privately with my recovery coach clients and friends. We all deserve authentic, intelligent, and thoughtful support and guidance on this journey of healing and transformation in the aftermath of abuse.

Namaste!
Paula Carrasquillo, author of Escaping the Boy: My Life with a Sociopath

Sociopaths steal our values to create their mask and gain supply

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First thing this morning, I received my weekly newsletter from Donna over at LoveFraud.com. I skimmed the headlines and read the first article listed which succinctly explains that love equals supply for a sociopath. I agreed with the article and moved on with my day.

A few hours passed, and I received a text from a reader and friend (whom I got to meet this past weekend in NYC!). She wanted to know how I was able to find a way to accept all of the sociopath’s lies and manipulations and move forward. The previously mentioned LoveFraud.com article immediately came to mind.

I explained to my friend that I don’t accept the lies or abuse or the shame. However, I do accept that he, the sociopath, needed to lie, abuse and shame me because he was/is too weak to fulfill his own needs and needed me as his supply.

(I don’t think I have ever used the word “need” so many times in a single sentence. Hehe!)

To be his supply, mirroring me and my values and interests was absolutely necessary. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have looked past what I falsely perceived to be his “minor” flaws and stuck around dealing with his shitty character for so long. Instead, because he made it appear like he was so much like me, I subconsciously saw myself in him and used patience to deal with his outbursts, rages, and insults.

(Despite such behavior, he had to be a good person underneath, right?)

The mirroring, which he did/does so well, had me looking past his racism, lack of education, elitism, ugliness, and lack of compassion. All of the good he seemed to have was stolen from those around him (me and a small handful of folks he used as friends). These stolen values allowed him to fit in and be accepted despite all of those flaws that would have been glaring red flags had he not swiped our strongest character traits and worn them as his mask.

These people, sociopaths, can’t survive on their own. They need us; we do not need them. They find us and prey on us when we are at a temporary place of vulnerability. We could have just lost a parent or spouse. We may have lost a job or found ourselves financially burdened due to something unexpected happening to us. Whatever the case, we were weak and in need of support. We were at a place of dependency.

These people, sociopaths, sniff out dependency, get their hooks in us and refuse to let go until we’ve been depleted of all usefulness. And we all eventually become depleted of value, because sociopaths only understand how to take, take, take. They have nothing, absolutely NOTHING, to give to us of value in return.

(Money is not value, by the way. Money does not feed the soul or elevate us to a place of higher consciousness. If you are with someone who seems to be supportive because of their financial support, this financial support is actually a way to make you weaker and more financially dependent upon the sociopath, which makes walking away from the toxic relationship even harder, which prolongs your exposure to the abuse, which causes even greater loss of self and spirit, which makes healing and recovery in the aftermath harder to attain.)

At one point inside the relationship, I wanted to die. I wished to die. I could not take the sight of what was being revealed to me. I couldn’t accept that the person I left my husband and family for was really just a leach and a fraud. I was disgusted with myself for choosing such a grotesque person over the wonderful people he had stolen from me. Death seemed like a better option than leaving this person, and the thought of wading through the shame and humiliation of my flawed choice of life partner scared me.

Somehow I made it through that cesspool. I use my experience as a message, as a gift. It happened to me. I was awakened to it, to the existence of people who feign love, concern and devotion for personal gain, money, and status. Many are not so lucky. Many never escape and become awakened. Many spend their entire lives trying to please and serve people like this who do not deserve their love, adoration, precious time, or energy and resources.

(I send those people metta/peace daily in my meditations and visions. What more can be done?)

Luckily, regardless of how long it takes to escape, everything that was stolen from us–our self-worth, self-love, self-identity, self-devotion, self-confidence–can be rebuilt and replenished. It may take longer for some of us to rebuild our financial security and/or regain relationships with family, friends and even our children, but it can be rebuilt once we discover our inner peace, freedom, and hope.

Every survivor is destined to heal, prosper, and thrive in this life. Begin today by taking inventory of your worth and encouraging another survivor to take inventory of his/hers. We truly are stronger together than divided.

Namaste!
Paula Carrasquillo, author of Escaping the Boy: My Life with a Sociopath

From Hurt to Healed – Conversations with Kim and Paula

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We hope to meet soon for a real side-by-side picture moment!!

It is with great enthusiasm to announce that I will be partnering with Kim Saeed, No Contact coach and writer of the narcissistic abuse survivor blog, Let me Reach, as we come together to launch a BlogTalk Radio show for Narcissist/Sociopath/Psychopath and Domestic abuse survivors. Our show is supported and promoted by Communities Digital News, LLC.

While we both share similar experiences as abuse survivors and have a common outlook as it relates to understanding abuse dynamics, recovery, and healing, our show serves as a symbiotic resource for survivors. Kim shares her expertise as a No Contact coach, how codependency and inner child healing are crucial to the recovery process, and her ongoing education as a spiritual healer. I offer listeners and callers my passion and experience as a published author, adult educator, certified yoga teacher, and integrative health and nutrition coach.

Topics that will be covered on our show will include: No Contact (before, during, and after), the role of nutrition and exercise in recovery, spirituality as the cornerstone of healing, the mind-body-spirit connection, FAQs, recovery from codependency, inner child healing, rewriting our narrative beliefs, and alternative modalities and therapies to healing and recovery. We will also be interviewing niche celebrities and experts, as well as holding Question & Answer sessions with listeners.

However, none of this would be possible without you, our faithful and dedicated readers and followers. We would love to get your input on what you’d like to hear covered on our show, as well as days and times that would work best for listeners who are interested in sharing survival stories and live Q&As. Please take part in our survey below:

Take Our Survey & Share Your Ideas!

Our expected launch date is December 2014/January 2015. Please check back often so you don’t miss out on the fun!

Namaste!
Paula Carrasquillo, author of Escaping the Boy: My Life with a Sociopath

Survivor story #31 – Fawn’s story: Increased sociopath awareness and education helps us all

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Fawn’s story: Increased sociopath awareness and education helps us all

“I thought it was work, stress or that my success was bothering him. I remember becoming an uglier version of myself; I had never yelled or been so angry before. He used a lot of hurtful words, speech and actions. I started to do the same, which was not my personality before him. It was a rollercoaster. The highs were so high; the lows were very low. He was constantly threatening to burn my clothes, listening to my voicemails, reading texts and cell records. He sabotaged my family vacations and any happy moment I had.” Read more.


Each day during the month of October, column author Paula Carrasquillo will feature a story written by a survivor of domestic violence. At the end of October, a compilation of all stories will be available for free as an e-book.

*All names have been changed to protect the survivor and the survivor’s family and friends.

Survivor Story #30 – Eva’s story: Lies, theft and extreme love of material possessions and status

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Eva’s story: Lies, theft and extreme love of material possessions and status

“After being in the new apartment for almost a year he proposed to me. The way he proposed was sick. He is from Iran and claims he came to The United States by himself when he was 17. He also stated that he had criminal charges for possession of marijuana and that he could get deported on his court date. I said that I did not know if I was ready to marry him and then he said that he could just pay someone else to marry him. I thought that it was extremely rude for him to say that, but I did not want to have to live with him getting deported just because I did not marry him.” Read more.


Each day during the month of October, column author Paula Carrasquillo will feature a story written by a survivor of domestic violence. At the end of October, a compilation of all stories will be available for free as an e-book.

*All names have been changed to protect the survivor and the survivor’s family and friends.

Story #29 – Dana’s story: Cognitive dissonance is a measurable sign of abuse

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Dana’s story*: Cognitive dissonance is a measurable sign of abuse

“I was in this relationship from the age of 15 to 50. So before the relationship, I would say that I was an open, enthusiastic and loving person. By the time the relationship ended, I was suffering from chronic depression and needed lots of therapy. In between, I became a loving mother and a freelance writer and newspaper reporter. I often wonder how much more I could have accomplished had I had a supportive spouse.” Read more.


Each day during the month of October, column author Paula Carrasquillo will feature a story written by a survivor of domestic violence. At the end of October, a compilation of all stories will be available for free as an e-book.

*All names have been changed to protect the survivor and the survivor’s family and friends.

Survivor stories 25, 26, 27 and 28: Zoe, Alice, Beverly and Christina #SeeDV #abuse

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October 25, 2014 – Zoe’s story: “The relationship absorbed me; I was hypnotised by it.”*

October 26, 2014- Alice’s story: Leave abuse; it is not worth the anguish and loss of yourself

October 27, 2014 – Beverly’s story: Lies, manipulation and emotional abuse

October 28, 2014 – Christina’s story: Building up after being broken down by abuse


Each day during the month of October, column author Paula Carrasquillo will feature a story written by a survivor of domestic violence. At the end of October, a compilation of all stories will be available for free as an e-book.

*All names have been changed to protect the survivor and the survivor’s family and friends.

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