Achieve genuine inner healing, let go of past trauma and find clarity, resilience and freedom with #1 Sunday Times bestselling author Vex King. Vex developed powerful inner healing techniques to help him break free from his troubled past, heal his emotional pain and trauma, and create a new and empowering belief system. Since then, he's helped thousands of people worldwide unlock their own healing journey. And now he's here to help you become your own healer too. Vex shares how to experience healing through the layers of the self, combining yogic principles and simple, accessible techniques for exceptional, long-lasting results...
Publisher: Hay House UK (April 13, 2021) Pages304 pages ISBN-10: 140196124X ISBN-13: 978-1401961244 ASIN: B08SGGPTLR
About the author: Vex King is a Number 1 Sunday Times Bestselling author, social media content creator and mind coach. He experienced many challenges when he was growing up: his father died when Vex was just a baby, his family were often homeless and he grew up in troubled neighbourhoods where he regularly experienced violence and racism. Despite this, Vex successfully turned his whole life around and is now leading a revolution for the next generation of spiritual seekers. As a major voice in the world of personal development, Vex shares deep spiritual knowledge in a way that’s easy to understand, with stories from his own life, great inspirational quotes and practical solutions.
In memory of my nan, Tara, who I lost in
he process of writing this book.
We live in a world in need of more heroes, wisdom and love.
Amid the tectonic change, relentless disruption and new ways of being, it becomes so easy to wish for lights and luminaries to show up who will guide us forward. Through the good times and the unfortunate. Into the beauty of a better future.
And yet—there is no doubt—that you are the wayshower that you seek.
…You have the strength, insight and bravery to handcraft the life you deserve.
…You have the potential to make your promise real and the gorgeous ability to push your stardust into society.
…You have the mental toughness and spiritual genius needed to help make our little planet a better place to inhabit.
And you have what it takes to truly be an inspirational force to everyone that you meet. So people leave you bigger than you found them.
When Vex asked me to write the foreword to this book, I was delighted to say yes. Because he gets it.
He gets that the only real guru resides within yourself. And that everyday people are the truest of all heroes.
And that for our world to grow better, each of us must stop excusing and do the work required to make our selves better. And stronger. And wiser. And immensely more caring.
So, I pray that you savor this book. Read it with an open mind and with a careful heart. Consume the lines slowly, intentionally and embrace the offering in ways that allow them to touch your center.
So that when you’re done, you walk out into the world.
Author of the #1 worldwide bestsellers
The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari and The 5AM Club
Why does this book exist?
This book has been a long time coming. I’ve written it (at last) because my life hasn’t always been easy and because I know that your life hasn’t always been easy. I’ve written it because through developing and using the inner healing techniques I share in these pages, I’ve been able to let go of my troubled past and heal my emotional pain, or trauma. I’ve also helped others move forward on their own healing journey.
You don’t need a guru to do inner healing work. Nor do you need to spend a huge amount of money on courses, or quit your job and find hours and hours each day to practice it. You can heal from your trauma and other emotional wounds in a long-lasting way by using the practical exercises in this book. Simple, accessible, and with the power to produce exceptional results, they’re underpinned by the principle of raising your vibration (this is the energy that courses through you and that you radiate out into the world around you).
If you’ve read my first book, Good Vibes, Good Life, you’ll know that vibrating on a higher level can help you manifest great things and change your life. In this book I’ll show you how you can become your own healer to raise your vibration.
That’s not to say that your healing journey can’t be hindered, or that results will always be immediate and clear. One of the biggest obstacles to inner healing work is a desire to cling on to the past – our inability to let go of what’s been prevents us from moving forward into what could be. That’s why the first chapters of this book focus on developing our ability to let go. And then we step into the present, before looking to the future.
Inner healing is the act of letting go of past conditioning, creating a new, empowering belief system for ourselves, and embracing the unknowns of the future with the confidence that we’re strong and capable – no matter what comes our way. You’ll come to realize that you have the ability to move forward with confidence, and with a steady belief in your own resilience and strength.
Trauma is the enduring emotional and psychological pain that often results when we live through an experience that our brain is unable to process properly for some reason. Sometimes, that lack of effective processing occurs because the experience was deeply disturbing, shocking, upsetting, frightening, or hard to understand, or because it happened to us when we were very young and our brain hadn’t developed sufficiently to work through it fully. But trauma can be more subtle, too – experiences that confuse us, or that make us feel ashamed or humiliated, can settle into us as deep emotional wounds, even though no one else notices them.
Here’s the thing about trauma: we’ve all suffered it in some form or other, but almost none of us were taught from a young age how to handle it. As a result, a vast number of people turn to a method of self-medication to manage their pain, whether they’re struggling emotionally, physically, or spiritually.
Certain highs, produced by taking synthetic or natural drugs, or alcohol, or feeding an addiction to food, sex, work, or social media (to name but a few), make us feel as though we’ve transcended our struggles. But that feeling is temporary. At best, it leaves us needing more of that high just to get through the days; and at worst, the high is followed by a low that’s deep, dark, and may feel intensely desperate.
So, I’m striving to let go of false highs, however they show up in my life, and instead to access a more truthful, sustainable, and less tumultuous high: the high of genuine inner healing. This doesn’t disappear and leave you feeling empty and lost. It builds, and it builds you, until you see everything with new clarity.
This is the high that I’m writing about and sharing with my clients every day. And I believe that now is the perfect time to focus on it – because we’re living through a shift in human consciousness, and we’re all increasingly driven to change the way we interact with ourselves, with others, and with the world around us.
You, like every other person reading this book, are playing an active role in embracing this shift. You’re part of something special: a move toward living better and caring more.
I’m not a doctor or a psychologist, and this book is not a substitute for medical advice or the help of a professional therapist. I’m someone who’s learnt from my experiences, mistakes, and growth, and created a life filled with happiness, love, and hope. As a mind coach, I’ve successfully helped hundreds of thousands of people, both online and offline – from celebrities and business owners to people who thought that happiness and success simply wouldn’t happen for them – to exercise new and powerful ways of thinking that bring about beautiful and positive changes to transform their lives.
And this book is intended to give you the tools you need to do the same. If you’re working through therapy at the moment, or would like to soon, this book can be a supportive addition to that process.
Inner healing is a means for creating a better world, and so we must invest in it – not only for our own sake but also for that of others. As the popular saying goes, ‘hurt people hurt people.’ And in contrast, I firmly believe that healed people help people. Which is why it’s my honor to help you heal.
Inner healing is the act of letting go of past conditioning, creating a new, empowering belief system for ourselves, and embracing the unknowns of the future with the confidence that we’re strong and capable
We’d had an argument. I can’t remember what it was about, but it was a big one. I had a funny feeling that night – unsettled, as if something big was going to happen. It could have been due to the argument, or discomfort rooted in paranoia – I knew she was heading out to a bar, and she always got plenty of attention.
On top of that, she hadn’t texted me. I’d always get a text goodnight, even if we’d fallen out, but that night I got nothing. My mind was crowded – too many conflicting thoughts were blaring out – and I just couldn’t sleep:
Maybe I’ve taken things too far.
Maybe something’s happened to her.
I think I need to text her. No, wait – she was wrong, not me.
What if she’s moved on already and she’s with someone else?
No, she won’t be – that’s deceitful, and I know her. I can trust her because she loves me with all her heart. After all, she’s the one who pursued me when I wasn’t interested.
Finally, I plucked up the courage to text her goodnight.
She sent her response in the early hours of the morning. She poured her heart out to me, saying she loved me and wanted to patch things up. Apparently, her life wouldn’t be the same without me.
I bought the idea, I really did.
But then a friend sent me a text, and in an instant, even before I’d opened it, I felt anxious. I just had a bad feeling. And I was right. The text said that my girlfriend had gone home with his cousin.
I felt angry and disappointed, but also doubtful. This particular friend didn’t like the idea of the two of us and he had his reasons. Maybe he was trying to put me off her. But then, why would he lie? After all, the guy he was accusing of being with my girlfriend was his cousin. Also, my friend had existed in my world long before my girlfriend had, so I should have been able to trust him before I trusted her.
And to be honest, I owed it to him to believe him because I’d broken the ‘Bro Code’ by getting together with my girlfriend despite knowing he’d had history with her. Our love story was flawed to begin with and it should never have existed.
Eventually, I confronted her. And she was appalled. She denied it and told me my friend was jealous and trying to get between us. She made me feel bad for believing him and not trusting her. She seemed open and vulnerable, and told me she was deeply hurt. I felt guilty – she was that convincing.
And here was my problem. Every time we argued, a new story would emerge and the narrative would be the same. She was unfaithful to me on multiple occasions, and each time, she’d buy her way back into my life and emotionally manipulate me into believing her faults were my flaws.
This pattern was becoming embarrassing for me. I had a reputation as the boy who got the girl – not, perhaps, because I was good-looking but because I had a charming nature, was popular with my friends, and had a good heart. Now, I was becoming known as the boy with the girlfriend every other boy was hooking up with.
My closest friends had warned me; even strangers had. They told me to use her for what she was good for: physical intimacy. But I was in way too deep, and I didn’t believe in being in a relationship if there was no future in it. I didn’t want to hurt her. And I saw light within her that no one else could see.
People labeled me ‘whipped’ and ‘sprung,’ and eventually I responded to that by pretending to use my girlfriend for sexual encounters. But this was a lie. I felt as if I needed her. It was painful with her, but my life would seem more painful without her. The pain wasn’t just emotional, either: I was getting into fights with other men over her. Men who teased me about what they were doing with her, and how I wasn’t good enough for her because her attention was swaying toward them.
I’d always heard that it’s guys who are the players, the scumbags, the ones who have all the control. But I’d lost mine. Here I was, a hopeless romantic foolishly believing in an illusion I’d shaped from my own imagination about this other person, and the connection I thought I could have with her.
As time went on and new evidence came to light, I finally hit boiling point. I knew I couldn’t be with her, and that I had to remove myself from this relationship and not buy into her words and emotional manipulation.
I decided to put on a front. I told her that if we were to move forward with our relationship, she’d have to admit to everything she’d done. Deep down, I knew that nothing she could say would be enough because I’d already decided to move on, regardless of how uncomfortable it would be. But she didn’t know this.
And her response really did put this into perspective. I wasn’t even shocked as she told me about all the times she’d betrayed me – I’d always known it was true, but I’d just refused to accept it. I almost needed the words to come out of her mouth. What was increasingly painful at that point was the blame she put on me. In no way was I perfect, but she made me out to be a failure and created doubt in me, even though I’d been faithful and loving throughout our relationship. The only times I’d really given her a reason to look elsewhere was when we’d argued over my accusations of her cheating.
Afterward, it was so hard not to text her at night, like I always had. We’d had several breakups before this final one, and I’d always reopened our communication to get closure. However, what I was really doing was keeping my routine with her alive. I was reentering my comfort zone by speaking to her, even if it was just to argue.
So I had to exercise huge willpower to stop myself from responding to her text messages, which said things like:
‘If you truly cared about me, you’d reply.’
‘If you loved me at all, you’d want to work this out.’
‘I miss you and will do anything to be with you.’
Nevertheless, this really was the final straw. The heartache was too great this time, and I was willing to undergo the pain of change in order to break my attachment to her. I had to resist the urge. I had to start a new chapter.
Although I didn’t know it at the time, in the months following the breakup I went through a traumatic grief reaction and experienced a number of intense thoughts, physical sensations, and emotions. With traumatic loss it’s really hard for the mind to wrap itself around the concept that this thing’s really happened and that it’s true. Below, I’ve described my symptoms and their trajectory:
Denial I was still a little unsure if this really was the end. I questioned whether or not we should actually try to make things work. I mean, if this was love, we shouldn’t just give up on it.
Hatred Hate is a strong word and I don’t like using it, but this is how I’d describe what I felt toward her. She’d embarrassed me, played me for a fool, and got in the way of my most important friendships. But I wasn’t just angry with her – I felt anger toward a whole gender: women. I felt they couldn’t be trusted, and that nice guys do indeed finish last.
Disappointment I went into a deep mode of overthinking – questioning why things hadn’t worked out in the way I thought they should have. What had gone wrong? Why had she done it? She’d said she loved me!
And when she stopped sending me text messages – to which she was getting no response – I even said to myself: If she really loved me, why would she let this end?
Self-blame I went through a period where I blamed myself for the breakup. Maybe if I’d paid more attention to her, she wouldn’t have shifted her attention elsewhere, I thought. I’d recall statements that she’d made, in order to evoke guilt in myself. I even began questioning my looks and my physical attributes, which just left me feeling even more insecure.
Anti-love I told myself I’d never love again and that I’d never commit to anyone. I actually convinced myself that I needed to become more of a player. Although this role wasn’t in my nature, and I never quite fulfilled it, I did start to have more random hook-ups. But I often felt ashamed and disappointed in myself after them.
Moving through the pain toward healing
After the end of that relationship, I kept telling myself not to get too deep with people. I had a guard up, and as soon as I sensed I was falling for a girl or I felt threatened by one (as if she were going to hurt me), I tried to hurt her first and broke things off without giving her a chance. I had trust issues and I never admitted to them. If a girl had a close male friend, I’d assume the worst, and this created problems in my romantic relationships.
This often meant I wouldn’t give girls the treatment they deserved, or that I was capable of. And although I believe that everything happens for a reason and things have worked out as they were meant to, I’m truly sorry that I inflicted my own pain and insecurities onto my romantic partners. I was always the one to end these relationships, but I take responsibility for the times when I didn’t act with love, compassion, and understanding.
The truth is, after that breakup, I needed to undergo a whole healing process. The relationship had severely dented my belief in others and, more importantly, in myself. The flaws in my perception meant I could never love with all of my being. I was unable to turn up in a relationship with genuine love to give – I was always trying to receive love, and the moment I felt it wasn’t being delivered in the way I wanted it to be, I’d switch off.
What I didn’t know was that I was already healing. From the moment I made the difficult decision to end that relationship for good, every minute, every painful emotion, and every flicker of rage or doubt became vital to my ability to become the person I am today. The person I so badly wanted to be.
I’m not saying that I’m ‘done’ – there’s always work to do and there’ll always be wounds to acknowledge and heal. But when I started to take an active role in my own healing, I realized I’d started the work years earlier. I just hadn’t known how to understand it, or how to interpret the moments of clarity I experienced, or how to use my emotions to propel me forward instead of becoming stuck in a hole.
Even in the early stages of my relationship with my wife, I acted on the pain of my past. Fortunately, my wife had the capacity – and the willingness – to hold space for me to heal in. It was my responsibility to commit to my healing journey, and also to hold space for hers, which she was equally devoted to. We were both grieving over past relationships. And although it took time, when I learnt to put my ego aside and welcome the potential of a new life, there was no going back.
Your journey toward healing
This isn’t a book about relationships. Well, it is in a way, because relationships (not necessarily romantic ones) are always an important element of a person’s healing journey. But I want to make it clear that I’m not sharing the story of this breakup with you because this book is about breakups. Instead, I’m sharing it to lay bare a little part of myself – to reveal a pain that I’ve felt, and healed from, in all its ugliness.
This story also reveals some of the things about myself that I’ve been most ashamed of over the years – paranoia, jealousy, ego, insecurity, and a willingness to believe lies because I didn’t want to be alone. Being ready to reveal those darker parts of ourselves is vital if we want to draw light into our life again. And if I’m going to ask you to do it, you have to know that I’m willing to do it too.
My intention in this book is to give you the support and motivation necessary for you to embark on your personal journey to inner healing. I understand that some journeys will be harder than others. You might be healing from a relationship breakup, sure, but if you’re healing from something else, you’re welcome here too. If you’ve been through a traumatic experience that you still struggle to speak about, you’re welcome here. And whether you’re recommitting yourself to healing old emotional wounds or battling with something new and raw, you’re welcome here.
You’ll gain insight into your own lived experience, and discover opportunities to reflect on and see your pain in a new way. I won’t pretend that every page will be easy to read, or that every moment of this journey will feel good to you – because the reality of inner healing is that it hurts. You have to face up to experiences and emotions that you’ve tried to squash, feelings that you’ve hidden away in the recesses of your mind.
You have to confront your own perspective on the world, on yourself, and on other people. And you must invite yourself to accept the possibility that you were wrong – that things weren’t always the way you thought they were.
One thing I know about trauma is that it distorts and intensifies every negative thought, feeling, physical sensation and so on that we have. Trauma is like being covered with open wounds and wading into the ocean. A person who is whole and healed will very likely experience a positive sensation, especially if the water’s warm and inviting and they love the ocean; however, someone who’s experiencing trauma will immediately feel pain as the saltwater burns each wound. Trauma makes us thin-skinned, overly sensitive, hypervigilant, and prone to pain. And it’s often all-encompassing, too, so our attention is focused on the pain and on desperately trying to avoid more of it.
When you experience the world through the lens of trauma, it’s easy to miss the opportunity for positive experiences. Healing isn’t a linear process – we move two steps forward and one step back on all levels. Gradually, healing can ripple out, like a stone tossed into a pool of still water; each ripple penetrates the trauma and replaces it with healing energy. Committing to the practices of healing is the first step. Be patient with yourself, get support where you can, and positive changes will occur without you even noticing.
No matter how skeptical or unsure you feel right now, you’re here – reading these words and taking the first steps on your journey to powerful inner healing. You’re doing it already, and with this book in your hands, you don’t have to do it alone. Every chapter includes the gift of one or two practical exercises that will gradually lead you to a new sense of confidence and freedom. Each exercise is simple, and you’ll learn how to integrate it into your daily life in a way that makes your healing process a part of your everyday.
Inner healing isn’t something you do in the evenings or on weekends – you’ll learn to work on it all the time. And I’ll share more of myself along the way, of course; I’ll tell you about the experiences that have helped me and that I hope will remind you that you’re in good company.
If your attention is fading here, I’d like you to ask yourself why. Is there a voice inside your head saying, This isn’t for me – other people can heal, but I can’t? That voice is your pain talking – and it’s wrong. Because here’s the thing: inner healing isn’t something that only ‘healers’ or ‘spiritual people’ can do. Every person is their own healer. You’re your own healer – you have all of the tools for growth and change already within you, and this book will teach you how to use them.
You’ll discover how to explore the edges of your experience with curiosity, not fear. And ask yourself questions that will begin to take down the walls you’ve built to protect yourself from being hurt, allowing you to walk with new ease through life.
- Why do I respond like that?
- Why is that particular memory so important to me?
- Why do I base my assumptions about the world on that memory, and not this other one?
- Who do I trust? Who can I trust?
- What would happen if I told someone this?
- How would I choose to live if I felt completely free?
So, come with me. I welcome you on this journey. And perhaps, soon, you’ll be able to welcome yourself on the journey to true peace, every single day.
One thing I know about trauma is that it distorts and intensifies every negative thought, feeling, and physical sensation we have. Trauma makes us thin-skinned, overly sensitive, hypervigilant, and prone to pain. And it’s often all-encompassing, so our attention is focused on the pain and on desperately trying to avoid it.