Last week Twitter and Facebook blew up with #Me too comments. Women (and some men) of all ages and walks of life shared their experiences with sexual harassment, abuse and inequity. What’s been stunning is not only the sheer volume, but the pain and secrets that have been held by so many. What do we do with this now that it’s out?
The hashtag tweet used by actress, Alyssa Milano, sought to call out others after accusations surfaced against Harvey Weinstein, “so we might give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem”. As reported by CNN on 10-17-17, it certainly did that, but it was started over ten years ago by activist Tarana Burke. She used it to launch the program “Girls For Gender Equality” after hearing the painful and poignant story of a young girl’s molestation by her mother’s boyfriend. Her sense of inadequacy to respond to the revelation prompted her to do something about it. What about the rest of us?
What wants to happen now – now that so many people have come forward with admission of their own victimization? I asked this of myself too, when I faced my own story of unwanted interactions.
Here are some of my thoughts on what we can do. It’s based on what I have done to shift my perceptions and behavior after recognizing I have a responsibility to stop tolerating intolerable treatment.
CLAIM YOUR TRUTH
In Transformational Coaching and Leadership Alan Seale, founder, writes in his new book Transformational Presence: How to Make A Difference In A Rapidly Changing World that we are in a time of a “Great Breaking Open”. * The structures that have held things, like gender inequality, in place for so long are being challenged and falling apart. It may be uncomfortable to have it out in the open, but like a seed bursting open, it is the only way we can begin new growth.
What’s your truth on this subject? I’d like to encourage you to claim it, put your arms around it and notice it’s impact. Imagine the timeline of your life and note the incidents in which you were harassed, abused, disrespected or marginalized. Look at your history from a distance so that it doesn’t overwhelm you and notice. How does it affect the story of your life? Are you still living that story? If the answer is yes, it’s time for a change.
Notice the story of your life related to sexual inequality – claim it and declare that those days are over.
SEEK THE OPPOSITE
Once you’ve noticed the trends in your life, notice where you are now. Are you still in situations where you are not treated with the respect you deserve? Is there still a reservoir of shame that affects how you function in your life?
Bad situations inform us of what we really seek – it’s opposite. Use this polarity to guide your decisions about who’s around you and where you place yourself. We have choice in all matters. Claim your power to make the choices that reflect what would serve you better. This awareness and action is what galvanized massive change in my life. It will work for you too.
Any negative feeling situation can help you understand what you really want – it’s opposite.
FIND YOUR SOUL’S TRUTH
Your soul only sees the positive person you truly are. Do you know yourself from this perspective – powerful, capable and full of potential? That is the necessary starting point for true and meaningful change in your life.
Many of us have had our self-esteem damaged by the treatment of others. When we believe it, we are victims. It’s time to recognize that what happened reflects the offending person, not you. It’s necessary to move out of the victim role and claim the truth of who you are. Your soul knows and the joyous child who first arrived here knows. Find that part of you and reclaim her or him.
Your soul knows your full potential – it doesn’t see you as a victim.
STAND UP FOR YOURSELF – BE THE RESPECT YOU SEEK
One of the nicest compliments I’ve received came from a Jailer who noticed that in my work within correction facilities, I was dignified and didn’t attract sexualized interactions. By holding myself in a respectful manner, I didn’t attract inappropriate behavior from inmates or staff. If it occurred, I ignored it.
If you understand the Law of Attraction, you know that we are energy and our energetic vibration attracts others with similar patterns. To be treated with respect means several things must happen. You must know you deserve it and respect yourself enough to choose situations where it will likely occur. You must move away from victimizing situations/people because you don’t want that contamination and shame. And you must speak up for yourself when you need to. These changes support you in carrying yourself strong and clear.
Taking these actions worked for me. Do they stop it from ever happening again? Unfortunately, no, we don’t have control over other’s behavior. But it continues to help me rise above what I don’t like and quickly move away from people and situations that are inappropriate.
Model the feeling and behavior that you want – it sets the expectation.
The code of silence on Harvey Weinstein’s behavior is broken with new awareness that harassing, abusive and marginalizing behavior is intolerable. Now we owe it to ourselves to clear out our history of this inequity and move forward. I can tell you from my experience, this is life altering work. It starts with claiming your truth, seeking situations that reflect what you want, finding your soul’s positive perspective on who you really are and standing up for yourself to receive respect. It’s not a simple or fast task, but it’s necessary and rewarding. It’ll help you claim the life you long to have.
If this is a topic that speaks to you and you’d like support to move out of old patterns of victimization or marginalization, I’d love to share what I know works. My Transformational Life Coaching and Counseling is designed to help you clear out negative history, so you can step into your full potential. Go to my website www.spectrumtransformation.com for more information. Take me up on my Free Consultation offer and see it’d be helpful. I’d love to hear from you!
*Alan Seale’s work can be found at www.transformationalpresence.org and a free digital download of his new book is available here: http://transformationalpresencebook.com/