Turning Trauma into Empowerment

Turning Trauma into Empowerment

Across the globe, we are exposing the amount of female sexual abuse trauma with the #metoo movement. Could this be counterproductive?

The movement is allowing so many to share their repressed trauma, and to find support (albeit social media support). So many females realizing they are not alone in their trauma should be empowering, right?

Yes, and no. I think it’s what happens after the “metoo” moment that determines whether it’s a healing journey, or one that fosters internal discord and disease.

I’m not undermining the power of expressing your truth, and being supported. It’s invaluable for your sense of self worth, and as relational beings, we need validation.

Expressing truth to heal requires that you then line up your words and actions behind this healing intention; and if you don’t, you’ll create internal conflict.  In other words, if you have experienced trauma, and don’t turn it into an empowerment, you’ll have deep-seated insecurity and anxiety.

And yes, speaking your truth is an essential first step in your empowerment from any trauma. This is the beauty of #metoo.

The ugly side will be if this is just turned into another commercial opportunity, and foundational tools remain missing in our individual or collective lives; If girls end up learning that the greatest support in their lives is when they share their pain; If bonding through trauma is one of the few forms of healthy bonding available to us; If having #metoo becomes a way to fit in at school.

There are going to be some people that totally can’t get down with what I’m saying here, and that’s okay.

If you’re with me, here’s how to ensure your #metoo leads to empowerment:
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1. Radical accountability
From the Vedas, to the Toltec, to the big money coaching programs, the road to empowerment begins with taking full accountability for our traumas. This is not about shifting blame onto yourself. It’s about shifting into a perspective where life traumas serve as a vehicle for your growth.
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​​​​​​​What are the ways in which you became more aware, more mature, or other gifts that came from the healing journey?

​​​​​​​I became softer, realized the importance of regular self check-in, more able to identify emotional needs, and more able to express and meet those needs with ease as a result of being in an emotionally unhealthy relationship. The inner work I did healing from the traumatic experience is what really made me even capable of healthy relationship.

This key step allows you to move out of a victim archetype, and begin your empowerment path. Add this to your story, and watch it change shape. Ask these questions to others sharing their trauma. Your FB feed and Ted talks are full of more serious trauma survivors that share their empowerment stories.

2. Radical self-acceptance
Across professional and personal circles I saw that people who experienced trauma go back and ​​​​​​​choose the same things that make them a high probability to experience the trauma again. Physical, and emotional hurts. I did too.

Modern psych studies validate the ancient wisdom of the Vedas: our choices are strongly patterned, and we choose familiar even if it’s traumatic. (Amy Wheeler, love your talk on this!)
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You are a human trying to pave new patterns and choices. Be gentle with yourself, acknowledge where your choices don’t line up and just reach for baby steps. It doesn’t happen overnight.

3. Take a step, even if it’s a baby step.
​​​​​​​We feel better inside when we know there is some progress in lining up our words and actions with our intentions.

What are 30 steps you can take to support your trauma healing intention?

You may only do one, but even that one starts to create more harmonious flow of prana in your subtle energetic body. Listing so many gets you to think out of the box, and for indirect supports, like essential oils.

There’s this “pandit” in Little India that has phone sex with his unassuming female clients seeking to “release chakra blocks.” My girlfriend and I went to see him separately, and were both propositioned. When we discovered this, I had a fantasy of setting him up and having him caught. But, I wasn’t activated enough to do that. Now that I’ve told you it’s the Rudruksha guy next to Rajdani restaurant, I’ve lined up with my intention to make myself feel safe. Its a babystep to announce to my 10K+ audience, but feels better already.

Our subconscious just needs an “in progress” stamp to be at ease, to trust that we show up for ourselves.

4. Keep it solution oriented.
Collectively, we can progress the dialogue from #metoo to #whatnow, and #hereshow. The trick here is to stay focused on the desired reality.

How can we apply what we’ve learned? What are solutions?

We have so many tools to heal trauma and to influence population level behavior change. Putting energy towards solutions instead of rehashing the details and tragedy of the problem is what propels true change. If you are focusing on your own trauma, I’ve had great benefit from spiritual counseling, somatic trauma release techniques, tapping, but most importantly, in changing the way I perceive myself. Just bring in the tools that you feel attracted to now, and they will be the right ones.

5. Bring in support.
We all need it, period. At the very least a safe person to dialogue with and to update on your journey and needs along the journey.

Here are some resources I found helpful: 

This is a great post that offers resources for not only the victim but also has links to help those who are laterally effected. (i.e. : parents, friends, boyfriend /girlfriend):

http://www.pandys.org/secondarysurvivors.html

Adult survivors of child abuse:

https://www.rainn.org/articles/adult-survivors-child-sexual-abuse

Support and advice for survivors:

http://thesurvivorstrust.org/

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