As more women come forward with accusations of sexual harassment and assault in the workplace, the conversation is also shifting to how we can assist women in healing. Empowerment coach Susan Goudy is offering tips to enable people to heal from the trauma associated with sexual harassment and assault.
A recent survey reports that one in three women aged 18-34 has been sexually harassed at work. Sexual harassment in the workplace is defined by the American Association of University Women as any, “unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.”
“With such an ambiguous definition, you may have been sexually harassed or even assaulted and you didn’t recognize it because sexual harassment has become ‘part of doing business’,” Goudy said, author of “The Journey from Fear to Love is Shorter than you Think.”
Goudy said if you are that one in three and you are having trouble moving forward, these 10 steps can help.
- Acknowledge the Harassment or Assault Happened – Sit with it for a bit. Feel how you feel about it, let yourself cry, scream or whatever it is you need to do.
- Let It All Out – Tell someone. Find someone you trust to tell what happened to you… a friend, a family member or counselor.
- Take a Closer Look – Look at the situation and see how It has affected your life, both in bad and good ways. Has it made you stronger? Has it held you back?
- Throw Out Your Baggage – Seek help. Find a counselor or healing professional who can assist you in throwing out the baggage once and for all.
- Change Your Perception – You can choose how this situation affects you going forward. Perhaps you will create a new career path because of this, one that is more fulfilling.
- Step into Your Power – Take your control back by saying no to things you that aren’t in alignment with your wants.
- Embrace Your Value – Match your thoughts and feelings to your expectations and life goals. You will realize you are worthy and deserving of the best in your life.
- Accept Change – Stay in the moment and move forward; don’t look back.
- Love Yourself – Take care of yourself first. Exercise and then go to work or pick up the kids.
- Serve Others – Helping others can be very positive as it increases your feelings of self-worth. Volunteer at a local animal shelter or help clean up your local park.
“While progressing through the 10 steps for healing from sexual harassment or assault you may find the reactions of those who know about your situation are more harmful than helpful,” she said. “The intention behind these responses may be goodhearted, however, you may feel as if chaos has crept into your life in an already sensitive time.”