How To Be Empowered AFTER Abuse: The Super Now Wow Show
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SNW010: How To Be Empowered AFTER Abuse

How To Be Empowered AFTER Abuse

Episode Summary:
Most of us have had people in our lives that have caused us pain.
And sometimes that pain is hard to let go.
Often leaving us feeling angry, hurt, bitter, confused or vulnerable.
It can knock our confidence and severely damage our self-esteem.
In short, it can have a powerful negative impact on our lives.
That’s the reason why I decided to share my story with you. A story that impacted my life for 27yrs.
I also explain how two steps took me from being a powerless victim, to someone who felt empowered and regained control of their life.
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Episode Transcript:

Maybe we knew them, maybe they were a stranger…

Maybe it was intentional or maybe it was an accident.
But one way or another, most of us have had people in our lives that have caused us pain.
And sometimes that pain is hard to let go.
Often leaving us feeling angry, hurt, bitter, confused or vulnerable.
It can knock our confidence and severely damage our self-esteem.
In short, it can have a powerful negative impact on our lives.
And it is for that reason I’ve decided to share with you my story.
A story that negatively impacted my life for 27 years.
I want to share with you how it changed my behaviour, my thoughts and what I believed was possible or not.
I want to share with you how I realised the true extent of the damage that it had caused.
And I want to share with you how I stopped it from affecting my life anymore.
And I want you to hear my story. I hope it will encourage and inspire you to overcome difficulties that you’ve either already faced in life, or you have yet to face.
Empowered After AbuseMy story begins at the age of five. That’s the age I was, when my fifteen year old stepbrother began to sexually abuse me.
The abuse lasted for three years.
My stepbrother, who was my fathers son, had just started living with us because he had fallen out with his mums partner.
Understandably, it wasn’t long before my parents made use of there new in-house babysitter.
I remember the dread when ever my parents left the house.
I remember the confusion when anyone made a comment on how ‘great he was with kids’.
I remember the heart-pounding fear when he offered to take me anywhere
I remember being frightened.
Constantly, frightened.
Life moved on. He moved out and our whole family had less and less contact with him.
I was too scared to tell my parents.
It took the courage of another abused child to speak up first, before I could mutter to my mum the words “He did it to me as well.”
I was 14 or 15 years old.
And then it never got mentioned again, for decades. Not by anyone.
I buried it, everyone buried it.
And is stay buried of the next 25 years, until I started to slowly realise what a large affect the abuse was having on my life.
The realisation started when one of businesses failed in 2008. I then spent the next two years doing very little, feeling depressed and lethargic.
I felt no passion for life, or hope.
It got so bad by 2010, that I realised this couldn’t continue. I needed to do something.
I wanted to understand why I felt this way, I wanted to understand why my business failed,
I wanted to understand who I was.
It sounds silly, but ‘Who was I?’ What we’re my beliefs, my morals and where did they come from.
So, I went away and learned.
I studied psychology, personal development methods and neurology.
I listened to hundreds of hours of audio, read countless blogs, magazine articles and reports.
And in an attempt to discover where my beliefs had come from, I also wrote my autobiography.
The discoveries I made writing this book astonished me.
I could trace all of my most destructive personality traits back to the time of the abuse.
I could trace most of my limiting beliefs back to the time of the abuse.
I realised it had shaped my life. It affected nearly everything I did.
I used to get angry, when I felt I wasn’t  in control.
I now realise that was because I wasn’t in control and felt helpless during the abuse.
My entire business life was fuelled from a mixture of anger, fear and frustration.
I felt he was better than me, above me, in control of me and I wanted to prove him wrong.
And I wanted to prove to myself I was good enough.
And these emotions weren’t all bad. They at least provided me with the motivation, need and determination to go and start a business.  To grow it up to £2m a year.
But it also gave me the self-doubt, the apprehension, the limiting beliefs.
As my business grew, I always knew I’d never be able to grow it any larger than £2 million a year.
How To Be Empowered After AbuseWhen we were turning over £200,000 I dream about us doing 1/2 a million.
When we hit 1/2 a million year, I could visualise us doing 1 million.
When we hit 1 million, I could see us doing 1 1/2 million.
But when we hit 1 1/2 million a year, I couldn’t see us doing 2. Never, just couldn’t even picture it in my mind.
And what happened?
The company hit a peak of 1.9 million a year, then sunk like a stone and collapsed.
I never knew why? Why couldn’t I see me running a business turning over more than 2 million a year?
I now realise it was because, subconsciously, I was frightened of losing control.
When a business starts getting to that size you have more staff, more managers, more areas that you have to delegate – more control you have to surrender to others.
And I couldn’t do it. I had to be in control.
My subconscious mind was protecting me.
My subconscious mind remembered how I felt when I was abused.
The helpless feeling of not having a say in what’s happening to you. My subconscious remembered the fear, the hurt and the pain.
And now, even after 25 years, it protects me and stops me from being in a position I’m not in control of.
No matter what the cost.
But that realisation didn’t upset me.
Because now I knew. Now I finally knew why I acted like I did, why I thought like I did and why I believed what I did.
And what a relief it was.
Because now I knew the cause of my negative thoughts, feelings and behaviour, I could cure it.
And I knew instinctively what I had to do.
First, I had to take responsibility for what happened.
All my life I blamed him. It was his fault, nothing to do with me.
I was the victim.
And if your the victim you give yourself no power to do anything.
And it was feeling ‘powerless’, that made me feel so frustrated when I wasn’t in control.
And you can take responsibility for something that wasn’t your fault.
They’re different.
I wasn’t to blame for what happened, but how I deal with it afterwards is my responsibility.
It’s my responsibility to use what happened to help me to understand human nature, to help me understand myself and to share my thoughts in the hope it may help others.
It’s my life, my choice. My responsibility.
Today, I am no longer a victim.
I no longer feel that part of my life was out of my control.
I’ve grabbed control back.
I feel empowered.
But I knew I needed to take one more step to completely release me from the past…
I knew I had to forgive him.
Totally, unconditionally, forgive him.
Some people may struggle to accept this idea.
But it’s not healthy for me to go through life full of hate for anyone.
And it wasn’t easy. It took me time. A long-time.
For me to forgive him, I had to re-frame what happened.
He didn’t deliberately set out to hurt me, he didn’t deliberately set out impact my future.
He wasn’t thinking past that moment.
I then wondered what may have happened in his life, to make him do that.
His parents divorced, he didn’t get on with his step dad. Who knows what happened there?
Maybe he was abused himself?
I’ll never know for sure why he did it.
But what I am sure of is this.
He never deliberately set out to hurt me. He was only young himself, he wasn’t considering the emotional consequences of his actions.
Look, I know it goes against many of our instincts to forgive someone who has hurt like that.
Because when someone does something bad to us, we feel we need revenge.
We need to level the score. They wronged us and it hurt our pride.
And we use our hate and threats and anger in an attempt to reclaim power.
But there is no power there. There’s no power in hatred.
People, deliberately or not, will hurt us during life. It’s going to happen and the quicker we can let it go, the better for us.
Refuse to let it destroy you.
Because, really, what’s the alternative?
Do you learn to lead a life fueled on fear, hatred and self-pity.
Or do you learn to forgive and take your life back.
It takes time. But realise, forgiving is empowering you.
Not them – YOU.
And I tell you this.
If it hadn’t been for my step brother.
I wouldn’t be doing this now.
I wouldn’t have been interested the psychology of learning.
These words I am saying now would never have been spoken
and you would never have heard them.
So not only have I come to forgive him.
I thank him.
Now you may think nobody has negatively impacted your life that much.
And I hope you’re right.
But are you absolutely sure?
Take a closer look at any of your negative traits. Where have they come from.
Where have your beliefs come from.
Trace them back, they’ve all come from somewhere.
Maybe you loved your dad, but you wish he told you he loved you more.
Maybe your parents divorced and you’ve never fully appreciated how that has changed your thoughts and what you believe.
Maybe you had a bad relationship and that’s subconsciously driving how you think, talk and react within your relationship today.
Whether you’ve been affected by the actions of others or not,
whatever you believe to be true or not true,
whatever happens in your life remember:
You always have a choice.
You can choose to hate or you can choose to forgive.
You can choose to be angry, hurt and upset or you can choose to be feel lucky, happy and blessed.
You can choose to take responsibility or you can chose not to.
You can choose to give up your life to someone else, or you can chose to take control.
They are your thoughts, your mind, your choice.
And believe me, you are stronger than you think.
You are braver than you think.
You are not normal. You’re so special.
Trust yourself. Trust yourself. Stand up and do it.
Decide to take responsibility, decide to forgive, decide to be person you deserve to be.
Decide to have the life you deserve to live.
And do it now. Because this week, these days, this ‘now’ is going to pass anyway.
So why not make this ‘now’ a super now… a super ‘now’ that makes you go wow.

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