For 15 long years I had a secret story of shame and judgement.
A story I was afraid to share with anyone.
Because of what happened to me, (which I will reveal in a minute) I created a story that kept me stuck and playing small.
What if the one thing that was stopping you was the very thing that could set you free? An interesting Paradox Indeed.
By now, you’ve probably noticed more than a few paradoxes in life. Along my journey I’ve come across so many paradoxes that I have almost come to expect them! Often, when I’m least expecting them, this is when I have the biggest breakthroughs. (Check Out the Power Paradox Article).
Back to the “Secret Shame:”
I didn’t know at the time, but this story was so powerful it impacted my ENTIRE life:
- my relationships
- my career
- most importantly, myself.
Because of what happened, I had come to believe that I couldn’t truly love myself. As a matter of fact, I didn’t think it was even possible to do so.
The story I had created wouldn’t allow me to fully accept myself and be true to who I really was. But, what I thought was my biggest secret, turned out to be my biggest breakthrough.
When I was 12 years old I was sexually molested by my friend’s dad.
It was a one time ordeal, and afterwards I never told a soul. Nobody. I didn’t even believe it myself for the longest time. Through that pain, I created a story that it never really happened and I lived with this story, this lie for over 15 years. It was only when I started to become more aware of my thoughts, feelings and actions around the age of 27, it started to unlock the truth that I had hidden away for so many years.
Thankfully a beautiful woman, named Jess Johnson, who ran an organization called Jeans 4 Justice, helepd me open up enough to share my story. If it weren’t for her amazing ability to create a safe space, who knows, I may still be holding on to this deep, dark, secret.
In the months that followed I told my girlfriend, my parents, and some of my close inner circle the truth about the secret I had been hiding all those years. Most were shocked (especially my parents) because I was able to live such an outwardly happy, outgoing life!
For over a year I thought that telling my close inner circle of people was enough, but when I started to study NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) and I realized the true power of our thoughts and emotions, I realized this event was still very charged for me.
Once again, I decided to step up and take action. I wanted to completely free myself from feeling the guilt, shame and fear that I associated with this life altering event. For 5 months I studied NLP, then saw a psychotherapist for EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprogramming ) treatment, and finally I took place in an Ayahuasca ceremony that really accelerated things for me (Another story for another time!).
Acknowledgement, acceptance, love, release, and sharing; these are the phases that helped me to transcend a story that took me 15 years to discover. The self love, acceptance, and learning I found through this healing process was nothing short of amazing.
I’m writing this story for 2 reasons.
The first is because I want to create an open space for others to step into and share their story so they can take on their stories the way I did. Helping people free themselves of emotional, mental, and physical trauma is something that is obviously near and dear to my heart.
The second is to start clean. When I chose to rewrite my story from an empowering context, I realized that the only way to do that is to rid myself of all the things that were disempowering me.
Cutting the ties from my past has helped me to step powerfully into the future from the present moment; and from the present moment ANYTHING is possible.
So as I move forward from this point, I want to ask you: What’s stopping you?
The answer may change your life…
But only if you choose to let it 🙂
Matt Ritchey, Life Coach and Entrepreneur has dedicated his life to helping others expand their potential and live the life they really want to live! "The only thing standing between you and your true potential are a few simple tools that I can teach you!" If you are interested in working with Matt, learn more on his coaching page.
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Thanks for your example and transparency. I got some healing from it.