Updated: Sep 9, 2019
And also you?
Ladies, today, I invite you to join with me in declaring - not my daughter, too.
I have this dream that women can connect to create so much joy that our daughters get to avoid that awful metoo conversation. I have this idea that as women we can mentor each other, celebrate women at every decade of life, and create such strong bonds between our sons and our daughters and our husbands and our childrens' fathers, that our daughters - and our sons - will never have to say, me too. Never again.
How can this dream or idea become a reality?
First, I'm realistic enough to know we can't stop all evil.
But, we can do as much as possible to unite to reduce the trauma that holds back so many of us.
8 Tips to Leave the Past Behind & Spread Joy Today!
Let's spread joy by leaving the past behind
If you are dealing with past trauma, address it. Get help. Talk it out. Don't let past trauma keep you from living the life you get to live. Find a group of women and connect, mentor, celebrate them. When you have worked on it, addressed it, forgiven (but not forgotten), and decided - I'm ready. Then, you will be free to live the life you were born to live.
2. Find a young girl you can mentor
Many of you have asked me how they can find a mentor for yourself. Start by looking to help someone else first. Start by finding a young girl to mentor. Many of you have asked me where to find someone to help. Your local middle schools and high schools, even as young as elementary schools, have lists of girls who have been invited to join a mentoring program. Ask your schools' guidance office. Find a youth group at your parish or church and ask if girls are interested in mentorship. Start a mentoring program in your own small group or school, office, or college, if they don't have one. Don't delay - the life experience you have gives you all the expertise you need to help someone heading in the same path.
3. Find a group of friends and authentically mentor each other
If you have a close group of friends, find a friend or two within the group and ask if you can be mentors or accountability partners for each other. Follow the 2F5M program (more on this soon) and put a calendar date on the 2nd Friday that you will plan to meet by the end of the month to go over your goals, share your latest idea or challenge, and ask for help - be completely authentic and honest, vulnerable and real. This is your chance to get feedback and a review of your life. If you don't have a close group of friends and you'd like to find one, ask yourself some questions - where can I use my talents and abilities to help others? What types of friends am I seeking? How much time do I have to devote to a small group? Would a bible study be good for me? Can I seek friends at work or in my college major? Perhaps you can start a group if you can't find the one for you. Be brave and ready to see where intentional mentoring takes you. Connecting and collaborating with other women who seek nothing more than to help you spread joy may just change your life.
4. Seek truth, beauty, goodness and joy
For me, I find truth, beauty, goodness and joy in my faith, my family, my friends, my church, my community, and helping at my children's' schools. Where do you see those things? Take some time each morning to really find out.
5. Adopt the 8G Mom Principle
Trust but Verify - If you want to protect kids in your life, you must have a system in place that works for you to help keep them safe, so we can say, never again rather than me too. I was interviewed on Sirius XM about this recently, and the biggest advice I gave to my other group, Homeplace Wisdom, was to not be wowed by the celebrity factor - meaning, if everyone in the world loves and adores this adult for whatever reason, it doesn't mean you blindly trust him or her. Follow the 8G Rules to guard your kids and other children in your life from abuse. It's not full-proof, but it can give you some concrete ways to put in these procedural safeguards.
Mark your calendar for the 8th of the month - recurring every month - and check the new and old people in the kids' lives. Make sure the kids don't have a lot of one-on-one time with adults alone unsupervised or times of the day when their time is not monitored or accounted for. Ask your friends the hard questions about how they plan to supervised your kids when they have them in their care. Talk to your kids in an open and honest way about your fears. Prepare them for the right words to use if they need to say no to someone. Guide their hearts and be their confidante so they will feel safe coming to you when they need help. Build a community that helps you to keep your kids safe.
It takes a village.
6. Spread Joy & Laughter Today
If you are having trouble leaving the past behind, try to find a way to do charity, find a friend in need, volunteer, write a gratitude list, make some goals, and get outside of yourself and spread joy. Go see a comedian. Have a joke-telling family dinner. Write your own stand-up comedy and try it out on some friends. Try to find the humor in every day and make someone else smile. Smile at someone for no reason at all. Sling some compliments to women in the grocery store checkout line. Put down the phone and give yourself a few minutes of fresh air and breathe. Laugh at the little things. Go confidently into your future, holding the hands of the mentors in your life, and make them laugh!
7. Move Your Body
If you can't stop the trauma loop in your head, go for a long walk, move your body in some way that makes you happy.
Trust that someday it will be better than it is today. You have the strength to leave the past behind. Soon, I will share my story in my upcoming book, and maybe it will help you.
You've got this!
Connect with other women to be joyful today.