How to evaluate the risks and rewards of speaking up
“I lost my church. I lost my closest friends as a result of advocating for survivors who had been victimized by similar institutional failures in my own community. I lost every shred of privacy.” Racheal Hollander reveals that she paid a high price for taking on Larry Nassar. Really?
Racheal, you are a hero and a role model. Often, we must weigh our losses against our gains.
Loss of friends, church, and privacy; but what did Racheal really gain?
Racheal gained self-respect. She restored trust and confidence in herself. She begins her healing process by helping others. It took Racheal H. twenty years to speak up about the abuse and assault of Larry Nassar.
Yes, I’m sure Racheal perceived those to be the collateral damage of speaking up.
But in reality, Racheal had no good alternative if she wanted to forge ahead with her life and function as a healthy human being.
Speaking up restores self-esteem and self-respect. It restores trust and confidence to lead a more meaningful and happier life.
Speaking up raises awareness and helps you to know you are not alone. People often are followers and not leaders. So, if you lead the pack, others will follow. When others follow, justice can be achieved. Justice provides society with trust, stability, and confidence that the system works to make it a better place for all.
I encourage you all to speak up and never remain complicit. In some situations, we just do not have good alternatives.
Speaking up is risky. Accepting risk entails anxiety, pain, and uncertainty. Taking a risk is an essential component for self-development, growth, and a meaningful life. A meaningful life leads to happiness.
If you do not speak up, you lose your self-esteem. You feel like a failure. You feel powerless and isolated. You become depressed and lack any motivation to do anything. You lose trust and confidence in the system. You are stuck in misery and your trauma.
So, which is the better alternative?
Do you want silence to kill you slowly, or do you speak up to cure your illness and help others around you?
Do you want to act as a victim or a victor?
Silence shapes you as a victim. Speaking up shapes you as a victor.
Racheal may not have foreseen all the risks and exposure associated with her taking on Nassar. But Racheal is no longer a victim, she is now a victor! Winning her life back! She gained more than she lost!
Take action! Do not let silence’s cancer infect you and your relationships. When it matters, and you are being violated:
Silence and politically correct rhetoric is a cancer infecting our relationships and society. When the cancer is not contained, it deepens our distress and trauma causing slow death to our soul and happiness.
Do you want to raise a confident and self-reliant child?
It starts with you. You must be role model for your children, and they will follow. Be responsible and respond with love and understanding:
Often, we parents focus on our social status, business, or relationships. Making waves and shaking the status quo creates instability. Yes, but advocating for your kids is essential to their well-being, safety, and self-confidence.
When you remain silent, you are simply saying that others are more important than your child, and you care more about others than your children.
Young children will resent their parents and harbor anger. As they get older, they will care more about others than you!
Be a role model and they will follow!
To the heads of schools, principals, presidents, board members, and those in power:
What do you do when a violation is reported?
If you answered YES to any of the above questions:
You are guilty! You should be held personally accountable. You fail our kids. You traumatize our kids. And you fail our society.
If you reading this, here is your wake-up call. Gain insight before it is too late:
If You Cannot Lead You Must Quit!
If you want to lead, take action:
You are not doing a favor to the violator either. You prolong their agony as well and allow them to become the cancer and poison to society. When violators get away with their horrific acts, they become more evil. You are now an accomplice to all those evil acts.
There is risk in everything we do. If we speak up, there is a risk. If we remain silent there is a risk. At times, either alternative has collateral damage.
Bottom-line, the key to happiness is first to be happy with yourself. Being happy does not mean pain-free. Being happy does not mean risk-free. It simply means, we must accept risk and pain for long term gain. Assuming risk and pain when it matters is the key to a life with meaning. A meaningful life leads to happiness. It is empowering and liberating.
Racheal Hollander’s short-term losses were relatively small compared to her exponential long-term gain.
Racheal can replace her church with ease. She can find real friends. And she can leverage the loss of privacy by empowering others and doing good!
We need more Racheals! You are my hero!
Speak up assertively and act responsibly!