What does it mean to stay in your personal power?
It means that you don't let others decide for you how to think, act, or feel. It means that you get to stay in control of your own life.
So much of our happiness hinges upon feeling like we have the freedom to make positive choices for our lives.
I first became aware of the words I chose to speak when I became a high school teacher. I was young-- just 23 years old-- and I needed to make sure that I left my youthful slang and childish self-deprecation at the door if I was going to be taken seriously as the authority in the room among 36, sometimes hard-to-reach teenagers.
I remember the few times I slipped in front of the class. Once, I made a mistake on the board and the words fell out of my mouth before I could catch them, "Ugh... Duh. I'm so stupid."
I'm not entirely sure how many of my students actually heard me. But think about it just a second: what business would I have teaching students to believe in themselves, to strive to do their best, to persist, if I couldn't do the same for myself? With one quick phrase, I gave my power away.
Here are 4 ways you may be giving your power away causing your overall confidence to wane:
1. You put people on pedestals.
The belief that other people, be it because of their connections or degrees, or money, or upbringing, or possessions, or profession somehow have more worth than you is actually a load of garbage. Knowing your worth and what your gifts are will help you stay in your personal power.
2. You imitate instead of create.
Sometimes it's easier to do what everyone else is doing because you blend in. It's scary to stand out, but if you're always so concerned about blending, you'll find yourself masking your true self. Don't your ideas matter, too?
3. You settle for less than you deserve.
Asking for what you really want can feel greedy. But that's a lie. You were meant to prosper. You were meant to succeed. You were meant for joy and connection. Settling for less in any aspect of your life allows for other people and circumstances seemingly out of your control dictate how you feel in your own life. The agency then belongs to someone other than you. You're allowed to say no to situations that don't suit you. You're allowed to say yes to circumstances that are abundant and "too-good-to-be-true." You deserve them.
4. You get stuck in the past.
Just because something bad happened, doesn't mean it's your destiny forever. Just because you failed a test doesn't make you a lifelong failure. Just because you chose a crummy partner doesn't mean you're terrible at all relationships. One of my trusted mentors catches me when I slip and say something like "I'm so bad at cleaning the house." He says, "You USED to have trouble cleaning the house, but NOW you are consciously making the effort to get better at it each day." Notice that little shift? Your words have a significant impact on how you perceive yourself. You don't have to stay stuck or in a "fixed mindset." A "growth mindset" says, "Every day in every way, I am getting better and better."
Do you find yourself slipping into these traps, too?
If you need support to stay in your power in order to increase your confidence, check out my masterclass: Creating Confidence and Conquering Fear. In this 45-minute video course (with accompanying workbook), you will:
- Learn to recognize what confidence and fear have in common, and how to choose one over the other.
- Reflect on past experiences that may have shaken your confidence, and how to release them.
- Bravely proclaim what you want out of the next chapter in your life in order to set the stage for a more bold, powerful, confident YOU.
- Take action in order to achieve those goals.
You will examine the ways you might inadvertently be giving away your power and change your language in order to build better habits of confidence and courage in your daily life.
Let me know in the comments:
What do you do to ensure you're staying in your own power?