17 March, 2017
Have you ever stopped to notice how nature just goes with the flow? The change in seasons appears to be this continual, effortless transformation. Leaves on trees change gracefully from lush green to burnt reds, oranges and browns. The waters cool and nobody wants to go swimming anymore. Things have to be let go for new growth in the Spring.
To orchestrate this creative magic, it’s hard to ignore that nature is completely grounded in its power.
When gorgeous souls like us are deeply connected to our own personal power, or intuition, life seems to just work out for us. The ‘best of things’ is always showing up on the doorstep. This is the ‘joy of being’ of which many wellbeing gurus and teachers speak.
It appears as a free car park spot at the front door of the supermarket, an exciting job opportunity, the ideal partner calling for a date. It allows the space required for our children to be crazy, silly, loud and we find ourselves responding with patience, love and kindness.
It’s like a direct shout-out from the universe, which exclaims “Hey girl! Where you been?”
But here’s the thing… along the way we have been taught to give away our personal power. Like lollies at the Christmas parade, just biffing it away handful after handful.
When we are sitting in our personal truth, it can make it uncomfortable for some of those we are in close relationship with to sit comfortably in theirs. Then, out of love for that other person, we can start to question our own intuition.
We can start to question the deep faith and belief we have in ourselves.
For example have you ever tried to do something for your wellbeing, like having a break from alcohol, only to become the target of ridicule of a friend? Your intuition is telling you to gift yourself a detox, but it makes those closest to you question their own drinking behaviour, and this causes tension.
As adults we become stronger and more confident to express this truth. However as children we were vulnerable and powerless (unless you were the lottery winner of highly conscious parents); and in my experience many of us were taught to give away our power from a very young age.
We are taught growing up to trust in schoolteachers, television, adults and exam results. Rarely are children given the opportunity to explore their own inner wisdom and power. Actually children are infinitely powerful and with the right guidance this can be nurtured from a young age.
Imagine what you could create if all of your personal power you had ever given away returned to you in an instant?
What would you be capable of?
Here are five signs you might be giving away your power and some strategies to claim it back again.
1. You complain all the time. Complaining comes in many shapes and forms. It can come in the form of explosive rage on the motorway as someone cuts you off, or subtle internal complaining when critiquing your partner’s cooking. It’s natural to complain occasionally – sometimes things warrant complaint. But if you find yourself complaining daily, always finding a battle to fight, then chances are there’s a hole in your power bucket dear Liza. Don’t allow unpleasant events to have power over your life.
2. You blame others for the way you feel. How easy is it to get caught up worrying about a particular situation and person and then blame that person for the way we’re feeling. When we blame other people, rather than take responsibility for the way we feel, we are actively giving away our power.
3. You do not have clear boundaries. When we don’t have a solid fence set up to protect our inner peace, we are vulnerable to the impact of other people’s stuff. Let’s face it, we come into contact with other people’s stuff as soon as we hit the breakfast table. When you’re taking on somebody else’s stuff, consciously or unconsciously, you’re releasing your power in to thin air.
4. Comparing oneself pessimistically to another’s perceived amazing life. Do you get caught in the vortex of online/in life self-comparison? This is a highly corrosive habit, worse than eating sugar. If you’re going to give up one thing entirely, give up the self-comparison and leave a little sugar in your life. When we’re always comparing ourselves negatively to others, we are actively giving away our personal power.
5. Always trusting outside sources over your own intuition. Are you always seeking the answer to questions outside of yourself? Do you need constant verification from people in your life about choices and decisions? Of course we’re always going to seek guidance from our closest mentors, but when you’re not checking in with your own intuition as well, this is a big sign you are under utilizing your personal power.
Like me, did some of these experiences ring true for you? Are you ready to call back your incredible, personal power? Okay, here’s what we’re going to do…
1. Call it back. Literally. During your evening meditation/reflection go back to that part of the day when you consciously gave your power away. Perhaps you received some shoddy customer service in a cafe. Take yourself back to that experience, watch yourself losing your shit and then ask your power to return to you. This doesn’t just have to be focused on the current day. You can go back a week, a year, five years, twenty years and call your power back.
2. Get in right relationship lady! Heal the relationship you have with your mind. Observe when you are criticizing, complaining, blaming and try to have curiosity, compassion, understanding for the voice. See how the energy shifts and you are able to reclaim your personal power rather than play the victim.
3. Movement. Love your body. Reclaim your power by embracing your body. During the movements of yoga asana we are guiding prana (subtle energy) through the body, like running fresh water through a blocked pipe, we are flushing out waste so that our energy can flow freely. Each of us enjoy different ways of getting our prana moving, my friend loves running, another friend enjoys brisk walks, another Pilates. Some days when I’m busy with my kiddies a brisk walk around the supermarket and unpacking the groceries ticks the box.
4. Meditation. When you make returning to stillness a part of your daily routine, that stillness leaks a deep peacefulness into you, which starts showing up in your day-to-day life. So finding curiosity, compassion and understanding for the thoughts you have becomes much easier, it becomes ‘just what you do’.
5. Establish boundaries. If you become aware of a relationship or situation where you’re giving your power away, you may need to establish a boundary. A friend told me once that she had a difficult relationship with her mother. The mother for years had told her, especially in front of others, that she was too bossy. It had become very hurtful for my friend, and was clearly more her mother’s insecurities rather than her actually being bossy. At a family gathering her mother accused her once more in a playful, joking mood of being bossy and my friend decided to set a clear boundary “Please stop calling me bossy, it makes me feel very hurt and it’s also not the truth.” Her mother was very angry about it for a few weeks, but she moved on, the boundary was set and my friend claimed back her power.
6. Surrender. When we recognise how much, and for how long, we have been giving away our power, we might feel angry and disappointed. Learn to forgive yourself for the ways in which you’ve disconnected from your power. Forgiveness is synonymous with compassion. We choose every situation and every relationship we have ever manifested. Every experience, no matter how incredible or how evil in appearance has a pearl of wisdom for us to take on our journey. When we look back at the past with compassion for ourselves, it makes living in the now more vivid. We are re-gifted the confidence to receive opportunities life throws our way, rather than hide in fear.
As always, I would love to hear your personal experience relating to this topic, please feel free to share any thoughts in the comments below or on A Yogafied Life's Facebook page. When we discuss these things openly, it leaves room for great healing.