This is a quote that has emerged from the “back of my mind” and I can’t access the name of the person who said it….but since I write about power, I loved the concise statement that some wise person made! — as well as how much it fits with my thinking in my book, Release From Powerlessness: Take Charge of Your Life. But what does the quote actually mean?
Basically, I think it means our personal power is inside each of us — available for expression, decision making, action. The problem is how we get in our own way. How many times do you know what you “wish you had said,” “wish you had done?” Those reflections actually indicate that you KNEW the healthy, effective thing to say or do at the moment, but, for some reason, perhaps a complex reason, you did NOT.
One way to check this out is to recall a time that fits the “I wish I had _____” Reflect on the experience in detail. Write about it or try describing it to a close friend. Pull up the details. Where were you? Who were you talking to? What specifically was involved? A decision? A confrontation? A declaration of loving or complementary feelings?
What did you say or do INSTEAD of what you WISH you had said or done? Now you can analyze by asking yourself, “what got in your way” of saying/doing the “I wish.” Typical answers include, fear, guilt, uncertainty, the possibility of rejection or disapproval or just a sense of “it’s too risky.”
Next ask yourself when you have had a similar feeling. This question can sometimes take you on a bit of a journey into your past. Look for historically similar experiences and you’ll find a pattern. A pattern tells you what you learned that now gets in your way. This could even include, and actually likely does, a clear and distinct message from childhood about the “do” or “do not” mandates.
Finally ask yourself, “what is the worst thing that could happen if I do or say what I want and need to do or say?”
See if it’s really as difficult as you have imagined. I’m not suggesting you underestimate what might happen but that you get as realistic as possible with yourself. THEN evaluate what you could do differently.
Remember the quote says: “…..DECISION to use it.” Give it a try. Flex your power muscle….!
Read more in my book about power, RELEASE FROM POWERLESSNESS: TAKE CHARGE OF YOU LIFE.
Listen to Dr. Linda Moore and Mike Manko discuss personal power and how to use it on the SteveAndMikeRadio.com podcast.