I have a fundamental belief that we all deserve and need to feel empowered.
We don’t automatically have it. For most of us, we must decide to own it, because the world has a way of serving up hardships that tests us. It’s easy to feel like a loss was because of a hand that was dealt to us.
And, success doesn’t equal empowerment. In my work with high achievers & performers, some people can have massive success in attempts to run away from a negative feeling or experience. That is not empowered.
If we’re moving away from something negative or stressful to us, the achievement likely feels more like relief on a good day or worse, it can create even more anxiety because there’s a fear we’ll lose it all.
Instead, empowerment gives us personal agency. It’s a sense of spiritual, mental, emotional and even physical autonomy.
When we’re empowered, we take on goals and challenges because we look forward to the opportunity to learn & grow. Success creates fulfillment and the desire for even more. It’s a beautiful cycle!
Empowerment grows within ourselves. We are empowered when we take responsibility for how we interpret the past, how we move into the future and how we show up in the present.
Empowerment starts with being at cause over our lives.
In this space, we can acknowledge that unfortunate or unwanted events beyond our responsibility have happened to us. Yet, in empowerment, we can cause ourselves to move beyond it, own our experience and how we move forward.
In his new book, Never Finished, author, retired Navy SEAL, ultra-endurance athlete David Goggins writes about his experience moving from being on the effect side to being on the cause side of life.
He writes about the abuse he took and witnessed as a child at the hands of his father. By his account, he allowed his – clearly horrific – childhood experience to create an excuse for his personal & professional failings early in his adult life.
Obviously, he had no control of what his father did to him and his family. Goggins says, though, when he made the decision to not allow the abuse to define himself in his own mind, he was able to become the person he is today. That decision, he says, was the beginning of his cycle to military and now civilian success & fulfillment.
Through deep personal work, Goggins became at cause for the trajectory of his life. He became, and is still, empowered. You have that same ability as he did and still does.
To me, it’s empowering to understand that this is truly up to us. We can listen for what we say – out loud and even to ourselves.
Listen for when we say something “makes me…” or “because of…” Notice when you allow yourself to be on the effect side vs on the cause side.
Continue or start your empowerment journey by taking responsibility for what you can control.
If this strikes a chord and you’d like to learn more about how to become more empowered to experience greater success and fulfillment in achievement, schedule a private meeting with me.