I’ve been thinking how we generally accept that there are areas of our lives that we are powerless to control. We feel that we have no control over the crazy boss, bills, our partner’s habits, or what our children do. We have no power to choose in some situations. Yet is that true?
I’ve certainly had a boss from the pits, who was constantly unhappy with whatever I did, loved to let me know and was controlling. It was no fun and to be honest I didn’t really handle it well. I vacillated between trying to keep a safe distance and doing my best or giving up and not really trying as hard. I definitely felt powerless with this person. Yet was that true?
How about relationships? Have you ever been in a relationship that sapped you of your energy and you felt you couldn’t leave? What about those annoying habits that drive you crazy and endless efforts on your part hasn’t elicited a change from your partner? Is it true that you are powerless to change the situation?
We don’t have control over people, places or things…they just are. But we do have control over choices in how to deal with it. I know most of us don’t want to hear this because in some ways it’s easier to be powerless than to make a concerted effort to change. Was I powerless over that boss? Yes, I was powerless over how she dealt with her employees, but not how I reacted to her. I could have chosen to do my best and then let her deal with her own displeasure.
Some people you can’t satisfy because they don’t know how to satisfy themselves. We take on other people’s drama, thoughts and we absorb them as judgment against ourselves. Or maybe we are the controlling ones trying to stymie the choices of others.
My friend says, “it’s easier said than done” whenever I discuss how we have choices in every situation. She’s right…because if we believe we don’t have any power, guess what, we don’t because we gave it away.
We do have choices in every situation, even if we don’t like the options. The fact that we have a choice allows us to own our power and not give it away so freely. Here’s the life lesson I’ve learned after spending a chunk of time on this earth.
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Eleanor Roosevelt
We give away our power all the time…and others will grab it as quickly as we disown it. The choice we make is who owns our power. What if you do have a boss from the pits, how can you exhibit your power? You can do anyone of the following to start on your road to gaining back your power:
Don’t accept immediately that you have no choice, always look for choices – create a list of potential choices and see which one you can handle at the moment.
If you are overwhelmed, find a “power” buddy to work together to bring more choices into your life. You don’t have to make a change, just start creating options. When we get overwhelmed, it blocks our creative thinking. Have fun with creating a list of choices, as this is the beginning of gaining back your power.
I bump into feeling powerless on a daily basis…that’s part of life. Sometimes, I catch myself and reframe my reaction, so I feel more in control of my choices. I still allow the drama of others to seep into my life and then start to feel overwhelmed and powerless.
It’s a balancing act on a daily basis. You wait for the bus and it’s late and you need to be somewhere quickly, then you feel powerless over the circumstance. You are, but not with your reaction to the situation.
Powerlessness implies that we have no choices and that is not true…we always have a choice.
What About You:
What areas do you feel powerless? Listen to areas where you complain a lot…those are your areas to work on. Do you feel that there are times we just don’t have choices?
“To fully enjoy the ‘richness’ of our lives, we need to stop long enough to visit with ourselves.”
Thanks for your help.
*******How To Deal With Fear*******