4 Ways to Improve Empowerment Right Now
When we are young, we are taught to share.
To be kind to others. To give without asking anything in return. For some, those concepts get skewed into a sense of powerlessness and we allow people to start to take advantage of our kind hearts and willingness to help.
So how do we regain a sense of empowerment without feeling that we are becoming selfish? First, we have to wrap our minds around the idea that being “empowered” is not the same as being “in power.”
Empowerment is the ability to stand up for what you believe in assertively and confidently without being mean or talking down to others. It’s recognizing your own accomplishments while not belittling the achievements of others. It’s the ability to say “no” and believe wholeheartedly that you are doing not only what is best for you, but what is best for the other person. We often enable unhealthy behaviors to continue in others when we lack empowerment because we fail to empower them.
Are you ready to start feeling some of that empowerment today?
Grab some paper and a pen, you are going to want to write a few things down!
- Think of a time you made and followed through on a decisionThis can be anything. Seriously. Did your kids want pancakes and bacon on a Monday morning before school, but you held out for cereal because, good grief, it’s Monday morning?? You’re darn right you should write that down.
Or maybe a family member made some vague statements that pretty clearly alluded to needing/wanting money or a ride, and you chose to not give in or offered a suggestion as to how they could take care of the situation themselves? Heck yeah! That’s what I’m talking about! Write that down!
Anytime you make a decision that is not defined by the wants of someone else, that’s empowerment, no matter how small that decision seems. It’s the whole idea that YOU made that decision for YOU. With that in mind, it empowers you to decide when you want to do something for another person, which is an act of kindness and heartfelt, not done out of duty.
- Think of something you chose NOT to do because it went against your values Ever got caught up in the action around your friends and regretted the decision later? Yeah, me too. Think of a time that you chose to go against the flow and say “nah, not this time” and were glad you made that choice. Write that down.
Choosing to honor your values instead of going along with the crowd will always benefit you in the long run. Will you get the best reaction from the people that hear you say “no?” Maybe not.
But many times, the outcome for them can tell you a lot about who made the better decision. I can think of several times where I did or didn’t follow my values, and the outcome pretty much reflected which was the better choice (take a guess).
- Think about information you learned that helped you make a decision Have you ever thought that you knew everything you needed to know in order to make a decision about something, only to find out some other piece of information that changed your mind? Or maybe that information made you totally sure you were making the right decision? Write that down.
I used to think I wanted a music degree. I love music. It’s a constant part of my life. I even started college with a music scholarship. I thought I was in heaven when I started school and almost all of my classes were music related. Heck yeah, I was going to have the easiest college career ever!
Then I realized I still had to take all of the core classes everyone else did PLUS all those music classes. School would take me LONGER than everyone else. And my paths would either lead to playing or teaching. That’s it. Whoa. Big reality check.
What decision have you made once you learned all the info? Were you surprised it was different than you originally thought? Or did you stick with your original plan?
- Think of someone or something you chose to take out of your life We all have that one thing or one person that doesn’t make our life sunshine and roses. Whether or not we choose to let go of it is a sign of our empowerment. Think of time where there was something or someone you were able to let go of and how that made you feel – initially and over time. Write that down.
Was it a habit that you broke? A relationship that you ended? Whatever it was, no matter how small, it’s still important to acknowledge that you did it. That shows your ability to say “no, I’ve had enough. I’m strong enough to say that I am better than this and I deserve more.”
Notice all of the empowering things that you have been able to do to this point in your life.
Are you surprised? You can take this concept into other areas of your life, as well as the other things that you wrote down.
You may want to go back over the list and see if there are more things that come up for you that you didn’t think of initially. Share the post with a friend and see if they have more ideas that you didn’t think of at first. You may be surprised at what others see in you that you don’t.
Share your experience in the comments below! I’d love to celebrate your empowerment with you!