3 Ways Women Give Away Their Power
What is power anyway? How does one get it and how does one give it away?
What three words come to mind when I say power? Is it control? Is it domination? Is energy, as in turning on the electrical power?
By focusing on control or domination, we limit what we as individuals and communities can achieve and accomplish. By thinking of power as outside ourselves, we assume that power cannot change or develop.
Empowerment is an ongoing process that forces us to look at how things are and how we want them to be.
Traditionally, many women thought that men held “the” power and they could not function without their permission. In order to create some sort of balance of power, women openly obey, but gain back some order of personal control will be passive aggressive.
An example that comes to my mind is the mother in the movie directed by Barbara Streisand called “Prince of Tides.” The abusive husband insists on hash for dinner. She goes to the kitchen and fries up a can of dog food. In the movie, you can see the sly smile on Blythe Danner’s face as the children watch their father consume the meal with relish.
Please know that I am not standing in judgment of what she felt she had to do to regain some of the self-respect lost in an abusive relationship.
It is a false statement that someone takes our power. We give it away when we don’t act with courage.
Women who set boundaries do not give their power away, nor allow it to be taken. They are sure of who they are and what they want in life. You are that kind of woman.
3 Ways Women Give Power to Others
1. We agree with the erroneous belief systems, labels and criticisms in our heads that are no longer true, even if they once were.
2. By body language and non verbal communication, we tell others how to treat us. We give signals that we are less than we really are.
3. We forget that we all have the right to be treated respectfully and so do not set and enforce healthy boundaries.
Owning Your Power
Owning your own power is an integral part of happiness. You will never be a truly authentic person if the only way you gain empowerment is by tricking someone or lying to yourself. It may work short term but the long lasting effects erode your self confidence and are a poor role model for the children.
Many women forget how smart and strong they really are. They have lived in the shadows for so long, they doubt their own abilities and talents.
You give your power away when you make someone outside of you more important than what you hold inside of you.
Self Awareness Quiz
1. Do you spend time with people who are kind and considerate in the midst of discussion or conflict?
2. Do you ask for what you need and want?
3. Do you doubt your own worth because someone has treated you badly?
4. Do you know how to set boundaries and be consistent in expectations?
5. Do you give your power away because you try to make everyone happy by looking for approval and acceptance?