Power does not lie in how effectively you can control others, either overtly or manipulatively. We all have the ability to make another feel good or bad. True power will know how to make you feel better even as you make another feel good. Demanding the fulfillment of your wishes, at the cost of another’s submissiveness or distress, is the course followed by a tyrant.

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Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren’t….Margaret Thatcher

In the journey from ‘powerlessness’ to ‘powerfullness’, we come across certain traps. These traps make us believe that our journey is complete, the destination has been reached. Though this is far from the truth, its deceptive lustre is often too difficult to resist. Caught in this trap, we begin to believe that our words and actions are assertive and power-filled, when often they are just the reverse. Assertion can exist only when you grow to be what you truly are, not when you are trying to leave behind the burden of what you are not.

Assertion is often confused with aggression, with rebelliousness, with inflexibility, with uncaring willfulness. These are the disguised forms of powerlessness that we willingly believe to be ‘the truth’. Let us make use of an example to understand this simple but evasive truth. An elephant calmly stands his ground, lofty and strong, able to withstand almost any external force. A weaker animal will struggle and fight and dig its heels in, in order to make an attempt to prove its muscle. It is in this that the key lies…the elephant does not sense the need to prove his power.

Let me help you to identify if you are being assertive or only attempting to prove your strength. Do not pay as much attention to your words as to the tonal quality of your voice. Is there defiance or stridency in the way you speak? Is there instant dismissal of another’s needs, truths, beliefs? Is your body feeling closed and tight? Are you breathing fast and shallow? Are there uncontrollable physical tics, jerks, shrugs or other such bodily movements? Well, any or all of these have already given you your answer. Assertion of power makes you feel good, not agitated; results in harmony, not conflict. Continue reading “Are You Really Power-full?”

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