Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.
My friend Anna just told me about how she was inspired by a commercial of a natural disaster insurance. I was like: “Insurance. Inspiration. Really?” Anna recently had a minor accident that involved a bus. This incident and how it was handled by the administrative office in charge made her feel totally out of control. We all can relate to this feeling of being at the merci of somebody else, of having no power, can’t we? By now you probably wanna know what the disaster insurance ad was all about. The message was: “Take back control over your life!”
After my chat with Anna I started contemplating about where I give my power away, how I could take it back, where I could feel more in control in my life. There are many areas of possible “powerlessness” : In relationships, when it comes to finances, in our families, with health and how we feel in our bodies, and then there’s work of course. On a larger scale there’s politics, the state of our society and the planet as a whole. On top of the external challenges, we are often our own worst enemies: The never-ending disempowering stories we tell ourselves don’t do us any good, do they? I was and still am a master in telling myself all kinds of awful, at time demeaning stories about myself. What now? Pause, breath, and lean back. Might sound cheesy but it does helps. It interrupts the habitual behavior pattern and allows us to move into “the observer seat”.
Here are some questions for you to think about:
- In what areas of your life do you feel powerless and why? Make a list of what’s most challenging for you.
- What can you do now to take back control over your life? Address one area after the other and come up with action steps. Remember it doesn’t have to be big. Take a couple of small steps one day at a time.
- Is there anything that holds you back? If so, what is it? Any fears, anxieties, self-doubts?
- What stories are you telling yourself about who you are and what you can do? Are they true? Hint: They most probably aren’t!
- How can you change your narrative so it’s empowering?
These are just a few questions to get started. I am sure there will be more but at the end of the day it’s not so much about the questions but about taking appropriate actions. It’s so easy to get lost in analyzing why things are the way they are. I often get stuck in my mind planning and trying to figure stuff out instead of taking action. Wayne Dyer says in his course “How to be a No-Limit Person” that non-action is one of the main reasons for depression. I have experienced this in the past. The moment I take action I always feel better, even it’s just something small.
Let’s choose health and wellbeing as an example. Are you tired most of the time? No energy? Not working out? Troubles sleeping? Did you gain weight you wanna lose again? Having the second piece of cake despite knowing that it’s only instant gratification and nothing else? This all can be truly overwhelming and because we don’t know where to start, we don’t start at all. Here are a couple of ideas on how to take control over your life when it comes to your health goals:
- Take responsibility for how you currently feel and know that you can make changes. You can do it!
- Decide what you are willing to commit to, make a list of action steps, and ideally get a friend to hold you accountable.That’s already a huge step!
- Get a professional to work with you on achieving your health goals. You can always schedule a free 15-minute discovery call with me here.
- Mediate to calm your mind and increase your awareness on where you are in your own way. I really like Insight Timer. It’s a fabulous, very inspirational mediation app.
- Consciously transform the negative “not-enough” and “I-can’t” narrative to stories that help you take your power back. Be creative & playful! Enjoy the process!
It’s important to remind yourself over and over again that you do have a choice. The question really is what do you choose? Do you choose the food that supports your overall health and well-being or do you eat that sugary cake because it feels good in this very moment? Do you take the 20 minute walk that makes you feel energized or do you sit down in front of the TV because it’s more convenient right now? Do you get angry over what someone just said and waste your precious energy or do you lean back and choose not to react? Don’t get me wrong, I believe it’s important to acknowledge whatever emotion is present but also to remind ourselves that we do have a choice on how to react to the stimulus we are exposed to. It’s not always easy but it’s possible. The more charged a situation is the bigger the challenge. The biggest triggers for me are relationships and family. That area is still very much a work in progress for me. What are yours?
The better we are able to observe our thoughts, the less they will control us and the more we will be able to make an active choice around if we feed them or not. What is it like to be unsure and show up anyway, to not give in to one of our BS stories that keep us powerless? It’s your choice, it’s my choice, it’s our choice! By making conscious choices and getting into action we take our power back.
What steps are you willing to take today for a better tomorrow? Have fun and enjoy taking back control over your life!
Why not start now with making yourself and your health a priority!