I love this image, because it reminds me of Pippi Longstocking, who never is afraid of her power, and never apologizes for being larger than life. Unfortunately, most of us are afraid of immense potential. We know what we are capable of. Yet, the risk is that our powers will remain dormant, because it's scarier to be fully expressed than to remain small. So how do we claim our power? Here are 3 Steps:
1. Start where you are.
Power comes to us when we stop reaching for it. It's actually always with us, but it's our striving that gets in the way. How many don't we know who are 'trying' to get ahead, often using other people to get there, yet as observers, we often end up being a bit embarrassed on their behalf. In reality, most of us have 'tried', one way or another, and maybe that's the reason why we then subsequently gave up. Because it didnt' work. Using myself as an example. I know what I'm capable of. But because I've been both 'striving' and 'trying', I've often just managed to come close to what I wanted, and then, when I could almost touch it, it was lost again. What I've now learned is that the magic comes when I stop trying, and start acting from who I am, right now and what I can offer, right now. It comes when I take the plunge and say: "This is good enough!". That changes the game - completely! Who are you, RIGHT NOW? What can you offer - RIGHT NOW - to the world?
2. Don't Give Up.
If we look at successful people, they have a few traits in common. The most important one is that don't give up. It's what separates the dreamers from the doers. If we want to claim our power, we have to draw a line in the sand and say: "Ok. This is it. I'm doing it, and I'll make it happen. If it doesn't happen today, I'll keep doing it, even if it takes me ten years." When we get experience 'defeat', when we 'lose', we tend to see everything in black and white, believing it's a zero-sum solution. But that's not how life works. Often success is just around the corner from a failure, and failure in itself a prerequisite to get there. Abraham Lincoln kept losing until one day he became one of the most celebrated American Presidents in US History. Aung San Suu Kyi, the Peace Nobel Prize winner, keeps being arrested in Burma, and keeps feeding an entire country with hope. Apple was perceived as a dying company, bleeding profusely, and as a last, listless effort, brought Steve Jobs back as CEO. The rest, as we know, is history. How do you you claim your power? What idea or dream are you close to giving up on? And what are you going to do to stay true to yourself and hold on?
3. Refuse to Settle.
The third step to claim our power comes from when we refuse to settle. At one point, I wanted to write a dissertation on 'The Settling Point'. I was deeply curious on at what point people decided to settle and WHY we settle at that point. When do we tell ourselves? "This job/relationship/financial situation/health is as good as it gets. Now suck it up, and live with it." In the end, I realized that I was more interested in people who didn't settle than those who did, so I abandoned that idea. The conclusion I arrived at, however, is that most of us settle because we don't believe we deserve more, which is directly linked to how we claim our power. One of the best ways to start this process, is by starting small, building our muscle for asking for more out of life. Ask for what you want, exactly, at a restaurant and take the risk that you'll making the waiter/waitress exasperated. Don't accept the first offer you get from the car-salesperson. Date one more person. By saying YES to ourselves, and YES to that we deserve the best, and by saying NO to settling, we create an enormous energy field of possibility. In what areas have you settled, and what are you willing to risk to change your game?