You were wild once, don’t let them tame you.
It’s a quote by Isadora Duncan. I absolutely love it, and I’ve included it in other blog posts like this one.
Because the truth is, we are really powerful beings. We just get used to giving away our power.
We go through everyday struggles, stress, tension… or simply focus on the wrong things… and lose our power, lose our energy and vitality.
But we don’t have to.
How we lose power/energy
Each of us has a limited amount of energy, just like we have a finite amount of time, money, and resources in general.
We invest these resources in the things we want to do, or are supposed to do, and try to maintain a balance — nothing wrong with that.
The issue arises when we, consciously or unconsciously, give away power — lose our vital energy… and never get it back. This can be obvious or subtle.
For example, you clearly lose energy and willpower if you perform repetitive work that you don’t like, but you also lose energy by being stuck in the past.
In the first example, your power goes to the type of activity you perform; in the second, more subtle example, it’s like your power travels in time and gets trapped somewhere.
We can also lose our vitality by being around people who literally feed off it — energy vampires or, worse, abusers with a controlling attitude.
By giving ourselves permission to claim back power, we guard our energy and become more mindful when giving it away.
And discover that although our energy and power are finite, they are definitely enough once we learn to manage and invest them the right way.
Alright — here are the thirteen simple practices…
How to reclaim your power
1. Monitor your energy levels
I have found that mindfulness is the very first step to protecting your personal power — and working toward optimal wellbeing in general.
There is no need to keep journals or lists, but do try to be consciously aware of how you lose (or gain, or maintain) your energy throughout the day.
The easiest way to do this is to simply pause for a few minutes at night and look at the day that’s just gone and see what gave you energy and what took energy.
2. Use affirmations
This is a super simple practice, and it works. It may not be the most effective practice, but it will put you on the right track.
Some people swear you have to say the affirmations out loud for them to be effective, but I’ve found that repeating them silently in your mind works too.
I’ll share a few affirmations for claiming back your personal power at the end of the list, so feel free to use those.
3. Prioritize your wellbeing
We would make a big mistake by approaching the energy problem from a psychological view only. Wellbeing can only be holistic; reclaiming power can only be done holistically.
Prioritize your physical health and there will be a correspondence in your mental and spiritual health — and vice versa. Sleep, nutrition, exercise — they are vital.
All elements of our being are deeply interconnected, much like the pieces of a puzzle or the branches of a tree. To protect and reclaim your power, see it holistically.
4. Let go of guilt
The archnemesis of peace of mind and personal power, guilt is the invisible bully that prevents you from becoming the person you are meant to be.
As a secondary emotion that is rarely helpful (and that seems to be exclusive of the human mind — animals don’t really understand what guilt is), guilt is the perfect example of a subtle energy drainer.
Allow yourself to be new, to be free. Learn from your mistakes and move on. As soon as you catch yourself falling into the trap of guilt, tell the mind to shut up.
5. Make a stop-doing list
When it comes to improving our energy levels, what we don’t do is definitely as important as what we do.
The fifth tip: sit down and have fun by experimenting with stop-doing lists — write down everything you need to let go of regardless of how intimidating it may sound.
This includes bad habits, automatisms, unhelpful thoughts, things that interfere with your health and yes, it may even include some people
Meditation helps you remove all the distractions around you and most importantly within you (the endless unconscious chatter of the mind).
Any meditation practice helps, but to take it further you can deliberately visualize images that empower you during the session.
For example, once you reach a deep state of relaxation, you can visualize your power as a circle/sphere around you and then “expand” it.
7. Learn to say no
No to what steals your motivation, no to things that drain your energy, no to extreme overthinking, no to anything that your heart wouldn’t say yes to.
Again, what you don’t do is as important as what you do. The only difficult part is breaking the pattern. Once the pattern is gone, it will no longer belong to you; it will only belong to the past.
8. Challenge your thoughts
What our mind says doesn’t have to be the truth. It doesn’t have to be accurate, helpful, or even important.
This is one of the blessings of meditative practices — they teach you to exist beyond the mind, to break the link between the mind and the real you (identification).
If you are serious about reclaiming your power, you must learn to detach from your thoughts, and challenge them. Literally observe the mind and challenge what it says.
9. Turn “must” into “want”
Ever noticed how the life of the average person is built on things they have to do or must do — rather than happiness and fulfillment, which are a lot closer to wanting to do?
This is definitely useful in a social sense, but problematic when it comes to being the best we can be.
Ninth tip: as an exercise, develop the habit of asking yourself what you really want to do — before the demons of guilt and false responsibility take over.
10. Connect with nature
We come from the earth. Nature is a nurturing force that cannot be ignored. We need it. Ask anyone that does “forest bathing” and they’ll tell you.
Being in nature — and ideally being totally lost in it, rather than checking your phone a million times — is one of the easiest ways to reconnect to the ultimate source of energy… and it’s free.
11. Forgive yourself
You must forgive yourself to claim back your power. There is always a part of your identity that remains in the past, and you can’t allow past mistakes to dictate how you should feel about yourself.
Be your own best friend and consciously forgive yourself for everything you may have done (in the past) and may do (in the future) before guilt and shame make you self-sabotage.
12. Practice self-care
Probably the most practical tip, and it can get pretty creative. Take a warm bath, light up a candle, read your favorite book, go for a long walk, go to the gym, get a fabulous massage…
The list is endless. You choose. It doesn’t have to be expensive — most self-care activities are free or very inexpensive anyway. Just listen to your body and mind and do what makes you feel good.
13. See the good in others
The attitude that’s directed outward is often the same attitude that comes back to you. Want to feel powerful and full of vitality again? See that in those around you.
Consciously choose to see the good side of people and things. Focusing on their worst side surely won’t help anyone — including you.
Being surrounded with positivity and positive things is key to high energy levels. Your environment may not be perfect (I doubt it’ll ever be) but you can still choose to see the good in it.
Affirmations to reclaim your power (examples)
- I forgive myself for my mistakes — in the past, present, and future
- I choose to focus on the empowering thoughts and silence the unhelpful ones
- I protect my energy and prioritize my wellbeing, and inspire others to do the same
- I let go of things, people, habits, thoughts, and emotions that don’t add value to my life
- I say goodbye to the past and embrace the person I am becoming
- I give myself permission to be the most powerful version of myself