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“When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves.”
If you had the power to change your life, would you?
Whether you have power or not isn’t as important as whether you feel empowered or not.
If you had a choice where you don’t have one now, what choice would you make?
Whether you believe you have a choice or not isn’t as important as what happens when you realize you always have choices.
Power and choice and our perception of both determines, to a large degree, our level of contentment and satisfaction in all areas of life. What could be more important?
You certainly don’t have to agree with these concepts. And, of course, you don’t have to answer the questions. But I challenge you to consider both the questions and the concepts. To do so will require the courage of introspection.
If you feel up to the challenge, I offer the following guidance for self-inquiry. Take this challenge and begin reclaiming power and choice.
If you find these exercises difficult to complete without help, contact me to set up a complimentary 60-minute coaching session, or if you have already had a free session, schedule a paid session.
The Power to Change
To answer the first question, “If you had the power to change your life, would you?” use the following exercise.
If you could change one thing about each of the following categories, what would you change? On a separate document (paper or digital), describe how it is now and how you would like it to be for each category.
- Your body
- Your mind
- Your emotions
- Your spiritual life
- Your social life
- Your love life
- Your environment
- Income and Wealth
- Recreation and Hobbies
- Significant Relationships
My body: I currently weight 165 lb. I would like to weigh about 150 lb.
How empowered do you feel to make the change you described in your answers? Use a scale of 1 to 3.
1 = completely disempowered 2 = somewhat empowered 3 = completely empowered
If you scored 2 or 3 for a category, what is stopping you from making the change? You feel at least somewhat empowered to make the change, but you haven’t. Why not? Take a moment to answer the following question for each category using the same document.
What is stopping you from making this change?
You have answered the first question, “If you had the power to change your life, would you?” If you feel empowered at all to make a change, it is possible to make that change. But until you feel empowered to make the change, you won’t even try. That is why it is more important to feel empowered than it is to have power.
To answer the second question, “If you had a choice where you don’t have one now, what choice would you make?” use the following exercise.
The Power of Choice
Using a separate document, make a list of three to five circumstances where you don’t believe you have a choice.
I can’t leave my job because if I did, I wouldn’t be able to pay the bills.
Now, imagine someone else in the same circumstance. Make a list of possible choices for the other person.
They could either leave the job and file for bankruptcy and lose their house and car, or they could begin to research other ways to earn the income they needed.
In the majority of cases, there are options. In some cases, the options are extreme. But even if the alternative to the present circumstance means risking an unacceptable consequence (like death or other significant loss), you still have a choice.
Next, clearly describe what you choose in each circumstance.
I choose the security and predictability of my current job. I could leave but don’t want to take the risk or go to the trouble of creating another source of income or finding another job.
You have answered the second question, “If you had a choice where you don’t have one now, what choice would you make?”
In most cases, you do have a choice. You have chosen your current circumstance because it is preferable to the alternative.
If, after completing this challenge, you realize that you want more access to power and choice, continue to read, contact me to set up a complimentary 60-minute coaching session, or if you have already had a free session, schedule a paid session.
How do we give away our power?
How do we lose access to choice?
I believe we are all born as our true selves with all the power we will ever need. But, as we experience life, its easy to lose access to that power. We get confused about who we are, thinking that we are some diminished version of our true self.
This confusion throws us off course and we lose access to our true power. Before we realize it, we are living automatic lives, involuntarily reacting to what happens as if we have no power or choice at all.
To reclaim power and choice, we must reclaim our true identity. Doing so replaces confusion with clarity.
How do we reclaim our true identity?
Richard Schwartz began developing a new approach to helping people do just exactly this in the early 1980s. Over the past four decades, he has developed the Internal Family Systems model (IFS) which acknowledged the multiplicity of the mind.
It is our very normal and needed mental multiplicity that makes it possible for us to forget who we are as we navigate the slings and arrows of surviving this life.
Using the IFS model to connect with, understand, and appreciate the multiple “parts” of ourselves that have enabled our survival and current levels of functionality and success, we can begin to reclaim our True Selves.
As we continue to get to know and appreciate our parts, we gain clarity about who we really are and access to the power and choice that comes with that clarity.
To begin the process of reclaiming your true identity, your power, and your choice, set up a complimentary 60-minute coaching session, or if you have already had a free session, schedule a paid session.