Personal power could be
defined in many ways, but essentially, personal power is the
strength that lies within you to accomplish hard tasks, itís what
you draw on when things are not going well, and itís what helps
you survive catastrophe.
Personal power is what it takes to
make risky moves, to believe in yourself, to take on new jobs and
new responsibilities and move forward.
Without an adequate supply of personal power, self-doubt,
fear, malaise, and apathy can take over your life.
Losing your personal power
Sudden loss of personal power
Loss of personal power can happen
suddenly or over time. When
it happens suddenly, people recover quickly.
If your house burns down and you realize that your insurance
has lapsed, it can completely take the wind out of your sails.
Youíve lost your personal power and you feel helpless and
While devastating, such
catastrophes can be the impetus to excel in ways that you never
epitomize the phrase, when the going gets tough, the tough get
going. Many people
accomplish more immediately after a catastrophe than they do at any
The sudden loss of a spouse or
parent is another event that can completely wipe you out.
It zaps your personal power and the bottom can seem as though
it has just fallen out. But
then you realize that you have a family to raise, and you must move
forward. It can take
all the energy you have to make that first step, but then you find
itís easier to take the second step.
Before you know it, you realize
that what wiped out your personal power in the first place, gave you
more than you ever had before.
Tragedy strengthens people.
Gradual loss of personal power
The worst way to lose personal
power is gradually and over time.
Small nagging things that are worrisome, always on your mind,
and things cannot seem to resolve are issues that slowly bleed your
personal power. A job
that you are constantly in fear of losing, financial troubles, a
long illness, or taking care of an sick or aging spouse or parent
are examples of things that just wear you out over time.
The problem happens when you
donít realize what these things are doing to you and your personal
power slips a way slowly and unnoticeably.
Today is not much different than today, and it wonít be
much different than tomorrow.
However, over the course of months or even years, these
chronic situations take their toll.
Sources of personal power
You arenít born with a sense of
personal power, and neither do you ever obtain an endless supply.
It is a well that you draw from, but itís not a bottomless
well and if you abuse it or donít replenish it, personal power
reserves are depleted. When
that happens, managing daily events becomes almost impossible.
Personal power is an inner strength
that people often donít even know exists until they need it.
When they do need it, they often arenít sure where to get
Each personís source of personal
power can be slightly different, but there are many common
Spiritual replenishment Ė
Regardless of your faith, spending time in prayer and meditation on
those spiritual things that are important to you is an amazing
source of personal power, and most people tend to forget it.
Time alone Ė Itís rare
that we ever find ourselves without demands being placed on us.
Everyone needs time alone and in different ways.
Sometimes itís time at home, sometimes itís with music
(or not), and sometimes, just a walk around a lake can do a person a
world of good. Reading
a good book adds loads of personal power.
Be good to yourself.
Time with a spouse or children
Ė One of the things that causes a loss of personal power is guilt
over not spending adequate time with a spouse or children.
Planning and executing this time not only adds to personal
power, it stops the drain from the other end.
Physical exercise Ė Not
taking care of yourself is a quick way to lose personal power.
Your body needs exercise and when things are going rough, it
needs even more. When
you exercise, your body produces endomorphines and these are great
pain-killers and mood enhancers.
You are never too old or out of
shape to do some exercise. Start
walking one minute per day if necessary and then do two the next
day, and then three. By
the end of the month, you will be walking 30 minutes a day and
feeling much better.
Friends Ė Add personal
power by spending time with your friends.
Go shopping, go to lunch, just hang out, or just spend time
on the phone if nothing else. Just
make sure that itís time that is not interrupted.
Laughter Ė Nobody is sure
why, but the actual act of laughing makes people healthier and
shortens recovery time. Take
time to laugh, rent a funny movie, go to a comedy show or just play
a fun game with others. Laughing alleviates stress and adds tons of personal power to