Nobody’s Guru

 23316737_1568435839879840_1335567993384597821_nCan we talk about authenticity for a minute?

I feel very fortunate to get to do the work I do. And I put in significant effort to do the part of that work that is mine to do. But I’m no one’s guru.

(Though, I have studied the Vedas and the Bhagavad Gita and the Upanishads, have read a six volume novelization of the Ramayana to my youngest daughter,  and I adore and feel a kinship with Indian mysticism. Of course, if I were going to borrow a word from Sanskrit for what I do, it would be devastra not guru.)

My job is not to save anyone. Or to fix anyone. Or to sit back on my regal cushion and dictate how anyone should live their life in order to reach some final state of bliss from which they never have to return. That is not what I do.

What do I do? Well, I’m glad you asked! Here’s my authentic truth:

Every morning I get up early. (Though I used to stay up late…) I fill the water jar I use with a mix of cool and boiling water poured over the five crystals that live in the bottom of the jar. (Apatite, magnesite, fluorite, azurite, and aquamarine, in case you’re wondering…) I ground into my source. I connect with my guides. And I call to Spirit to join with and work through me. (And because my ancestors were burned at the stake, and starved, and chased out of their homelands, and all our rituals were lost — I humbly borrow from other sources and follow my own guidance for these rites.) I sing over the water during this ceremony, and call in my allies to bless it, and then I drink the inspired elixir. Afterward, I meditate and do yoga or some other movement practice. (Again, borrowing from other sources for this technology.)

I do this everyday to draw in the power, and guidance, and courage to be of service to my people. I do this because I know, even in the smallest endeavors, I do nothing. Whether I am coaching or consulting, or doing emotional body work or shamanic integration — I don’t do one bit of the actual work. The only thing I ever do in any of my practices for supporting others to reach their greatest heights is hold space. I hold space for my clients and I hold space for Spirit. That’s all I am ever doing. Or ever going to do.

That’s my authentic truth.

And authenticity is what it is all about. The space I hold is for my clients to be their true authentic self. When we work together, the process is focused (through whatever means or tools Spirit uses my body to wield) solely on peeling back the layers necessary to reveal the authentic person always already inside each one of them. I am not my clients’ leader, or master, or guru. They are!

I am just a catalyst. A door through which my clients pass on their way to realizing their own truth. A door in a house of Spirit.

My clients are among the most powerful people in the world. I concentrate my efforts on supporting badass (self-identifying) women, femme, and non-binary leaders because I believe we need more fully empowered people in these ranks to lead the world right now. But I also work with some brave (self-identifying) men, too! For all of my clients, in all of our work together, we are digging into, uncovering, and integrating their truth. Their authentic and undaunted self.

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See this amazing human, here? This is one of my clients, Layne. (I asked permission to brag about her…). Over the course of our work together, I have watched Layne become one of the most potent humans I know. Sure, she still has some things that she is improving in her life. (Don’t we all, and if we don’t, what are we doing??) But you know what this woman has that so many people in this world struggle with, or can’t seem to muster — authenticity, of course! Through our work together, Layne has developed her authenticity to such a degree that she can now say what she thinks in any situation, she can act from her own truth regardless of external pressures, and she can honour herself in all her relationships. Our work has put her in touch with her own power, and she regularly checks in with that power when making decisions or taking courageous action. She has become (and continues to hone) her own fully realized self. And she doesn’t need a guru!

But let me stop speaking for her and share with you Layne’s own words: “Nathan has been a fantastic guide and ally through this journey called life.  Over the last five years, he has helped me achieve goals, overcome obstacles, and find the joy of living authentically along the way.  A true gem of a human, I’m ever thankful for the work we do together.” (See that, she called me “a human”…)

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Here’s a little more authenticity for you. I never asked to be a life coach, or an emotional body worker, or a shamanic practitioner. (I actually would happily hermit my days away making art and music and poetry.) But I did ask to be of service to my fellow humans. I did ask to be a tool for Spirit to work through me. I did ask to be courageous in being my Most-Me. And in order to fulfill my end of the bargain, in order for me to put myself in position to hold space for Spirit and to hold space for others who want to become their own Most-Me — I have to talk about what I’m here to do. I have to be brave (af!) to stand up and say, “I’m here to help!.”

So I’m going to do that. I’m going to be in your various feeds, and popping up again and again in your notifications, saying I’m here to help. I’m going to be real, and authentic, but I’m not going to be quiet about it. And if that happens to get in your way, then I would gently suggest that you look at why you’re feeling what you’re feeling about it, and/or that you unfriend me or unsubscribe so that you don’t have to be bothered. Because my people, they don’t need a guru, they need themselves — and I’m not going to let anything (not propriety, or coolness, or anyone else’s resistance to me offering my services to others on social media) stop me from boldly standing up and calling out to those who could use my support in getting there. That’s just one of the ways I hold space for my people (and for Spirit) to do what needs doing.

If this speaks to you… If you want help becoming who you are really meant to be… If you need authentic, inspired, compassionate support, but you don’t need a guru — then may I tenderly invite you to follow up with me? Message me, comment below, send me a telegram. Reach out! Or if you know someone who could use my help, will you share this with them? And, if you feel so called, here’s a link you may use to apply to work with me right now: https://centerforemotionaleducation.as.me/manifesting-my-most-me. I’m here for you.

With love and respect.

Be well.

Working with Our Wounds: Integrating Ancestral, Transgenerational, and Early Life Trauma

I’ve had a lot of folks ask me about this lately — so here’s what a lifetime of experience and over a decade of study has taught me about trauma:
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When we experience something traumatic in life — whether we’re still in the womb, in our adult prime, nurturing our own babies, or in our twilight years — there is a psychological marker inserted into our neural processing. Like a wedge, it interrupts and reshapes everything that goes on around it. This modulation of our neuropsychology stays with us, regardless of years of ignoring and pretending that we are not (have not been and will not be) affected. In many cases, even if we have made numerous attempts to heal, to realign, or to augment the effect(s) of the traumatic experience, the results of such addresses are temporary and maintenance-oriented at best. We may find that we can repeatedly heal the symptoms, without ever touching the wound(s).
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From a Shamanic perspective, trauma is engrained energetically into our very beings, and sometimes even results in a split or loss of one’s soul. All the healing in the world can do nothing more than maintain the health of the left over part(s) of us. We feel some relief, we go on in hope, but pretty soon, because the original source of the imbalance is left untouched, the same old symptoms, or even brand new ones begin to spring from it. Like a splinter that was healed over instead of removed, the wound festers, and no address at the level of the surface of the skin can do anything to fix the deeper issue. In order to heal the symptoms of the trauma we have to go to the source.

One way we do this unconsciously is to repeat patterns of behavior that are either part of the cause(s) or part of the result(s) of the trauma. This is how we unknowingly attempt to heal the source of our suffering. We keep having the same painful relationships. We keep going back to the same unhealthy lifestyles. We keep protecting ourselves even when there is no danger. We keep re-experiencing similar trauma to the original event. All because the epicenter of our pain is calling us back, back, back to the place(s) we were injured so that we can truly heal at the source, back to the trauma that caused the wound(s) in the first place.

But there is another way.

If, with a trusted practitioner, we return to that original source; if we go back to the intersection of the trauma, we have an opportunity awaiting us. Instead of continually healing ourselves of the symptoms superficially associated with the wound, we can delve under the triggers, under the skin rashes, under the lack of confidence, and the slew of bad relationships, and the failure to thrive. We can get at the splinter wedged into the center of our life and pull. it. out.
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That’s what my Emotional Body Integration sessions are all about. I spend about 2 hours helping you get in touch with, find the roots of, and address the original trauma. I help you reintegrate the part(s) of you that the trauma split away. And then you get to finally, finally heal your old wounds, drop your old shields, and experience yourself in a new, whole, and empowered way. Problems and issues you never even associated with the traumatic event fall away. Patterns you’ve been beating your head against forever begin to effortlessly unravel. Old proclivities that you forgot or lost after your trauma, return to you like dear friends. And life takes on an aspect that is lighter, brighter, and more fulfilling.
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I’ve had clients discover how a relatively trivial event they’d almost forgotten from childhood was undermining their ability to launch a new business. And once that wound was addressed, they went on to blast off to huge success in their new endeavors. I’ve helped clients retrieve parts of themselves that they had lost touch with for decades. Suddenly they began making art, or writing, or singing again. With another who was experiencing profound shame over the death of a pet, we discovered the shame was linked to a childhood trauma that was assumed healed already. By addressing that old hurt, we made room for more peace in the current grieving process and brought deeper healing to the original trauma.
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Are you suffering? Have you tried everything else already? Are you ready to be done with self-limiting cycles and painful reproductions of your past? That’s what I’m offering, because I know what it’s like, and I don’t want anyone else to have to keep carrying the weight of their old wounds.
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I’m in such a fortunate place in my life because of how this work has healed me. Over the last 13 years, I’ve been on a path of deep exploration and restoration and growth. I’d learned so much about protecting and hiding myself during my upbringing, and from the hurt that was passed on to me from those in my family who came before me. I built shields to keep me safe, but which also kept me in, and kept others at bay. I lost my family, my livelihood, and my will to go on. I repeated patterns of unhealthy relationships built on trying to belong, and trying to help others in order to justify my value. I even dragged myself through a series of several horrendous, high-speed car accidents, over and over again, barely (and lucky to be) walking away. All just to (unconsciously) try to heal myself of the wounds I carried.
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Then I started my training (with CTI) to be a Life Coach in 2006, and began to peel back the leathery layers I had grown over my old hurts. I started making a practice of digging into the places I would normally ignore. Then, as part of my work (with my partner Natalie) to create our line of emotional education tools called Feeleez in 2007, and the research and work we’ve gone on to do with parents since, I learned about emotional development, neuro-emotional dynamics, and rewiring neuro-emotional programming.  Finally, about 6 years ago, I entered into an apprenticeship with Shaman, Marge Hulburt, in Missoula. Through her tutelage and tender but powerful skill in healing, I began the simultaneous process of addressing my latent energetic wounds and learning to help others to do the same. These experiences have not only brought profound changes to my life and allowed me to integrate my past trauma, they have also culminated in empowering me to offer this deep healing to others.
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Part of my life purpose is to ease suffering in the world. I’m on a mission to reach as many people haunted by ancestral, transgenerational, and early life trauma as I possibly can. If you know someone struggling with their past pain, or pain handed down to them from their family, will you share this post with them? And if you, yourself, are struggling with your old wounds, may I gently invite you to get in touch with me. I offer a free “Get the Splinter Out” Strategy Session designed to help you get super clear about what you’re dealing with, what you want instead, and what to do about it.
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Please don’t wait for your same old pattern(s) to knock you into the dirt again. Take this chance to do something different today that will change every day that comes after. Message me or check out the FAQs for more information, and/or follow this link to schedule your complimentary consultation now.
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Because you deserve to be your whole self.
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With love and respect.

 

Be well.

Purpose

Patience masters resolve:
From under the wheels of time,
she pulls a carbon miracle:
Right there
in front of God and Everyone:
Unfailing the wrinkle(s)
of her circumstances;
Biding moments;
Bracing and braving
her tender fortitude.
And then comes the day:
Then comes the instant:
Then comes the action
that she can’t take back:
The leap off the edge
of comfort:
The thing we sometimes call
the opening…

One unfurled,
the bees will have their way
with her;
The season will undo her;
The wind and rain and sun
will all gang up
to destroy her:
But that is not her concern.
She only lives
to courage her bloom through
the opening:
She only lives
to be her true
unbridled self.

Kinda like you and me,
I guess:

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Argue for Your Un-Limitations

If you’re like most humans, you’ve probably spent most of your life either being told and/or telling yourself that you are limited.

You’ve been hearing from both the outside and the in that you can’t do this and you can’t do that (“Can’t you read the siiign?”). You’ve been told that life is hard, life is a struggle, and that you have to overcome nearly insurmountable odds and obstacles in order to achieve the things you want because nothing is free. Even love is (supposedly) a battlefield.

The result is that most of us are so couched in our limitations that we can barely see anything for what it really is, especially ourselves.

Everywhere we go and everything we see and everything we do is colored by the limits through which we’ve been taught to perceive the world and ourselves. From this cloudy perspective the world can look pretty rough, and our station in it can seem like nothing but the space between rocks and hard places. What’s worse – we are often such good owners of our limitations that we believe we can’t even move through this brambled landscape without dragging those weights around with us. And even worse still – these ideas have always been handed to us as though it was a favor we were being offered; as though someone was saddling us with all this doubt, and fear, and limitation in order to “save” us from the brutality of life.

This is why sooooooo many of us have lives full of things that we don’t want, and why so many of us feel unable to whittle away these obstructions in order to have the lives we do want. This is why so many of us simply feel like we can’t. We are so encumbered by these heavy halters that any move, change, or goal seems nearly impossible.

Many of us are so limited that it’s a wonder that anything happens to us at all.

And the most insidious part about all of this is that it’s all a bunch of hogwash. It’s not even really true. And it’s not helping us. Not one iota. We’re not being safely kept from getting “too big for our breeches”. We’re not being awakened from some self-destructive, self-delusional fantasy life. We’re not being sheltered from embarrassing ourselves with our ignorance of how life works.

We’re just being caged.

 So I’ve got a new challenge for us all. Since we’re holding the keys to our own destinies, and since we are what we believe we are, let’s make a promise to each other. Let’s promise to get ourselves out of these prisons of limitation. Let’s promise to leave these bound beliefs behind us and never retrieve them.

And instead of arguing for our limitations and thereby owning them (as the old adage explains), let’s give them up. Let’s argue instead for our limitlessness. Let’s claim and discuss and prattle merrily on about how empowered we are, how easy life flows for us, and how peacefully we move through everything that comes.

Let’s never talk about what’s wrong with us, why we can’t do this or that, or why we’re unable to achieve, be, or have whatever we want – ever again. 

No more complaints. No more fear-mongering (even to ourselves). No more disastrous outlooks. No more foreboding predictions of imminent failure. No more “owning my issues”. No more “saving myself from disappointment”. No more holding ourselves back. No more self-depricating, self-loathing, self-abusive bullsh*t. NO. MORE.

From here on out, let us use our words, both inside and out, exclusively for empowering ourselves and others. Let us dedicate ourselves to looking exclusively at how, where, and when we and our world are unbound. Let us train ourselves to be exclusively aware of all the places and ways that we are, do, and have whatever we want. From here on out, let us argue only for our un-limitations – and sure enough, they’ll be ours.

Want help finding your limitation locks and using your keys to get free? You can hire me as your Life Coach – powerful un-limiting is one my favorite parts of the job!

Be well.

Building the Super You: Focussing Your Vision

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How focussed are you? How well are you able to hone your focus, and concentrate on the minutia of any particular activity or interest? How precise can you be in directing your attention and for how long?

We have a skill set available to us, the potential for which is hardwired into our brain design, giving us the power to focus our attention on whatever we choose, and thereby, draw to us a deeper perception of that which we give our focus. So, for example, if we spend our days focusing our attention on building a physically stronger body, then we wind up perceiving ourselves as stronger on deeper and deeper levels, and it becomes fact. If we take this a step further, there are a number of studies that show people can learn new skills, heal wounds, reverse paralysis, and grow muscle tissue, just by focusing their attention on thinking about performing those same actions. Our focus is not only how we notice things, and take account of the details, but also how we relate to the world, how we experience life, and how we create more of the things we want in our lives.

Dr. Joe Dispenza, the nuero-scientist featured in the films What the Bleep Do We Know? and What If?, and author of the book, Evolve Your Brain, has made a study of the power of human focus and tells of one study in particular in which participants were told they would be learning how to play the piano. One quarter of the participants were shown and given regular time to practice certain scales and other active elements of piano playing. A second quarter was given the same amount of time to play, but no instruction whatsoever. A third section was given information and instruction and then told to mentally rehearse, and for the same amount of time as the others played, this group sat imagining themselves playing. The fourth group did nothing, as they were the control group. The researchers hooked the participants up to MRI scanners so they could tell which parts of the brain were being stimulated by the various activities. They discovered that the second group (the free players) had as little stimulation and brain development as the group that never showed up. But more surprising, and more to the point, the group that just imagined themselves playing showed just as much stimulation and just as much development in the exact same portions of the brain as the group that was actually practicing.   !

The bottom line is, if we give our attention to something, and focus on it regularly and with clear intention, we can create change – change in our perceptions, change in our awareness, even change in our abilities. In fact, depending on the particulars, we can create just as much change with our minds as we can with our hands. But the key is developing the skill of focusing our attention and keeping it focused long enough to have the desired effect. To have the experience, as Dispenza puts it, of timelessness, of being completely absorbed in the thoughts, feelings, and mental experience we are working to cultivate, and repeating that experience regularly.

A simple focus-building practice is doing only one thing at a time and finishing it completely before moving on. It may sound too easy to be good for you, but I challenge you to experiment with it for a day. With every activity that you take on – whether it’s going to the bathroom, brushing your teeth, writing your memoir, or spending a couple hours in the park with your kid – give yourself completely to the activity, and let nothing distract you from it until it is complete enough for the present moment. So this means, no texting while eating, no talking on the phone while driving, no working while playing. You may find it more difficult than you’d like for a daily practice, but giving yourself the opportunity to work with it regularly will build those focus muscles into super focus muscles – the kind that can change your life.

Another fun focus activity (and this is also Dispenza’s idea) is to choose something in the morning – an image, an object, an idea, anything – and hold it in your mind throughout the day watching for how your focus will draw more of the experience of that thing to you. So let’s say you pick “a blue bucket” as the mental image on which to focus, and revisit during the course of your day. Then you just sit back and watch how that blue bucket shows up in your day. If you hold your focus on the image for 10-20 seconds at a time and revisit it more than once during the day, seeing it clearly in your mind, I guarantee you that you will perceive it somewhere else – either a picture, or a real blue bucket, or some mention of a blue bucket in someone’s meandering story you happen to overhear as you pass them on the sidewalk. Don’t believe me? Give it a shot.

Happy focusing!

Be well.

Rediscovering… YOU

In the last post, I discussed the idea that we often are the ones holding us back from being our most magnificent selves. We do this in many different ways, depending largely on methods we were taught to use by our parents, caregivers, siblings, and early friends. We have loop reels of negative self-talk rolling in our heads most of the time, we tend to doubt ourselves regularly, we self-deprecate to our friends, and underestimate our prowess to any audience who’ll listen. But one of the more subtle techniques we frequently use to disempower ourselves or keep us stuck is our own self-awareness.

Now, I know – you’re thinking, “Damn. I thought ‘knowing myself’ was supposed to be a good thing!” And generally speaking, I’d say you are more right than not right about that. Exploring yourself, and discovering the you that you carry with you (often too closely to sense) is a necessary project for almost all humans. Otherwise, we spend too much time bumbling around and being dissatisfied and blaming it all on forces outside us.

However, there is a difference, between knowing yourself and canonizing yourself. To know yourself is to look within, and explore who you are, and how you work, and to be present in your own processes. To canonize yourself is to make a claim (based on “knowing” or not) for how you always already are. To know yourself is to take note of your movements in relationship to the events of your life. To canonize yourself is to write in stone how you will respond in every foreseeable situation, and to manipulate the events of your life to confirm and conform to a static version of yourself.

Knowing yourself has some real advantages, but almost all of them are lost if you only use that knowledge to limit yourself.

You might be holding yourself back with how well you “know” yourself if you’re saying any of the following:

  •  “I always… [get sick, get taken advantage of, etc.]”
  •  “I never… [win, get to do what I want, etc.] “
  •  “I’m just a… [neat freak, addictive personality, etc.]”
  •  “I can’t…”
  •  “I don’t…”
  •  “I won’t…”
  •  Or any other “universal truth” about how you are and always will be, or about the way life works for you.

You in a nut shell…

But, lucky you – today you have brought yourself a brand new opportunity to reacquaint yourself with yourself. That’s right folks, today, you can give yourself a get-out-of-self-free card any time you feel the desire to look at yourself from a fresh perspective. Today, you have been given full license to rediscover yourself – forget your biases, make no assumptions, and take nothing for granted.

Pretend you have no habits and see how long you can get away with it. Act as if you have never met yourself but have always wanted to. Forget everything you ever knew about how you respond to life. Take yourself in for the first time. Give yourself an exclusive interview with You. Experience your being-ness from a place of wonder, and exploration. Be a novice to your own existence. Chances are you’ll discover that there is more to you than you were previously allowing, and more to life than you had yet been willing to allow.

Try it for a day and you will change your thinking about yourself. Practice it everyday and you will change your life.

Be well.

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Want to turn up your experience of ecstasy in life? Pretend you are an alien trying everything on Earth for the very first time. Allow yourself the richness of every sensation in all of your experiences. Be open to everything as a sublime gift. For example — eat a single raisin as slowly as you can; peel a grape; watch a bee pollinate a flower; savor a sunset; wish on the first star you see tonight…

Today, You are a New You

What are you bringing into your life today? What are you drawing toward you with your focus, intention, and emotional state? What are you creating in your immediate future?

Everyday, we are building our stories. Everyday, we are attracting and manifesting the things we focus on, and intend, and feel. Everyday, whether we want to or not, whether we believe it or not, whether we make an effort to do so or let it happen passively, we are creating our lives.

The present we are experiencing today is the result of what we have been making up to this point. Everything you see in your world is the result of your focus and intention in all the days before now. Most likely you have (as most of us) spent the majority of your life in ignorance of this fact, and therefore, have witnessed a lot of your life with wonder and confusion, not realizing from where it has all come.

But today?  Today you know what you are bringing toward you. (And if not, then I am here to tell you.) Today you are being given the opportunity to focus on, intend, and delight in realizing the life you know is right for you.

It exists already inside you. You feel it and know it as if it were your own hand. You always have.

You’ve just been too afraid to believe it.You’ve just been duped by the naysayers preaching into your ear since you were born. You’ve just been deceived about who and what you are, and what you are capable of doing, and how life works. You’ve been lied to. And now, today, you are in the right place and time to say, “No more lies.”

You can be who you are now. You can do what you dream now. You can have your life now. You simply have to believe it. And know it. And feel it in your bones that you are your most magnificent you. You are the creator of your life.

When you believe that – as a beyond-any-shadow-of-a-doubt belief – then, and only then, will you begin to see it. Look where you are and realize that it is all the result of what you have believed until now. And recognize that if you want to see something different, you will have to change what you believe.

Today is when you begin to believe in what you will see next. SO get busy, you’ve got some focussing, and intending, and feeling good about your life that you’ve got to get to. Your time is now!

Be well.

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Want help changing the beliefs that inform what you’re seeing in your life? Get in touch  with me to set up your complimentary strategy session today!

Who Controls YOU?

Are you a puppet? No offense, but seriously, is someone controlling you? Is someone conjuring your life and making you play along? Is someone else writing you in as the unwitting character of your own story?

Well, I’m hoping that by the last one of those questions, you were shouting a resounding, “Noooo!” But put more subtly, I wonder if you might find yourself frighteningly less disagreeable. What I mean is, you may be willing to resist being called a puppet, or being outright controlled by another, but are you giving away your power in other less obvious situations?

Here’s a good way to check – answer these few questions:

  • How did your life get the way it is?
  • How did you get to be the way you are?
  • How did you arrive at your current financial state?
  • If things aren’t the way you’d like, how do/will they change?

If you responded to any of the above questions with any answer other than, “By my choice and intention” or a variation thereof, then you are giving away your power.

How, and to what degree, we take responsibility for our lives and what is showing up in them right now, are fantastic indicators of how much power we currently have. If we are aware that we are responsible for everything, then we are already more powerful. If we own that responsibility and make it our motivation – well then, our power becomes immeasurable.

A place to begin taking more responsibility in your life is by refusing to ever play the victim again.

I don’t mean become a bully, take self-defense classes, or increase your vibrato in adversarial scenarios. I mean stop blaming anyone else for anything that happens to you. Stop saying that the universe doesn’t want you to have something. Stop saying that you “can’t” because of someone else. Stop pointing the finger at coworkers, bosses, spouse, lovers, friends, kids, or strangers. Don’t let them have that power over you.

Take that power back! Own every aspect of your creation. Delight in the surprises that you have made for yourself. Revel in the opportunities for growth, and exploration, and change. Savor the many chances to bite the dust on your own volition, by virtue of your own power, and at the end of your own choices.

Sounds hard, but you begin with one choice. Make the one choice to own your power. And then, just don’t stop using your ability to chose, recognizing that your life is all your choice.

Be well, powerful choosers.