Know Your Power | Phenomenal Image

You Are So Capable of Personal Success!

Let that statement sink in for a moment… 

How do you feel about that statement?  Do you believe it?

You may even say that you know that already.  But do you live it? 

In public, you may look and act fierce, confident and on point.  But when you’re alone, you may feel totally inadequate and you wonder whether you can ever really be successful.

Feeling overpowered by such thoughts can make you feel like you’re unworthy of success. You may feel like your dreams may never come true.

You can achieve your success by taking intentional action to reach your goals and dreams. There’s no one like you in the world and your ideas are unique. The world needs to hear your voice – Share your ideas and go after what you want!

But here’s the thing…

You Have to Stop Pretending You Must Be Perfect

You’re not perfect – and it’s ok.

Others may appear as if they are flawless, but the truth is that all humans are imperfect.

There are so many people who put off pursuing their dreams because they want to wait until everything is “picture-perfect”.

l was one of them. 

There were so many opportunities I missed because I sought perfection in an imperfect world. I equated my value to who I perceived the world thought I should be.

Procrastination is disastrous to your future success!

Waiting for the perfect scenario before you go after that promotion at work, pursue the degree or certification or put off writing that novel only increases the likelihood that you will not achieve the thing you’re waiting for.

And, ignoring the changes you need to make in your life until things are impeccable tend to lower your self-esteem because you don’t see yourself as valuable enough to make the changes now.

The process of esteeming yourself means that you’re setting a higher value on your happiness and creating the life you deserve. If you think you’re undeserving, then your needs become an afterthought.

Instead of waiting for everything to be flawless before you spread your wings and fly, begin to create the life you want now.

Start Now:

  • Make a decision to believe in yourself.  Only you can take responsibility for your dignity.
  • Acknowledge the success you’ve already achieved.  It’s okay to showcase your talents, promote your abilities and foster your potential.  How else will others know?  Write them down as you identify them and keep the list as a sort of victory journal.
  • Refer to your journal when you lose focus of what you want to accomplish and when you feel self-doubt. Being reminded of your past successes help you recharge your batteries and gain a sense of purpose.
  • Recognize you faults and focus on your positive traits.   Everyone has a weakness.  Your imperfection may lead you to your purpose because it may motivate you think of a new way to overcome a situation. Your faults allow you to strategize how you can reach your goals in spite of it.
  • You may have to take some risks in the path to success. Sometimes it takes a lot of self-confidence to face obstacles head-on (Fear of the unknown is always difficult to navigate).

Your future is at stake and you only have to believe in yourself to create the future you want and deserve.

You Must Master the Art of Forgiveness

Forgiveness is something that doesn’t come easy for most of us and we have to constantly and intentionally work at forgiving others and ourselves.

True forgiveness is a challenge that takes action. Demonstrating mercy requires that you have a strong desire for closure and be able to set aside any emotional pain you may feel. It’s important that you move on.

Some people need guidance to develop the skill of forgiveness. Even if the person you need to forgive won’t meet with you nor accept your forgiveness, it’s essential that you go the action to forgive and be satisfied with forgiving him/her.

Why You Must Forgive

The act of forgiving brings many benefits (Mayo Clinic)* including:

  • Healthier relationships
  • Improved mental health
  • Less anxiety, stress and hostility
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Fewer symptoms of depression
  • A stronger immune system
  • Improved heart health
  • Improved self-esteem

Releasing anger and resentment can provide a unique perspective of yourself and could be the catalyst for your success.

So how can I learn to forgive?

Holding on to grudges can hold you back and keep you from focusing on your goals. Developing empathy for the other person is one way you can begin to forgive.

Picture yourself in the shoes of the offending person.  Think about what s/he might be experiencing in his or her life. The negative factors they’re dealing with might be similar to a situation you may have gone through and you can relate the anger and frustration that goes along with it.

Perhaps the motivation for the hurt someone inflicted on you wasn’t meant to hurt you – but the act occurred due to what the other person was going through. Sometimes hurting people hurt others.  It’s also possible that s/he wasn’t aware you were offended.

When you look at the offense this way, it may become easier to forgive.

But what do you do if the person intentionally hurts you?

Let’s face it.  There are people who hurt you simply because they want to.

It’s hard to comprehend, but there are some people who just act plain evil and enjoy inflicting pain on others.  It could be the coworker who takes credit for something you did – or the family member who demeans you despite you’re expressing how badly it makes you feel.

Forgiving doesn’t mean that you condone the offense.  Forgiving provides a process for you to take control of your emotions as a result of the infraction, bring closure to the situation and move on with enjoying your life.   Forgiveness brings a level of personal satisfaction and peace in your life.

When the Offender is You

Many times, we’re less forgiving of ourselves than others. When you hold onto disappointments, resentments and are overly critical of mistakes you make, you build a wall that makes it virtually impossible to reach the success you desire.

It goes back to understanding that you’re not perfect and you will make mistakes.  Find the lesson in the situation, make it right (if possible) and resolve that with your new wisdom, you’ll do better next time. Be grateful that you were able to grow from the experience.  Remember, what doesn’t kill you, makes your stronger.

If you are having a hard time forgiving someone and just can’t reach that point, no worries.  Get help through a therapist or other professional who can offer the guidance you need. Keeping a journal of your feelings can also be helpful for letting go of an old hurt that’s holding you back.

Learn to Tame This Dynamic Duo

Self-talk and your subconscious mind frequently link forces that threaten to destroy your confidence and hope for a successful future success. Self-talk is very powerful to our conscious mind, and can be formidable in the subconscious.

Learning how to communicate with the subconscious mind can turn the influence of self-talk into vibrant energy that can transform your ability to achieve meet your goals.

As your conscious mind processes your thoughts, choices and actions, your subconscious mind is storing those same thoughts, choices and actions.

Your conscious actions and thoughts can be opened again and flood your mind with whatever you have stored. It can fill you with self-doubt – or spur you on to greatness – depending on what you’ve been feeding it.

When you criticize yourself, you are planting negative thoughts in your subconscious. The good news is that it’s possible to reprogram your subconscious mind and replace those negative thoughts with positives.

Keep in mind that it’s going to take a lot of Atta’ girls to get rid of a single fragment of criticism. Criticizing yourself can become a habit that’s difficult to break, but you can make it happen.

One way to tame the negative monster is to practice positive self-talk.  This requires becoming aware of when you criticize yourself.  Whenever you consciously criticize yourself, immediately replace those thoughts with positive ones.

You must also examine the reasons why you’re telling yourself you can’t succeed.  What sparks your subconscious to dig up old disappointments and mistakes? Don’t allow these triggers to sabotage your current efforts to thrive.

Shifting your thought processes from negative to positive is a marathon, not a sprint. And it will take resolve to rid your subconscious mind of all the negative ways you’ve criticized yourself.

You can begin your self-recovery through affirmations.  When you feel anxious by your thoughts, try repeating a mantra to calm you. When I am feeling anxious, I recite a bible verse, “God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind” (2 Tim. 1:7 KJV)

Visualization is also a good technique for training your subconscious mind to become more positive. Think of it as making a great movie about your path to success.  Focus on that great movie and provide more details as you go along.

Make sure you add details about your rise to success.  Include how you will feel and your reaction when you achieve your goal.

In time, the monster inside your subconscious mind can transform into a loving friend that nurtures you rather than cripple you.

You Help Form Others’ Opinions of You When You Do This

Earlier we discussed that we internalize self-doubt when we degrade ourselves with negative self-talk and feelings of inferiority.

It’s common to make fun of yourself; especially when you’re afraid.  However, when you fill yourself with thoughts of not being good enough, you may also convince others to form low opinions of your self-worth.

Comedians do it all the time.

We laugh at their jokes, but in the recesses of our mind, we may believe there is a little bit of truth. However, self-criticism goes far deeper than a comedian.

When others have the impression that you don’t believe in yourself, they may come to a conclusion that what you’re saying is true. Your self-worth is further damaged when they mirror your feelings about yourself.

This can potentially wreak chaos in your life. Your boss, coworkers, spouse and friends may cease to believe in your talent and begin to demonstrate that doubt in their actions.  You could miss out on promotions and other good things that otherwise would have come your way.

Those closest to you may turn away due to all the negativity you hold about yourself. Frankly, it makes people uncomfortable, and rather than look for ways to make you feel better about yourself, they may avoid you.

Now that doesn’t mean you have to inflate your ego by singing your praises to others. That’s a turn-off too. When you truly believe in yourself, others will see your confidence through your actions.

Try to catch yourself when you begin to degrade your abilities. Replace those thoughts (and words) with positive affirmations and let others see rather than hear what you’re all about.

How Much Time Have You Wasted, Anyway?

It was once said that “Time waits for no one”.  You can never regain the time wasted in self-doubt.  But you can begin take action now to achieve your dreams and stop punishing yourself.

Get rid of the shame that’s limiting your success. Whether that is through people who use shame to control others or you believe you’re unworthy of happiness.  Try replacing your thoughts with positive thoughts.  It will take some work, but you can do it.

About those who Constantly Criticize You

Any positive image of yourself can be damaged by others who constantly criticize you.  Don’t allow others to push their negativity on you. You can nip this, but telling the person they do not have permission to talk to you like that. 

Your image can also be crushed by your own negative self-talk. I challenge you to refute those critical voices.

When I find myself feeling weighed down by negative comments, I try to nip it in the bud.  What works for me is that I challenge the comments. Does this comment hold any merit?  What evidence supports this comment/thought as true?  If I cannot find any supporting evidence (at least 3) I conclude that the statement is a lie and dismiss it.  Sometimes I’ll say it to myself or I state the following out loud: “That’s a lie.  I live in truth.  The truth shall make me free.” 

Prove to yourself that you’re worthy of success by working toward goals you want to pursue. It doesn’t have to be grandiose dreams of success. It could simply be a hobby that you want to excel, such as increasing your skill in your favorite game.

Every small success will elevate your self-worth. And, pride will take the place of the disgrace that’s kept you from achieving your dreams.

You’ll be so busy focusing your time and energy toward achieving your goals that you won’t have time for negative thoughts. You must also learn how to surround yourself with positive people rather than those who would feed you with negative thoughts about yourself.

What Language Does Your Body Speak?

Think about the language you’re presenting to the world. Even your body language can make a difference in the way you see yourself. The way you carry yourself when walking, sitting or dealing with others sends a powerful message.

Slumping as you walk or sit, hanging your head and not looking someone in the eye when you’re speaking, crossing your arms across your chest and speaking in a voice that indicates weakness can all hamper your image to the outside world – and yourself.

Take the necessary steps to help you believe in what you can accomplish and stop punishing yourself for all the flaws you think you have and the mistakes you’ve made. Believe that you’re worthy of achieving your dreams now – and you will.

Most People Have Yet to Uncovered Their Personal Gifts

Do you know everything you’re capable of accomplishing? In fact, you may not have even scratched the surface! Most people struggle with uncovering their personal gifts and using their gifts to create success for themselves.

You may feel limited by what others have told you about yourself. Teachers, parents and other influential persons in your life may have inadvertently restricted you by judging your capabilities from only observing or testing.

Although well-meaning, these “persons of authority” don’t usually dig deep enough to set you on a path where you feel you’re capable of achieving your career goals.  

Unless you begin to discover your unique personal gifts, you’ll never know your capabilities.  

It may also be worth noting that your habits may become talents. Whether you want to write, play a musical instrument, or start a business, forming habits can help get you to closer to achieving your dreams.

What’s Holding You Back?

The only obstacles that can hold you back are those you’ve placed (and allowed to be placed) on yourself.  Overcoming these barriers will require perseverance, determination and intention.  And, you must begin to prioritize on the steps that are going to get you to where you want to be.

Each step requires focus and an openness to learn.  It is also important to note that as you begin to take the steps toward achieving your goals, the outcome may not work out as expected.  Keep an open mind and consider that you’ll at least be taken to a place that may provide guidance regarding your next steps.

Don’t Forget to Refer to These

It’s essential that you have specific core values and goals in your life. Never violate these values to get what you want. Compromising your values will keep you seeking satisfaction and happiness with what you’ve accomplished. 

To find clues about your true mission in life, think about the activities you enjoy most.   What activities come naturally to you?  Your innate skills are abilities you can utilize to bring success into your life.   

Be honest. Think about what you might regret not pursuing later in life and the challenges you’ve already overcome. Use these thoughts as part of your mission in life. After you identify your true mission, it will be easier to reveal your gifts.

When Should You Deserve Good Things?

It’s easy to feel as if you’re unworthy of any good things that come your way when you feel like a failure.  Deserving good is not conditional on whether you’re a success or failure.  You deserve goodness all the time – not only when you are successful.

When you have a strong sense of purpose and vision, you understand that you’re worthy of all the success that can come your way. You cannot allow the past decide how you plan your life – Have a plan and commit to it.

Truly successful and most deserving people never give up on their commitment.  Successful people believe they deserve the success they’ve realized.   They refuse to allow biases from themselves nor others wreck their chance of success. 

Successful people also understand that spiritual success and material success are mutual.  Without both types of success, each becomes ineffectual. Many people lack insight into this concept of success.   However, when you are spiritually healthy, you bring a consciousness into your life that helps you understand the role of material things you want and need.

Don’t Be Scared

When you give into thoughts that you are undeserving, you connect to the fear that you just don’t have what it takes to reach the level of success of peers. You become afraid of success.   Unless you identify these fears and overcome them, you may not accomplish what you set out to do in life.

Your Common Fears Hit List

The challenge to be successful involves various fears that get in the way. Unless you identify these fears and conquer them, you may have difficulty achieving what you set out to do in life.  Here are some common fears that undermine your efforts:

Fear of failure.  You may struggle with the fear that your goals are not working out the way you expected.  You may have low self-confidence and think that you simply cannot achieve your career goals.  Or, you may self-sabotage in the form of anxiety or procrastination by failing to follow-through on your goals.  Alternatively, you may not even try if you do not feel like you cannot perform perfectly.  

You must be intentional.  You can overcome the fear of failure by deciding to put those failures behind you and take steps to find future success.  A way to overcome the fear of failure is think about everything that can go wrong and then plan what you will do if the scenario happens.

You can also think positive by visualizing you achieving your goal.  What does that success look like?  How does that achievement feel?  

One last way you can overcome the fear of failure is by simply planning for failure.   How will you identify failure of your goal?  What are your alternatives?   Will you have a debriefing (Review what went wrong, what lessons you learned, what can you do differently next time)?

It’s particularly difficult to overcome this fear if you’ve tried before and failed.  However, when you set a plan on how to overcome your failure, you will have overcome one of the main fears that are holding you back.  And you’ve already increased your odds of success. 

Fear of the Unknown.  A sibling of the fear of failure, this type of dread has to do with feeling anxiety toward venturing from your comfort zone.  Fear of the unknown may present itself in the form of being afraid of what others think or feeling out of sorts about a new situation or place. Preparation (mental and physical) helps to allay this fear; including preparing for the career success you deserve.

Practicing good habits, such as being on time, organized, getting enough sleep, eating healthy and exercise can help you feel better about facing the unknown. Good habits can help to nurture you past the times you may feel self-doubt. When your mind is clear and your body is functioning at full force, you are capable of most anything.

Change is inevitable.  There’s no avoiding it.  Since we have to experience change, we must find a way to accept it.  Take emotion out of the equation.  Pretend you are a secret agent and you were assigned a mission to explore.  You were sent not to judge the change, but to explore.  You are only to provide the facts and not opinions. That will require you to be open minded and unbiased.  When you remove emotions, change is easier to accept.

Looking outside the box may also help you overcome the fear of the unknown.   What sources of information do you refer to relative to changes that occur in your circle of influence?  Is it possible that alternative sources may offer a fresh perspective? 

Are you afraid of what others think? Follow your own heart and do what you need to do to reach the goals you set for yourself. When you strive to please others over yourself, you become co-dependent and that can be detrimental to you ever achieving personal satisfaction and success.

Do you worry about what others think?

You don’t need approval from others to realize your dreams and have personal satisfaction about your life. Not everyone will agree with the paths you take for your career success.

Everyone wants to be admired, but truly successful people don’t let it stand in the way of their own success. When you’re working toward something you believe in, others’ opinions about you fade away.

Each goal you achieve helps you become more satisfied with the direction you’re going. As you continue to realize your ambitions, your need for approval becomes less important.

People pleasers are those who depend on others to validate their success.   It’s critical for people pleasers to impress everyone so they can gain the praise they need to feel worthy.

If you’re a people pleaser, it’s essential you take responsibility for your life.  Stop depending on the admiration and love of others to make you feel whole.  You’re already whole.  If you don’t, you’re limiting yourself and you’re likely to miss out on what life has to offer.

Continuing to depend on others for your happiness will leave you empty and insecure. These feelings prevent you from enjoying your life and creating good memories.

What if you never get the approval from others that you think you need and deserve? Then what?  When you believe in yourself, it doesn’t matter what others think.

You can run yourself ragged trying to please others.  By the way, you will never be able to please everyone.  Breaking your habit of needing the approval of others will allow you to focus on you your purpose. You’ll become more relaxed and enjoy your relationships with others without feeling like you need to “buy” their approval.  And, when you’re happy with yourself, you’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish.

Fear of Success. This type of anxiety actually mimics fear of the unknown.  When you succeed, things will definitely change.  What was status quo in your life will no longer exist.  And besides, it’s lonely at the top, right?

There is a bible verse that comes to mind: “…For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required; and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more” (Luke 12:48 KJV).  That means you will most likely have more responsibility, greater accountability and work harder. 

Whoa, you didn’t sign up for that!

It may mean that your success may contradict the stereotypes you grew up with in the media:  Women are not supposed be powerful, they’re supposed to be pretty (as if powerful women cannot be pretty; or does it even matter?), nurture and support.  Even if we don’t espouse to the stereotype, that is a barrier that women may have to deal with in the workplace, in relationships and within yourself.

You may unknowingly self-sabotage your success.   

To overcome this type of fear, you must first be aware of your fear of success.   Does it seem like something always happen when you get to a certain point toward achieving your goal?   Do you find yourself procrastinating or you somehow become distracted by something else?

If your answers to these questions are yes, you very well may be afraid to succeed.  Understanding your reasons for being afraid to succeed can offer insight.  Ask yourself, what pay-off do you receive if you don’t succeed?  What do you get to avoid?  

Once you understand the reasons for being afraid to succeed, challenge each reason.  For example, let’s say you avoid asking for a promotion at work, and you discover the reason you fear getting the promotion is because rumor has it that you will have to work more hours and you have a family to raise.  Do you know whether the statement is true?  Have you considered the source of the rumor?   What is his/her work ethic?   Does their work ethic match yours?  Does the job description state a required number of hours?  Is there someone you can inquire about the job details?

Let’s say the rumor was true and you may have to work more, is there any way that you can compromise?  Is that the only route to being promoted?  What other opportunities exist at your company?  

Changing your mindset from thinking about the unknown and instead thinking “how” you can make success work for you can alleviate some of the fear of the unknown.

You can also practice visioning what success looks like and how you can handle it.   Planning what you will do when you become successful can squash some of the fear.

You may also ask yourself, “What are the benefits of facing success versus staying at the same job? Can you afford to stay the same?”  

Using the previous illustration, being promoted may require longer hours, but this may be temporary as I learn the new job and develop my system. The benefits of being promoted is increased salary, finding whether the new job is the right fit for me, learning new things, moving closer to my dream career and taking control of my career. 

If I stay where I’m at, I will most likely get the annual minimal salary increase, have strong work relationships, and be seen as dependable (which may demonstrate that I’m not interested in leadership positions).     

Another way to overcome the fear of success is to think positive about change.  Change can be a good thing – New opportunities, new adventures, fresh perspectives; a time for renewal.  Even if you were to fail (which I highly doubt you would), you’ve would have learned about what not to do

I once heard fear described as “false evidence appearing real.” We’ve discussed how fear of failure, fear of the unknown and fear of success is erroneous data about change, your future and your success. Take steps to break free and give yourself the life you need and desire.

Each of Us Are Courageous and Intimidated

You don’t need to be the king of the jungle to see yourself as courageous. And you don’t need to think of yourself as a scared little mouse to feel intimidated. But you can muster all the courage you need when necessary and take fear with a grain of salt.

Living life on your own terms presents lots of opportunities to prove your bravery.  And, life also provides many daunting experiences that may make you want to throw in the towel.

Courage is willpower to face challenging situations head-on.  This form of courage, consisting of strategy, planning and wisdom, will see you through your trials and tribulations and make you a better person. 

The word courage contains the root, cou, which means “heart” in French. You can have strength in your heart to counteract some of the most pressing problems that come your way.

For example, Mother Teresa was the exemplary of courage using love and compassion for others to meet incredible disasters in the world. But courage also has the word, rage, embedded in it.

Rage can also give us power to meet challenges. It helps to sustain and energize our drive to become successful and overcome tremendous odds. Constructive anger or rage means that you’re using your anger to generate the courage you need to get things done and make things happen (And not to hold grudges or vendettas).

While it takes courage to live your life as you want, it also takes a great amount of courage to think of others and allow yourself to love (and be loved) and commit to another person. Moving past fears to move ahead doesn’t mean we don’t have fear – only that we’ve conquered it.

Use courage to face your fears for what they are and to follow through with your plans and dreams.

Liquid courage (alcohol) may temporarily make a person feel like they could conquer the world, but in time that type of courage will take a severe downturn and destroy any hopes of success.

Intimidation is courage’s worst enemy. It can rob you of your courage and keep you mired in the past or afraid of taking brave steps to make your dreams happen and to live the life you deserve.

Everyone has a choice to make when intimidated by people or circumstances; either flight or fight.  You can choose to curl up in a fetal position and give up or you can stand and fight.  Endure and proceed rather than give in to the intimidation.

Intimidation can also come from within. If you’ve given in to intimidation as a child or in other areas of your life, it may be difficult to see yourself as a courageous person.

For myself, I lean on my faith in Christ.  When I feel especially fearful, I recite the following bible verse: “God did not give me a spirit of fear, but of power, love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7 KJV).  So, you may need to dig deep to find that lion-type of courage and find quotes, scriptures to inspire you.

It truly takes an inordinate amount of courage to live a life of creativity and productivity.  It’s not always easy to have the courage to follow your dreams. But, as long as you believe in yourself and your faith, you can tap into that courage to achieve your dreams.

I have a free report that I would love for you to have.  It offers more insight on what makes you powerful.  It’s called What Makes You You. You can pick it up here. 

*Credits: GIPHY

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