I think most people know by now that I fly to Chicago once a month to train leaders and coaches at Accomplishment Coaching. What's super cool is that we just hit the halfway point of a twelve month program. At that point we always take a look at what the next big breakthrough for our participants will be going into the final six months.
It's really cool because it brings up all these conversations around the ground that we've taken and what's next for us. From that place we can distinguish what will actually make the difference for people and the team overall. It’s really just a great time to take inventory of what's needed to really have you reach the goals that you've declared.
So I was having this conversation with someone around a breakthrough that she sees for herself in power. The really interesting thing that I noticed in the conversation was she was declaring that power would give her access to what she wanted in life, but it almost occurred like it was something that she was also scared of or concerned with.
I shared with her, that I used to have a really wacky relationship to power. Based on my own experiences growing up and the household that I grew up in. What I've realized is that I used to equate power with authority or with fear or with power dynamics or with anger. Like this was something that was used or a thing that you do to make yourself powerful.
With that interpretation of power, came the consequence of thinking that in order to be powerful, it meant that the people around me had to become less than or weaker than me. As a result, I was super resistant to relating to myself as a powerful woman and relating to my leadership as powerful.
Through sharing this experience of power that I used to have with this person, we opened up a conversation around what power really means or what power gets to mean for each of us. For her, the definition of power was actually vulnerability and harmony and being willing to be patient in the face of circumstances. It meant being willing to be open and truthful and at times face pain and at times face sadness.
That was just so beautiful to me. It reminded me that too often in our communities, in our companies, in our spheres of influence, we take vulnerability as something that's the opposite of power. We aren’t willing to own it as an access point for authenticity, honesty and integrity. What a cool conversation to be a part of.
So here is a quick little exercise for you. Take a moment, and ask yourself these questions:
What is your definition of power?
Where in your life are you expressing power as you defined it?
Where in your life would things be completely different if you brought that power?
What will you take on today to make that shift?
Feel free to share in the comments below, or if you would like some support in having this conversation email me firstname.lastname@example.org.