Standing in Your Power or Being Pushed Around
I talk a lot about choosing not to engage in conversations or situations that steal your joy or pull you off your positive wavelength. This obviously isn’t easy, and feels extremely counterintuitive when you first start doing it.
It’s particularly hard when it’s happening with someone really close to you, with whom your social graces may have relaxed. It’s much easier to walk away from a stranger with road rage than a member of your close inner circle who has said something hurtful or insensitive.
The number one thing that stops people from being able to disengage in these situations is the feeling that you’re swallowing your words, being pushed around, or, as my best friend put it, “eating a large bowl of shit.”
Yes, it is important that we respect ourselves and speak our minds. We should not let others push us around or bulldoze our desires. And we should definitely stay true to ourselves even when threatened by negative influences.
However, the point is not to argue and get other people to agree with you. The point is to maintain your own truth and sense of peace no matter what is going on around you. There’s a big difference between productive discussion and reactive emotions.
It really comes down to deciding whether your priority is maintaining your joy and continuing to positively manifest your desires, or trying to prove you’re right and teach someone else a lesson.
It’s an internal process. You’ve chosen to live a certain way. You’ve chosen to maintain a certain sense of happiness and peace. You’ve chosen to be a beacon of love and light to those around you. No one can take any of that away from you unless you let them.
The way you give other people power to affect your mood or disrupt your flow is to engage with them on a negative level. To respond when they say something rude. To argue when they have a different point of view. To try to get them to agree with you. To defend yourself when they insult you.
Remembering these key elements will be very helpful in choosing how to respond in a challenging situation (and remember, your response is always a choice):
The only person whose behavior you should be concerned with is you.
You should behave like the kind of person you are (or are trying to be) rather than the kind of person you’re interacting with.
What other people say reflects their own feelings and has nothing to do with you.
It’s helpful to have a few quick responses in your pocket when you’re being tempted to jump off your positive wavelength and engage in some negative behavior. Try one of these next time one of those situations arises:
“Oh, really? What makes you say that?”
You’re not arguing or challenging them, but you’re gently forcing them to explain themselves. This can often help dissolve the tension and give you some time to manage your emotions.
“I hadn’t thought about it like that before.”
This can shut it down immediately...no response required.
“That’s an interesting perspective.”
This gives the illusion that you respect the other person’s point of view and may even want to hear more about it. This is a perfect way to continue giving love even when it’s tough.
Believe me, I know it’s not easy to keep your emotions in check when someone offends or insults you. This is something I have to practice every single day, and I don’t always succeed.
But honestly, the times I’ve been able to avoid reacting have been some of the most liberating experiences of my life. There is a feeling of freedom and absolute joy that comes with being the bigger person, choosing to respond in a mature way, and letting other people’s problems remain theirs.
Standing in your power is choosing to preserve your inner peace no matter what anyone says or does to you -- honoring the unwavering truth that resides deep in your core.
Keeping your mouth shut can be one of the most powerful acts of your life.