Three little words that may change your life – Give yourself permission…

November 28, 2014

I’m kind of a work-aholic (I suppose there really is no way to be kind of a work-aholic) and my wife often tells me to “give yourself permission” to stop or take a break. As I thought about those three little words, I realized not only what good advice she was giving me, but just how important it can be to empower yourself.

Certainly, giving yourself permission to take a break is a good thing and can save you from becoming stressed out or overworked. There are many other things that you need to give yourself permission for that may also be life changing or life enhancing.

chasing goal You need to give yourself permission to fail every now and then. Not every endeavor will result in a win or getting done what you set out to accomplish. Sometimes you just have to tell yourself that it’s OK to fail, as long as you tried your best and you can learn something from the failure. It’s OK to be wrong every now and then, too. For many people that is a hard permission to grant themselves (or to admit to themselves). “Perfection is an illusion. Allow yourself room to make mistakes and permission to be happy regardless of outcome.”  ― Dawn Gluskin

Many people await someone else’s permission to take a chance or try something new, when they could easily just give themselves permission. For some, even allowing a relationship to progress to the point of making a real commitment is something that they have a problem giving themselves permission to do. For some the issue may be be the permission to feel your emotions. “I gave myself permission to feel and experience all of my emotions. In order to do that, I had to stop being afraid to feel. In order to do that, I taught myself to believe that no matter what I felt or what happened when I felt it, I would be okay.” – Iyanla Vanzant

Have you given yourself permission to feel and experience your emotions, or do you stifle them while you seek someone remorsefulelse to give you permission? Let me string together two quotes – “Don’t look for society to give you permission to be yourself.” ― Steve Maraboli and “When you are open to others, you give permission to those around you to be open to you.” ― Bryant McGill. So, give yourself permission to be you and to be open about yourself and your feelings. Others will open up to you.

We often hear about some organization or cause being empowering for the people involved; but, that is waiting for some outside group or event to give you permission, to empower you. Rather, have the confidence in yourself to give yourself the permissions that you think you need. Empower yourself. “Give yourself permission to get the most out of your life.” – Sandra Lee

What things are you waiting for permission to do in your life? Where do you think that permission is going to come from? cheering upYou can’t call your mom and ask for permission to fall in love. You have to give yourself that permission. Only you can grant yourself permission to stop grieving over a loss and move on with life. And, only you can give yourself permission to change your own life. “Dream and give yourself permission to envision a You that you can choose to be.” – Joy Page

First, believe in yourself…

July 31, 2014

“If you don’t believe in yourself, who will?” – seen in the comic strip Nancy.

Every now and then a daily comic strip from the paper will strike a chord with me; admittedly that was more unicornoften when the Calvin and Hobbs strip was a daily feature, but it still happens. In this strip Nancy and her Aunt Fritz were discussing the disappearance of Unicorns and Nancy offered that bit of pithy insight into what might have happened to them. They didn’t even believe in themselves, so they vanished from the earth.

The really important message in Nancy’s little saying is that your success, your breakthrough in life, your ability to cope with what life throws at you, your ticket to happiness begins with your belief in yourself. Others will not get or develop a sense of you as a person that they want to know and be around, if you can’t even develop that same feeling about yourself. I’ve written about that here in many different posts (so read backwards through my posts until you find them all). You have to like you first; then you can start liking others and they can like you back. Feel free to substitute the word love in that last sentence.cheering up

Now, I will admit that there are people who sometime may have more faith and confidence you than you have in yourself. Those are your personal “cheerleaders” and they are an important reinforcement for the belief that you must have in yourself. Some of these people may occasionally take on very aggressive roles similar to the trainers that you see on the TV reality programs such as “The Biggest Loser”. They may push or cajole you towards success; sometimes seeming harsh in their entreats, but always on your side and cheering you on.

It’s great if you have those supporters in your corner; but, the fact remains that it is you who must believe; you who must know that you can achieve the goal; you who be willing to push beyond your old, self-imposed limits to reach new heights. You must believe in yourself. After a while, if you don’t believe in yourself, those cheerleaders will turn into sympathizers or worse. People will cheer forever for the person that they think will keep trying forever; but they will leave the stands and go home on the person who quits and admits defeat in front of them. So, like the Unicorns, who may not have believed in themselves as Nancy put it; you will disappear.

reaching goalYou must believe that you make a difference, that your dreams and aspirations are worthwhile and that, if you work hard enough and long enough, you will achieve them. You must believe in you first. Others, who believe in you, too, will follow. I’ve met many people in my journey through life who struggled with believing in themselves. Some had been beaten down by bullies in their life (sometimes parents) who tried to convince them that they weren’t worth anything. Once they found a way to like themselves and accept who they are, as they are; they next found the strength to stand up and say, “I believe in me and there’s nothing that can stop me now.” They are a joy to watch and fun to be around, because they are finally empowered to be all that they could have been all along.

If you’ve already “jumped that shark” and feel good about yourself and empowered to be successful, reachhelping hand back and grasp the hand of someone you might know who is still trembling in fear of failure and help them get to that place, too. There’s nothing wrong with sharing some of the power by being able to say,” I believe in me and I believe in you, too.” Help them get to that state of belief in themselves that feeds upon itself and fuels success.

Have a great, empowered day!