I bet it hasn’t been that long since you have found yourself in a discussion about Power…being in your Power, or giving something power, or giving away your power. It peppers our conversations on relationships, careers, movies, politics, books, and self-worth. But what is power really?
Recently I was facing a challenge and felt a bit powerless. I listened to my thoughts, and they weren’t good. And it struck me that the only reason I felt powerless in that moment was because of where I was aiming my attention, on thoughts that were about how I lose instead of win. And by shifting my attention to what I really do want, and a desired outcome, I felt an immediate, and I mean immediate, shift in energy and a lot more space inside of myself.
As I see it, Power is simply directed Attention. It's where we focus. Our attention creates a magnification of something and that magnification looks bigger than it did before we put our attention on it, so it appears to have more power. What's really happening is the magnification of Attention capturing our awareness. Rather than thinking in terms of something having more or less power in our lives, power over us, or us having more power over something, consider the idea that power is simply the focus and strength of our attention, and we have the power to dial it up as we choose.
Here's an example: Let’s say you are experiencing lack—say, not enough money to take a vacation. Your attention is on not having enough money to take a vacation. You are telling yourself that you can't afford to take time off from work, and you don't have the money. You affirm this power through your conversations with friends, and you solidify your position through the self-talk about others taking vacations and not being in the same position.
If you choose to shift your attention to taking the vacation, and focus on aspects of taking the vacation, then that is what begins to magnify in your consciousness. Regardless of whether you have the dollars in your bank account to take the vacation, your attention is on taking the vacation. And when our attention and focus is on something, we have the capacity and the creative tendency to create scenarios and possibilities around that which holds our attention. Our Intention holds a strong foundation and a clear and sustainable space for our desire and drives our attention, and this creates a powerful environment for actualization.
Attention usually has a negative and positive polarity attached to it. The negative polarity in our example here is the lack of money to take a vacation. If we choose to place the focus on the positive, the vacation in this example, then we can align with the plan that will get us there. Creative ideas begin to fill the space that was formerly cluttered with the "I can't" thinking. We CAN create a fund or savings account for it, we CAN choose dates, we CAN research places, and we CAN change our self-talk and conversations with others to the realization of that vacation. All of this creates more space for the actualization of the thing itself.
Personally, I can say I've had a positive experience in the area of producing music, at one point just a lofty fantasy in my mind. One might think you need a lot of financial resources, technical, production and musical skill to produce an album. But my attention was placed on self-producing based on a desire to experience it. Yes, I had moments of focusing on money I didn't feel I had. And, I kept my intention and attention on the steps to create and produce the music, and that created a whole environment and platform in which I could commit, learn, organize, visualize, write, conceptualize, practice, and move through the recording process. Step by step. It was exhilarating. I felt alive and happy creating. I learned more about what works for me and what doesn't. I learned technical skill along the way. I felt musically and graphically creative. I met incredible musicians to collaborate with. I laughed a lot. And I was amazed at the end of it.
Utilizing the mind for focused attention is a very specific choice and involves discipline and commitment just like any undertaking. Power is experienced as Attention is harnessed and we feel powerful when our attention yields sustainable results. One of the key ways to focus our attention is through mapping our plan through time, on a calendar, down to the small details. This makes things easier to manage, and you'd be amazed at how much you can fit into your schedule when you map it wisely. A big part of putting our Attention on what we want is prioritizing, and it follows that if we place our attention on something it will reveal that which it needs to thrive, and it also reveals time-wasters, meaningless activities, and procrastination. Give yourself the great gift of mapping. It will make realizing your dreams so much easier. It might even feel like magic. I remember looking back on a couple of projects I placed attention on, and through mapping they simply flowed day-to-day and after 6 months I was amazed at how much closer I was to my vision. What had felt like an impossible dream was actually coming to fruition, and I learned a great lesson. Just by clarifying and taking the steps needed to complete my vision, it seemed to be happening on its own. And this gave me a very powerful feeling. I felt like I could do whatever I wanted just by placing my attention on it and taking the steps.
Dogs are also great teachers for us in the realm of attention and power. When they are focused on something, their power explodes as they race toward their target. They have no thoughts of “I can’t.” And they don’t get upset when they don’t reach the target because they stay focused. They will come right back and start again, enthusiastically, until they achieve their goal. Here's a tip: spend more time with dogs.
I have also become very aware of the power zappers that suck energy from my vitality and they ALWAYS occur in how I'm thinking about something. How I'm interpreting something either increases or decreases my mental and physical energy and my power. Re-directing my attention gives me instant energy and puts me back on track.
What is holding your attention? What do you choose to place your attention on? How can you experience more of your own power through the attention you harness?
I want to help you ignite your Creative path.