A Monthly Wellness Column
By Amie Mignatti
Step Into Your Power
Have you ever asked yourself what your strengths are? Not how strong you are or what you can do physically, but what your actual strengths are? If we sit down and make a list of the things we are good at – areas in which we shine – we may surprise ourselves. Strengths come in many different forms and have value in all sorts of situations.
Strengths can range from being super organized to remaining calm when the shit hits the fan. A strength can be the ability to inspire others, a positive attitude, reaching out to a friend in a time of need– the list goes on and on and on. I’d like to invite you to take some time out and sit down and list what your strengths are; not how others perceive you, but how you view yourself. Give yourself a good twenty minutes just to brainstorm and write whatever comes to your mind. You will be amazed at how much you have within you.
Once you have defined your strengths, look at the areas in your life where you use these, and where you don’t. In what part of your life do you feel weak, not heard or seen, uncertain, and scared of what others think? Write those down, too. Now, once you have your two lists, start to see where you can apply your strengths to an area of your life where you don’t feel your best. You may notice that in some areas of your life you’ve let your boundaries down and have allowed yourself to be the victim or are being taken advantage of. How can you build them (and yourself) back up? How can you step in the power that you have, that you own and that you know in ALL areas of your life?
You’ll find that you may set stricter boundaries for yourself than you did before. In order for us to stay within our own personal power, we must have clearly defined boundaries for ourselves. For each and every person in our lives, we need to know what is acceptable and what is not. Once we are able to define this, then our power and our strengths will not slip so easily from us. We know what we want, what we are willing to take on and what we have to give. This clarity is our greatest power.
It’s also important to know when to ask for help, when to not take on too much, and when to say no. These are all parts of defining our personal boundaries and knowing where we stand. Reaching out is not a weakness, even though it can sometimes be seen as such in this “overachiever mom” culture. Reaching out is being vulnerable, is being honest, is being real, and is a great strength. Strength does not mean doing everything alone, but rather opening up to the community and supporting each other.
It is within our own limitations that we often find the greatest resources. If we are honest about what we cannot do, and we speak out about it, we are bound to find someone who can help us. By being honest with ourselves and respecting our limitations, we become even stronger. No one is Superwoman, nor should she be. We were all given gifts, talents, and strengths that are different, and this means that we can be ourselves in a rich and diverse community that uplifts and supports one and other.
Amie Mignatti is committed to bringing children and adults into the outdoors, so that they can learn new skills, feel at home in nature, and be in a space where they can connect more deeply with themselves. She is confident that more time spent outdoors can lead to a healthier and calmer life, a more positive attitude and a never ending sense of wonder. She is happiest when she and her family are in the forest around the campfire with good friends. She leads courses and retreats for all ages. http://www.amiemignatti.com