I recently realized something so clearly, and while at first it seemed so simple, so obvious, it was profound.
In my last relationship, I had met a man that I saw as generous beyond measure. His motto was “We, Us, Ours” and all that was his was also mine. We had fused, become one, and he wanted to share it all with me. It felt like an affirmation from the universe that someone finally wanted to share all of who and what they are with me. The abundance of spirit and the material world both collided and coalesced.
I also remember him saying in the beginning that I could do whatever I wanted. I didn’t have to work if I didn’t want to, or wear makeup, or dress a certain way. He also never said he would love me regardless of what I did, but did give me “permission” to be myself, for the most part. Of course, there was disapproval of certain actions, like dancing (which is my first love) but I was “allowed” to do them….At the time, all I heard was I could be Me.
I was sitting enjoying a beer recently when it dawned on me… I don’t need anyone’s permission to Do or Be anything. What I once saw as a generous offering to me was in fact a mirror showing how I didn’t give myself permission to do as I pleased.
I had put my power in someone else’s hands.
By putting that authority in his hands, I allowed him to control everything I did or didn’t do, simply through his approval or disapproval. I wanted to please him, so I gave up what I loved and did what I could that made him happy, which ultimately didn’t work. Why? Because I wasn’t being myself.
I realized I had given over all of my power, and I saw the detrimental effect it was having on me and thus our relationship, so I started taking back my power. I stopped asking for permission to do what I wanted, stopped waiting on his availability to plan my day and my week, and started doing what was best for my well-being. I spent more time with my daughter, got my Oregon licensure, got a job, bought some nice new clothes for myself, started yoga teacher training with my favorite teacher on Maui, and was really on the up and up when he left.
I don’t need anyone’s permission for anything I do or say.
It is a huge switch in my entire being to acknowledge that, to KNOW that. I am thankful for him reflecting that back to me, for giving me the permission I wasn’t giving myself, so that I could realize how I had given up my power.
How often do we give up our power in our daily lives? How often do you not question the status quo just enough to get the results you need? How often do you let things slide to keep the peace? So often, we actually create more peace when we speak our truth from a place of self-edification and knowing.
How often do you NOT give yourself permission to stand up for what you want? At a restaurant, if you ask for something and they don’t give it to you, can you remind them of what you asked for and request it clearly and nicely?
Do you find yourself changing your habits or dress to please someone else? Why? At whose benefit? More importantly, at whose cost? If that person can’t love you as you are, it’s best to let them go.
Now, if someone tells me I can be myself, I can say with all certainty, “You are right.”