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Owning Your Power: Balancing Old and New Programs

Updated: May 30

Owning your power isn't about dominating others or always having the last word. Sometimes, it means swallowing your pride and walking away. True power is a balanced act, a muscle that needs regular exercise and mindful practice.

Understanding Your Old Programs
We all have ingrained programs or patterns that we've developed over our lives. These are like muscles we've worked repeatedly because they served us in some way. Maybe you’ve always bulldozed through obstacles, getting what you want by sheer force. Or perhaps you’ve been a people-pleaser, bending over backward to make everyone else happy. These programs are not inherently bad. They’ve met your needs in certain situations, but they might not be serving your highest good anymore.

Recognizing the Need for Change
When you start to notice that your old ways are no longer creating the life you want, it's time to develop new muscles. This isn’t about erasing the old you but balancing those established strengths with new, empowering skills. It’s about having access to the full spectrum of who you are and what you can achieve.
Building New Muscles
Imagine you’ve always bulldozed your way to success. Owning your power now means building the muscles that create strong, healthy relationships. This involves skills like listening, understanding, compassion, and empathy. Conversely, if you’ve been a chronic people-pleaser, owning your power means learning to stand up for yourself. It involves saying no, setting boundaries, discovering what you truly want, and overcoming patterns of shame, guilt, or self-blame.

Practical Steps to Building Balance
Identify Your Patterns: Recognize whether you lean more towards bulldozing or people-pleasing. Understanding where you start helps you map out your journey. Example: Sarah realizes she tends to bulldoze in meetings, often talking over colleagues. She identifies this pattern and commits to practicing active listening.

Start Small: If you're new to setting boundaries, don’t jump into a confrontation with a close partner right away. Practice saying no to acquaintances or in less critical situations first. Gradually work up to more significant relationships. Example: John, who struggles with saying no, starts by declining a casual invitation from an acquaintance. He then gradually builds up to setting boundaries with closer friends and family.

Celebrate Small Wins: Each time you say no or listen empathetically, celebrate it. These small victories build confidence and strengthen your new muscles. Example: Every time Emma successfully asserts herself without guilt, she rewards herself with a small treat or a moment of reflection to acknowledge her progress.

Adapt Your Approach: Know your limits. If you’re not ready to handle a big confrontation, it’s okay to walk away. Removing yourself from a situation can be a powerful act of self-care and preservation. Example: Mike finds himself in a heated argument with a colleague. Recognizing his escalating emotions, he chooses to step back and revisit the discussion later, when he feels more composed.

Practice Compassion: Building new muscles takes time. Be compassionate with yourself as you learn and grow. Every step forward is progress.  Example: Lisa reminds herself that personal growth is a journey. She practices self-compassion and acknowledges her incremental improvements, even when they seem small.

The Power Of Walking Away
There is immense power in recognizing when we are in over our heads or not ready for a specific interaction. Walking away isn't a sign of weakness; it's a strategic decision to protect our well-being and give ourselves the time to build the necessary skills. By acknowledging our current limits and stepping back when needed, we create space for growth and prepare ourselves to handle similar situations more effectively in the future. Walking away with intention is a powerful act of self-awareness and self-respect, ensuring we approach our challenges from a place of strength and readiness.
Embracing the Balance
True power comes from a balance of old and new programs. It's about integrating the strengths that served us in the past with new skills that will guide us towards a more empowered and fulfilling future. By recognizing where we are and building our muscles mindfully, we can create a life that reflects our true potential.

Where are you at when it comes to balancing your power? Share in the comments below!


Coach Anna Lang

If you are interested in exploring concepts like the one above, please check out the Permission To Shift HUB ( - where you'll receive weekly live training, downloads, worksheets, prompts and access to a self-guided course that will will walk you step-by-step through the skills you need to work with your unconscious programming. Get unstuck, move through blocks and FINALLY generate the momentum in your life that you are worthy of!
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