It’s time to trust, inspire and guide yourself from within.
Lighthouses have often represented a beacon of light and hope, dotted on remote, rugged and treacherous shorelines to guide us safely home. Amidst global turbulence and uncertainty that has felt so predominant over the last three years, it’s easy to feel untethered and adrift at sea. It often feels safest to search outside ourselves for a lighthouse on the horizon to help us avoid crashing into the rocks and guide us to the proverbial safe haven of a port.
Expert knowledge through experience, expertise and academic qualification has often represented one of these beacons of hope. Important to consider, however, we have to remember that guidance from many sources can be a perspective and often conflicting. Encountering different opinions about where we should be and what we should do can often feel akin to intellectual whiplash. We have to sift through advice, opinions, facts and truths to consider what resonates for us personally and feels most aligned with our knowing and path. Instead of feeling helpless when the inevitable storms of life happen, buffeted about by the ever-changing winds, we can centre into our own intuition and trust ourselves, as this equips us with a compass in hand and a life jacket to wear as we navigate uncertainty and change.
This inner trust is a critical step in embracing our own personal power. In Embrace Your Elegant Power: Your Path to Success with Ease, I look at the difference between power and force in our lives, as they are often confused. Force is dense and seeks dominance over another and often demands a response – a counterforce. Power is expansive and magnetic. Like gravity, it moves things without having to move itself. Force resides outside of us, whereas power is innate within. Power is something we embody, and it’s felt in our bodies rather than emanating from our logic, intellect or emotions. Embodied power is that lighthouse energy, which I believe that we should all centre into for ourselves. As Anne Lamott says, ‘The lighthouse doesn’t run all over the island looking for boats to save, it just stands there shining.’ We can’t make everyone happy and be everything to everyone else. Five years ago, I would have looked like a schizophrenic glow worm, flitting around the island as I sought to do just that, trusting external authorities and opinions before my own. All I really needed to do was tune into my intuition and instinct, trusting myself first before I outsourced my self-worth and knowing as I chased the gold stars of external validation. When we trust ourselves, stand sure in our own worth and unique gifts and know that we are enough now, the only approval we need in life is from ourselves. Not when we have started that business, found a partner, lost weight, delivered a project, been promoted and qualified by meeting some distant milestone. Happiness, self-worth and self-trust is in the present moment, not something to be postponed for a future date.
As we overthink and remain busy on the hamster wheel of life, it’s far easier to follow approved paths of societal validation that run on repeat. A busy mind overrides and drowns out our intuition, gut instinct and knowing. In doing so, we dilute our inner power at the expense of the surest path home for us – our internal guidance – and we feel this lack of trust within our bodies and nervous systems. Everyone else is not more qualified to guide us in our lives than we are. As we step back into and embody our power, this is not an ode to selfishness, instead, it’s a nudge to step out of people-pleasing behaviours, diminishing our gifts and our sense of self to remain small and tame, as we outsource our sense of self-worth to the validation and approval of others. Instead, we need to quieten our minds, tune into this guidance and get grounded in our bodies. That is where our greatest wisdom lies.
We need to be the lighthouse in our own lives, shining brightly for ourselves and others as we start to trust ourselves as we guide ourselves home. By standing sure in your own self-worth and your unique gifts that you have to offer to the world, you never know who you’re inspiring. And that includes yourself.
Nicky Rowbotham is the author of Steps to Finding Flow – Flip the Script on Stress and Embrace Your Elegant Power – Your Path to Success with Ease, available in all good book stores, Amazon, Kindle, most audio formats and at nickyrowbotham.com