I’m a huge advocate for not saying sorry unless I really do need to apologize for something.
Which is why I was shocked at myself when I heard the words “I’m sorry” slip out from between my lips a few days ago. I was walking past the end of a supermarket shopping aisle and found myself uttering those words as I let a man pass in front of me when we were both blocking one another’s passage.
There was nothing to be ‘sorry’ for, it wasn’t anybody’s fault. But I apologised; and he continued walking, without saying anything. So what’s wrong with saying ‘sorry’, I hear you say? Isn’t that just being polite? I’m afraid it isn’t. When we defer to apologies and ‘sorry’, when a simple ‘excuse me’ will do, it begins to insidiously chip away at our personal power and individual energy fields.
Upon slightly unpacking the reasons behind our collective (often female) inclination to do this, we can see a tendency towards the need to make ourselves smaller and diminish ourselves. When there’s nothing to apologize for and we still apologize, what does this say, truly? It’s a contraction of energy – rather than an expansion or ‘holding’ of our energy and our right to take up space in the world.
This moment in time had me thinking about the other under-the-radar ways that we, as women, give our power away.
Here are 3 ways we give our power away and how to plug the leaks:
1. Not respecting our own boundaries.
Every time we say yes when we mean no. Every time we lie about how we’re feeling, to manipulate a situation or hide from the truth; we diminish our spirit, and begin to have less and less faith and confidence in our ability to have our own backs.
When we go to the event that we really don’t want to (in our heart of hearts) go to. When we know we don’t want to be in the presence of a particular person or situation, but we trudge along anyway out of obligation.
When we make a promise to ourselves that we do not (ever) keep.
All of this personal boundary over-stepping siphons our energetic integrity over time, and reduces our personal power considerably. It may not appear to be such an issue to do it ONCE, but collectively, all of those little decisions against ourselves really add up.
How to plug this leak: Be true to your feelings and faithfully have your own back. Align with what feels good and true to YOU, and follow that feeling. Do not diminish or shape shift for other people’s comfort.
2. Unconscious Energy Leaks.
As women we often pride ourselves on our ability to multi-task, but placing our attention on and ‘thinking’ about many different situations, people and circumstances at once, scatters our energy far and wide.
These fragments of our energy are then working away and siphoning off our energy in the background of our lives. It sucks away at our reserves unconsciously, exhausting and depleting our energy, often without us realizing.
It’s like having too many tabs open on your computer – all playing videos at once. Draining the battery and creating excessive noise. What chaos!
Projecting our thoughts and energy into the worlds of many, takes energy away from what we’re doing in the present.
How to plug this leak: Call all of your energy back to you. You can do this by simply by commanding it back. Use a simple phrase such as, “I call all of my energy back to me now”, will do. Become conscious when you’re throwing your focus and attention in too many directions and practice presence by dropping into your body and anchoring your focus within your heart or womb space.
3. Seeking the opinions of others, before seeking our own.
It’s often a default behavior for many women – calling a friend when something arises and seeking their thoughts and opinions straight away. Trust me, I’ve done it in the past. A lot! We bond over the mulling of a situation, feeling like this is quality time with our kindreds.
It can also serve as a sneaky way to give partial responsibility over to someone else for a decision, which helps prevent you from needing to fully own the consequences. It is a recipe for personal energetic depletion.
When we perpetually give our personal sovereignty away in this sneaky way, we send the signal to our subconscious that the wisdom within us, our intuition and capacity to make the best decisions for US, is not to be trusted. And this seriously depletes our own energetic potency.
How to plug this leak: Before immediately going to a friend or trusted confidante with a quandary or issue – FEEL into your own discernment about the situation. Truly be conscious and know how you feel about it from as many angles as possible.
Journal it out, meditate on it, or quietly tune in to it using your body as your indicator for how to proceed – are you contracted and tense? That’s generally a no. Feeling open and expansive and an internal ‘lift’? That’s often a yes.
Once you’ve done this, then ask a trusted friend to hold space for you to process or work through it. They may help you see any blind spots and create more awareness of a situation – BUT always run it through your own feeling system first, look for your own internal signals as to what it is telling you – your friend is not the final arbiter of what is right and wrong for YOU. You are.