Many struggle to answer questions on the use and misuse of power. Real power is not ruling over others or leading others to get them to do things.
True power is an attitude and a state of mind rather than an attempt to control others. Its foundation builds our competence, vision, positive personal qualities, and courage within ourselves. This then as it is projects outward is generous, creative and humane than other forms of what is power.
True personal power – in reality is the only power we have in our entire lives. We must move towards self-realisation and transcend our limiting ideas of who we are. Our primary aim is mastery of ourselves, not others.
Below I list some of the areas which have helped me and I call the ‘Magical Keys of Power’ and hope you will read and comment/ suggest others:
1. The key is Humility & Calmness:
Humility shows self-assuredness and produces calm assertiveness. Imagine as we enter a room of people, what attracts us immediately to others and them to us? May we become calm.
“Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real.” – Thomas Merton
2. The key is Subtlety & Listening:
Being subtle in communication is a powerful quality of inner balance. Let people use their own imaginations in dealing with you. You do not need to ‘market’. Those who are humble and willing to learn, you will likely attract. And those who want something from you will likely withdraw, but be open to both. Our life is not about pleasing others but looking deeper within others with respect. May we listen more and talk less.
“Sometimes all it takes is a subtle shift in perspective, an opening of the mind, an intentional pause and reset, or a new route to start to see new options and new possibilities.” – Kristin Armstrong
3. The key is Demeanor & Observation:
Demeanor attracts. The manner in which others move and carry themselves and do things is what we notice. We need to understand that the way people communicate with others is not the real them – they are ‘advertising’. At least we can be real in communicating with others – we have nothing to prove. May we observe more and seek to please less.
“There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
4. The key is Compassion & Suffering:
Being nice is not the key to survival. Being compassionate to ourselves and those around us is that key. Through this, we develop strength of character and courage. May we understand that all suffer in one way or another.
“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.” – Helen Keller
5. The key is Thinking & Reflecting:
Thinking and understanding are what our lives are about. But we need to understand that any understanding or thinking we do is still our own perspective. Nothing is the ultimate truth – everything is a perspective. We must look at things from other perspectives also to get the fuller picture of things. This is where we need to develop our minds and think. May we reflect on our potential.
“A moral being is one who is capable of reflecting on his past actions and their motives – of approving of some and disapproving of others.” – Charles Darwin
6. The key is Patience & Endurance:
Patience is that quality many of us do not practice. Patience in any shape or form is key. Through patience we reveal who we are; this does not mean we suffer in silence or let others suffer. Rather it helps us focus. May we endure more and complain less.
“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.” – Leo Tolstoy
7. The key is Honesty & Nobility:
Being honest can be the same as lying. With others, we must do so with a balance towards honesty so we can be kind to those who are suffering. Imagine someone is dying of cancer who we hate and they ask for our forgiveness? Are we going to tell them the truth and refuse to forgive or tell them a lie?. Letting others carry our pain within their hearts and minds is not who we are. May we become nobler in communicating.
“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow men. True nobility lies in being superior to your former self.” – Ernest Hemingway
8. The key is Reliability & Independence:
We admire reliable people and we must be reliable ourselves. The person who does what they say they’re going to do is a leader and teacher. People say and do things and we ourselves consider them as truthful. We depend on others, then in turn we tell others what we will be doing because of the ones we trust and when they let us down in turn, we let others down. May we learn not to depend on others.
“Unlike a drop of water which loses its identity when it joins the ocean, man does not lose his being in the society in which he lives. Man’s life is independent. He is born not for the development of the society alone, but for the development of his self.” – B. R. Ambedkar
9. The key is Living & Detaching:
We are all different, regardless of who is rich or poor in wealth or labels or letters after our names. What counts is how we live our lives and how we make use of our potential. Our light within has a specific quality and vibration that links with everything else. We have lost touch of who we are. The more we separate ourselves from one other with labels the more we become enslaved to others. May we learn of who we really are.
“An old thing becomes new if you detach it from what usually surrounds it.” – Robert Bresson
Our eyes, ears, feelings are a perception of something greater. People may call it spriritual or religious – but those are labels that limit.
True power and wealth is living to serve and learning from others perspectives. It does not mean we must agree on something except to see from others viewpoints. Some call this ‘spiritual intelligence’ – but again that label means nothing. Our deepest meanings and motivations lie deep within us. As individuals and we are responsible for finding those meanings – not others.