When Michelangelo was asked how he created his life’s masterpiece, the sculpture of David, from a slab of marble that all the other artisans had rejected, he responded that David was already in that slab of marble. “I didn’t invent David, he was already in the marble; all I had to do was chip away the parts of marble that weren’t him.”
You were born complete. You are perfect and you came here that way. Some parts of you may be “covered up” or hiding under extra stuff due to life’s circumstances, emotions, traumas, experiences, and cultural confusions. These things have a way of piling up on us and we start to forget what we actually look like. Who we really are. We start to view ourselves as a useless slab of marble. We forget who we are and we stop connecting with our soul’s purpose.
Young children who are unabashedly themselves are a perfect representation of this. They’re so happy to simply be who they are. How do we lose that complete, uninhibited, un-fettered sense of self? Life slowly pulls us down. Our culture slowly teaches us to cover up our true inner selves, and we even subconsciously create barriers of protection that hide some of our most beautiful parts.
Surely the greatest transformation that can occur in a human being is when one chooses to own their power. We own our power when our thoughts and our actions are in alignment with what our soul came to earth to do. When you are in alignment, when you claim your own power in any moment, there is literally no one more powerful than you.
You can chip away at your own marble by being aware. Living your own truth, staying awake, knowing you are worth it simply because you were born. We’re here to figure out what our calling is and to connect with it; and whenever we do connect with it, our burdens are lifted. Our circumstances don’t always change, but the burden that comes with them is lifted. How do we start chipping away at the parts that aren’t ours? How do we chip away at the things that cover us up just as the excess marble hid David’s beauty? First, awaken to the idea that you are constantly giving away your own power.
We’re constantly giving away our power
Sometimes consciously, but usually unconsciously, without even wanting to.
When we are dominated by someone in a relationship, we surrender our power to be an equal partner.
When we feel anxious about whether we will be accepted or loved, we surrender the power of self-esteem;
When we are burdened physically, mentally or emotionally, we start to believe that the burden is just a part of us and we are trapped, thus surrendering our power to define ourselves.
Once we begin to feel powerless or hopeless, we start to think that’s who we are. We start to think, “I am depressed” instead of “I am experiencing depression.” We start to think, “I am overweight,” instead of “My body is just carrying around some extra fluff right now.”
We (and society) create these boxes, and then we climb into them willingly and we shut the lid, because we think that’s who we are. This perpetuates themes that show up in our life over and over without us even realizing that they are part of us. It can show up as constant self-sabotage so that we can’t experience true health and happiness.
I believe that a huge cause of this self-sabotage and this climbing-into-boxes-to-define-ourselves-as-burdened is our culture. Our culture pressures us through labels:
In-control/Out of control
Have it together/Hot mess express
These are common societal pressures and labels. Sometimes we unknowingly climb into these boxes. Sometimes we gladly jump in, because we know that closing the lid on ourselves protects us from having to do the work. It protects us from coming into our power and showing up in life as love and light. (Ask yourself: “am I willingly inside any boxes to protect myself from owning my own power?… what’s the benefit? (there’s always a benefit.))
Always remember that you have the right to define yourself by who you want to be. By who you actually choose to be. You have the right to take back your power: to speak and act according to your own truth.
The next time you say to yourself, “I am (insert label)” [unsuccessful, depressed, diabetic, shy, poor], picture yourself climbing into a box and the light going out as the lid closes. Every time you put a negative label on yourself, picture this image. Say to yourself, “I am not putting myself in this box.” At that moment, you begin to take your power back.
“I define myself by choosing who I want to be.”
This is a reminder that you are worthy because you were born and you are perfect simply because you’re here. Of course we have trials and we get to learn how to respond better to life’s situations. We get to learn how to create more love, acceptance, peace, serenity and harmony in life. But your inner self is perfect. You can free yourself from these labels by looking at the warning signs: Every time you’re angry or jealous, that’s an alarm clock that you have chosen to surrender your power in some area. Every time you’re stressed or resentful, that’s an alarm clock that you’re not working in your power because you have given it up in some area. Reverse this by remaining awake and noticing what has happened. Get quiet, start an inquiry, and find out what area in your life you have given up power and choose to start taking it back.
We own our power when our thoughts and our actions are in alignment with what our soul came to earth to do. When you claim your own power in any moment, there is no one more powerful than you.