We’ve all heard the word empowerment, but what does it really mean? Personal empowerment is about looking at who you are at the present time and becoming more aware of yourself.
The goal is to appreciate yourself and try to become your best self and live your best life. It is about taking stock of your good points and the areas in which you would like to improve. It is about goal setting in relation to the areas in which you would like to do better, and following through with those goals through practical action steps.
There are four main areas in which a person will usually seek to empower themselves:
Over the next few posts I will be looking at each of these in turn, and offering easy ways to empower yourself.
But first, let’s look at some of the main principles behind personal empowerment.
Starting On The Path to Personal Empowerment
Personal empowerment involves developing the confidence and strength to set realistic goals and fulfill your potential. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses and a range of skills that they use in everyday situations. However, many people remain unaware of, or undervalue, their true abilities and sell themselves short. They hold themselves back from leading their best life, or feel stuck – as if they have no control over what is happening to them.
Personal empowerment is all about overcoming obstacles and taking control of your life through positive action steps. The first step is developing self-awareness, an understanding of your strengths and weaknesses. You can maximize the one, and minimize the other once you know how.
Personal empowerment and personal development are intertwined. For example, if you know you are disorganized, once you admit that fact, your logical next step will be to learn how to become better organized. Once you have set this goal, it will be time to follow through. Action steps to take might include:
- Taking a course
- Getting a coach
- Hiring a helper
- Getting an intern
- Using organizational tools:
- Day planner
- Buying organisational items:
- A filing cabinet
- File folders
- Archive boxes
…and so on.
It will also include setting and following through with a new routine, such as 15 minutes at the start and end of each day for organizing everything you will need in the morning, and tidying your desk at the end of each day.
If you are struggling with self-confidence, there are also a number of action steps you can take, though they will not be as physical, concrete and obvious as buying organisational items and turning your dustbin of a desk into a model of neatness.
Yet there are several steps to better self-confidence that have been proven to work. These include:
- Maintaining a good appearance
- Engaging in positive self-talk
- Ignoring negative self-talk
- Not taking what people say as criticism
- Not taking criticism too much to heart
- Putting yourself in situations that challenge you, such as public speaking
- Learning from your mistakes
- Not comparing yourself to others all the time and thinking you are falling short
…and so on.
In the next post I will take a look at how we set our goals to enable us to move forward and become empowered individuals.