Personal power has been something I’ve always wanted to develop ever since I was in high school. I grew up in an environment where my thoughts, emotions, and personally my sexuality have been challenged.
To this day I still have a problem with getting past emotions about my private Christian education as a child. It wasn’t until I was older that I started thinking, like REALLY thinking about why I believe what I believe and why I even follow what I believe.
I’ve had a brief stint as an agnostic in college. Seeing other so-called Christians out there acting the complete opposite of what they preach was a major turn off and essentially a big reason why I started drawing away from church and associating with other supposed Christians. It left a bad aftertaste in my mouth and my visceral reaction to getting invited to church is just pure discomfort.
Perhaps my parents wanted me and my siblings to be in a “safe environment.” We were sent on a Sunday school bus full of other kids from different neighborhoods in the city and we got to experience firsthand how “lost souls are lead to Christ.”
I was grouped with mostly people of color: African-Americans, Asians, Latinos.. the white church was the private Christian school I attended. Ironically, I felt more comfortable with the other non-white kids than the white churchy kids.
I learned about segregation very quickly and how different it felt between ethnic minorities and the white majority. I’m not going to turn this into a post on social justice issues, but it is a big part of my identity that I’m still struggling to accept.
My point being in explaining all of the above: discomfort in a place where you know deep inside you feel like you don’t belong can give you seeds to build upon your personal power.
But, you have to act on planting those seeds and watering them so you can grow into the best version that you can be.
Other people may have ways of attaining personal power. For me that experience was being in an environment that made me question the world instead of blindly following instructions by people whose actions were the complete opposite of Christian.
I admit that I still have a grudge against my private Christian education. I have nightmares of going back to that school and facing people who made me feel worth less than what I am today. It’s a raw feeling, a deep place of pain and anxiety for me.
But as I grow older and see more of the world subjectively through my own eyes, I begin to feel more comfortable breaking past chains each and every day to find my ultimate happiness in living my life.
That happiness is finding my personal power in not letting any sort of institution religious or otherwise define me.
My spiritual path is my own. I build it. I create it. I experience it. No one else is experiencing anything else in my life but me. I think it’s okay to be a little bit selfish and retreat back into yourself so you can deal with things later with the right energy and mindset.
For years I’ve been told that I was never good enough and that I was never going to amount to anything. The damage has been done, but I’m making that pain into the power I want for my life.
Fortifying my defenses, gaining the personal power I need to fulfill my life however I see it.