Tag Archives: truth

One Easy Step To Becoming More Powerful

Let’s continue the discussion we began last week, when I said, “ . . . to make keeping your word a moral issue saps it of much of its power and all of its joy.”

Look and see if you feel righteous when you keep your word, or especially when Being Powerful5.15other people don’t.  Do you get angry when people don’t?  Disappointed?  If so, then it’s most likely a moral issue.  I did the right thing, or they were wrong.  It’s been drilled in us since we were children; good people keep their word; people who don’t are bad, but such a stance is quicksand.  If you are good, someone must be bad.  The word good is meaningless without bad.  Suppose that:

“There ain’t no sin and there ain’t no virtue. There’s just stuff people do.”                                                                                                                             John Steinbeck

And then consider this: When someone says to you, “I’ll do it,” and you accept his word, then you are a party to it; you have assumed a certain responsibility in the matter.  Is this true?  Not among ordinary people in the world.  It’s true only for the truly powerful.  The question is: “What is your intention?  To be good?  Or to be powerful?”  (powerful: producing, or capable of producing, an intended result) This is the real value in keeping your word.

Generally, when we think of powerful people, we think of the rich, the famous, and and those in power; and yes, some of those people are powerful.  But ask yourself: If the people in high places are so powerful, why does there appear to be so much effort involved in their lives?  The people I know who are truly powerful don’t spend their lives in an effort to amass great wealth, fame, or importance.  They seem to have a sufficiency of whatever they need, whenever they need it.  When they say something, it happens.  They don’t have to hammer other people; the people around them get to win too.  How do they do this?  By not setting other people up to fail.  But, more important, powerful people don’t set themselves up by expecting—or worse, depending upon—unreliable people to keep their word.

Keeping your word is like using a muscle; it gets stronger and stronger with use.  The outcome of this is that your word has power—what you say, happens.  The place to start is right here, and the time to start is right now.


Did You Do It?

Lighthouses don’t fire cannons to call attention to their shining—they just shine.          ~Dwight L. Moody

Pursuant to last week’s letter, did you engage in the . . . I almost called it an 3MegaCamexercise—(just what you need, right? another exercise)—but here, we are addressing being, not doing, and the important thing is: did you do it?

Do what?

Did you observe closely who you are being when you are with other people?  Observe what do you do; what are you up to?  As I said last week, if you really do this, and don’t just think about it, you will probably be disgusted, which is most often the case when you have a direct experience of the truth about yourself.  The truth is usually bad news—and then it sets you free.

But you and I would rather tread familiar territory, even if the familiar involves repeated failure, broken relationships, mediocrity, work that bores us—at least it’s familiar; we know how to deal with it.  But truth is a pathless land.  There are no rules, no signposts, no handrails, no certainty; your ship’s rudder is gone; you no longer know exactly who you are, or even what you are.

As you are observing yourself with other people, notice the strategies and the compulsive behaviors that arise.

  • Do you compulsively thank people?
  • Do you constantly apologize, as if excusing yourself for daring to be alive?
  • Are you compelled to talk excessively?  Or to be silent?  What is that designed to do?
  • Are you an habitual wallflower?  Or are you driven to be the center of attention?  (some effective attention grabbers: anger, emotional outbursts, being late, being loud, flamboyant behavior or attire)

The powerful action to take regarding being is to simply observe it.  You can’t do anything to impact being; anything you do is more of the same, just different.

We will continue this dialog next week, but it will be useless to you unless, in the interim, you actually observe yourself with people—watch yourself closely—you want to catch yourself in the act.  Thinking about it won’t do it…

Guest Post by Richard Saunders, Sculptor/Artist, http://www.fantaciworks.com