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Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be. ~Thomas à Kempis, Imitation of Christ, c.1420

I’ve spent an awful lot of time the last few years thinking about all the various ways I’ve handed over, given away, or misplaced my personal power. Not surprisingly, the ruminations began when I realized I felt powerless in just about every area of my life. I wanted to know why. I wanted to know what was keeping me stuck. I wanted to know why I was so miserable.

Of course, for a long time, I blamed others. Others hurt me, disappointed me, lied to me, betrayed me…and yes, that can create a pile of misery, for sure. I burned the fuel of mighty indignation for years. But it didn’t ever change anything, except to leave me tired, more miserable than ever.

All the while, there were others (albeit different others) who comforted me, supported me, told me the truth, and stood by me.

I spent years wishing the first group would change and be like the second group.

It dawned on me that the chains that kept me bound to those of the first group were not chains they put upon me, but were chains of belief…in me!

I think we each have a sense of how hard it is to go against the tide of the life you’ve created so far to create the life you really want to live, whether we’ve really tried to do it, or not. And since we seem to be able to see what others need to change so much more clearly than we can see what we need to change in ourselves, we think we can change other people more easily. We’re all delusional, it seems.