Knowing Your Power

Posted October 17, 2012 by Marcy Farrey in On the Ladder

How often do you truly feel powerful, Career Girls?

For many of us, power is not a part of our everyday vocabulary. If we think of power, we often think of it in terms of being respected and well-liked. But, chances are, you don’t wake up every morning saying “I am powerful.”

I had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Arin Reeves speak at an event last week. Dr. Reeves is president of the consulting firm Nextions, the author of The Next IQ, and an expert in the field of leadership and inclusion. She made some interesting points about how women view power differently than men. Men assume and own their power, while women often worry if they can be powerful — and they worry about how much power they should assert.

I’ll admit that I have had trouble with asserting power and taking control. I stop and question myself: What if I end up being wrong? What if people don’t like what I do? A lot of the questioning surrounds my desire to please everyone. But men — they don’t worry about this: They don’t obsess about who does and doesn’t like them. Dr. Reeves also pointed out that men have no trouble calling themselves experts. I, however, hesitate and analyze. I look at work experience and years of education and ask, “Can I really call myself an expert? Can you call yourself an expert at anything at the age of 26?”

Dr. Reeves left us with two ideas to remember when we think about our own power:

  1. When you wake up in the morning, say “I feel powerful today.” Even if you don’t really believe it at first, the more you say it, the more confident you’ll become, according to Dr. Reeves.
  2. Understand that there is no such thing as being too powerful. Dr. Reeves says you should want all the power you can get. This doesn’t mean you have to be tyrannical — you can asses how much of that power to show or use in each situation. The important thing is to want power, and to know that you can have it.

I had an “Aha moment” as Dr. Reeves spoke. There is no reason that I shouldn’t feel powerful, and there’s no reason for me to sell myself short. And, most of all, I don’t have to be cutthroat or arrogant to be powerful. I can just be true to myself and trust my own abilities.

So, Career Girls, when do you feel powerful? Do you feel powerful today? Tell us why below.

About the Author

Marcy Farrey

Marcy Farrey is a videographer, writer, and editor. In her previous life, she worked as a broadcast news reporter and producer in Lincoln, Nebraska and as a writer and producer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She has a Master of Arts in Writing and Publishing from DePaul University and a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University. Learn more about Marcy on her website

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