Shared Wisdom – Are You Giving Your Personal Power Away?

Shared Wisdom Guest Post
Featuring Shann Vander Leek

Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do. – Benjamin Spock


I’ve witnessed and been involved in situations where personal power is traded for acceptance and peace at any cost. Life coaching clients, family, friends and yours truly, can find ourselves in situations where we relinquish our personal power and over-empower others.

If you are a highly sensitive creature like I am,  these encounters can bring forward feelings of sadness, betrayal and confusion.

Recently I was involved in a conversation about a subject matter that I knew very little about. Upon spelunking into the conversation to share an example of my rudimentary understanding, I was pounced on and treated like a fool.  It never occurred to me that I would be attacked for sharing my point of view. The exchange was unsettling because I am strong, intelligent and creative.  Instead of saying, “Shove Off,”  I let myself slide into a place of insecurity.

I gave my power to a person who was in the mood to behave badly.

The next day my husband and I discussed the scene and he counseled me to shrug off the encounter. Then, my brilliant husband asked me why I’d given my power away? Great question from the all-knowing and loving oracle!

In this particular instance,  I knew I was out gray mattered by a person who spent years interested in areas of study I had only just begin to think about. BUT, I thought it was safe to climb in, share, and explore.  When the terrain became too challenging,  I tried to explain my position, eventually lost my footing, and slipped away into a sink hole.

This encounter led me to dive deeper into the curious cave of personal power and trust.  Owning your power is an integral part of personal happiness, fulfilling connections, and achieving your potential You give your power away when you make someone outside of you more important than what you hold inside of you.

You give away your power when you …

  • Doubt yourself.
  • Try to make everyone happy.
  • Over-empower others by looking for approval and validation, thus giving them the power to hurt you.
  • Forget that you know what you’re doing, and you are good at it.
  • Have poor boundaries.
  • Allow yourself to be intimidated by bluster and emotional assaults from other people.
  • Don’t honor and share your truth.

You keep your power when you …

  • Learn to say “No” and mean it.
  • Stand up for yourself and believe in yourself, no matter what.
  • Stand on the courage of your convictions.
  • Ask for what you need and want.
  • Embrace the fact you have the right be treated respectfully by other people.
  • Be detached and practice detachment by observing other people’s behavior without attachment to the outcome.
  • Spend time with people who are kind and considerate in the midst of a spirited discussion.

Owning your power means speaking your truth, honoring your sensitivity, and believing in yourself. Your life experience, education, personal relationships, and curiosity make you wise.  Always believe in yourself and if need be, tell the bullies to shove off!


Successful television advertising maven turned transformation goddess, yogini, and author of Life on Your Terms. Shann Vander Leek is the founder of True Balance International, co-founder of Anxiety Slayer, and creator of the Transformation Goddess Experience. Unconventional and delightfully curious, she inspires professional women in transition to live life on their terms and create more balance in their lives through coaching, self-care, and creative expression.  Check out her luscious new offering for women who are ready to reclaim their feminine sovereignty at

Thank you so much, Shann, for such a powerful message! I know that we have all been in situations where we have given away our power, and this is such a great reminder for all of us to always speak our truth and honor ourselves.

If this post speaks to you, please comment below and then share it on Facebook and Twitter (buttons below). Thank you for spreading the love!

P.S. – We’re already on Day 20 in our Month of Meditation! How is it going for you? Have you been giving yourself the gift of stillness each day? If you’re just seeing this for the first time, you’re more than welcome to jump right in!



P.P.S. – If you aren’t already reading my husband, Dan Teck’s blog, Halfway Up the Mountain, I definitely would encourage you to. It’s all about personal growth, reflection, and fun! It’s a blog for anyone who has come a long way in their life, but wants to keep climbing, growing, and sharing—and enjoying every step of the journey! Click here to subscribe and receive our Transitions ebook for free!



Shared Wisdom – Are You Giving Your Personal Power Away? — 13 Comments

  1. Hi Shann,
    What a great story for sharing. Last year I had to quit a popular personal development forum because of all the egos and know it all’s there. Everyone has a unique POV and none is better or more superior than anyone else.

    Are you an empath?
    Justin Mazza recently posted..Becoming a VegetarianMy Profile

  2. What an excellent post to start my day with, Shann. Each one of us gives our power away in some way or other on a daily basis. The little things build up and we end up feeling we’re worth less than we will ever be. You raised such a relevant point by describing your own experience – most of us go through it. Not being heard can be very discouraging. Quite like starting an idea, having everyone rave about it, but not one person acknowledging the person who initiated it in the first place. Makes it easy to step back and watch.

    This is a very valuable post! Thank you, Jodi, for introducing Shann. Heading over to her place and also to check out Dan’s blog!

    Wishing you both a wonderful week ahead!
    Vidya Sury recently posted..My Happy PlacesMy Profile

    • Hello Vidya, I agree that not being heard can be discouraging. When people are quick to pounce on an idea because of a triggered ego, the conversation is over before it even started. No good comes of sparring with ego. Thanks for visiting Transformation Goddess.

  3. Shann, this is a subject that I am quite familiar with. When I was young I gave my power away on a regular basis. As I grew I learned how to hold onto my power in some instances. Within my family (sibs, parents) was the hardest place to learn this and I still give my power away in hopes of gaining acceptance. I’m still learning that I as long as I posses my power I am living authentically, but when I trade it off in hopes of gaining approval and love that is when I betray myself.
    This was a wonderful reminder. Thank you Shann!
    Leah recently posted..Ripples and RepercussionsMy Profile

  4. I gave away my power for nearly 28 years in my marriage. It was exactly as you described it. I’ve spent the last 4 years working toward owning myself and strengthening myself, knowing that I am not dumb, incompetent or unlovable. I feel like I still have a long way to go, but I have a terrific support system now, and they are fiercely protective of me and couldn’t be more encouraging.

    I am now single and stronger, and I will never give away my power again!

  5. I know I have given my power to my husband who is abusing me. I know I have given it before to my family who was taking advantage of it, but reading this article made me realize one additional thing. I had a friend, who decided one year ago to turn her back on me and leave. I felt like i was dying. I used to hear people telling me it wasn’t a healthy friendship as I was TOO attached to her. she was more important than my life, my kids, my well being. She was everything to me and I was lost without hr. I thought that was pure love, but when I read : “You give your power away when you make someone outside of you more important than what you hold inside of you.” i realize how true it was. I was nothing when she was in my life. I considered myself nothing as she was everything.

    • Oh Nikky, I wish I could wrap my arms around you and give you a big hug. If you are currently being abused by your husband, please call someone for help. There are 24 Hour domestic abuse hotlines available worldwide. Here are a couple of numbers for the US and UK.

      UK: 800.621.HOPE (4673)
      USA: 1−800−799−SAFE(7233)

      In regards to your past friendship, I highly recommend reading Co Dependent No More by Melody Beattie. This book inspired me to change my life and step into my personal power. I suspect you may gain a great deal from this material.

      Please call the Domestic Abuse Hotline to learn how you can protect your precious life and innocent lives of your children.
      Shann recently posted..Create a Sacred SanctuaryMy Profile

      • I completely agree with Shann, Nikky.
        I know that you’re wanting to change your life and empower yourself, and calling the domestic abuse hotline and taking yourself and your kids out of a harmful situation is a wonderful first step. You’ll be telling the universe that you’re serious about your life – that you’re willing to take action to make changes – that you know that you’re worth happiness and so much more.
        I also agree with Shann about reading Codependent No More – Melody’s books have helped me, and I know she can help you find your strength as well.
        Big hug to you.
        Jodi – Soul Speak recently posted..Reconnecting with Your SoulMy Profile

      • Thank you very much Shann for your nice words and for giving me the title of the book. I will certainly get it and read it and I will let you know.
        About the abuse, it’s a very complex situation. I’m not in the UK nor in the USA and in my country he has the right to do what he is doing. I wrote last week a Blog post about that. There is a comment from Patricia, she is sharing an article about domestic violence in my country. It gives a clear explanation :(
        Nikky44 recently posted.."West Side Story"My Profile