Many of us have experimented with different kinds of power. At times we may have used force, brute strength. Certainly most of us have experimented with power plays — only to find that they aren’t the answer either. Along the way, some of us may have gotten hard, cold, rigid, even angry — thinking that was a way to own our power.
Often, these attempts don’t signal power. They signal fear. True, for many of us, learning to experience, express, and release our anger has been an important milestone on our path to power. But the power we’re seeking is different from force, coldness, hardness, or power plays. We aren’t learning to flex our muscles that way.
Open to a new kind of power — the power of the heart. Clarity. Compassion. Gentleness. Love. Understanding. Comfort. Forgiveness. Faith. Security with acceptance of ourselves, and all our emotions. Trust. Commitment to loving ourselves, and to an open heart. That’s the power we’re seeking. That’s true power, power that lasts, power that creates the life and love we want. In those situations that call for power, we can trust that brute strength, coldness, or rage won’t get us what we want.
— Melody Beattie, Journey to the Heart, p. 335-336