Use these 7 practices to banish self-imposed limitations and heighten personal energy.

Enormous resources of personal power are available to all of us maintains Carlos Casteneda, a teacher of Toltec philosophy. Mastery of your environment, emotions and experiences is not about manipulating external conditions but doing inner work and getting to the core of beliefs and behaviour. He advocates specific practices to banish self-imposed limitations and become conscious of the places where energy is lost or dissipated. The idea is not to become a victim to external circumstances but to monitor your internal environment. 

Putting yourself in a relationship with power

Cultivate an attitude towards life that makes you impervious to the world. Embrace the idea that nobody can move or touch you without your agreement. ‘Find a way to view all the events in your life as a challenge, something you can overcome’, says David Copeland, American communications expert.

Being impeccable

When we allow external situations to determine our internal state, what we are doing, is giving away our power to the person or event we have allowed ourselves to be affected by. Through appointed authority someone may have control over a situation, but they don’t have control over your internal harmony. Allowing yourself to be chaotic or ruffled is effectively handing over the most intimate part of yourself to someone to do with as they will. This doesn’t mean suppressing your feelings, but bypassing those reactions that don’t serve you.  Staying focused on the bigger picture, and ‘jumping over the temper tantrums’ that originate from the ego saves an enormous amount of personal power. ‘Impeccability’, Castenada says, ‘is the ability to temper or tone your spirit while being trampled upon’.

Living expansively

Elements of power are often only found outside the realms of routine – just as hunting requires a trip into the wilderness, so does the search for power require a journey into the wilderness of your own life. Start allowing your life to expand by doing everything differently. Breaking routine is essential to access power. Eat new foods, wear different clothing, drive different routes and allow unpredictability. Change your life from hunted to hunter by being unpredictable.

Developing a new aspect of awareness

Everyone is aware of expectations from other people, we also have perceptions of what these expectations might be.  Existing outside of these constraints requires releasing the psychological discomfort that comes from performing in a way that may be unusual to others. Excuse your own behaviour, and dare to tread outside of judgement, your own and other peoples. Do, be and say things with abandonment.

Self-importance versus self-respect

Self awarded self-importance prevents us from doing things we would like to do, often because of how our actions may appear to others or ourselves. Just as the fear of failure prevents us from taking risks, usually because we fear what we will look like to those around us. When you know in your heart that your beliefs are right, then there is no need to justify your motives or actions to others. Allow others their opinion, then do your own thing without needing to conform. Self-importance is merely a filter on our belief system that makes a certain set of consequences unacceptable. In the process of losing self-importance we can develop self-respect. 

Conserving energy

Energy can be lost in the physical plane but also through our thoughts. Unconscious habits like pen biting or face scratching are leaks in vital energy. Negative thinking drains even more energy. As the saying goes, ‘where the mind goes, energy flows’. Start imagining positive outcomes, create a separate space and plan for things that might not work out, leave that plan in the space you have created and then continue to think positively, advises Copeland. Training the thinking muscles to think positively is much like training any other muscle.

Action and intent

Action must match intent, i.e. if your intention is to save money and you go out and frivolously spend money, your actions are sabotaging your intent. Intent should rule action with an iron will.