Empowerment isn’t blowing out someone else’s candle

Some people are allergic to inspirational quotes. Personally, it always makes me smile when I read something that connects with my state of mind at that moment. Yesterday, this one greeted me:

“Blowing out someone else’s candle won’t make yours shine brighter…”

It couldn’t have summed up my current train of thought any better.

I’ve been avoiding social media recently because there’s so much hatred being flung around. Someone says something and fury is swiftly unleashed by those who don’t agree. People are being encouraged to fight back as if it’s empowering. It’s not. There are no brownie or good karma points in making others feel small.

I often wonder what goes through people’s mind in that moment. Does it make them feel better? A quick rush of gratification before a slump of guilt, perhaps. Making others feel bad doesn’t make you happy. You will never build yourself up by tearing someone else down and two wrongs certainly don’t make a right.

If someone has an opinion that differs from yours, you don’t have to tear them down. They are not stealing your ‘right’ by what you see as ‘wrong’. Walk on by and get on with your own day.

It’s like FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). Just because someone else is having fun, doesn’t mean they’ve stolen it from you. You don’t need to feel wronged or that you’ve missed out.

Equally, there is no maximum amount of success or happiness to be shared around. When someone gets a win in life, it doesn’t mean you’ve lost. Learn to say ‘Well done’ – and genuinely mean it.

Real empowerment is standing on your own two feet and taking true responsibility for yourself. You don’t need to trample on others to feel your own power – even if they hurt you.

Trampling on others is easy. Lashing out is quick and simple. But it’s weak.

When you’re really empowered, you’re very aware that you stand alone as a human being. You don’t need to take to become stronger. You don’t need to bring anyone else down to lift yourself up.

Blowing out someone else’s candle will never make yours shine brighter; you’ve only taken from them. There can be no happiness in that.

You know you’ve cracked it when you feel the urge to take someone else’s hand and help them succeed. After all, a candle can light plenty of other candles and lose nothing.

That’s real empowerment.

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