I love old movies, myths and stories for the wonderful insights they can give us. One of my favorites is the Wizard of Oz.

Wizard of Oz screenshot

Screenshot from the Wizard of Oz

In the Wizard of Oz, the wizard used the magic of advanced technology unknown to his people, so he could seem bigger and more powerful than others. In the end, Dorothy and her companions discover the truth about the wizard; he was just an insecure man who ruled through fear. Dorothy and her companions are destined to become wizards in their own right when they conquer their own fears. When  they were able to peer behind the curtain and see that the wizard for what he really was, his power over them waned as their personal power grew.

I cannot underestimate the courage it takes to truly face one’s fears and insecurities. Fear can freeze you, and incapacitate you at the very moment when you should be taking action. But fear, like all emotion, is just energy. Rather than fearing fear, you can welcome it when it comes, because it can give you a boost of energy that you can channel in the direction of accomplishing any task you desire.

“Don’t fight your fear, roll with it.”

Dorothy thought that if she just accomplished the tasks that the wizard assigned her, she would be able to achieve her desire of returning home. She thought that the task and the power to complete that task was outside her, but her real task was to discover her own power, and that task was cleverly masked by the wisdom of the wizard who tricked her into learning.

Many of us have been taught to be afraid to be powerful.

We have been taught to hand over our most precious gift — our personal creativity and individualism — to remote authorities and organizations who do not have our individual growth and well-being at heart. The power that Dorothy feared was her own nascent power; she was a child who didn’t know that she could be an adult and claim her birthright of creative freedom.

It takes a sense of personal responsibility to claim personal power. No one arrives at personal power if they have an agenda of hurting or controlling others.

Personal power is not power over others, it is about gaining the freedom to choose one’s own thoughts.

You can only claim personal power when you can choose your emotional reaction to what life brings you; this emotional detachment and clarity is called “sobriety.” Personal power is about sobriety, clear vision and independence of thought.

Don’t be afraid to speak your truth; when it is truly yours, you will feel it is true and your truth will speak itself. Don’t be afraid to claim your creative power, and know that you are powerful. You need no one else to validate you or confirm your truth for you. Suddenly, like Dorothy when she woke up in the Land of Oz, you find yourself in a place of incredible vividness and color; I like to call this place “creative freedom.”

After many trials and tribulations, Dorothy woke up to her personal power, looked down at the ruby slippers on her feet, and realized that she could get home under her own power after all.

Copyright 2010 Aliyah Marr