The most common way people give up their power is thinking that they don’t have any.

– Alice Walker

The 4 Derailers that Hold us Back from Stepping into our Personal Power

In 2008 I started life again. My ex-husband was having an affair so I left town due to shame and embarrassment of him being proud of the fact and telling anyone who would listen.

Unfortunately, it was around the time of the GFC and I couldn’t get a job no matter how many I applied for.

In fact, applying for jobs was becoming a full-time job.

Nothing seemed to be going right. I moved home to my parents’ house and I remember sitting at my parents’ dining table and my mother saying “I don’t know what you’re doing but it’s clearly not working. I think it’s time you talked to Centrelink.”

Now I wasn’t too embarrassed to do that, but I was already feeling really disempowered. It was more that I was feeling like life was out of control.

Things were happening that I didn’t feel like I had a choice in and I was finding my circumstances hard to change.

So I decided to shift into my personal power. I decided to look what company and role would be my dream job. I figured there must be someone out there who needed my help, I just needed to find them.

So I set out on my goal and approached the company that I considered my dream role. They hired me and it was a great fit for both of us. It was the dream position I had always wanted.

Stepping into our personal power doesn’t come naturally to all of us.

In fact, sometimes we don’t do it until our back is against the wall and we’re forced to. The good news is you don’t have to wait until things go wrong.

Or maybe there are some self-sabotaging activities you’re doing that are holding you back from stepping into your personal power.

Below are what I find to be the 4 derailers or behaviours that often hold people back from stepping into their personal power.

The 4 Derailers that Hold us Back from Stepping into our Personal Power


Have you ever had the feeling you’re not good enough? Not smart enough? Don’t have the degree or the Masters? A sense of inadequacy is sometimes called the ‘imposter syndrome’where we can be afraid we’re going to be found out.

If this is the case for you the key questions are:

  • Have you started to make steps towards your goals?
  • Are the fears you have ones that you have created in your own mind?
  • Have you spoken to an expert, mentor or coach with experience to advise you?
  • Have you actually had a conversation with a decision maker who you’re wanting to influence? Whether it’s for a promotion, a new job or to connect with that ideal client, have you actually had the conversation with them about what you’re trying to do and how you can help them?


One of the greatest challenges when trying to step out into your space can be looking at what everyone else is doing or worrying that all the opportunities have gone, all the jobs are taken, no-one has the money or no one can afford to hire you.

If this is you it’s time to look into your assumptions to see if they are actually true. More often they’re not, it’s just perhaps you need some guidance to know the right way to go about your approach or put your blinkers on and stop comparing yourself to others.

Or maybe you just need to pick up the phone and ask the right people the right questions to see if your assumptions are true?


When things don’t go the way we want or expect, it can be very frustrating. It can seem like no matter what you do nothing works. You’re questioning “why is this happening to me” or the payoff is that by sharing the issue with others they feel sorry for you over the drama, therefore you gaining attention.

If this is you, it’s time to put a deadline on the emotion. It’s not going to get you anywhere.
Take control of the situation by asking for real help if you feel like you can’t step out of the situation on your own. Stop being at the peril of your circumstances or playing the victim.


Seeking validation is only natural when gaining a sense of identity, however when you’re just taking on validation for what’s popular, that isn’t necessarily doing what is your most powerful you.

  • Do you constantly seek likes and comments on your social media feed?
  • Do you need to be reassured constantly?

This is not stepping into your power.

This is playing the popularity contest and will keep you as a follower, not a leader. It’s time to ask what your higher purpose is, why you’re really here on this planet and what is the difference you were born to make?

So take active steps to not just step into your power but avoid these derailers and you’ll be well and truly on the way to taking control of your business, career and life!


Are you a female entrepreneur or leader ready to step into your power? Find out more about the Women With Influence Program.

Our next strategy day is on the Gold Coast at Kingscliff on 30th of Nov 2018. Limited spots available!


Trusted book Jane Anderson

Jane Anderson is a communication expert, speaker and the author of 6 books including the upcoming “TRUST: The Level Above Influence.” With over 20 years experience helping people step into their personal power, she is obsessed about creating human connection to drive business growth in a world of disruption and automation. To inquire about her working with you or your organisation please contact us here.