Often, the only thing standing between you and a better, healthier, more abundant life is simply giving yourself a permission slip to be who you truly are meant to be.
But, that can be difficult because we live in a culture where we are programmed from birth to ask “authority figures” for permission for everything. For example, you may have had to ask your parents for permission to eat a snack if you were hungry between meals. Or worse, your feeding schedule as an infant might have been dictated by some outdated “schedule” based on obsolete research on the emptying time of an infant’s stomach rather than your own hunger.
As you got older, maybe you needed to ask permission to use your own money to buy something for yourself. Perhaps you even had to ask a teacher to be permitted to use the bathroom in school, and maybe you were told that you could not go until you finished your assignment! I once met with my daughters’ first-grade teacher when I found out that this practice was being instituted. (Emphasis on “institution!”)
Not long ago on my radio show, Flourish, I covered the topic “Give Yourself a Permission Slip.” However, on the day I was originally scheduled to do the show, I overslept! Clearly, it was time for me to give myself a permission slip to rest that day. When we rescheduled the show, it was a huge success. (LISTEN HERE.) So, I want to share with all of you how you can give yourself a permission slip whenever you need.
Why You Need to Give Yourself a Permission Slip Regularly
Most people don’t realize that a culture of asking permission creates one where many people’s self-worth is attached to their ability to receive permission. So, it is not uncommon for many people to carry these patterns through adulthood. The patterns I am talking about often show up in your marriage, your work, and your relationships.
For example, maybe you refrain from buying yourself a new pair of shoes because you are afraid that your husband may disapprove. Or, maybe you are so busy finishing something for your boss that you don’t use the bathroom until your bladder is almost bursting. Of course, the most common situation I hear from women is that they feel guilty for resting after they have had a baby. They do the laundry, make dinner, clean the house, and entertain family members!
The first thing I want you to do is to remember that you are here on this planet in your physical body for a purpose, and it’s impossible to be who you are truly meant to be if you are always looking to others for permission. The only way you can even begin to fulfill your purpose and be who you are meant to be is to give yourself permission to live for the things you love. Giving yourself permission to use the bathroom when you need to or to buy yourself a fabulous pair of shoes begins to shift your energy toward self-empowerment.
Of course, living for what you love means that you also need to give yourself permission to let go of worrying what other people may think of you. When you let go of the need for approval you can begin to live your life’s purpose.
How to Give Yourself a Permission Slip
Giving yourself permission to be yourself is a process. It starts with small permissions such as giving yourself permission to rest when you are tired or sick or giving yourself permission to ask for help when you need it. When you practice these smaller permissions on a regular basis, it becomes easier to give yourself permission to be your true self.
Here’s how you can give yourself a permission slip.
- Turn your super traits on yourself. If you struggle with giving yourself permission, you probably have a super trait that results in you putting others first just because you’re so darn good at making things work for them. For example, maybe you are super responsible and take care of everyone’s needs at work and home before you take care of yourself and your own needs. This is at the heart of burnout. The best thing you can do is give yourself permission to apply that super trait to yourself and give yourself a permission slip to prioritize self-care.
- Learn to trust yourself. When you give yourself permission, you are trusting yourself to make choices. There is an all-knowing consciousness inside you, at all moments, guiding you toward your highest good. This includes what medical tests or procedures are best for you. Please don’t forget this. The more you can connect with this guidance and the more you listen to it, the easier it will be to give yourself permission.
- Let go of your need for approval. When you seek external permission from others, you are allowing yourself to be judged. As long as you need the approval of others, you will remain disempowered. Once you stop seeking external approval, your ability to give yourself a permission slip when you need one increases greatly.
- Call on your guides. There are many ways you can call on Divine guidance. Tosha Silver’s Change Me prayers are one simple way. You simply ask the Divine to change you into someone who, in this case, knows what she needs and gets that need met without asking permission. Here’s an example: “Divine Beloved, please change me into someone who easily knows my needs and feels comfortable with getting them met.” You can also use Robert Fritchie’s Divine Love petitions. For more information go to his website, the World Service Institute.
- Feel your emotions. When you want to give yourself a permission slip, allow yourself to feel the emotions associated with whatever you are seeking permission to do. For example, if you are seeking permission to rest, you may need to feel the guilt associated with resting while your family members may want something from you. Remember that your emotions are the connection between your physical body and your spirit. Feeling these emotions is essential to connecting with your higher self and your purpose.
- Love and cherish yourself. Matt Kahn’s approach works wonders here. Place your hand on your heart and say, “I love you. You’re precious. You’re beautiful. I forgive you. I truly love you.” Do this exercise every day as often as you need. Watch Matt’s YouTube video “The End of Victimhood” or learn more at his website, about how to raise your vibration when you are around negative people. Or use Louise Hay’s famous mirror work. Look deeply into your eyes each morning and say, “I love you. I really love you.” Do the same when you go to bed. Within 30 days, you will notice a big change. Truly.
- Meditate. Meditation can help you connect to that higher part of yourself that knows your true worth. This can help you release your need for external permission.
- Stop saying “I have to.” When you let go of “I have to” and replace it with “I want to,” you free up tremendous energy to do what you love and be who you are meant to be.
- Practice permission daily. At first, it might feel quite uncomfortable—or even selfish—to give yourself permission daily, but the more you practice, the easier it will be. Start by making a list of everything that you would do if you gave yourself permission. Another way to make this list is to write down everything you wish others would do for you—which you always end up doing for them! Slowly work through your list. You can do this with a friend and then compare notes. Eventually, you will be able to give yourself permission to be free from anything that does not support you—including a job or a toxic relationship.
10 Permission Slips You Could Give Yourself Today
Here are 10 permission slips I recommend you give yourself every day.
- Rest when you need to. If you are tired, give yourself permission to sleep. The dishes, the laundry, and the work you didn’t finish today will still be waiting for you tomorrow.
- Feel joy every day. Paint, sing, dance, play music and have sex if you so desire.
- Let go of toxic relationships. Toxic people drain you. Work on creating relationships with people who support you as you are.
- Love your body. Stop comparing yourself to the airbrushed models in the media. Dress the way you want. Do your hair the way you like it. If this is difficult, do mirror work and tell your body how much you love it.
- Trust your intuition. Step out of your comfort zone and go for whatever feels right – maybe it is a new career path, new health or fitness program, or simply speaking up when you feel the need.
- Simplify your life. Focus on what truly matters to you. Don’t let yourself get derailed by drama.
- Forgive yourself. Forgiveness is a process. Find time every day to practice forgiveness.
- Say “yes.” Saying “yes” to yourself is empowering. Say “yes” to whatever you want in your life, and say “no” to whatever you don’t want.
- Feel the guilt. Realize that the guilt you are feeling is probably just cultural programming. Thank it for sharing and release it.
- Be yourself. Accept yourself exactly as you are. You don’t have to fit any cultural mold.
9 Ways to Give Yourself a Permission Slip When You’re in an Energy Vampire Relationship
Giving yourself a permission slip when you’re in an energy vampire relationship can be a big step toward healing and reclaiming your power. Here are 9 ways to give yourself a permission slip when you’re in an energy vampire relationship.
- Get quality sleep. Sleep is hands down the most effective way your body has to metabolize stress hormones. When you are sleep deprived, it is nearly impossible to fight off the energy vampires in your life let alone live from your true authentic self. If you are living with your energy vampire and are unable to sleep well, try to take naps when they are not around. You can even visit a trusted friend and ask to take a nap where you won’t have to worry about your energy vampire intruding.
- Prioritize time with yourself. Take 15–20 minutes per day just for yourself to do something that supports your well-being. You can choose to meditate, take a long luxurious bath, or spend time walking in nature. Visualize all the negative energy you have mopped up from others draining from your body right back into the earth. Or send them to the Central Sun! Then, use some time to process your own emotions and get back in touch with your center—the real driver of your actions.
- Try a daily energy cleanse. When you’re in an energy vampire relationship, you are constantly taking on negative energy. But there are ways you can transmute this negative energy. For example, if your energy vampire is a work colleague, try bringing plants into your workspace to help absorb any negative energy. You can also try crystals, which are natural energy modulators. Tapping (EFT) is another great way to transform negative energy. Starting each day with a gratitude affirmation can increase positive energy.
- Listen to music. Music heals. In fact, it has been demonstrated that music therapy is efficacious as an independent treatment for reducing depression and anxiety. It has also been shown to improve respiration, lower blood pressure, improve cardiac output, reduce heart rate, and relax muscle tension. Try listening to music that matches your vibration. This will help transform the negative energy you are holding onto. You can do this when you are alone, while you are exercising, or even when taking a shower.
- Set boundaries. Once you can recognize the energy vampires who drain you, set limits on the amount of time you spend with them. Notice how you feel when you are with them and how you feel afterward. Soon you will be able to walk away for good and recover your precious energy. You will also have a lot more time on your hands to do something you love.
- Focus on something other than your relationship. If you must spend a little one-on-one time with the energy vampire in your life, choose activities that take the focus off your relationship. Find shared passions and do those together. Perhaps you both love art. So, meet them at an art show where the focus is on the art—not on your relationship. Then give yourself permission to enjoy the art you are taking in. This will help make the experience lighter all around.
- Don’t compromise. No energy vampire likes boundary setting. Learn to be okay with this. You don’t need them to like that you’re done with the interaction. Learn to say “Okay, I gotta go,” and then leave. Let them throw their fit, but don’t get involved. Stick to your guns, get moving, and don’t look back.
- Express righteous anger. In his book The MindBody Code, Dr. Mario Martinez points out that many Tibetan monks have diabetes that can’t be attributed to their diet or lifestyle. He suggests that the monks’ development of diabetes is intimately connected with their belief systems of loving-kindness and forgiveness. Now, the Tibetan culture and its people have suffered a huge amount of damage by the Chinese. The natural response is anger and rage, yet the monks have been taught to send love to their enemies instead. They are literally “sugar-coating” their anger. This initiates the release of endorphins (akin to morphine), which numbs their pain and prevents them from feeling anger. High levels of endorphins over time can adversely affect glucose metabolism. Learn to express and release your anger. You can start by saying “I now clear anger and resentment from my body.”
- Love yourself. Your life’s purpose is to take care of yourself. It’s all you are asked to do! Listening to your own thoughts and emotions is self-empathy. Take some time every day to honor your feelings and embrace your sensitivities. Recognize that you can be vulnerable and strong at the same time. Celebrate every time you listen to your intuition or do something that helps you become happier, stronger, and healthier. Remember, when you live up to your full potential, you actually transform the lives of others.
How have you given yourself a permission slip? Please leave your comments for me in the comments section below.