When is Enough....Enough - Part 1

When is Enough....Enough - Part 1

In the last two weeks my friend Jeffrey Van Dyk and I have been talking about people living in a “fantasy world.”

I’ve been pondering this in my life and also applying it more broadly into “when is enough actually…enough?” For example, in my world, how many Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter cups are “enough” in one day? Is it one, three or unlimited? I’m actually facing this question daily. It’s a struggle because it feels like an addiction. And I’m very picky about the actual type of Peanut Butter cups. Other ones are not tempting. I feel this is true with all addictions – very specific choices.

Where I’m focusing this article is about “How Much Power is Enough” if somebody is living with a powerless wound. Jeffrey’s work for years has been identifying wounds and using the consciousness and skill set developed to serve your clients.

I see powerlessness in people's hand markings as a student path experience. Here are some of those phrases from the Hand Analysis system:
1. Being in power struggles
2. Power give-away to others
3. Power diminishment in order to be loved
4. Overwhelmed and thus feeling powerless to take action
5. Feeling passionless thus powerless
6. Losing faith in oneself because of giving away power to others
7. Challenged to see a bigger vision and/or purpose; limited scope of vision
8. Feeling disrespected and not honored enough
9. Dismissing leadership as a way to be influential because of poor leadership role modeling thus under-expressing one's power
10. Denying one's ability and/or action of being influential rendering one powerless

This is the first of a 3-part series. In this one we are identifying the powerless wound and consequential impact. In the next one we will be looking at suggestions, recommendations, solutions. The third one is a personal story.

Identifying the Powerless Wound
I started pondering this wound when Roe v. Wade was overturned by 6 of the 9 Justices of the Supreme Court. This is such a blatant and ever- present media story so it's easy to use as an example. There are MANY people in positions of authority to whom this same conversation could apply, as well as to us on a personal level.

What if the Justices who voted to overturn this law have powerless wounds? And of course, when Trump was running for President, he promised to get this law overturned. I so see him as displaying repeatedly a powerless wound.

For example, for the Justices, these questions may have existed inside, most likely not consciously:

"Is graduating summa cum laude in college enough?"

“Will I feel powerful enough when I become a lawyer?”

“How many cases do I need to win to feel like I’ve attained a feeling of power?”

"How about if I clerk for a Supreme Court Justice? Will I be acknowledged and recognized as powerful, as respected?"

“If I am a judge at the County or State level, is that going to create this internal feeling of enough power? If I influence 100 people’s lives is that it? How about 1000 people?”

“How about a District Judge? Is the power to make choices about groups of people and organizations enough to satisfy the thirst and hunger for power that is missing inside me?”

"What if that internal feeling of powerlessness disappears if I serve in some capacity with a sitting US President?"

“Oh, maybe the REAL feeling of power will come when I’m a Supreme Court Justice? Then I can feel so powerful because I can make choices that influence an entire nation!”

If the powerless wound is never addressed as a wound, there is no “crossing the finish line” of feeling “powerful enough” to compensate for the feeling of powerless.
~ There is a thirst for power, a hunger that will never be fulfilled.
Erin Schaff-Pool/Getty Images

If the powerless wound is never addressed as a wound, there is no “crossing the finish line” of feeling “powerful enough” to compensate for the feeling of powerless.
~ There is a thirst for power, a hunger that will never be fulfilled.
~ It’s a never-ending search.
~ There is no end point.
~ It ravages your system.

And it can be all consuming like an addiction. Maybe it is an addiction.

It can consume somebody’s perspective to the point that they resist taking responsibility for the harm or damage to other people. Like many wounds, the relationship with the wound is the primary relationship in one’s life, that determines choice after choice after choice.

I looked up the court case against Judge Clarence Thomas by Anita Hill in 1991 for sexual harassment which was shown on TV so I was aware of it. This was when the Senate was holding confirmation hearings for his position to the Supreme Court. Anita claimed he had sexually harassed her in the work place. At that time, the laws about this didn't exist like they do now.

Sexual advances in any form is a “power over” experience. The person who has the most power intimidates or manipulates a person they perceive as less powerful. I’m sure you can imagine that the person feeling “more powerful” is doing this because realistically that person has a powerless wound. Again, "how much 'power expression' is enough so that I feel truly powerful inside?"

In 2018 Dr. Christine Blasey Ford accused Justice Brett Kavanaugh of sexual harassment while he was being confirmed by the Senate. A series of women accused him of sexual assault in high school and college. And yet here he is - serving in a capacity to use power over with women.

Power over can limit the freedom of the person being targeted.

Taraji P. Henson said at the BET awards, "It's about damn time we step into our power.

"It's about damn time we talk about the fact that guns have more rights than a woman. It's a sad day in America."

She continued: “A weapon that can take lives has more power than a woman who can give life if she chooses to. And it’s about time I got that off my chest.”

So, I ask…what if the motivating factor for the 6 Supreme Court Justices to overturn Roe v. Wade is from a powerless wound? And it isn't being addressed? The "power over" will continue to flourish. It's endless. There is no "enough" reached. There is no end point until the Justice is no longer in power. And the hunt to control more groups of people nationally to have power over will continue, as we have seen Justice Thomas state. He wants to go after gay rights, for example.

No amount of name calling, shaming, making them wrong will matter. They are immune to external shaming because their internal dialogue of feeling ashamed, of feeling powerless is already so strongly in place.

There is no "enough"...ever.

In summary, we've identified through this one lens some of the challenges of having a powerless wound - it never ends and others are harmed as a result.

In Part 2 of this series, we will look at some solutions, suggestions, recommendations to address powerless wounding.