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This Is What Empowerment Means

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Empowerment has been more than a word for our more recent generations (Z and Millenials) — It has become a journey and a way to live.

I first heard this word in one of my sociology classes when they talked about feminism. I remember thinking that “empower” sounded so beautiful and sophisticated — I suppose that coming from Latin America is not something I have heard much in my life.

For a while, “empower” was simply a term I used for academic purposes. However, not too long after, I began to see it all over social media. And I LOVED IT!

Essential Meaning of empower (verb)

1: make (someone) stronger and more confident, especially in controlling their life and claiming their rights.

By definition, the word empower seems pretty directional and transactional. However, in my experience (in the therapy room) is much more than that.

Here is a collection of concepts that empowerment means to humans of this generation:

  • honoring human rights
  • freedom of being
  • power and encouragement to change the world
  • ability to take care of the world
  • healing the victim mindset
  • knowing triggers
  • owning faults
  • processing trauma
  • making justice
  • learning what is just
  • seeing other people’s perspective
  • speaking up
  • redirecting disrespect
  • seeking help
  • trusting self and others
  • count on a community
  • defending one’s beliefs
  • protecting self and others
  • mourning dilemmas
  • crying for oneself
  • acknowledging the dark side
  • acknowledging the good side
  • using one’s strengths
  • being proud of self
  • making space for self
  • taking care of self
  • investing on self
  • establishing boundaries
  • distancing self from others when needed
  • personal honesty
  • expanding one’s knowledge
  • accepting reality
  • not blaming
  • developing a good sense of self-identity
  • employing compassion and empathy
  • critical thinking
  • fighting for one’s passion
  • respecting humanity
  • respecting what we don’t know
  • feeling capable
  • overcoming hardship
  • resilience
  • challenging oneself
  • getting out of the comfort zone
  • putting one’s feet on the ground
  • loving every piece of oneself
  • exposure

Every bullet point tells a story of a client who felt victimized or ready to take over the world — both are valid. Every statement speaks for something someone went through, maybe something you are going through. But most importantly, these stories combine into an emotional connection that inspires our generation to stand back up and carry on.



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