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Know your role and stay in your lane

It’s one of my favorite phrases borrowed from the military, typically used to remind service members what’s their responsibility and what’s not.

At first glance it can potentially seem condescending, no?

I actually think there’s magic in those words many likely miss. You see, empowerment comes by cultivating a laser-like focus on what we shrink types call “locus of control.”


The extent to which people believe they have power over events in their lives.

A person with an internal locus of control  believes that he or she can influence events and their outcomes, while someone with an external locus of control blames outside forces for everything.

– Psych Central

When people are able to clearly see what’s their responsibility and what’s not, shit gets so much easier. And that translates into less frustration, anxiety, depression…you name it!

Know your role and stay in your lane

We can’t always control what our boss, lover, coworkers, or even kids do, but we sure as hell can control our reaction.

Step one is simply clarifying what’s yours to worry about and what’s not.

Common ways to do this:

  • Not taking responsibility for other people’s thoughts, feelings, or actions
  • Not trying to save everyone who thinks you should
  • Setting good boundaries around your time and money

This frees up a lot of energy that would likely be wasted otherwise. And now you can use all of that fantastic energy on what really matters – YOUR zone of genius.

Step two is taking that re-appropriated energy and directing it towards the shit YOU really care about.

Maximizing your zone of genius

I firmly believe we all have a soul purpose or sacred contract if you will. Think of it like the reason you are here on this planet.

All too often we either never realize what that is or we lose sight of it, comparing ourselves to people we think are doing it better. Insert existential crisis here.

Most waaaaaaay overthink it.

It’s really no more complicated than paying attention to how YOU best make other people’s lives better because you’re in them. Certainly this could translate into career choices but not always.

For example:

  • Smiling at a stranger
  • Seeing the best in others and looking past their bullshit they either can’t or won’t change
  • Offering words of encouragement (NOT advice giving)
  • Lending a hand on a project you happen to have expertise in

Let’s talk business

Entrepreneurs are especially prone to floating outside their lane. It can be super hard to keep the blinders on when you’re trying to make a profit.

And yet, when business owners get caught up in comparisonitis, their bottom line suffers every time. They weaken their impact by trying to do it (whatever their it is) the way someone else does.

It’s a lose-lose situation.

Business owners lose confidence, sleep, money….you name it, and potential paying customers lose the opportunity to work with someone he or she might totally resonate with!

Comparisonitis ends where service begins. – Alexandra Covucci 

If that’s you today, I would encourage you to hit the reset button on your brain. Go back to what lights your soul up.

  • What do you naturally find yourself talking about frequently?
  • What are some character traits YOU would most like to be known for?
  • What hurts your heart when you look out at humanity?

The answers to these types of questions are a like a compass for your soul purpose. Start there. You might surprise yourself!

And for the love of all that is holy, stay in your lane!


pensacola life coachTamara Powell, LMHC is a licensed therapist, university psychology instructor, and empowerment coach who believes life should be lived as a journey that is “anything but ordinary.

Passionate about holding sacred space for the rebels and mystics of the world – the healers, the visionaries, and the creatives, she guides them in bringing their soul driven purpose to the planet in a very practical and powerful way.


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