Illustration by Ruben Ireland
To have power you have to believe you can have it, and for that you have to know you're worth it, and for that you have to love yourself. The amount of self-love is proportionate to what we harness in childhood. How much have we been given, how much have we retained, how much of it was beaten out of us by parents, well-meaning strangers, institutions. At one point in our adult lives we face this dilemma for the first time: the first time we get dumped, get fired, have someone die on us, suffer an irreparable loss. In these times we look to those in power and wish we were like them. "If only I had that kind of money," we think, "if only I had that kind of a family," "if only my health was that good," "if only I were that pretty," and so it goes, ad infinitum.
We keep looking in all the wrong places until some kind soul tells us to look inside our grief-stricken chests. Some of us were lucky enough to have been told this early enough in life to have had the time to dig through the crap and get rid of most of it. But those of us who weren't as lucky, those of us who got very little love growing up have the hardest time and sadly sometimes never find it, that path to the power (which is paved with shit-bricks, by the way).