Webster's Dictionary lists only one word to define empower: v. To authorize
So when a person refers to empowering herself, what does that mean? How does one empower herself? Basically, you are giving permission to (authorizing) yourself to grow, to accept yourself and your power, and to accomplish what you want/need to accomplish. How? By increasing your self esteem, personal growth, spiritual growth, and claiming your power!
How does one accomplish the above? You can obtain these things for yourself by making your own choices, relying on your own intuition, becoming a stronger more independent... stepping out of your comfort zone. You can do these things through contemplation, positive affirmations, incantations/chants, reading self-help books and/or spiritual books, prayer, visualization and meditation, setting goals and meeting those goals... AND YOU ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO BE OPEN TO CHANGE!
My personal favorite tool(s) are Positive Affirmations. Love them! Positive affirmations have helped me tremendously with accepting myself, as well as life's curve balls. I have suffered from "Re-occuring Chronic Depression" my entire life and let me tell you, negative thinking and beating up on myself comes automatically to me. Positive affirmations help me to combat those negative thoughts and turn them around; they boost my mood, give me courage, and help me find trust in the Universe that everything is going to be ok... positive affirmations help me get through change.
As you most likely know from past experience, change comes from being tested in life, and those tests are meant to take us out of our comfort zone, which requires trust and acceptance. These growth spurts are sometimes painful or scary; just remember that growing pains are normal, temporary, and to our betterment. Accepting change is sometimes not an easy thing to do; we often struggle against change in protest, sometimes kicking and screaming, but the quicker we are able to accept change, the less painful the growth spurt.
"Whenever you become empowered, you will be tested."
"Do not assume that divine guidance flows only when you are in need of help. Guidance continues to flow whether or not you have problems. It transcends problems, heartbreaks, and traumas, flowing through dreams and illuminations. Whether guidance comes during times of tranquility or trauma, however, it is up to you to have the courage to acknowledge it."
I found the quotes at http://www.sapphyr.net/women/women-quotes-carolinemyss.htm
Goals are another awesome tool(s). Start small, setting goals that are not too easy but easy nonetheless, and from there work your way to larger more challenging goals. Each time you accomplish a goal you will feel the sense of pride, joy, and... empowerment! Acknowledge your success and follow it up what affirming your success. By acknowledging and affirming you are claiming your power.
You may be thinking to yourself: "Whoopty-doo, what's all this hoo-hah have to do with paganism?" Well for starters (1) Quite simply, how we view ourselves... our confidence, affects our energy, which in turn affects our magickal workings. Lacking self esteem leads to lacking faith and leads to fear. Your fears are basically from your lack of faith in life and in deity. I'm sure you can understand the significance... these things cripple your spiritual work! (2) You can use this process of empowering yourself by expanding your spiritual awareness, widening your perception, getting acquainted with your Higher Self, and bringing you closer to the Divine... obviously these are significant to your spiritual workings, right?!
The following crystals, stones, deities and runes are just a few suggestions for magickal workings corresponding with empowerment. Keep in mind, that these are just a few; there are many others you can work with.
Crystals and Stones
Amethyst, Carnelian,Clear Quartz, Clear Calcite, Herkimer Diamond, Diamond, Emerald, Garnet, Labradorite, Ruby, jade, Topaz, Fluorite, Lapis Lazuli
Cerunnos, Lugh, Manannan, Odin, Ogma, Zues, Math [gods]
Cerridwyn, Maat, Maeve, Nimue, Triana [goddesses]
Fehu, Uruz, Ansuz, Kenaz, Sowilo, Tiwaz
Now.... books! I LOVE to read! These two books I have not read but have added them to my Wish List; they sound awesome and I'd like to suggest them to you as well.....
(1) Empowering Your Life with Wicca, by Sirona Knight
(2) Empowering Your Life with Runes, by Jean Marie Stine
The following books I have read or I am in the process of reading. Keep in mind that I am Eclectic and these particular books are based on Christianity, as you can see from their titles. Hey, before you start cussing me... there are some great teachings here if you an put aside any prejudice concerning Christianity, just saying.
(1) Sermon on the Mount, by Emmet Fox
(2) The Moses Code, by Janet E. Twyman
(3) The Disappearance of the Universe, by Gary R. Renard
(4) Women, Thou Art Loost, by TD Jakes
I'd like to wrap this up with three more quotes from Melanie Tonia Evans at
"Taking back our power means deciding who we are, and who we wish to be. This is only possible when we no longer make our past or other people's opinions "about us".
"Every adversity in your life is presented as a response to your previously unresolved fears. This perfect system allows these subconscious undercurrents to be exposed and become conscious. By understanding and embracing this belief system you'll dissolve it and replace it."
"You are a more powerful creative being than you could ever dreamed possible!"