The symbolism and metaphorical nature of the picture below can be appreciated by even the most nonreligious of us. If you look closely, an angel looks to be slaying a demon (it's hard to tell because "Empowered" is stamped over his face, naturally). Then angel seen is Saint Michael, and the demon is Lucifer. The biblical story of Saint Michael is powerful and awesome. After the creation of heaven and Earth, an infamous battle broke out between Lucifer (who believe it or not was an angel at the time) and his followers against God and his angels. [Scroll down to read more]
The angel Michael, firmly siding with God, gathered the other angels and defeated Lucifer and his followers; thereby casting them out of heaven. Lucifer then became known as Satan ("adversary") and his followers as devils. Now, substitute Satan and his devils in this story for your own personal "demons", such as: doubt, impatience, temper, procrastination, laziness, hate, or any other inner struggles that make you feel or act less than your best. Substitute Saint Michael as your ability to choose between good and bad, and qualities such as: confidence, patience, responsibility, inner strength, loyalty, industry, and love.
We cannot chose the things that happen to us, or the fact that sometimes we will unintentionally make the wrong choice or decision (a mistake). However, what we can control is the ability to choose our response. Will you choose to hold a grudge, or to forgive? Will you be unconfident and victimize yourself, or will you accept that you are powerful beyond measure? Will you hate someone who has wronged you, or will you chose to love them because forgiveness releases pain from your heart and hate keeps it trapped?
We encounter situations like this that make us chose every single day, multiple times a day, 365 days a year. Well, unless you live in a Utopia...
You start to take control of, and improve your life, once you recognize when you have the ability to chose between a proactive or destructive response. Recognizing a mistake, taking responsibility for it, and correcting it, is a highly proactive and empowering choice. On the contrary, finding someone else to blame for your mistake or even pretending that it didn't happen, robs you of an opportunity to grow and may even hurt others around you (depending on the situation of course). The moral of this short story, is that you have the power to choose, no matter how unfair something feels.
When something happens to you, no matter how big or small, recognize your intuitive response: is it productive or counterproductive? Helpful or hurtful? Proactive or reactive? If it falls into a negative response category, see if you can find and chose the positive response!