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Solar Plexus & Personal Power in Recovery

Updated: Jun 7, 2023

Image by Wellford Wellbeing


Right around middle school, we start to develop a strong desire to claim our identity and find our place in the scheme of the social structure. We deem what’s morally acceptable and question other’s rationale (ie parents). We’re individuating- becoming our own people- and thinking and acting for ourselves. This is the life imperative of the solar plexus.

During this awkward stage we start to push back on the rules, staking our claim to the bitter end. Developing a strong sense of will, or personal power, is essential in order to make actionable change in our lives when it’s needed. The element of the solar plexus is fire. Fire is the spark that ignites and transforms will into action. Without it, we’d stay stagnant.


Addiction strips us of personal power. We become a slave to the substance or behavior of choice. It’s pretty cut and dry. When we don’t possess a solid sense of personal power our self-esteem and confidence dwindles. We feel stuck and weak. As a result, we may turn to manipulation, coercion, and force to give the illusion of power. This can manifest as sexual misconduct, steamrolling over people, abuse (of many forms), controlling others, and many other forms.

Generally, feeling a lack of personal power and low self-esteem occurs prior to becoming addicted. When the life imperative of the solar plexus isn’t met we will search and search for ways to fulfill it. And down the path of self-destruction we go.

One of the very few bones I have to pick with 12-step philosophy is the concept that we must surrender self-will in order to recover. It’s not that black & white. Yes, we need to curb manipulation, coercion, and force. But we need a healthy dose of self-will to survive. We need self-will to stay the course. We need to know we’re strong enough to do it. Women especially need to feel their power.


  1. Mantra- I CAN. Mantras are subtle yet powerful ways to redirect energy. Repeating this phrase- I CAN- over and over will communicate to your body that you have the strength and power that it takes to overcome.

  2. Food- eat complex carbs like oats & brown rice. Also yellow foods like bananas, squash, lemon, corn, and pineapple.

  3. Mindful Yoga- a strong, mindfulness based yoga practice will keep you in poses for an extended period of time with a focus on the present moment, building strength and giving you confidence- just what the solar plexus needs.

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