We know that the choices we make or don’t make in our lives, determine our path through this life.
When we stand there scratching our head and asking ourselves, “How did it come to this?”, we can probably figure out the reason or reasons if we examine the choices we made along the way.
For me, a pivotal event occurred in my life a few years ago and it caused me to become even more introspective and question everything I’d done in my life up until that defining moment.
After several months of journaling my thoughts, as I read various self-help books and blogs, I began to understand more clearly who I was and who I was not. Why I did things the way I did. Why I got the results I got. And how I should perhaps change to get better results.
I looked back at all the people and experiences that had the greatest influences on me. I journaled my thoughts on which traits I received and from whom I received them. Then I looked at those more closely and discovered that some traits that I thought were admirable and positive for my life also turned out to be traits that had hindered me in some way.
Good examples of this are faith and tolerance. My mom had strong faith and my dad was very tolerant. I admired both qualities and took them on as my own. How can these be hindrances?
Having faith in something greater than yourself helps to keep you sane and hopeful about life and living. And I’m sure you can think of several instances where tolerance would be a good thing.
But if you have strong faith in your dreams, for example, but you never take action to achieve them, the result is probably going to be less than desirable. The hindrance here is the thought that faith alone will get the desired results. You have to want it badly but you have to make the effort.
If you are tolerant to the point where you always give in to others and never stand up for what you want, others will never know your true desire and thus never know the real you.
What I learned from all the introspection and self-analysis was that first, I really needed to determine what was most meaningful to me. Then I had to take steps to make it happen. I realized that for the most part of my life I had faith that everything would happen “as it was meant to”. Now I see that as a passive way of looking at things; having faith but not understanding the importance of acting on that faith.
I was just taking the path of least resistance. If more than one opportunity was presented to me, I chose one thing over another simply because it was more desirable than the other and it was the more tolerable choice. I should have been saying, “Neither choice is acceptable to me. I only want what I want!”
Somewhere along the way I began to subconsciously undervalue my interests and true desires. Somewhere I got the idea I didn’t really deserve what I wanted. When that happens, you lose a part of your drive and self-determination. You begin to settle for less.
So I decided to uncover those interests and desires that I had pushed way down deep inside me, to value and respect them once again, to pursue them, and to share them. I came up with a long list. Some of them surprised me. Some of them I was always fully aware of.
If you give it some consideration, you may surprise yourself with your own list. If you already know what you want in life, then great. Either way I wish the best for you.
The next post will include “The LIst”.