What can you do today to get back to that feeling that it is you — and only you — that in the end control your own time and energy?
Think about these for a second:
- What can you say no to?
- What can you say yes to?
- What can you just let remain as it, but — at least let the emotions of it being a burden you’re hopelessly inferior to — take less space?
You don’t have to do anything
The feeling that we must do something, and not having a choice, sucks. That’s what I think at least. It really sucks.
It puts its two hands around freedom’s fragile neck, and strangles us until the knuckles get white. Which is sad when you think about it, because we all urge for and love the feeling of being free.
But the truth is that we have a choice. We always have a choice. Often there are consequences if we release one of our socially constructed “must-dos”. Sometimes big consequences. Whether it be moral, financial, relationships or something else.
But, at any point in your life, you have the power to change your life — change the story. It’s a story and you’re the author.
- Don’t fancy your job? Get a new one.
- Fed up with your friend? Tell him/her.
- Sick and tired of feeling sick and tired? Clean up your diet, hit the gym and gain proper routines.
- People strongly think that you should do X instead of Y? Do whatever feels right to you.
As I’ve written about in my “About” page, I tended to just live on “auto-pilot” with no personal direction; just doing as told or for what was expected. However, after my graduation, I was offered several nice corporate job offers, and after some consideration, I released the general “must-dos” and expectations placed on me and instead made the choice of going down the entrepreneurial path. While the decision felt scary at the time, I’ve never been as happy as since I did. And that triggering event has enabled me to increasingly become more in charge of my own life in all aspects. I’m definitely the author now, but I didn’t used to be. This is not to say that becoming an entrepreneur is what you should do to become more in charge of your life, that’s just an example. You would have to identify areas that would make sense to you 😉
Also, if we do choose to complete the things that feel like “must-dos”, then we have chosen that these consequences weigh heavier than what we would get from choosing not to complete them. Notice the keyword; we are “choosing”. That we’re choosing doesn’t necessarily mean that the thing or situation just suddenly solves itself and that everything is nice and sweet. But at least it means at least that our freedom is not as stifled — and that this “must-do” becomes a bit easier to carry.
Or maybe we choose to end something or stake out a different course, as I touched upon earlier. Again, the choice is ours.
What do you want to accomplish?
But so think about, what do you want to accomplish? Can you visualize it? What if you start in small bits and build from there? The mind is a powerful and beautiful thing; if you can just get rid of self-doubt, blurry intentions and past failures and instead clearly envision a destination, then you can and will get there.
You are the author of your own story, so it is up to you to make it a good one.
Also think about the words that inspire possibility in you. Every time you come across an inspirational line in a movie, book or newspaper or hear it from a friend, write it down. Refer to these words. Use them as your anchor. My core anchor phrase is simply “if it is to be, then it is up to me”; a beautiful phrase that encapsulates my focus on my proactivity and authorship of my own life story.
Overall, as I put forward in my graduation speech a few years ago:
“You can either be passive victim of circumstance, or you can be the active hero of your own life
If you haven’t already, then please take back the pen, be the active hero and author of your own life.
It’s your life, don’t forget that.
And the best way to author your life is to come clean and speak the truth — your truth. While it is important to be honest with others, it is even more vital to be honest with yourself. What would you want if no one was judging, watching, directing, or controlling your fate?
Thereon, how can you move towards that targetted life story? Maybe you can pursue it without rocking the boat or maybe you simply have to “abandon ship and jump”. Do what it takes, and do what feels right to you; to you as the main character and the master of your life.
Everything is in your hands, and you choose how you will react to every situation you face in your life, both good and bad.
Just remember that blessings comes to those who are proactive in their life. Don’t just sit and wait for the perfect opportunity — if you do, then you will wait a long time, maybe even until it’s too late. Be persistent, don’t give in and you will find all the success and happiness you seek.
Personally, I don’t know exactly the next chapters of my life, but I’m very optimistic and hopeful because right now it feels that my story is heading where I want it to go and I am in charge of it.
So what about you?
Do you feel like a character in someone else’ story, or do you feel like the author of your own?
What kind of story do you want for your life, and what are the principles and values that you hold for your main character?
I read this good example some time ago that really encapsulates the gist of this: Imagine at the end of this life we all will be comparing stories and someone will ask to see yours. When you look at what you’ve written so far and what you’re currently writing, will you be proud to show them, or wish there was more there?
Chances are if you’re reading this you’re privileged with an amazing amount of freedom, opportunity, and financial power, certainly when compared to most of human history and much of the world today. All of those are ingredients for an incredible story; so what will you write with them?