When you've finished reading this post you will do one of two things.
You will either lie to yourself and tell yourself I'm wrong, or that it doesn't apply to you. Or you'll realise that what I've said is 100% correct. And you'll do something about it.
My advice? Choose to do something about it.
Choice. It's yours.
It really is that simple. Choice. Everything in life is about choice. Everything you do. Even deciding to read the rest of this post is a choice. And I'm glad you're choosing to keep reading. Because if you're someone who feels like you can't do something (anything). Or that the ability to live an amazing life doesn't apply to you then what I'm about to say can change your life. If you choose to change it.
It's quite a bold statement to say you choose everything, especially when there are so many things that seem to just happen to you. So let me explain.
When you wake up in the morning you can choose to be miserable - because you're not a morning person, so there's nothing you can do about it, or you can choose to be in a good mood and make the most of every second because life is for living!
Or when your boss asks you to do something you don't like doing you can choose to do it. Or tell him/her to f*** off!
Or when your rent is due. Or your mortgage. You can choose to pay it. Or you can use the money to go on a day out with your family and friends.
Now you might be thinking - I can't tell my boss to f*** off! I'll get sacked. So know this. You can tell them to f*** off. And you probably will get sacked. You still get to choose. Is getting sacked worth the joy of telling your boss to f*** off?
If it is, then do it! There is literally nothing stopping you. If you can't afford to lose your job, then maybe the right choice is to do what they've asked (unless it's something unethical or illegal).
And what about your rent/mortgage? Well it's simple. If you want to keep your home, then the right choice is probably to pay it. But what if it's a choice between feeding your kids and falling behind on your mortgage? That's a little more difficult right? You can choose to do both.
Choose to call your mortgage provider/landlord and explain your situation. Tell them you're choosing to prioritise your kids' survival right now, so your payments will be a little down this month. The law protects you from immediate issues with rent/mortgage payments. But the law doesn't feed your kids!
So because the consequences of your choices may be terrible it means you should understand these consequences before choosing. And if you're willing to accept the consequences you're able to make the choice and accept it for what it is.
How does this help you day-to-day?
Once you accept:
1 - You choose everything
2 - You must accept the consequences of your choices
Then you're in a position to move forward and live the life you want by making the choices that will get you there.
Not all choices will determine whether you keep your job or your home. Sometimes they're more simple - like whether to eat a cake or not, whether to learn something new. Or whether to get off your arse and exercise. They might even be things like choosing whether to let others' opinions have an impact on how you feel about yourself.
And the basic principles of your choices still apply. Imagine waking up and deciding to wear an outfit that's quite bold. Something you don't usually wear. And imagine feeling awesome when you see yourself in the mirror.
And imagine that you've not worn this before because you were worried about what others say. But today that doesn't matter. And imagine you pop to the shop and hear someone in the stop mutter to one of their friends about how it looks awful on you.
You can either ignore it and stay happy - because this person is genuinely irrelevant in your life and their opinion has no value. Or you can ponder the comment all the way home. And as soon as you look in the mirror you no longer feel awesome. You feel like you look stupid. So you get changed.
In this situation the consequences of choosing to ignore the comment is happiness. For you. Even though this is sometimes the difficult choice, it's the one that would have made you happy.
And if you took the choice to let that irrelevant person's comment weigh on your mind the consequences is upset, misery and self-doubt.
So choose wisely. Letting poisonous comments that people say, or might say, dictate your choices and the way you live your life is going to make you miserable. And you'll never live the life you want if you keep choosing to listen to these arseholes.
Now let's look at your health and fitness choices.
I'll admit to you here and now that I like cake. I like junk food and I eat far too much of it. And each time I'm face between the choice of ordering a takeaway or going to McDonalds, I have an internal debate before I choose that goes something like this:
"I really should eat something that's healthier." and then I follow that with something like "Yeah. But pizza?" or "Yeah. But a Big Mac!!" And depending on how focused I am on eating healthily I'll make the choice. But I'll do it consciously. I accept that eating a Big Mac, Fries (and probably cheese bites too) is not going to help me achieve my body goals. Other times I'll choose something healthier.
The consequence of choosing junk food is that I will need to spend more time being active or reduce my calorie intake to make up the difference. The point here is, when I feel that I'm getting fat, I know it's because of the choices I've made. And I simply need to make better choices.
And it's the same with exercise. You know that moment when you're going to sleep and think. "Tomorrow I'm going to exercise. I'm going to get up, get dressed and workout for 30 minutes".
And then in the morning when your alarm goes off and you think - "Nah. I'm good. I'll do it tomorrow!". That's your choice. And if you're making the choice to do it tomorrow knowing that you're taking a step further away from your goals, then fine. Accept it and move on. Don't stress about it.
But if you do this a lot with your food and fitness choices - and then complain that you're not in shape. Then I have to say, you're not accepting the consequences of your choices. It's no-one else's fault, it's your own. And you can change it by making smarter choices.
What about relationships?
In all aspects of life, choice is the critical factor in how things work. This is especially true in relationships. Whether it's with your friends, family, spouse or work colleagues. Choosing how to act or respond dictates everything.
Think of it like this. If someone says something to you that upsets you, you have a few choices:
1 - Ignore it
2 - Respond, explaining how you feel in a clear and articulate way
3 - Respond by trying to say something just as upsetting
4 - Pretend it doesn't bother you and let it weigh on your mind for days on end before exploding at the person about it
There are probably some other choices in here too. Either way, the choice you make will impact the outcome. And each will have consequences for you. If it's something petty and irrelevant, choosing to ignore it might make you feel like the other person 'got away with it' but in the grand scheme of things, it's only your pride that's been hurt. And life will go on fine. But if you start screaming and shouting about something petty the consequences could be more than your pride. It could be the entire relationship. Especially if your reaction is over-the-top. The consequence of this choice is that your pride is in tact, but your relationship is in tatters.
The same is true if you choose number 4 - but you'll also add into this days of angst and stress about something that was fairly petty.
Maybe you choose to respond and say "Hey, that wasn't nice!" And leave it at that. You've addressed it, you've moved on. Great work.
However you respond and act in your relationships will have consequences you should weigh. And again, the message I'm giving you here is that you are the one who gets to choose. And as long as you're happy with the consequences for you and those around you then make the choice that's best for you. And never look back.
Okay, so what now?
Most people are under the illusion that they must behave in certain ways, or that there are times when they have no choice. Those people are wrong. Because as I've shown you in this post you always have a choice. So no you can make the choices that are right for you. You get to choose every action and if you genuinely want to look back in six months and see that you've made a change that has moved you closer to the life you want then pay attention to your choices. Know that it's completely up to you. Pay attention to the consequences of your choices and make choices that will move you toward your goals. You are the person that will make the difference.
It's your life. Live it your way and be the reason you succeed.