Choices we don’t realize we have

March 12, 2015

Often in our life we get into a routine and a set way of living. We get so used to it that we don’t even realize that we have chosen to create our lives that way. Perhaps all the choices that we made initially had a reason, but now the reasons are no longer applicable. Perhaps they just happened by accident. We often think, well, that is just the way my life is, but is it really?

Sometimes it helps to take a step back and gain some perspective. I like to imagine viewing my life from the perspective of my sister (I don’t actually have a sister) or a good friend who knows me well and has my best interest at heart. If I were my sister or friend looking at my life, what would I see? Would I see someone maximizing her time, skills, and talents? Would I see someone making time for the most important people in her life? Would I see someone balancing her health and her professional life? If not, what choices can I make differently? What advice would I give myself?

These aren’t always easy choices to make. Perhaps we need to be more selective about who we give our time to. Are there people that we allow into our lives that take time from us, but don’t deserve it or haven’t earned it? Do we do this out of some feeling of social obligation or convenience? Do we spend too much time reading about other people’s lives on Facebook or reading top ten quizzes just because it’s right there on our phones? If we structured our day or our week differently could we make room for more fulfilling and worthwhile activities in our lives?

It’s important to remember that when we say yes to one opportunity we are saying no to several others. Sometimes if we stop to realize what we are giving up we might be less likely to say yes. Remember, we can’t do everything, so we should choose wisely.

A little choice that can make a big difference.

The thoughts we think have power. It’s not a magical power. It is a very real power. Let me explain. Sometimes I like to go running. Being the fish out of water that I am, it can often be a challenge for me. While I am running I sort through different things in my head. I am always amazed that if I think about something that makes me feel bad or have negative thoughts sometimes my body simply stops running! However, if I think about thoughts that make me feel good I run even faster and stronger. Try it for yourself while running, jumping, or swimming. See if you notice a difference in your performance by choosing positive or negative thoughts. It’s easy to see this play out in the sports realm. I learned about this every time I got up behind the blocks. My thoughts could make or break my race. However, now I always have to ask myself if I choose my thoughts wisely in my daily activities. My thoughts impact my productivity and my performance in everything I do. But sometimes it is easy to forget, because we don’t see the results measured quite so clearly as we do in sports.

We don’t often realize that we have a choice about what or how we think, because it seems to happen automatically. But we do have a choice. We can change our thoughts in an instant. It’s a small choice we make every moment of the day, and it can make a big difference.