Making choices

July 20, 2011

Today’s blog is the result of inspiration that I received while reading a book. I came across a paragraph that summed up my beliefs quite nicely:

“A partnership, friendship, intimate relationship, or marriage that succeeds or fails, a book that gets written or remains a jumble of notes in a drawer, the garage that gets cleaned out Saturday or put off until next week – these are all the result of decision. Or, to be more accurate, decisions. Decisions, for example, of self-reliance and personal responsibility, or of not waiting for better or ideal timing or circumstances, help from others, or a muse’s delivery of just the right mood.” (From pages 2-3 in No B.S. Business Success in the New Economy by Dan S. Kennedy, published in 2010 by Entrepreneur Press.)

The author, Dan S. Kennedy, goes on to offer his first “eternal truth” (of 19) in operating a successful business:

“Every successful achievement begins with decision. Most unsuccessful lives are conspicuously absent of decision.”

I was prepared to send these quotes to a few of my friends, suggesting that they read this book. Then I realized that I could send this to many more people by including them in my blog. So here are my thoughts.

The first step in breaking free of ideas, thoughts, behaviours or circumstances that appear to trap us is to accept our conscious decision to keep them or stay in the situations. Only until we accept that we have made the decision to keep these thoughts, ideas, or behaviours, can we make the conscious decision to change them. Only until we accept that we have made the decision to remain in the situation we don’t want or like, can we make the conscious decision to change it.

By accepting that we have made the decision to stay where we are, we then open up a world of possibilities. We can become at peace with our decision, knowing that it is the best one for us at this moment in our lives. Or we can take small steps to change the decision.

For example, maybe you live where you do because you want to be close to your parents or your children or your grandchildren. Or maybe you live in that area because of your work. You would rather live somewhere else, maybe in a smaller town or a larger city. Maybe in the mountains or by the sea. Maybe in a hot country or up north. Maybe where there is less traffic and less pollution. Or maybe where there are more opportunities for entertainment and cultural events. But there you are, living where you don’t want to because you want to work at that job, be near that person, maintain that relationship.

This is a decision that you have made. You have made the decision to sacrifice living where you want in order to live near someone. Or you sacrifice living where you want in order to work at a job that lets you own the things you want. By accepting that you have made that decision, you can change that decision whenever you want to. Whenever it is time for you to change. You are not “stuck,” you are doing exactly what you want: living close to your parents, or your children, or your grandchildren, or your work.

Some people decide to work at jobs they don’t like because it allows them to have the time off that they want. Or they work at jobs that they don’t like because it allows them to live where they want. Whatever the reason, these people have decided to choose one thing over another. These decisions are ours to make. And these decisions are ours to change.

By saying to yourself, “I can’t leave” or “I can’t move,” you remain a victim of your circumstances. You are stuck. Other people or life makes the decisions for you.

Instead, by saying to yourself, “I choose to stay here,” you become in control of your situation. Once you are in control, you have the power to change. You make the decisions for you.

(Please note: this blog contains my thoughts only. The only opinions from No B.S. Business Success in the New Economy by Dan S. Kennedy are the two quotes that I used. All other comments are my own.)

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