It’s amazing how little, innocent actions and inactions will completely alter the course of a life.
We’ve all done it at some point haven’t we? — we decide not to change our eating habits because we’re afraid the weight won’t come off anyway; we don’t pursue that business idea because it might not work. Most of the time, we watch, read and talk about the same stuff that most of our peers do because if we don’t, we might get labeled as weird.
These actions may be normal, but normal is the silent danger.
Day after day, too many of us ignore the things we really want out of a desire to “protect” ourselves from the trivial discomforts of judgement, failure, being different, or losing ‘their’ approval. We think we’re being safe & responsible, but the ugly truth is that we’re becoming more and more comfortable with the most dangerous thing we can do — cheating ourselves out of the life we really want to create, and instead, living a life we think ‘they’ will approve of.
The crazy thing is, we’re judged anyway, we fail at things anyway, our relationships struggle anyway and we’ll never have everyone’s approval! We at least deserve to face these challenges while striving to live at our true and original best.
If we cling to normal, we inevitably become addicted to — and live with the results of – average.
Decades can pass before there’s any realization that we’ve been living a life that literally wasn’t the one we wanted to create. It just — happened. Eventually, we’ll come face to face with the pain of regret — because we could’ve, would’ve and should’ve done and experienced so much more… but didn’t.
How does this happen? Well, quite frankly, it’s because there’s usually a short-term comfort in conformity. In the moment, it feels safe, routine and expected. When we see that most people aren’t as fit as they want to be, aren’t in the business they want to be in, aren’t happy in their relationships, aren’t truly loving the heck out of the life they created, we assume that these forms of unhappiness are what we all have to expect because — “that’s just the way it is.”
But an average existence is only “the way it is” if we choose to obey those little fears that keep us from taking the action needed to build a life based on what matters to us. We need to realize that those trivial fears aren’t helping us. You and I are intelligent and bold enough to do what may momentarily feel uncomfortable, but will ultimately lead to an amazing life by our own design.
So what’s the first step that we can take today?
Decide, unconditionally, that you commit to doing what you value and being the best version of the person you want to be. It’s the only thing that will give you the future you want. Doing what matters to you sets a rare example that others will follow.
Then … take another step tomorrow, and another the day after, and again … and again. Consistency will become your reality. It’s not just the huge steps that create our fate, it’s the small repeated actions.
The daily workouts, the potential arguments you diffuse, the new career you research and build, the 15 minutes of daily meditation, the drama you avoid, the book you decide to read instead of watching TV, the healthier food you commit to, the network of forward-thinkers you engage in, the unexpected compliments you give without any expectation of it being returned…
The quality of our life is determined by our choice of repeated acts.
The next time you think — “but that would be scary”, there’s a damn good chance that’s the very reason you should do it.
This is a one-way ride through life, and you weren’t born to live in submission to popular opinion, you were born to recognize that you’re amazing and completely original. You have the freedom to create your best story — there’s no need to duplicate an average one.
Our best story begins the instant we begin the habit of laughing at those little egocentric fears of being “different” that stop most people — because you’re not most people, you’re you.