“A sign of wisdom and maturity is when you come to terms with the realization that your decisions cause your rewards and consequences. You are responsible for your life, and your ultimate success depends on the choices you make.” — Denis Waitley
Whilst we are not always in control of the currents of life, we have the power to direct our reaction to what unfolds by greeting life’s changes with openness.
In his book Way of the Peaceful Warrior, author Dan Millman reminds us of this truth: “Once you have released the arrow from the bow, it’s only a matter of waiting in anticipation as to where it’ll land.”
While we have limited control over certain aspects of life, by casting the arrow as it were, we surrender to the forces of life to direct the unfolding of events — that is where the arrow will land.
This simple metaphor reminds us of our role as co-creators of our life’s events, although in a number of ways we ultimately surrender control to a greater power which takes care of the details. You might call it fate, destiny, pre-determinism or a higher power.
In order to accept control of your life, it is essential that you inhabit your body by aligning with your mental and emotional self. Be present by owning your thoughts and emotions — do not dismiss them as an inconsequential facet of your being.
You are the director and producer of your life’s narrative. When I discuss inhabiting your body, I am referring to a state of ownership and connection of your mind and body.
I am referring to being present and grounded in the moment, not at the mercy of your past or future thoughts or similarly any runaway emotions which vie for your attention.
When you inhabit your body you do not require stimulants to create an ideal physical state. Being in your body means honouring your natural gene expression as nature intended.
You are in command of your thoughts and emotions. You do not blame others for the way they treat you, since you assume ownership of co-creating every experience in your life.
“To control your life, control your mind. To control your mind, control your breath.”― Stephen Richards
It is said we coach others how to treat us. If you frequently play the victim role which says, “He/she is responsible for the way I act or feel” you deprive yourself of your potential to enjoy life since you are at the mercy of others. You yield power to others and lose sight of your self-worth.
As you surrender your power, others will use it according to their level of awareness. That is you bind yourself to others by assuming control of the relationship rather than being a balanced union.
In many ways it is fundamental you release past mistakes and regrets so as not to carry them into the future. The present is your gateway to the future. What occurred in the past resides merely as nothing more than a memory.
To replay the past by inviting it into the present moment is not conducive to living a remarkable life. You are held captive by your thoughts and emotions when you habitually replay past memories.
Thoughts and emotions create a kaleidoscope of chemical reactions within your body which influence your genetic destiny. Releasing the past entails making peace with the it and learning from the wisdom gained from your experiences.
It invites you to bring love to the process by letting go of hurt or anger or any other untoward emotional states. The lesson from your experience served its part in your soul’s journey toward personal growth.
The present moment contains the seed of opportunity which invites you into the future. If you re-live the past through toxic thoughts, you deny the future from making its way into your life, since your frame of reference is stuck in the past.
Your mind cannot dwell in two places at the same time. It cannot live with past regrets and strive toward future happiness.
Liberate yourself of one and subsequently another door opens to transport you into your future. The mental and emotional energy required to live in the past is lost on opportunities that are better served for your future.
Similarly, assuming control of your life by getting out of your own way invites you to accept what shows up in your life, despite your perception of how life should unfold. Roll with the punches calls for accepting the perfection of what is currently unfolding and owning the moment.
“And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”― Haruki Murakami
Stepping out of your way represents dropping the resistance brought to each moment. Through your resisting to life, you block the goodness unveiling itself through you.
Many struggle with the concept of universal intelligence working in their favour, since they focus purely on the negative aspects of life’s events.
Your perception creates and colours your reality. What you focus and dwell upon becomes your focal point; irrespective of whether it is good or bad. As you relinquish the need to control outcomes, you accept what permeates through your life as valuable lessons contained within each experience.
Your lessons become the experience you are having right now. Like it or hate it, the universe brings you this experience for your personal growth and is vested in the expansion of your connection to the deepest aspect of your nature.
How you respond to the experience serves as your lesson.
Equally, your lesson may not be packaged in the form you might expect. For example if it is in your interest to learn the value of friendship, you may find yourself in opposition with a close friend whom you do not share the same outlook. In such a way universal intelligence assumes this experience as vital to help you accept your personal power within the friendship.
We may be bestowed the opposite experience of what we expect the lesson to be. The boxing metaphor, rolling with the punches encompasses accepting what shows up in your life as a valuable lesson which serves your highest growth.
Wisdom has taught me that everytime I refused an important life lesson, I’ll be given a new one disguised in different form.
It is worth appreciating as you create a remarkable future, to expend less energy toward material possessions, people or circumstances which do not matter. If it does not feel right, let it go — follow the wisdom of your heart by feeling your way in to the experience.
A quote by Dave Ramsey reminds us of the need to please others at the risk of a contracted self-worth: “We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.” Can you identify with this quote?
It involves courage to go against the crowd and stand for something different. People will influence your decisions advising you of your inability to achieve a certain goal or dream.
Don’t waste time validating yourself by succumbing to this way of being. The energy required to validate yourself stems from resistance and is futile to living a compelling future.
Rather, pursue that which brings you joy. Let go of material possessions and relationships which do not enhance your personal evolution so as to usher in the new. Think with your heart asks you to feel the world instead of think of the world.
“Don’t be pushed around by the fears in your mind. Be led by the dreams in your heart.”― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart
Connect with your feelings often — feel your way toward a fulfilling job, career, relationship, life etc. How does it feel when you consider each of these scenarios? Your feelings are accurate representations of your call to action.
As you assume control of life while seeking to create an extraordinary future, employ the habit of consistent persistence — be unrelenting in your pursuit of the ultimate experience that is. Do not accept no for an answer.
Know when to back down and when to advance forward. Create your set of rules and abide by them. Do not subjugate yourself to other people’s way of life assuming it is the accepted model or simply because others have always done it that way in the past.
Be consistent in your pursuit of the truth and a way of life that serves your potential. If you desire to be the best in your chosen field, practice daily or as Malcolm Gladwell advises in Outliers — embrace the 10,000 hour rule while focussing on deliberate practice in order to be world class.
Do not give up at the slightest hint of failure. You are frequently being tested by the powers of the universe to determine your courage and tenacity. You will be presented with more challenges along the way, each time you conquer a new one.
Refuse to accept anything less than your best insofar as your heart’s desire. Find a way; create a new path if none exists. Recognising when a pursuit is futile is equally important.
Sometimes it may be vital to relinquish your current path in order to follow a new path. This simply means you have ventured down the path as far as it will lead you and it is now time to move in a new direction.
Life may pull you away from what seems like a futile cause in order to provide you with a valuable skill to use in another area.
An unexpected U-turn may pose as a blessing in disguise and does not imply that all is lost. It is upon reflection and with the passing of time that we see the value of the experience.
Create the life you deserve with enthusiasm — create it with unbridled passion towards the process of life. Be inspired in your pursuit of your ideal future, since motivation alone is insufficient to create a compelling and powerful dream.
Motivation wanes as the going gets tough. Inspired people harness the power of infinite creativity as the source of their wisdom, often with less effort and greater reward. Create the life you dare possible. It exists on the other side of your fears, doubts and anxieties — be so bold and approach life with vigour and enthusiasm.
Originally published at medium.com