Sometimes life seems patently unfair, doesn’t it. It seems that, out of the blue things can happen that you feel you just don’t deserve. A string of unfortunate events can make you feel that life has ‘got it in for you.’
There’s no question that life is full of challenges – some exciting, some enjoyable and some that you could, quite frankly, rather do without! But some of us seem to experience more than our fair share of undesirable challenges.
Could it be that this has something to do with mindset rather than an unlucky sequence of ‘rolls of the dice’?
“Take charge of your life! The tides do not command the ship. The sailor does.”
― Ogwo David Emenike
Firstly, let’s be clear that none of us exist in a vacuum. We all interact on a daily basis with the external world. Or rather, we interact with an external environment which is heavily influenced by the collective actions and behaviours of all of us.
Try as we might not to affect the lives of others, this is pretty much an impossibility unless we’re marooned on a desert island or the like.
So it seems logical to accept that there is a degree to which our lives are impacted by things that result from the thoughts, actions and behaviours of others.
Control Of Our Own Destinies
However, it would be wrong to think that the ability to control our destinies (within the context of the external environment) lies anywhere other than firmly in our own hands.
Depending on the type of person you are that may come as a huge relief or unwelcome news.
Unwelcome news? Why would we not desire complete control over our own lives?
Well, with control comes responsibility and if we have complete control then we are the only ones responsible for our lives. If our lives don’t go the way we would like them to … guess what? There is no-one to blame but ourselves.
The Convenience Of Justifying And Blaming
Strange though it may sound there are plenty of people for whom the notion of taking responsibility is uncomfortable. For those people it is far easier and more convenient to justify a mediocre life by pointing to a lack of control, than it is to take the actions required to rise above the mediocre.
Likewise, it is much easier to blame a bad situation or series of unfortunate events on fate or other people than it is to take responsibility, engage in serious introspection and take the difficult actions required to address the situation.
And yet, blaming and justifying are the sure fire route to an unhappy and unfulfilling life. Blaming and justifying are habit forming techniques that life’s ‘victims’ use successfully to deflect responsibility for their less than satisfactory circumstances.
Responsibility Requires Courage
Taking responsibility requires real courage and it is not something you can be selective about. Just as you cannot be half pregnant, you cannot be responsible only for the more attractive aspects and positive outcomes in your life!
To really take charge of your life you need to accept full responsibility for everything about it. This also means coming to terms with the things you patently cannot control, such as the weather, the economy and the actions of other people and accepting these for what they are rather than as a convenient scapegoat for your own under achievements.
The Route To Freedom, Confidence And Growth
Whereas taking full responsibility for your life is not easy, it is without doubt the route to a life of personal freedom, self confidence and growth – and the happiness and fulfilment that accompanies that.
When you resolve to take charge of your life in this way, your life will change for the better. You will begin to see other people in a more positive light – as responsible people in their own right going about their own business, rather than people who are potentially out to bring you down or ruin your life in some way.
By taking charge you will start to see life’s victims for what they are – people stuck in a vortex playing a lose-lose game. You will start to feel sorry for them rather than commiserate with them.
You will start to align yourself with other responsible people rather than with other victims. Their energy will feed you as yours will them and life will become more meaningful and invigorating.
If you’ve struggled to take full responsibility for your life up to now; if you feel the world is against you; if you think you’ve been a victim of bad luck or have had a miserable roll of the dice, then I invite you to see what a difference it makes when you take charge of your life.
Write the following in big, bold letters on a sheet of paper and read it over and over during the course of the next few days:
IF IT’S TO BE IT’S UP TO ME.
Realise that you are the architect of your own destiny. Think about that carefully and start to savour the fact that you (and no-one else) have been given the freedom to exercise complete control over your own life, just as others have too.
Go on … take charge and feel liberated!