Hello, everyone. My wishes to you all for a wonderful and productive week. The message for today is “Life does not happen by itself, we need to make it happen.” This is the Law of Creation.
Yes, we need to go after what we want in life. Over the years as a therapist, I have learned if that lesson is taken away from us in our learning experience as children, there is a chance we will end up living a diluted version of our own potential simply because we never had the chance to figure it out on our own. It’s an important part of learning who we are and who we can become.
Life will go on whether or not we choose to participate — but if we don’t participate, it’s not going to support our personal wants, needs and goals. We will end up unfulfilled and possibly at the mercy of the environment.
The Law of Creation teaches us to own our destiny. “Carpe Diem” — seize the moment. If we whittle this down, for me, it becomes a matter of our choices. A very concrete thing, really. Our choices dictate everything in our lives. Choices of who we hang out with, where we go, what we watch, what we do and how we do it — and how we react. If we recognize this and the importance of our choices, we can recognize what action is needed and in what direction we move. This is making it happen! YES, we make life happen through our choices.
Looking back, I’ve always thought that in high school we should have had a class on how to understand “the self.” Wouldn’t it have been awesome to actually discuss how to manage our emotional self (I’ve since discovered the emotional self is 5 years old), learn what our thinking is really all about, understand that “I am not my thoughts,” learn decision-making skills, how to do goal set for success, how to problem solve, maneuver amongst conflict in relationships, how to be mindful, how to get our needs met in a positive way, or learn how to communicate with others in a strengths-based manner and be heard even when the subject matter is touchy. I could go on; there’s just so much.
Real skills like these are needed to maneuver is this world. We should have learned them at the same time we were learning to solve a math equation or to dissect a worm. I needed these skills when I was beating myself up in my thinking or confused about my own feelings. The more tools we have, the easier it is to choose differently. Recognize what doesn’t work and substitute it for what DOES.
Life does not happen by itself; we have to make it happen. Yes, life goes on no matter what, but this is more about “my” interaction with the world and how am I meeting my own wants and needs. I have to decide how I’m going to make it happen and go after it — I need goals. Yes, goal-setting is how we push forward in our lives. I look at a goal like the top of a ladder; it is up to me to build the rungs so I can climb the ladder and reach the top.
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Unfortunately, there is one oxymoron to the statement “Life doesn’t just happen.” Life DOES just happen with or without us and it WILL get in the way. Therefore, I will expand upon this rule to say: “LIFE does just happen, but if you want a fulfilled life you need to make it happen the way you wish it to be. Master your life. Set goals and go after what you want.
One of the things that helps enormously with decision-making is using a decision tree.
You basically plug the problem in and follow the tree to the end result.
- What is the problem?
- Can I do something about it? Yes or no?
- If no, I have to let it go and move on, redirect my thinking or distract myself.
- If yes, the next question arises: Do I need to do something now or later.
- If now, what is the plan I create to effectively do something about it and do it; then let it go.
- If later, what is my timeline and what do I plan to create to effectively do something about it?
- Do it by the timeline and then let it go.
Sometimes we need to decide what to do between two really difficult decisions, with either outcome a difficult one. In deciding what to do, it is important to choose something you know will give the best optimal outcome or be the least destructive of the two. Sometimes it comes down to “which one can I survive and move on from…” or “which one has the least consequence for me.”
At some point, without any guidance (sorely needed) when I was 19, I decided I wanted to see the world and, as many of do, I started that venture by going to Israel. Israel changed everything for me. As I walked around in world history, I realized everywhere I stepped was hallowed ground for so many as well as places people have visited for thousands of years. I was always mindful of that as I walked through my life there. Every road was well traveled. Wherever I saw rows of eucalyptus trees, I knew it was a sign of an ancient road once traveled by Romans, Crusaders, Ottoman Turks and maybe even King David himself. That mindfulness inspired me and altered my thinking forever.
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I decided pursue my passion for ancient history and attended college at Haifa University and, after two years of study, I become a private tour guide so I could take visitors on an experiential journey and be part of making their pilgrimage to Israel as exciting and wonderful as mine. This was like a dream, no matter where I went I was immersed in history, whether I was standing in Crusaders’ castles, ancient ruins with colorful biblical references, cities and desert places written in the Torah where wars were fought, or hallowed grounds of multiple religions throughout history, I would continue to pinch myself every day for the 25+ years I lived there.
Later, other choices led me to end up as a house artist to local architectural firms. I spent time meeting and working with prime ministers, musicians, world-renowned artists, and all kinds of wonderful people who have lived more than 10 generations in Israel, as well as Holocaust survivors, Palestinians, Christians, Mormons, rabbis and priests. It was the greatest melting pot of extremes on this planet per square foot of land I had ever encountered.
During this time in Israel, I ended up spending many years off and on traveling all over, embracing new experiences and new cultures. Nothing extravagant, youth hostels, sometimes the odd park bench, hitch hiking and so forth. My life turned into quite the journey, sprinkled with life experiences good and bad — lessons learned, friends made, hardships endured. I was free, a traveler on my own terms. But that’s for another time.
The message is basically that if we want a fulfilling life we need to realize that everything we choose, the decisions we ultimately make, from the toothpaste we use to the opportunity we decide to embrace, impacts who we are, where we can go and who we will become. If we understand this and become the conscious owners of our decision-making and “intentionally” make our choices, we WILL make life happen on our terms.
Something I found helpful to get this going when I feel stuck and don’t know why is listening to the late Wayne Dwyer. Any of his lectures are helpful. Here is a web address for the audiobook for his Excuses Be Gone: www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnoCHjyEeNM. Enjoy.
With love and light, Lori