Choice Creates: A 24-hour Exploration
24-hours of choice and several days later (check out previous 'So You Think You're Stuck posts)… and several more days of writing, staring at it, not being satisfied with it, and then, finally, choosing just to post it anyway…
It was a bit of a wild ride, and, if I’m being totally honest with myself, I tend to like rides with a little thrill in them. Which explains a lot about how I have created my life. I make waves. I know that some of them I could do without, that ease and flow would really be my preferred way. And, some of it is just how I show up. And it’s ok. I can work with it instead of fight it. Which is one of the things I got from this.
How much do you fight yourself, instead of using you to your own advantage?
If I trust myself to be me, with all of the quirks and foibles, I can actually use that to my advantage both with business and the business of living my life. For instance, I intended to do some writing and since I stay up late decided I would do it at night, totally ignoring the reality that after 10-ish I’m pretty much only interested in watching something light on tv or listening to an audiobook. But, I convinced myself it was going to be different. It wasn’t.
What actually works is to dive into the more creative aspects of what I do early in the morning- even though I don’t enjoy the getting up. In the morning things flow more easily. The same is true with yoga, I pretend that I will do it in the late afternoon, but, most often, I won’t. By then so many things have come up that I would like to, or need to do, that yoga gets squashed. So, if I were to take advantage of what I know about me, I would wake up earlier than I want to, do my quick yoga and dive into the juicy creative stuff for a while.
Knowing this is what will work best for me doesn’t mean it will be super easy.
I have to make myself choose it. And, I can’t think of a time when I have that I have regretted it. It’s pretty much always been a great option. As a bonus, I don’t spend any time in self-recrimination for not making a better choice. NOTE: judging oneself for anything is a fruitless and damaging task. Nothing greater ever comes from it. And, during my "choice-a-thon," I discovered I do it more than I realized.
Moved to the top of my To- Do List:
1. Stop Being an Ass to Me!!
What do you know about you, that if you honored it, instead of judging it or pretending you will change it, would allow you to have more ease in your life?
On that same thread, what I know really, truly, is my greatest choice most mornings, is to wake up early, throw on work-out clothes, take my dogs for a walk, do my yoga, make coffee and then get creative. Will I ever love waking up that early, probably not. While I’m doing it. But once I do, I enjoy the peace and the space that time of day is.
If I try to convince myself the dogs will get the long walk in the afternoon, or that I will do my yoga then, I am lying! Or even thinking I will forgo the coffee…liar, liar pants on fire! It’s all cool and what makes it even cooler? Honoring myself and choosing for me (and my body, and my dogs); it creates more trust with myself.
This day of relentless choice has reminded me how much fun it is to “honor” oneself. It is now 3 days later and what has shown up is that I am continuing to be in question and choose towards the lightness. Each day it has gotten easier and while writing this I realized, I am out of the rut. Stuck no longer in a quagmire of my own design.
I even dissected some of the steps I use to unstick the stuck and I’m going to create a really cool 3-day online “living workshop” around it, and also created a last-minute OM Times Joy of Business radio show with my friend and colleague, Lauren Polly, on the subject. I will create a post with the link after this is up, it might be contribution to you. I used the crap I was wading in to my advantage and created something new and generative.
What are you struggling with now, that you could turn into something “new”? Even if it’s just an a-ha about how you be in the world, and then loving yourself for it, not in spite of it?
I won’t go into the minutiae of all of the choices I made during this 24 hours, but here are the things that stuck with me and I hope will be a contribution to you:
I’m not as fucked up as I think I am
As in, there are those areas where, if we are being honest, most of us have decided we are terribly flawed or beyond redemption. And it’s just not true. I am the queen of not following through on my own projects. And you know what? It’s ok. The ones that require to be out in the world are persistent, they tap on me and won’t really go away. So maybe all the stuff that didn’t get completed wasn’t really asking to be in the world. Or maybe, it was someone else’s to do, I was just the temporary incubator for the idea. What really matters is to stay present and ask questions about what is required right now and just do it.
When I am willing to follow what sparks for me in the moment I create more and have more joy
Following on the above when something is calling at me, pinging me, and I have enthusiasm for it, do something with it. Now is the time. It doesn’t mean an entire class, article, or project needs to be seen through to the finish. What is required is some attention; it could be asking more questions about whatever it is, or even just writing it down in my ideas book for future reference. But if I do something with it, it gets bigger and more substantial in the world and I get more clarity about whatever it is. When I play this way, with my work and ideas, it is fun. I am following the energy of the moment, and that almost always works to my advantage.
I am more creative than I acknowledged – as in I constantly have ideas and am playing with them in some way.
A lot of it is energetic, so acting on it while it’s hot is something I need to make myself choose even if I try to talk myself out of it; which in less than a few seconds I can. There are usually a banquet of reasons why now is not the time. And, when there is so much sparking and popping, I sometimes trick myself into thinking I am overwhelmed. Guess what? I’m not. I am more than capable of having my attention on multiple things (even if it just a thread). And, if it gets written down I won’t lose it and I can go back when the time is right for me. Which I mentioned earlier and I’m repeating for my own benefit J
My point of view really does create my reality
I have total choice with how I live each day. I can choose to make it laborious and routine, or I can choose to have some fun with everything that is required. I have consciously created my life so that there is space and I have more flexibility with how my day is structured. This can be a glorious and playful thing, and it also can lead me down the path of stagnation and stop which is how I ended up here, writing this. Even when I have heavily scheduled days, I can take the point of view that it will be easy and make the choice to interject some moments of quiet space and kindness to me and my body. Even just the choice to pet my dogs or spend a few minutes in the sun make a difference. My point of view about what the day will be and my choice are the only difference between ease and drudgery.
Here it is folks, the bottom line. You can choose to be happy or you can choose to be sad. You can make the most out of any situation by simply choosing a point of view that facilitates ease, joy, and flow. Every moment there are choices available and if you are willing, ask yourself:
What do I really want to choose here? What will create the greatest right now?
When you are willing to choose, whatever it is, you will either be on the path to something better or learn something that will help you get there. We are taught somewhere along the way to make a choice and stick with it. What if that’s one of the greatest lies in our world? It certainly isn’t true for most situations. That’s the thing about choice, there is always another one. If the one we make doesn’t work, pivot and choose something different. Choice is powerful and it is ours to use or refuse.
Keep on keepin' on,