Do you hit the snooze button or possess little energy or motivation to arise in the morning? How about the desire or automatic response to exercise, or do you think it’s too much work? Do you want to lose weight, although think it is too challenging to achieve and maintain? Do you desire to stop smoking, drinking, gambling, eating excessively, spending too much money, or jettison any other bad habit? Do you focus on your past mistakes and allow that past to dictate your present and future beliefs?
You cannot change the past, yet the future is so bright it can burn your eyes. Daily choices create power to make heaven from hell or hell into heaven. Attitudes and perceptions are in your control. Live your purpose, thus success, leading to fulfillment. Forget about what anyone else desires from you. Just do and be the best you. Remember, forgiveness brightens your future.
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world” (Anne Frank). Our existence and legacy can take on incredible meaning and purpose that transcends through generations. Change begins by igniting flames within our soul, coupled with a choice. What gifts, talents, skills, and abilities do you desire to share with humanity and the world?
“You can make many plans, but the Lord’s purpose will prevail” (Proverbs 19:21 NLT). Don’t steal from your future just to make today easier. Discipline yourself to invest in health, wealth, and relationships, while choosing to love, learn, grow, and live your purpose. Focus on living out your principles. Bumps in the road will come, although principles remain unchanging, thus impenetrable to enemy forces. Keep on doing the right thing, despite others’ opinions and small judgmental minds. This way of living leads to personal significance and fulfillment. Raise your standards. Be you, not someone else. Don’t chase after someone else’s worldly dreams, fixated on fame, power, or excessive possessions. What gives you peace and makes you happy? You owe yourself the best of you—all of you. Be unapologetically you.
“Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” (Patrick Henry). Psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor, Viktor Frankl, was inhumanly tortured in a Nazi prison camp, nevertheless, found meaning and purpose that helped him endure and truly live despite the horrors of death, tragedy, suffering, terror, and indescribable evil and injustice surrounding him. In spite of the chains and physical imprisonment physically seen and felt, Viktor saw and felt freedom with his mind. Through visualizing mental images and thoughts of his wife, while creating other positive anchors to hold near, he aspired to survive so he could tell his story to inspire and impact multitudes of people by giving them hope and purpose.⁵
It is irrational and illogical to do something just because our parents, grandparents, or whomever did it a particular way. Their reasons and ways of believing, thinking, doing, and acting may have been or might be erroneous. There is a story of a young woman who habitually cut off both ends of a pot roast. A friend asked her why she did that and the answer was because my mother did it. The young woman asked her mom why she cut the ends off the pot roast and the reason was because her mother did it too. Finally, the grandmother was inquired and subsequently gave the real reason for cutting off the ends of the pot roast. The ends of the roast were removed so it could fit in the small pan and oven that was possessed at the time.
Do not live an unexamined life. Why do you believe, think, and behave certain ways? Is this the best way to live your life? Are you living with purpose and meaning, beyond yourself?
What would you do if failure was not possible? If you had more money than you ever needed what would you do with your time, gifts, talents, skills, and abilities? What gifts, talents, skills, and abilities would you develop or enhance? What would you spend your money on? What organizations would you donate money to? Where would you invest your money? What percentage of money would you invest? Would you manage your own money or let someone else do it for you—why or why not? Where would you volunteer your time? The answers to those questions are likely what you should be doing or pursuing right now. Forget about what society, your parents, friends, peers, and everyone else thinks you should do. What do you love to do when time seemingly disappears? This can be a type or state of flow. Follow your gut, whereas the hunch just feels absolutely right or wrong. If you are greater than 50 percent confident about something to be true, speak and act as though you are 100 percent absolutely certain. Think and act as though failure is not possible. What gives you purpose and peace?
“Self-evaluation is helpful, but evaluation from someone else is essential” (Andy Stanley). Be brutally honest while self-reflecting on right and wrong. Your answers are perceptions related to personal principles, beliefs, and experiences. Make sure your ideal self and real self are congruent, therefore creating peace and abundant fulfillment within. What do you stand for and why?
“Sometimes what counts can’t be counted, and what can be counted doesn’t count” (Albert Einstein). Do not compare yourself with anyone, except who you were yesterday. Your very own intangible character traits based upon what you stand for helps preserve visions, dreams, and goals while persevering toward greatness, despite adversity. Know both what to do and what not to do in varying situations, thus expediting your journey toward becoming the best version of yourself. Furthermore, another person’s perspective, especially from a leader, mentor, counselor or coach can guide, teach, inspire and direct our steps, additionally, helping to hold us accountable. Strive toward becoming the person you truly desire and are fully capable of being. Be you!—everyone else is taken.
“A man who denies to other men equality of rights is hardly worthy of freedom; but I would give even to him all the rights which I claim for myself” (Abraham Lincoln). Only allow love and good wishes for greatness unleashed within to go out toward each and every beautiful God-created person. We all are human with ebbs and flows of ups and downs. Let’s maximize our ups and minimize the down times. Living with aliveness, excitement, adventure, and vigor is fully attainable for each of us, today, tomorrow, and always.
Deserve to be full of health, wealth, love, and joyfulness by the way you choose to live your life. Let’s work on ourselves persistently, while embracing self-discipline, so we can live filled with abundance throughout our life journey. Write five explanations why you deserve to accomplish your dreams. What makes you so special and equipped? Use “I am…” statements in present tense and add to your list daily until you reach at least fifty positive affirmations about yourself and your dreams. A few I am examples include telling yourself, “I am bold, I am brave, I am beautiful, I am confident, I am worthy, I am loved, I am valuable, I am forgiven, I am blessed, I am helpful, I am creative, I am giving, I am peaceful, I am joyful, I am healthy.” Don’t limit your self-talk and written truths to strictly short “I am” declarations. A few examples might be, “I am wonderfully and miraculously created from an infinite intelligence; I am a mighty and powerful child of God with unlimited potential. The gifts, talents, skills, abilities, and self-confidence to succeed are already in me. I am confident, capable, and willing. I have what it takes to succeed. I think I can. I can do it.” Hard work combined with passionate yearnings to help serve people or solve problems can create a sense of worth and deserving for whatever you truly desire. Always love yourself first, therefore being capable to love others a minimum of tenfold. You and your dreams matter more than you know.
Think of learning a new skill or observing a child acquire one. It took deliberate conscious effort. Riding a bicycle or learning to swim may have been scary at first, although once learned became automatic. Patience, courage, and deliberate intention produces results we desire when our want exceeds our fear. Tell yourself, “I am sick and tired of not achieving my aim. Do you mean it or not?” Write the goal down and get busy working on it day and night. Muster up the courage and just do it, leaving no excuses not to finish. Respect yourself enough to honor and complete your adamantly honorable desires. Persisting at anything long enough with sustained self-control will elicit all the blessings this world offers in direct relation to your endeavor and personal effort. Always do your best. What do you enjoy doing when time seemingly disappears? Why not do this more frequently and study the flow of your passions and desires more in depth?