Whatever the destination, there’s always a choice. It might not always seem like it, but the choice is there. Many times we don’t realise and get stuck on paths that we don’t want to be on, because we didn’t choose them. Some paths will be harder than others but if we are in control and have chosen to be there then we know where we are and can use all of our skills and resources to manage the ascent. Even when it seems like we’re on a path we haven’t chosen and the going is hard, we have a choice of how to respond to that path. For example, we can sit down and cry about it/ wallow/ run around like a headless chicken, or we can recognise where we are, plan how to progress with the journey and take the next steps. We may choose all of these options! The point is that the choice is always ours. When we embrace that we take back our power in any situation. All we actually have to do is take one small step at a time.
Anthony De Mello has “Four Steps to Wisdom” in his book Awareness (1990, Zondervan):
1. “Get in touch with negative feelings that you’re not even aware of.” It’s only through recognising and acknowledging these feelings that you can do something about them.
2. “Understand that the feeling is in you. not in reality.” We spend vast amounts of time and energy trying to change external circumstances and people.
3. “Don’t define your essential self in terms of that feeling.” For example, saying “there is depression here” is very different from saying “I am depressed.”
4. Change your perception of the situation. “You are the one who needs to change… You keep insisting, “I feel good because the world is right.” Wrong! The world is right because I feel good.”
So, my challenge to you is to try this out for yourself. See what changes you can make today.