“In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Lately I’ve been thinking a great deal about choices. Choices about what to do with my time, how to structure my day, what kinds of work to take on, what kind of exercise to do, how to look after my mind. One thing is abundantly clear, just like today’s quote by Eleanor Roosevelt: the choices I make are ultimately my own responsibility.
No one else is going to make healthy exercise or healthy eating choices for me.
I choose to look after my mind by regularly meditating and saying positive affirmations, and look after my body by eating well and exercising often. This is never easy. I have a massive sweet tooth, and love being lazy. I have discovered, through trial and error, that those things are really bad for my body and my state of mind. I know there are important things I want to accomplish, and a better version of myself that I want to be, which require me to avoid the bad stuff and embrace the good stuff. So I choose.
No one else is going to design my day so I use my time and energy productively.
I choose to make tough decisions about when and how I work, so I can produce my best work and be someone who contributes and makes a positive impact on the world. I’m a morning person. I love the quiet of a pre-dawn, and I do some of my best writing first thing in the morning. My work is evolving into a place where being a great writer and creator is of paramount importance to sharing my message and building a broader audience for my work. As a result, I get to bed by 10pm almost every night, so I can get up early and be at my best in the morning. I’ve also made the tough choice to no longer offer morning photo shoots, because the light is always better in the mornings, and for my business to be sustainable as we move it more and more online, I must be able to write and create content for my audience in the mornings. So I choose.
No one else is going to drive my business or my goals for me.
I choose to spend personal evening time (when I could be watching TV) working on ideas for the documentary film I will make with my wife, or researching the construction of our bus, or creating a marketing action plan. This is so we can make our Australia trip the roaring success we know it can be, and one that catapults us into the next phase of our lives as film-makers and change-makers. So I choose.
My choices are all about building habits and following practices every day, that translate to large achievements in the long run.
Choices about important issues aren’t always easy, but they are always simple. We complicate things so we can make excuses and justify taking the easier path. Making the tough – but simple – choices is one of the first meaningful steps towards long term change in our lives.
What choices are available in your life to take you where you want to be?
What simple (but tough) choices have you been avoiding?
What responsibilities are you abdicating by the choices you make?
I know you read these IQs because you enjoy my perspective. I know that sometimes I dish out lots of warm and gooey love, and sometimes (like today) I dish out a whole lotta tough love. That’s my experience of life, and I believe it’s impossible to have heaps of gooey love without the odd dose of tough love.
And you know what’s even better? You have a choice about how you read, respond, or react to my writing.
I really do love you. And Eleanor was right. You really are responsible for your choices.