MAKING A LIFE CHOICE!!!
The greatest advantage of the human species is our ability to make a choice…to select a course of action in specific response to an immediate challenge or situation…one that can be life altering. The animal kingdom generally has only the choice between ‘flight or fight”, a naturally instinctive reaction to the circumstances around them. Now before you berate me about your brilliant dog, who understands your every command, these are learned responses and not choices. Ok, I will admit that Fido may choose to ignore your command and that this maybe life altering but he /she will also return for food and shelter…a learned response. The human species rose to the top of the food chain on our innate ability to “choose” how we Live, Work and Play…Now making that choice can be excruciatingly difficult…including the ultimate response of procrastination and never making it at all!!!
I call the disease of procrastination “ ifitis”…replacing immediate action by focusing the blame on something or someone other than ourselves…I would take action now…If only I had more resources…If only I was smarter or faster…If only I had acted sooner…if only I could act more responsibly…when you find yourself with this disease, recognize immediately that you are avoiding the challenge…stop, analyse, and take the best course of action…but do it now!!! “Ifitis“ can be paralysing and debilitating…sometimes life threatening!!!
What’s the difference between Decision and Choice? According to Jon Mertz author of “Active Leadership: Aspen Truths to Empower Millennials…a Decision is the act of making up one’s mind…and Choice is the power or opportunity to choose…it’s all about perception. Jon suggests that a Decision is about the process, the analysis, the checks and balances…which we do every day and decide the range of scope of that decision and its high or low impact. We decide where to Live, Work and Play. Choices are much more difficult. They are about our perception of life and our position within our life’s framework. Choices determine how to best live or lead our life…We can spend our lifetime making Decisions yet spend very little time making distinctive life choices. Jon says we should take more time to make more proactive Choices in setting life or leadership goals. I have always every year, at Christmas time, set aside time to review the performance of my business, my family relationships, my goals and aspirations as set out in my 1 and 5 year plans and measure how I have been doing…but more importantly I always look for ways to improve or enhance my life going forward…I call it Family Council Time…making Choices that matter. This is about leading a purposeful life. Decisions made everyday get us through that singular day. But Life Choices about purpose, leadership, charitable giving, family relationships, health and wellness can create meaningful heartfelt differences in our contribution to our community and each other. It is your Legacy and your Choice!!!
Jon sets out three key points in making choices…
- Life choices set a direction…spend time to develop a mindset to build a meaningful future
- Choose to Lead…how we lead our teams, our work, our family demands a thoughtful approach, meaning we need to define the present life we want through our actions.
- Decisions still matter…Once a Choice is made select the best option to pursue…make a decision.
Look back over your life and think about how difficult the choices you made have been and what have been the consequences of making them. For many of you, like me, it has often been about wellness, exercise and diet!!! I can make the choice to eat better…what goes into my body, my temple, I have direct control over!!! But do I have the will, the determination to make the right and purposeful choice…particularly at the moment of temptation!!! OH those butter tarts!!! You might say my life depends on that choice. As I enter a senior decade I can look back and see that many of my choices were not particularly good. Fortunately, I must have good genes, clearly a good attitude, to survive the abuse I have rendered my body!!! Maybe I’ve just been lucky and dodged the bullet…what I discovered, however, is that it’s never to late to make the Right Choice…to make a Life Inspired Choice!!!
Review your Life and Leadership Choices and identify where and what you want to change, define your own Family Council Time…Choose a new direction that provides you with a powerful and positive life purpose…and make that Choice now…Go for it and Good Luck!!!
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