Just a quick note before we move forward, my effort is to break this down into the simplest terms. As it is, we spend much of our lives overthinking or over-complicating ourselves. The suggestion, of course, is “Keep it simple” which can become complicated because we often clutter ourselves with the perceived ideas of complications. We project and we assume.
The truth is we have a choice. Each morning, we have to choose when to get up and where to go. There are times when it may seem as if our choices are limited. Or better yet, we may not like our choices. We might not enjoy what’s in front of us. But still, each day comes with its own unique choices.
By morning, the alarm will ring and the day will begin. Each day will come with its own chores. This might be similar to the day before but, rest assured, each day is a new day. Each moment comes with new choices and new influences. And it’s true, life can change in the matter of seconds. Come to think of it, the world can change in an equal amount of time. There is no crystal ball and there are no guarantees.
Sad news travels fast and life can be altered by loss or personal tragedies. Then again, life is finite. Time is short and at the same time, the clock is always ticking. Even now, seconds are mounting into minutes which can either be a curse at times or a blessing at others.
Rest assured, the windows of opportunity are not open forever and, in fact, there are no opportunities like the opportunity of now.
Here are the ifs –
- If you find yourself stuck or if you wish that you have more
- If you find that you’re always lethargic, if you’re dragging or sluggish and it seems there is no drive nor reason to get up and go
- If you fail to see the reason or if your motivation to stay in bed outweighs your motivation to get up and face the day
- If you find yourself with a list of reasons “why” nothing works
- If you lack an understanding of your worth or value
- If you look around and find yourself displeased
- If you hate your job
- If you hate your community
- If you hate your environment or your surroundings
- If you want your life to be something or anything else, besides what it is . . .
Then the question is not what’s wrong but instead, what changes are we willing to make? What are we willing to endure? What are we willing to do so that we can be happy with what we have?
For the record: There’s nothing wrong with wanting more. There’s nothing wrong with having a day that does not reach our expectations. There is no law that says we will always be at our best or that we have to be at our best on a daily basis. But instead, we have the right to work, to move, to grow, or to change our mind. We can change our direction and improve at any moment.
We do not need permission to advance our skills. No one has to approve our efforts to prioritize our life.
No one can stop us from taking a stand or choosing to place ourselves as a priority.
We can choose to find our best version of ourselves and we can choose to find our passion. We can create our own purpose. No one can stop us from doing this.
This does not mean we have to extend our middle fingers upward and tell the world to “Go Shit!” We have to work in accordance with the world around us. I grant that this is not always an easy place to be but who ever said the search for success and happiness is easy?
Not everyone will always agree and often, people will not support our values or our decisions. But our rights as an individual show that we have the ability to choose. We can make collective choices for ourselves. We can claim our passions and our purpose without bargaining and without negotiation. We do not have to submit to a higher authority – at least not when this is done appropriately.
We do not have to regard anyone else’s opinion nor seek outside approval. We don’t have to consider whether our choices or tastes are popular with other people. In fact, we don’t have to regard anyone else at all. However, we do have to be mindful and respectful. We can reserve the right to excuse ourselves from the people around us. We can keep our conversations brief and stick to the facts.
Of course, this sounds to be a process which is easier said than done. However, the reason why this is easier said than done is because of our attachments to people, places and things. This is due to our training.
We are trained to be either subservient or dominant. We are taught about positional biases and whether someone has the right to be higher or better, above or below us.
We are taught about the social echelons of popularity and status; therefore, it is this training that can often mislead us.
There is no question that respect is called for. And yes, our bosses and supervisors might not always support our efforts to improve or advance our careers. They might not always be kind or understanding and there are times when it will seem as if they don’t even care.
There is a cultural problem with cancellation and character assassination in both the personal and professional world.
What is this used for?
What kind of tactic is this?
There are family roles and people who are somewhat unavoidable. There are also people in our lives who are bitter or unkind. We know this.
There is no way to avoid it. There is no way to avoid the sad imperfections of each other. There are mean people in this world. There are people who will look to trip you – and people will do this simply because they don’t want you to get ahead – or wait, here’s an analogy: Think about merging in traffic; think about driving in a lane and trying to get over and, for whatever reason, the car beside you decides, “Uh, no. Not before me” and they cut you off before you can merge.
I have lived in New York my entire life so I dare not push my culture or compare my experience to anyone else. But I have lived in a “Me first” world for a very long time.
I have seen the push and shove and the bump and grind. I have walked the business streets and watched the strategies change from the Wall Street side to the industrial parts of town.
I have seen both the blue collar and the white collar worlds and I have noted and documented my findings on the inability between the two to understand that we’re all people in this world. We all have hopes and dreams. No one is better. No one has the right to be above or below.
Some could say this world is highly competitive, which it is. One could argue that this is a “Dog eat dog” world and maybe this is true. Maybe life is competitive. So is work. So are job interviews. So is the competition we face in our minds which is a case of I against I or me against me.
Ask yourself this question:
If not now, then when?
When are we going to start treating heart attacks before they happen instead of after?
When are we going to start prioritizing our lives?
We make an estimated 35,000 basic decisions in a day. . .
When are we going to allow the bulk of these decisions to improve our life instead of worrying if someone is against us or dislikes what we’ve done?
There is the question as to whether people truly live or do they simply exist?
It is true. Today’s window of opportunity begins to shrink from the moment it began. Today will only be sufficient for itself, which does not mean tomorrow will not come. This doesn’t mean that tomorrow will not have something new in store for us.
Tomorrow can either come with its own share of opportunities – or, tomorrow can be another day that comes with its own excuses.
The idea is in order to move forwards then we have to think forwards. We have to move. We have to make an effort. This doesn’t mean we have to run at 1,000 miles per hour or that we have to burn every ounce of energy and change in an instant.
No, this means that our mental fitness and our happiness deserves exercise so we can improve.
A person who wants to reach happiness will have to seek happiness and I have news about this. There will be disappointments. There will be roadblocks and obstacles. There will be moments of training and discomfort. There will be the need for more effort. This might cause strain.
And, there will be people who look to interfere and they’ll do this as if this is their job.
There will be people who will look to confuse us or make us second guess ourselves. There will be people who try to squash our growth simply because this affects them. People will look to block our light because they won’t like the way our glow will outshine them. There will always be someone who looks to disqualify or discredit us. This will be constant. But this is not about their happiness.
This is about ours!
This is about our ifs and whether the ifs or whys in our life are the same or different; if we have the need to promote, push, or improve ourselves then we cannot be afraid to advance our position due to our fears of the outside world.
We have to prioritize, strategize and magnify our efforts to keep our goals alive and well. Otherwise, we find ourselves on a list of ifs and whys – wondering when it’s our turn to be happy
(or find success).
In the case of being happy or, at minimum, in our efforts to find happiness or at least when should we begin with the search – the question is simple:
If not now, then when?