Choice is a tricky one.
How many times have you heard:
“I have no choice.”
Or, you, yourself have uttered those words, “I have no choice.”
It’s essential to acknowledge that you need to have the freedom to make choices.
There are two over-arching constraints to your ability to exercise your freedom of choice – external and internal constraints.
External constraints are mainly outside your control, and include such things as your relationships with others and the associated roles and responsibilities. They impact both personal and professional relationships; laws, policies and regulations, the laws of the land are constraints; your current location may be a constraint; your current finances may be to a degree. You have to reflect on what is true in your situation.
And now to your own internal constraints. The internal constraints relate to your belief systems and the assumptions you make about the world. This is where you have the greater power to be able to exercise your freedom to choose. It’s not to say you can’t make free choices when it comes to the external constraints, however, the freedom to change your mindset and your beliefs is a personal choice that will most support you to achieve the positive changes you seek.
Choosing Positive Change
When you chose positive change, you're enabling yourself to see the world anew. You make choices to live a more positive, joy filled, meaningful and satisfying life.
Make it your goal to move more agilely, consciously, easily towards your deepest desire that aligns with your highest purpose, integrity and your strengths. This decision presupposes you to make choices and to focus on the things you can influence and not anguish over the things that you have no control over, such as unsupportive people, certain regulations, or acts of nature.
5 Practices For Making Positive Choices
1. Focus on what you want to create. Get real clarity about who you are, what you stand for and why you do what you do. Stay objective, meaning remain neutral (don’t obsess about being right and don’t judge yourself ). The old stories are just old stories, stop re-running those old, out-dated movies in your head, AND equally importantly, whose stories are they? Avoid getting caught in someone else’s story.
2. Start with defining your strengths. Make different choices when you need to create different results. This is a big, important topic which I will address in future posts.
3. Make the distinction: are you coming from love or fear? Pay real attention to which emotion is driving your choices. Love opens your heart and facilitates connection and trust. Fear, on the other hand, narrows your focus and limits your choices. Circumstances will determine which emotion will drive you to the best choice at the time, if you know the difference between love and fear.
4. Do the best you can with the resources you have. Take stock of your existing resources and assets and make them work for you, rather than stress over the things you don't yet have.
5. Stay in inquiry (don’t make assumptions). What new information is available to you? Ask questions and keep asking from that objective place – it’s all just information – you don’t have to judge. It’s give and take; express curiosity to learn of other’s perspectives and what’s driving their story. When you are genuinely curious, you are also humble, that feeds into your intellectual and emotional integrity: you have lots to learn, and you can be wrong. Let it go. Stay in the Inquiry. Notice how more choices open up when you come from inquiry and curiosity.