They say that we are only one decision away from a different life. Notice that I didn’t say a better life. That’s because not all the decisions we make are smart ones and if 2020 shows us anything, it’s been showing us the repercussions of our choices.
For the most part, our daily decisions are on autopilot. Our body and mind makes choices based on deeply grooved programming in our brain, etched out over years of repetitive actions. Wake up, coffee, shower, breakfast, off to work and on and on, we operate a step above zombie state, aware of our surroundings but not focused on our choices. Still today, like everyday, you have the power to choose. That’s the beauty of the human mind; the power of free will.
And so as we head into the final weeks of 2020, I ask you to consider the choices that you will make for 2021.
But before you do that, a question must first be asked and that is, “Who do I want to be in 2021?” Probably the hardest decision you will make for the whole of the year because asking who you want to be sets the tone for every other decision and choice you will make after it.
Let’s look at some of the decisions folks made so far in 2020 and consider how they played out. To wear a mask or not, to believe the news or believe in your own opinions, and for our friends in America, to vote for a republican or democratic president; the effects of these decisions may ripple out for years to come. If 2020 taught us nothing else, it taught us that making reactionary decisions with out focus can cause a lot of chaos.
Take control of your focus, take control of your life.
So back to the question, “Who do you want to be in 2021?” If you take a few minutes to think about this, you can create a new focus and then by extension, have better control of your life for the coming year. But let’s break this question down even further by asking a few more questions.
What do you want to focus on for 2021? Where your attention goes, your energy flows. So by putting a spotlight on an area of interest, you create a starting point for all other decisions to spring from.
If you choose to focus on health, then it would follow that your energy will flow in the direction of health related activities. If you focus on career, then your choices will be filtered from a career lens. If you decide to focus on being a kinder person, then the choices you make and the actions you’ll take in 2021 will come from the energy of love, compassion an empathy.
What meaning do you want to put on this focus? The meaning we give our decisions and choices controls our lives.
If you choose health as your focus but give it the meaning of resigned drudgery then the energy surrounding you will be one of resistance. If you choose to focus on career but act from the emotion of fear, then you will always be putting up blocks on your progress. If you decide to focus on being a kinder person but still harbour past resentments, then you are putting the meaning of conditional kindness on your focus.
What actions do I want to choose for my focus? Only action brings courage so as you decide on your lofty goals for 2021, choose to focus on worthwhile ones.
If your focused energy flows with positive intent and you put positive meaning to your actions, you are then in control of your life and will then develop the confidence to do even more.
So if your focus is health and you attribute a positive meaning to your daily workouts, then your progress will fuel you to maintain your health related goals. If your decision for 2021 is to build your career and you face your fears with continual small leaps of faith, you will not only increase your level of courage, you will be taking control of your career growth. If your decision is to be a kinder person and you approach this goal with vulnerability and hope, your actions will be rewarded with kindness in return.
Nature sows her seeds in the autumn so they can rest and absorb the nutrients of the earth during the fallow season of winter. Plant your seeds of intent now as well and make the decision to attach positive meaning and to create focused action steps so that you too, like mother nature, will be ready to burst forth in the new year.
2020 taught us that we have no control over events outside of ourselves but we always have the choice to decide how to react to them on the inside. But what’s even more powerful is that we can always make the decision to be in control of our own destiny so that outer influences no longer control our lives.
Make new decisions for a better future. Make decisions that empower you with life affirming meaning, then go out there and take worthwhile actions to etch new and powerful programs in that zombie part of your brain. But most of all, make the decision right now, while you still have time to nurture a plan, so that no matter who you choose to be in 2021, it will be the best year of your life.