I was recently on a plane and the flight attendant spoke up about the safety information she was about to share. She said, "It is better to know this information and not need it than to need it and not know it. This information could save your life." Good point!
Here is a list of "truths" that may save your life—specifically save you from living a life that EVEN YOU believe is not worth living.
1. Your life, Your choice.You create your own life. Period. No one else is responsible for what your life looks like today. Not your parents, not your significant other, not your boss. You choose the trajectory of your life every day and if you want it to look differently—you MUST choose a different trajectory. Your life, your choice.
2. The only person you can rescue is you.I'm surrounded by clients and friends that are amazing at helping others. This is no surprise because we tend to attract people like ourselves. Rescuing others is a trap. It can't be done. We do it. It feels awesome. We must focus on saving ourselves. The only person you can rescue is you.
3. What you avoid, what you can't be with—it is actually running your life.When we can't be with silence—our need for activity runs our actions. When we can't be with abandonment, how we interact with those who may abandon us gets affected. Learn to be with what you can't be with. What you avoid is running your life.
4. Your truest knowings are in your body—not your brain.You already know this is true. Your gut tells you the answer long before you figure it out with your head. Our art comes from our body. Our dancing. Our musicality. Our poetry comes from the places of deep emotion. Slow down long enough to experience what your body is telling you. Your truest knowings are in your body.
5. Guilt and shame are the worst motivators for decision making.It's funny—isn't it—that we constantly choose to do things out of guilt only to eventually resent the people we are trying to keep happy. Shame—negative self talk—keeps us from entering the life we really want time and time again. What would it be like if we just decided to stop listening to those voices for a day? Choose something besides guilt and shame to motivate your decisions. My suggestion: love.
6. Embrace NOT knowing.
It will change you. Knowing is the beginning of attachment, judgement, and much pain. Our culture has taught us again and again that knowing more gives us the answers. What answers? Try this: embrace learning, embrace curiosity, embrace never knowing enough about the world or about others. When you approach your relationship with your significant other with wonder—you'll be fascinated by what shows up. I for one spend too much time having already "figured out" what she needs. It simply does't work out--she isn't a machine to be figured out. Embrace NOT knowing.
7. Being real is the only way to experience real love.For me, this has been the most crucial piece on my path. Getting to the place where I stop trying to control how I experience others and simply step into the joy of what others choose for me. Being real means telling the truth even when the other person won't like what they are going to hear. Being real comes in fits and starts at first for those of us that learned as children how to get "love" by saying or doing the right things. Stick with it. Being real is the only way to experience real love.
8. Control of others is an illusion.We can't even control ourselves. This may be the core reason we try to control others—because we want to have some semblance of control. Also, the truth is that there are some people in the world that are willing enablers to our desire to control. Try even coming close to going a hour without having a single thought, action, or word that you didn't intend. Imagine doing that with your whole life. If you can't do that for yourself, what makes you think you can control others. Give up on it. Control of others is an illusion.
9. Your life story is made up.Our thought life takes the "truth" of every situation and fits it into our own "story" for ourselves. Your current story has served you well your whole life. My perspective is simply that you have the ability to adjust your life stories—look at them from different perspectives. One of my friends says, "since every story is made up—might as well make up a good one." Personally, I think if we look at every story in our life from the perspective that the universe is for us and wants us to have the best life we could possibly have—our own narratives begin to change. Your life story is made up.
10. You (and only you) must do the work.
Do you want something more? It's not going to be handed to you. We generally are awesome at getting things done and being massively successful at everything except working on ourselves. It's time to start.Do the work.
Save your own life. Choose something different.
What is it worth to you to have the life you actually want? Are you willing to disappoint those that you love? Are you willing to experience vulnerability?Are you willing to take a leap? Which one of these 10 truths will you choose to know?