In a recent post, I began a discussion about three factors that you need to have in line to live a meaningful life. Once in line, these three factors will leave you feeling fulfilled and satisfied, yet reaching for more. If you missed that post entitled Forget Being Happy, I strongly urge you to go back and read it as it explains why I have come to prefer these terms.
The short version is that success is in the eyes of the beholder and is only a fleeting experience that must be constantly pursued. Happiness, on the other hand, is not always a worthwhile goal. A little discomfort is healthy and sometimes the things that make us happy aren't good for us.
Today we are going to talk about the idea of autonomy. Merriam-Webster defines autonomy as "freedom from external control or influence; independence".
Now, we all know that living completely beyond the influence of any person or thing, or without any outside controls, is something we are never going to experience.
There are always going to be laws that have to obeyed and rules to be followed if we are to live within a civilized society. We also have to acknowledge the fact that there are always going to be people and things that have an influence in our lives.
The question is this: how do we react to the restraints placed upon us? The one area of your life that is completely autonomous is in how we allow ourselves to think and react to our surroundings and how we allow those events to shape our lives.
Everyone hates an overbearing boss. One reason for this is they take away our feeling of self-command and self-control of our own destinies. How often though do we say anything? How often do we question their instructions? How often do we actually put out the sweat equity to look for that better job or prepare ourselves to get a better position?
This same concept applies to bad relationships. They make us feel powerless, but be honest, with all the help that is available today, is there any reason for anyone to stay in a relationship that leaves them feeling unfulfilled?
People, we are autonomous human beings! Every one of us has the choice to stay or to walk away. No matter the situation, it is our choice how we handle it. If you find yourself feeling helpless, remember it is our choices that create the reality we live in.
My challenge for you this week:
Do a life inventory.
Make a list of situations in your life that you wish were different.
Ask yourself why you allow each situation to exist?
Choose a specific date that you will exercise your right to choose to change each situation.
Write down the actions you will take in order to release yourself from each situation.
Once you've completed the challenge, implement your action plans!!