Life goes like this:
Either you lead or you are lead.
Either you direct or you are directed.
Either you choose or the choices are made for you.
It is always this way. Life slows for no man and it pauses for no woman. Rather, it is intent on ensuring that all of us–the whole system–is in constant movement. If we do not work to actively shape our realities, the universe absolutely sees to it that external forces intervene and create movement and change for us.
So, either you seek out the person at the party whom you wish to speak to, or the person who wants to talk to you will engage you. In the first scenario, you have an encounter with the person you wished to know. In the second, the person who wanted to talk to you does, but whether that simultaneously satisfies your desires and needs is unknown.
Either you block out time in your schedule to attend to the tasks that are important to you, or you remain at the whim of others’ requests (this often looks like day after day of merely fielding emails).
Either you wield the sacred words of “yes” and “no” with authenticity and assertiveness, or you spend your life living on someone else’s terms, making plans when it is convenient for others, eating food selected by someone not yourself, sacrificing self care, and your truest forms of fulfillment.
Sure, there might be people who prefer it this way, people who are content to never choose a restaurant to eat out with their significant other, people who prefer that opportunities and trips are presented to them, rather than seeking them out, themselves.
But, do these people really exist?
And if so, are they confident individuals who put their faith in things going well? Do they feel worthy of taking up a healthy amount of space in the world? Are they people who are more efficient than they are lazy?
Or, are they merely people who prioritize pleasing others above all else? People who are too meek to speak their needs?
Even the meekest among us has personal preferences and desires and dreams.
But most of us, even those of us who are empowered, are too often prone to avoid summoning up the boldness required to live our most authentic lives.
We’re scared, see.
We neglect directing our dreams and desires because we’re full of fear.
We worm our way around making choices because in choosing we might choose wrong and that makes us paralyzingly afraid.
We don’t ask, don’t call, don’t reach out our hand in meeting, don’t plan, don’t invite, don’t suggest, all because we’re afraid. Afraid of rejection, of failure, of looking stupid, of losing our way, but more, I think, we’re afraid of finding it. Scared that if we stand triumphantly at the stern, we’ll steer directly towards our happiest, most fulfilled life. And who are we to get all we want? Remember? Who are we not to?
We are here to live as ourselves, and there isn’t a single person who can do that for us.
None but ourselves is going to take more risks.
None but ourselves is going to have more faith.
None but ourselves is going to fade away fear.
Lead your life.
Create; don’t conform.