Thrive Global
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Thrive Global

Quit Acting Like You Don’t Have A Choice

You Do, You’re Just Scared to Admit it.

“I can’t wake up that early.”

“I don’t have time to ______ after a full day of work.”

“I can’t afford to eat like that/dress like that/look like that.”

“I don’t have the luxury of free time to do ______ like you.”

(I’ve actually heard this last one said to me before, and I felt like the person was right and that I was a semi-loser for having “free time,” then realized ain’t no time free — it’s about the choices I made and the things I prioritized.)

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“I choose to sleep later than that.”

“That’s not how I want to spend my time after a full day of work.”

“I am not willing to spend my money on those foods/clothes in order to look like that.”

“I have not created any ‘free time’ to do that.”

And so we stick with things like “I can’t afford that,” “I don’t have time,” and “I can’t do it,” in order to protect ourselves. This works nicely when our circumstances are less than satisfactory, because we are able remove all blame from ourselves. However, in protecting ourselves from blame, we are also protecting ourselves from a deep sense of pride we could feel if our circumstances were magnificent. If things are wonderful, can we take responsibility for those circumstances, or do we relinquish control there, too?

You know what, though?

It’s all a choice, even if we don’t admit it.

Besides relinquishing control of our power to choose when we think like this, we’re also victimizing ourselves and thinking we are unique in how much money we earn or time we have.

And I think that, sometimes, that feels good, too. It feels good to believe we’re “special” in our circumstances, and that’s why we “can’t” do certain things. Our time is more limited that others’. Our income is less flexible than someone else’s.

Most importantly, what changes when we begin to choose our lives instead of letting our circumstances make choices for us, is ourselves.

We become intentional beings instead of a collection of circumstances perceived to be beyond our control. We begin to live on purpose, and though it may be harder, it is worthier. It may be a life with more opportunity for swinging and missing, but it is also a life with more opportunity for freedom and a joy that only comes from making choices.

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Emily Steele

lifter of heavy things: thoughts, words, weights, burdensome beliefs