You’d think making choices is easy: what to have for breakfast, whether to have a pizza or try out a new recipe, do you choose to watch the telly or go for a walk, go to a party or stay at home, go out with this man because he asked you or choose to meet your best friend instead.
How do you know what choices are the right ones for you?
Here’s the story of my life shaped by the choices I made:
Choice No. 1
I was 20 when I first met Jim. I engaged him in conversation and used those techniques girls learn in women magazines. I wanted to see if I could make him fall in love with me.
Was it a game for me? No, it wasn’t. What it was, was the need to prove to myself that I was attractive, that I was loveable.
It was a choice that cost me dearly.
Choice No. 2
Why did I stay as long as I did?
That is complicated but one reason was because, had I questioned my choice, I would have had to admit to myself that I’d got it badly wrong.
So I chose to continue to beat my head against a brick wall.
Choice No. 3
I allowed myself to see the emptiness. I decided I deserved better. I decided that, however scared I was of the unknown, I was even more afraid of growing old and continue feeling unloved and unimportant.
I chose to face the unknown. I chose to leave.
Choice No. 4
Do I choose to continue wallowing in the pain, resentment and the rage that finally engulfed me? Do allow myself to become bitter at the wasted years or do I choose to build something new, something better?
I choose to learn to like and respect myself.
I choose to build something better.
Choice No. 5
I decide I would like male companionship. I decide to try online dating. Bad choice!
I choose to enjoy my own company and that of my friends.
I choose to be happy.
And so it goes: choice after choice after choice after choice.
This is what I noticed:
The quality of my choices varies depending on how I feel about myself at the time.
The problem was that, in the past, I used to make them without thinking. Worse, I used to make them without considering the consequences.
I didn’t know that when I was making those choices but you know what they say – 20-20 hindsight vision is a great teacher!
If you want to know what choices you made in the past, all you have to do is look at your life experience right now – your health and wellbeing, including your weight, the quality of your friendships, the quality of your relationships – with your life partner and everybody in your life, the type of work you do, paid or unpaid, the kind of people you hang out with, and so on.
If you’re not happy with one or more areas of your life, stop before you make a choice and consider the consequences, not only in the immediate and short term but, especially, in the longer term.
You may enjoy eating a packet of crisps right now but, in the longer term, this will affect your weight and, in turn, your health.
You may have a good laugh with this guy but, if you choose to sleep walk into a relationship, your next years could be very unhappy.
So stop and think before choosing: is this the right choice for me? That’s where self-love and self-respect come in.
With love and gratitude,
P.S. My third book, ‘Open Your Heart: The 7 Secrets Of Strong And Loving Relationships’ will be launched in the next couple of weeks.
P.P.S. I enable women build strong and loving relationships, first with themselves and then with others. That’s because your relationship with yourself shapes all your other relationships.
If you’d like to find out how you can do that email me on firstname.lastname@example.org for a FREE one hour exploratory conversation.