Every day you make choices that will change your life for the better - to go out on this date or not, to take this job or not, to buy this car or not ... While some decisions are clear-cut, others are not. Following are choices that will change your life for the better. Following these may lead to a happier, more fulfilled existence, and couldn’t we all use a bit more of that??
1. Choose Gratitude
Sometimes it’s not easy to see the benevolence of a situation. Even when it's murky, choose gratitude anyway. This is one of the most powerful choices that will change your life for the better. Chances are, there is a reason buried somewhere deep in the experience that will create a reason to be grateful if not now, than in the future. The horrible relationship that just ended made you available for Mr. Right who is right around the corner. You’ll also see him through eyes of appreciation more than ever before. The job that went awry made your decision to go back to school that much easier. Now you are on the road to having the career you want instead of just the job you need.
2. Take a Chance
You don’t find you who you really are until you test yourself. One of the best ways to do this is to take a chance. Are you afraid to take the painting class you always dream about? Do it anyway. Is the nice guy in the cubicle down the way not the usual bad boy you generally date who breaks your heart in the end? Go out on a date with him anyway. Have you never lived away from your hometown and you are now being offered an intriguing job in a beautiful city? Explore the possibility. With this walk on the road less traveled will come a new appreciation of YOU.
3. Consider Leaving
Are you in a relationship where you are not respected, appreciated, or stimulated? Is your work just that? Your job is a necessity, yes, but it can also be fulfilling. Whatever it is that you have outgrown, wish it well, and move on. It’s not easy, but isn’t this what life is all about? Life never stops moving, so why should we? The revitalization you will feel will remind you how amazing life can truly be.
4. Consider Staying
On the other hand, when the going gets tough, do you typically head for the door? How many times has this happened with relationships, jobs, moving, etc.? If it’s a bad situation, head out. But before you jump into your next situation, learn from the last one. And if it’s not bad, but just needs tweaking, try it. Tell your significant other what you want or need, and see how he responds. Tell your boss your need for upward mobility, and see what she has to say about it. Before you move out of your place, re-evaluate why you want to go. If it reminds you of the last person you lived with, paint the walls, move the furniture, and redecorate. It may take on a whole new life.
5. Attitude is Everything
If you believe your life will get better, eventually it probably will. Even if you have everything—money, health, love—if you feel like your life stinks, it probably does. Not too sound like Stuart Smalley, but every morning, look in the mirror. Give yourself the first smile of your day. Tell yourself that something very good is going to happen today. After a few tries, the smile will not only be the first smile of the day, but it will keep you company all day long, out of the blue. Eventually tell yourself that today is going to be a good day. Then tell yourself it’s going to be a great day. You will be surprised how much control you have over your own life, and the positivity that positivity attracts.
6. Assume the Best is Yet to Come
One of the expressions that could not be less true is that after a certain age, it’s ‘all downhill.’ If by downhill they mean that it’s better because things are easier, and you’re not working on every push of the bike pedal, then agreed. However, I’m pretty sure that’s not the general consensus. The truth is, life is what you think it is. Your best years are not behind you. You have no idea what five minutes from now will hold let alone next year or the one after. If you say the best is yet to come, on a subconscious level you’re already working on that. Think of Shirley Maclaine, Goldie Hawn, Cher, Hillary Clinton, Barbra Streisand. In their 60s, 70s, and 80s, this group is going downhill in their Ferraris and smiling all the way.
7. Weigh Your Opinion like Gold and Others’ like Gold Leaf
Do you let others' opinions matter more to you than your own? You’re not alone. Many people are afraid of how they will be perceived by others, and so put themselves in the backseat while others drive their life. Bottom line, most people don’t remember the details of what happens in their own life on a daily basis, let alone other people’s. While it’s good to weigh in with your group of trusted advisors for major decisions, your are your own judge and jury. Trust you, consult with you, and be as honest with you as you can be. Don’t worry—you won’t leave you, so let it all out. And when all of the cards are on the table, gamble on a decision.
There are choices that will change your life that we make on a daily basis. What is your all-time best choice that changed your life?