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Refusing to Go

22 Jun

We all face times when questions of ethics and honesty come into play. Some situations are so obvious we easily decide which way is right and continue forward without much notice. However, there may be times when it’s a bit harder to choose. Our conscience will guide us if we’ve been cultivating honest and honorable decisions and have chosen to do what’s right in the past. But if we’re easily swayed by the promises of others or what we may gain in the short term, we may choose paths that are less noble. When we purposely make a bad decision the first time we may feel pangs of guilt and regret. But if we return and make another bad decision, and then another, over time we may become inured to the situation. After a while guilt and remorse may not even appear and our conscience may become numb. Our lives reflect every choice we make and bad choices rarely bring lasting happiness. We may find immediate gratification from them but they cannot bring us peace in the long run. We deserve to be happy and if we find we’re going the wrong way – no matter how long we’ve been on the road – we can stop and refuse to go any further. It is never too late to correct our direction and make better choices. The road ahead is ours to choose. We can choose what is best instead of what is easy, what is right instead of what is convenient, and what will bring us happiness. We can trust ourselves going forward and cultivate a strong and valiant conscience.

The world is filled with compromises. We can’t always have things exactly the way we want them and we learn to give as we move forward. Compromise is an important skill but it rarely works to compromise our ethics or values. There really is nothing worth the price of our honesty. We may be convinced that if we bend a little in the wrong direction just this once it will move us forward and we won’t have to do it again. We may tell ourselves we must be dishonest in order to get something we need but there is no way to justify dishonesty no matter what is at stake. Our integrity is our most valuable possession. If we abuse it we will lose the trust and respect of those around us, and in time, will lose it for ourselves.

A strong and noble conscience is a priceless asset that will guide us through many complicated and difficult choices. If we always choose the right in every situation we will gain the strength we need to make difficult decisions wisely. When we choose integrity and wisdom over ease and complacency we find happiness. Refusing to take the wrong road will bring us continued happiness and peace. It’s not always easy to choose wisely and we may be sorely tested but we have everything we need to prevail.

Today if you’re facing a hard choice and there are immediate benefits to choosing poorly, stop and look at the long road ahead. Your choices define who you are. Choose nobility and refuse to go down the path of dishonesty. You have everything you need to be happy. Make your decisions carefully. Be wise. There is so much joy and peace waiting for you. Good decisions will bring them to you.

 

Down the Road

15 Jun

As we’re making decisions and choosing our way forward we are sometimes influenced by other things going on in our lives. If we’re angry about something we may make a decision that reflects that anger and choose a path that takes us somewhere we really don’t want to go. If we’ve been hurt by a situation and new opportunities remind us of it we may turn away from them fearing we will get the same bad results. We make decisions based on where we are today and although there is sometimes no way to know where they will take us often we can see down the road far enough to where we’ll end up. However, if we’re distracted, angry, or frustrated and feel like it doesn’t matter we may make choices that have more to do with how we’re feeling than where we want to go. Every road has a destination. If we don’t want to go where it leads we must modify our way forward and turn toward what we want most. If we are deeply emotional about a decision we may not see clearly where it will take us. We are capable of making excellent choices and we can go anywhere we want. If we plan ahead before we begin it will be easier to navigate and find our way. There are always many things going on in our lives and around us. We can take the time we need to look ahead and chart a course that will take us where we want to go.

Sometimes we make choices with no regard to where they will take us. If we’re blinded by the moment we may storm ahead on a road that leads to trouble and complication. There may be an emotional connection that has us confused, or an attachment with someone who is lost and taking us along with them. Perhaps we become tangled in a relationship that holds us down and it’s difficult to let go and move forward. If we get lost on our way we can stop and re-direct the path ahead. We have all the wisdom we need to create successful, happy lives and if we trust ourselves we will find the road we’re seeking.

There is great power in our emotional attachments to others. If they direct us one way, we may follow trusting them to know what’s best for us. They may know some things about us but nobody will ever know us as well as we know ourselves. If someone says we need to do something but we aren’t sure, we may step back and look at the situation clearly and objectively. If their choice takes us where we want to go we may agree but if we want something different we may choose our own road. We are in control of our lives and can choose any path we desire. We can make sure the end of the road is the destination we are truly seeking.

Today if you’re headed somewhere you don’t want to go, stop and rethink your way forward. Look ahead and chart your course toward the destination you desire. There is no road too hard to find or too far for you to travel. You have everything you need to do anything you desire. Direct your life forward. Everything you want is waiting for you and you will have it.

Boundary Line

25 May

We’re all entitled to live our lives any way we choose. We can do anything we like, go where we want to go and become the people we want to be but our decisions may sometimes be in conflict with what others think we should be doing. We all have opinions about what we think should happen and our personal decisions are specific to each of us. It’s inappropriate and sometimes destructive to direct other peoples’ personal lives and correct them if they choose a path we wouldn’t have chosen. It can be hard to keep our opinions to ourselves if we love the other person involved. We may certainly offer our advice if it’s wanted and we can express our concerns but we cannot direct anyone’s life but our own. Others may make choices that are completely different than what we think they should do but nobody knows all the facts in someone else’s life. We can only see what is happening on the outside and understand what they are willing to share with us. We all have the right to confidently choose any path we desire despite how differently others may want us to live. Making our own decisions about our lives allows us to share our unique gifts with others. If we follow a path designed by someone else our lives will reflect their vision and not our own. We can choose our own way and live the life that’s best for us.

Learning to respect boundary lines is important. When we drive a car, we must stay in our own lane, and when we play a game, we must follow the rules. Boundaries bring order and help us understand where we are. Although we can’t see them, each of us have personal boundary lines regarding our choices and the lives we live. We have the freedom to choose anything we desire. If someone steps over the line and tries to direct us, correct us, guide us, or push into lives we haven’t chosen, we need not comply. We can choose what’s best for us even if it doesn’t match what someone else thinks we should do.

Personal boundaries are important. They help us protect our privacy and allow us the freedom to decide how we want to live our lives. Some people believe they have the answers for others. They may offer advice or even criticism if we don’t comply with their ideas. A desire to control others will never bring happiness and often brings conflict. It’s important to understand where our true authority lies and respect the ability of others to make their own decisions, even if we disagree.

Today if someone is trying to direct you to turn onto a road you haven’t chosen, be confident. You are the only one who knows everything about your life and what you want. You are driving the train and can take it anywhere you choose. Listen to good advice and then do what is best for you. You can make excellent decisions and be confident in your choices. You have everything you need to find success and you know where you want to go. Be true to yourself and choose the best road forward.

Call the Dance

16 Feb

There is an old saying that says if we call the dance, we must pay the piper. It means we are responsible for the results of all our decisions, even when they don’t turn out the way we hope they will. There will be consequences to every choice we make and no matter what they are, they belong to us. If we’ve been dishonest, childish, foolish, or unwise, whatever results from our actions is our responsibility. Of course, if we make good decisions and act well we will also gain the reactions to those choices. There is no way to skip out on our accountability and nobody gets to dance for free. We may try to ignore our part in our decisions, we may dodge the ramifications or try to hide, and we may even deny we’ve done something. But as in cards, once we’ve played our hand it cannot be changed. We can’t always predict the results of our choices and sometimes things will go awry even if we’ve tried our best. But if we are noble and honest we will manage what comes. We can call any kind of dance we want. We can choose wisely or foolishly, we can help or hurt, but whatever we choose the piper will require payment.

Selfishness never leads to happiness. If we selfishly make choices that only consider our wants or needs with no regard to how they will affect the lives of those around us we may get what we’re seeking but the price may be high. If we pretend to be something we aren’t or lie or cheat, we may fool those around us for a time. But truth is powerful and in the end, it will rise and if we’ve been dishonest our deception will become clear. Those who have trusted us and believed in us will see the truth of what we’ve done and who we really are. If we’ve hurt them badly they may turn away from us and we may lose our connections to them. It’s always wise to make the best decisions we possibly can and when we do, even if we falter, those involved will understand our objectives were noble even if our results didn’t work out.

There are times we might believe we can escape accountability by keeping our actions secret. Secrets only work when nobody figures them out. The problem is there is no secret so perfect or locked up that it won’t be revealed. Time has a way of opening the doors to truth. We might be able to hide for a while but nobody can hide forever. It’s better to make our choices out in the open. We can be honest about our motivations and choose boldly. If we decide to make a bad decision, we may make it and face the consequences. If we decide to embrace wisdom, our road will often be easier. If we choose well, when the piper comes for payment we’ll be ready. There isn’t anything we can’t do well. We deserve to be happy. Living honestly and making good choices will bring us happiness and peace.

Today if you’ve made a bad decision and must now face the consequences, face them bravely and openly. You can resolve any problem you must face and correct your course. Choose wisely going forward and live honestly. You’ll be happier knowing you’re on the right road and you’ll become the person you want most to be.

Friend Request

10 Feb

A friend is a great thing to have.  They are someone who will rejoice with us when things go well and be in our corner supporting us when they don’t.  A true friend will stand by us through the trials and challenges we face, give us advice, listen when we need to vent, and have our backs when we need them.  It’s wonderful to have them in our lives.  We value them, we love them and we count on them.  But sometimes maybe someone we thought was a friend does something that makes us see them in a new light.  Perhaps they choose something they know will hurt us, or act in ways that are demeaning or critical.  We may always re-evaluate our relationships with them, and if we choose to, may go forward without them.  Being a friend is a wonderful gift but it carries with it the great responsibility of respecting the relationship.  If that responsibility is neglected we may lose.  Losing a friend is disappointing, sometimes heartbreaking, but if our trust in them is broken we may have to continue on without them.  We may step back from any relationship we need to.  We deserve to be happy and if our situation changes and brings us sorrow, we may change our way forward.

Sometimes there may be people who want to be our friends with whom we aren’t comfortable.  Perhaps their lives are very different from ours and we don’t understand them.  Maybe we have seen them hurt others or act dishonestly.  Or maybe they aren’t genuine and often seem to be pretending to be something they aren’t.  There are lots of reasons we may feel uncomfortable around others and if we do, we are not required to allow them close into our lives.  We may be polite and kind, and still walk another way.  There are all kinds of people in the world.  We will relate to some of them and others will remain strangers.  We can choose whom to allow into our lives and how much we will share.  Having friends is a great asset and we can make sure those relationships will bring us happiness.

We all have free agency and can make any decisions we like.  If we aren’t careful or don’t care, we may make choices that break relationships and ruin our friendships.  It’s painful to lose the friendship of someone we’ve shared our lives with but if we’ve chosen something that has hurt them and broken their trust that may happen.  We may try to explain our position in an effort to repair the situation but if the damage is too great it may not be possible to continue forward as their friend.  Every decision we make has consequences which may be far reaching or even destructive.  We know how to make excellent decisions and if we are mindful and careful we will be able to preserve our relationships and find great joy having them in our lives.

Today if you’ve lost a good friend because of something that has happened, determine what is best for you and go forward with confidence.  If you’ve done something that has hurt a relationship with someone you care about, do what you can to repair the loss.  We all want true, honorable friends.  Be honest and caring, and those around you will draw close to you.  Be the friend you most want in your life and you will find happiness.

Hero Worship

8 Feb

Sometimes we meet people who seem larger than life.  They may be beautiful, talented, and successful and might appear to be close to perfect.  We may believe they are everything we want to be and more.  When we’re with them perhaps we can’t take our eyes off them, or hang onto their every word, and we may think they could never do wrong.  This sort of hero worship can happen to all of us.  While there are some people who have achieved great success, or done things we have only dreamed of, we must remember nothing comes without a cost and nobody is perfect.  Even the most successful among us have shortcomings and personal issues they must deal with.  Although their faults and weaknesses may not be readily apparent, they have them just like we do.  It’s good to admire those who have achieved great success, no matter what that success entails, but it’s important to remember they are just like us.  They may be further down the road than we are, and they may have opened more doors than we have but we are all on the journey together.  We can take from them the lessons that will help us going forward and we can be confident in continuing on our own course to the success waiting for us.

Everyone has personal struggles.  We all pay for our successes in one way or another and even those who seem to have it all have sacrificed something valuable along the way.  Nobody is truly perfect and even when others seem to have it all, there are things we can’t see.  We all have things amiss in our lives and problems we must solve.  Everyone has challenges they must overcome specific to their own circumstances.  We can learn from others’ experiences and they can learn from ours.  Everyone has a unique road to travel and the trials along the way are specific to the goals we are trying to accomplish.  Nobody gets a free ride or a free lunch.  We all have our challenges and issues, and it’s those who refuse to let them overcome the journey who succeed and reach their goals.

Although we may feel others are heroes, the real heroes in our lives are ourselves.  We are the only ones who truly know what we’ve been through, how hard the journey has been, all the detours we’ve had to navigate and the price we’ve paid.  Our determination to continue forward and reach for the next door is heroic and brave.  When we don’t quit and continue to persevere we are courageous.  We can honor the choices we’ve made to stay the course even when it gets hard, and take credit for staying in the game.  If we stay up all night with a sick child, endure a difficult boss, extend ourselves when we feel we have nothing left to give, or share when we don’t have enough, we are heroes.  Choosing to be the best we can be no matter what our circumstance, is the most incredible thing we can do.  And when we make that choice we are the real heroes.

Today if you’ve been admiring someone you think has it all, remember how wonderful you are.  You are the real hero in your life.  You are a blessing to the world and those around you. Remember that today and go forward with increased confidence doing well and changing the world for good.

The Way Out

3 Feb

We make millions and millions of decisions as we go through our lives and many times our choices take us exactly where we want to go and everything works out.  But there will inevitably be times when we make a bad decision that brings us disharmony, pain or confusion.  There are limitless reasons why this may happen.  Maybe we didn’t have all the facts beforehand, maybe we chose out of anger, maybe we got lost, or any of a number of other reasons.  No matter what caused the bad decision, once we’re in it and realize we’re headed for trouble we may look for a way out.  We might try to find an escape hatch to let us step away before everything falls in.  The desire to escape when trouble is on the horizon is a normal response to threat and if we know disaster is just ahead we may try to divert our course, hide behind something else, or pretend we aren’t involved.  Even if we’re successful in escaping the first wave of trouble, if we caused it, it will catch up to us eventually.  We can look for a way out but the only real way through our problems is to face them head on, and walk right through them.  It will take determination and it may take courage, but there isn’t anything we can’t manage and no problem we can’t solve.  We can admit to our part in the problem and then begin to do what is needed to correct our way forward.  Happiness comes when we live our lives effectively and purposefully.  We all make mistakes and when they result in additional problems we can do what we must to fix them.

Some people hide when they make choices that bring hardship.  They may pretend they weren’t involved, deny their participation, or ignore the problems that arise.  We can dodge the truth but the truth is what is real and will always surface.  If we deceivingly deny our part in the issue we may lose the respect of those around us and create more complications.  It’s best to step forward and honestly admit what we’ve done, and then work to correct the situation.  Everyone makes mistakes but there are no mistakes so terrible we can’t face them.  We have all the courage and wisdom we need to correct our course and turn onto the right path going forward.

If we’re in situations where the choices we need to make are unclear, we can wait until we get the information we need.  We don’t have to rush into decisions if we aren’t ready.  We can prepare ourselves before we decide.  All the information we need to choose wisely is available and we can take time to find it before we make our choice.  We are in control of our actions and even if there is pressure to hurry, if we are not ready to move forward we can step back until we feel confident.  We know how to make good decisions and we are wise enough to choose well.  Success if often a matter of timing.  We can take our time and make the best decisions possible.

Today if you’ve made a mistake and the results are troublesome and difficult, do what you must to fix the situation and move forward with confidence.  If you have a big decision pending and aren’t sure which way to go, take the time you need to get the information that will help you decide.  You have everything you need to make excellent choices.  You are wise and thoughtful and you will choose well.