How does it sound to be in control of your destiny, your own life? It sounds simple enough, doesn't it? So, why don't we do this? Being our own boss, making our own decisions, and charting our own course. It's not always easy, but the benefits can be profound. What are some tips and tricks for getting started? Read on for inspiration!
Before going further down the "why" journey I started in my last blog, this is a topic I want to cover first. My journey started in 2019, during a minor conversation at work where someone (thanks Sabine!) gave me some advice that sounded simple at the time, but has had a significant impact on my life since.
The Matrix: down the rabbit hole
We've all seen the scene in the movie The Matrix where Morpheus offers Neo two pills, one blue and one red. The blue pill will allow him to continue living his life as he knows it, never knowing what he could have become if he had taken the other pill. The red pill will show him "how deep the rabbit hole goes." This has come to represent how people can choose to live their lives remaining in contented ignorance (the blue pill) or the willingness to learn a potentially unsettling or life-changing truth (the red pill). Much like when you're given that option in real life! (thanks for suggesting this analogy David!)
One way this analogy applies to real life is that we are always presented with choices every day, some big and some small. How we react to these choices will determine our future, whether we want it to or not. This is the beauty of being captain of your own ship - you get to choose which path to take and what adventures to have!
Choosing the path of most resistance
How many of you have ever been in a situation where you had to decide between the easy option and the hard one? Maybe it was choosing between taking an easier course at school or trying for something more challenging. Maybe it was deciding whether to take your dream job or stay put with your current employer. Or maybe it was about picking up the phone and asking someone out on a date when all you can think about is that awkward ending from last time. What would happen if we took more risks, pursued our dreams, stopped playing it safe? It may not be so easy to say yes when there are so many reasons for saying no but as Eleanor Roosevelt said “You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”
My turning point
Around the year 2019, I had a turning point in my life. Everything was disintegrating around me at work. I felt compelled to help everyone around me, in addition to performing my own work. However, the problem was also having an impact on me personally, preventing me from being my best at work. The advice I got at the time was to focus on my own team, my "own" ship and captain that one. In a later coaching conversation I had, we translated that into being the "CEO" of my own life.
Finding our "why" and fulfillment will not come about if we continue down the path of least resistance, living in contented ignorance. We must be ready to make decisions and take risks when it comes to being the captain of our own ship. The simple choice isn't always the greatest option, and we must be brave enough to choose the path of most resistance. It won't always be simple, but when we're in control of our lives, the possibilities are endless. Thanks for reading!