What are you going to do today?
If you’re anything like me, you may have a schedule or “to do” list that helps give your day direction and intention, allowing you to feel productive as you accomplish small tasks and cross things off as you go.
Some individuals have their days and weeks carefully mapped out with appointments, filling their calendars and smartphones with the commitments and relationships that shape their lives. Still, others may wake up without any set plan and go about their day making choices as they come along.
The fabric of our lives in woven by the everyday choices we make. While many of us tend to focus our time and energy on the big, life-altering decisions – like where to buy a home or who to marry – we may often overlook the momentary choices we make each minute of each day: Wake up now or hit snooze? Bike to work or drive? Go out to dinner tonight or stay in and cook? Whatever it is, whenever it is, we always have a choice.
In one of my favorite books of all-time, A Life of Being, Having, and Doing Enough, Wayne Muller simply asks “what is the next right thing for us to do?”
Instead of viewing each decision as a mountain that needs to be moved, Muller shares that “our choices are small, quiet, intimate things that flow from us as water from a mountain spring: simple, endless each thimble of water tumbling into the next, creating a small stream that somehow, with neither a map nor a plan, through surprising twists and curving around unforeseen obstacles, somehow inevitably finds its way down the mountain to the sea.”
Yet instead of allowing the stream to form naturally, most people play out the curse of a decided life.
We over-plan and schedule ourselves so tightly that we leave little to no room to be surprised or amazed by what life has to offer. While we may claim to feel empowered by the control we have exerted over our calendars and lives, we often overlook all that we’re saying “no” to by saying “yes” to so much. Tweet This!
Muller comments that “our wanting to control, predict, or ensure a good and hopeful future can make us feel overwhelmed in every moment as each and every choice will either keep open or eliminate countless future possibilities…we ache for a blueprint, a manual; we need specifics.”
Does this sound familiar?
Can you easily turn off your smartphone or set aside the “to do” list, and simply ask “what is the next right thing for me to do now?”
Then Try These On For Size
Plan the event. Don’t plan the outcome. As much as we’d like to be in control of what happens, many of us know that we have no control over other’s actions and reactions or even what unexpected circumstances may emerge. You can, however, manage the plans you make and the attitude you choose at every moment. So detach from outcomes and set resonant intentions instead!
Stop forecasting. Start living. Unless you’re a meteorologist or having a working crystal ball, chances are you cannot forecast or predict the future. So don’t! Allow what happens to emerge naturally based on the choices you make, and then trust yourself enough to determine the next right choice as it appears as you choose intentionally.
Embrace uncertainty. Activate your intuition. When you create space to let life happen instead of trying to control it, you’ll discover that oftentimes the only thing standing in your way is yourself. Open yourself up to the unknown and be okay with not knowing how a situation may or may not work out. Activate your intuition as a powerful sense of knowing, instead of solely relying on facts and logic.
Be open and willing to explore. Be bold. Once you are open to all the possibility that life has to offer and you’re in tune with what you intuitively want and need, you invite a whole new world of choice in that never had room to blossom and grow! Explore. Be bold. Go crazy. Have fun. Keep trusting yourself to discover the next right thing and do it and be willing to get uncomfortable.
Choose to live a life of decided intention instead of living out the curse of the decided life. Tweet This!
Create a great day,