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Life by Design vs Life By Default

Living the Success Principles #4

Principle #3 in Jack Canfield’s The Success Principles is “Decide What You Want.”  This, folks, is your vision.  What do you want to be, do and have?  My corollary on that is “Who do you want to be?” or maybe it’s “Who do you have to be to do and have what you want?”

We live our lives with a lot of can’ts and don’ts.  I have made a point to take the word “can’t” out of my vocabulary and replace it with “won’t.”  So, if you see me use the word “can’t,”  I invite you to call me on it, because there’s a good chance it was unconscious.

Can’ts and don’ts limit us, usually unnecessarily.  Most of us were conditioned as children to deny ourselves in a well-intentioned effort to keep us from becoming self-centered, self-absorbed, egotistical narcissists, to protect us from the pain of failure, and because parenting is a tiring business.  Sometimes, it’s just easier to say no.  For most of us, though, something went too far, and we find that our own little voices tell us no.

We’ve learned to ignore our wants, our desires.  We’ve been told that we should be satisfied with our lives.  Don’t get me wrong… I love my life.  And, it isn’t wrong, selfish, immoral, etc etc to want to be more.  I want to help more people.  I want to live larger.  No shame.  No apology.

The first step in this process is to figure our what we really want without shame or apology.  I think I’m there.

The next step is have a preference and act on it.  I am getting better at that.  The other night, Russ and I went out for Tex-Mex.  I really wanted the queso.  Normally, we’d do this routine about, “Do you want queso… no… what do you want…”  Folks, I’d had some sort of virus for days and had been eating toast.  I wanted queso, would have queso, and it didn’t matter whether Russ wanted to share the queso or not.  He seemed a little surprised when I ordered it without prior discussion.  Some would call that selfish.  I say not.  He was welcome to share or order something else.

I am still working on settling for less than I want.  Turns out, it’s a habit like any other.

Next steps are creating a wants list and vision.  Have those.

Will let you know how the settling thing goes, because I’m not moving on the Principle 4 until we have replaced that habit with stating my preference.

Be Your Best You Today,

Carolann Jacobs

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