The majestic choice to leave the world of substance abuse behind was also the greatest act of self-love I ever made up until that point. That choice has allowed me to make many subsequent choices that I can be proud of, and a few that I could’ve done better.
As humans, it appears that we can get pretty mixed up about our choices. We forget that we have them. We tell ourselves that “we had no choice.” We deny responsibility for our choices. We let others choose for us. We forget that choices are meant to be followed by action. We don’t want to admit that choice gives us our results and outcomes.
This may be better illustrated by the contrast between three similar, and very different phrases.
“I have to.”
“I get to.”
“I choose to.”
For example, “I have to,” implies that I have to get up at 4 am most days to get to work on time. Some simple logical questions can be applied here to question this statement. Is it true that you have to get up at 4 am? It’s probably not true. What is most likely more true is that you don’t have to do anything. You’ve been conditioned to believe that you don’t have a choice. But you really could remain in bed. You might lose your job or be very unpopular with your spouse (or more popular, wink) or miss the bus. The reality is, most of us don’t have to do anything. Even if you are in a situation such as a prison or a boot-camp, you don’t have to get up. You could stay where you are and pay the consequence. It’s likely that getting thrown into solitary confinement or kicked out of boot-camp is not the result you are going for, so you are going to get up. However, you still did not have to, you just made a wise choice.
The phrase “I get to,” allows for more responsibility and freedom around choice. “I get to,” is a more powerful language, and is actually quite approved of in recovery and the “take responsibility for my actions communities.” “I get to get up at 4 am to be to work on time,” suggests more freedom. It signifies that I appreciate that I didn’t feel that I had a choice, and now I realize that I do. “I get to be grateful for my awareness that I have the opportunity to be employed.” “I get to connect with my friend today on a trail run.”
Taking this one step further, “I choose to get up at 4 am to go to my job,” gives us power over the result. Choosing the outcome of making it to work on time determines the result. “I choose,” supercharges the action with a higher energy frequency and intention. Choosing your actions means you are more on purpose. Purpose and intention have magic and flow within.
Now, let’s apply this to the choice of who we are, or choose to be. Instead of asking, “How do I stop overeating?” a more powerful question is, “Who is she/he that chooses the outcome of stopping the overeating?” Who do I choose to become to ensure I achieve my desire?
Since only we can choose our identity, why not choose the superhero within? “I choose,” claims the power that resides within each of us.
Choice also implies action. Once we make a choice, we must follow through with commitment and action, or the choice will wither on the vine of discontentment.
Commitment and action lead to more choice. By taking this thought process to mind and heart, by being aware of our language, we begin to make progress towards breaking down the conditioning that we are not at choice. It really has been conditioned out of most of us. The responsibility lies with you, to decide that you choose how your life turns out. It’s you who can choose to take ownership of your identity.
Who do you choose? Victim to the belief that you have no choice? Or… Grateful, powerful, responsible Superhero you?
I help women rewire their brains, bodies and emotions so they can stop food addiction, eating disorders and diet obsession, and halt self-loathing so that they can be joyfully present for life, health and relationships. Isn’t it time you choose the greatest act of self-love? What are you waiting for?