From December 8 in “Finding the Gift: Daily Meditations for Mindfulness.”
Have you ever asked yourself, What do I need to get done today? In other words, what do I need to have finished today? Past tense. Fast tense. I do, and often. I just realized that reflects how I feel a lot of the time. What do I have to do and how fast can I get it over with? For what? To get to the next list of have to’s, ought to’s and should’s?
Too often I am racing to some mysterious finish line. If I’m not careful, I can get in a rut and view everyday life as one big chore I must check off my list so I can get to the good stuff. How crazy is that?
Everyday life is the good stuff! A life is the sum total of many single days.
What do I WANT to do today?
It occurred to me to ask a different question today: What do I WANT to do today? This reflects me running my life, not letting my life run me. This question nurtures empowerment, rather than fostering a victim or martyr outlook. I do have a few appointments and other obligations today, but I created those. I’m the one who made a choice to say “Yes” to those.
We each design our lives, voluntarily or involuntarily. Life feels a lot better when we take ownership for ourselves and our circumstances. We may not get to choose every circumstance we will ever encounter, but one hundred percent of the time we do get to choose how we feel about it. How we talk to ourselves and others about it. How we think about it. And what we’re going to do about it. What actions will we take?
Today, I’m going to own my day. It’s all mine. I get twenty-four hours. If I’ve created obligations and commitments I don’t like, it’s my choice to honor them or not, and to agree to them again, or not.
If I have agreed and given an employer a portion of my day, it’s my choice. Regardless of how I earn income, I can go to work and earn money, or I can stay home and embrace the consequences of that decision.
We are only “stuck” if we decide it’s easier to be a victim than to take responsibility for ourselves and live our lives on purpose.
I am in charge of me and help is available as often as I seek it. As the Serenity Prayer suggests: “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
Amen and amen. Enjoy your day. Enjoy your life.
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