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On Doing The Right Thing

On Doing The Right Thing

We are the sum of the choices we make. Whether conscious or with little intentional thought, our brain tells our body what to do or mouth what to say, and consequences follow. Sometimes those consequences are immediate (e.g. if we say something offensive the reaction might be swift) and at other times the impact of our actions (or inactions) are not felt in earnest for years. But suffice it to say, everything we do or say either moves us forward or backwards in life.

Part of the problem for many people is that they treat their brains so poorly, and act with such impulse, that very few of their actions are based in conscious thought. They repeat destructive habits day after day, and react blindly to events around them rather than putting serious thoughts into their own actions and behaviors. The natural reactions and habits for most are the easy ones, not the hard ones. Easier to sit on the couch and watch TV than to take out a pen and paper and write a book. Easier to open up that bag of processed chips than it is to make a healthy snack of vegetables.

To be fair, even people who generally treat themselves well and act with good intentions live busy lives and thus follow similar sub-optimal physical, mental, and emotional routines day in and day out.

Which is why it is so important to get off the proverbial treadmill from time to time and really assess if your daily actions are leading you in the direction you truly desire. If the answer is no in any aspects of your life, then set forth a plan to make a change and review that plan daily. As discussed in previous newsletters, you need to train your brain and spirit daily just as you train your body daily.

The reality is that the easy way out in the near term inevitably leads to a hard life over time. Make the easy choice of eating junk food and not exercising consistently, and eventually you will pay a big price – potentially the ultimate price of your life (prematurely) – in the form of injuries and maladies. Take the easy path of not saving money consistently but instead spending on non-essential items, and down the road you will lead a hard life of being a laborer in your 60s, 70s and beyond when you should be travelling the world and pursuing interesting hobbies.

I challenge you to take a moment on a regular basis to check in with yourself. To ask yourself before you take material actions, if your choices are going to lead to a hard life in the future, or an easier and far more interesting/healthy one. Rather than just going through the motions now and suffering the consequences later, act with intention and purpose consistent with your well thought out goals, and enjoy the fruits of your hard choices later. Oh, and as a bonus, it turns out that most people are happier – as in deep down truly happier – when they are pursuing and overcoming challenges (i.e. making the hard choices) in the moment rather than always seeking the easy way out. So win-win. Happy life today, easier life tomorrow. The choice is yours.

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