virgin islands scene

Happiness is activity.
-- Aristotle


The MONTHLY Motivator - May 2008

Life turnaround

Every so often, you’ll come to a point in your life when you realize that you’ve gotten off track in a big way. Perhaps the realization will sink in slowly over a period of time. Or, some kind of crisis may arise that suddenly makes you see you’re headed in the wrong direction. Certainly it can feel frightening and overwhelming to realize that your life is not going where you wish for it to go. And yet, when you reach that point it is actually a very positive and empowering moment. Because you are marvelously equipped to deal with it, and by doing so you can end up making your life significantly more positive, meaningful, productive and fulfilling than ever before. You are smart, adaptable, resourceful, and completely able to turn your life in any direction you choose. Realizing that you have gotten off track enables you to re-evaluate everything in your life and to re-direct your efforts so they produce the kind of world that you truly wish to live in.

Success in life does not happen in one smooth, uninterrupted effort. In every life, in every achievement, there must be many adjustments along the way. Turning your life in a new direction does not mean you have failed. On the contrary, it means that you’re aligning yourself with success. It means that you’re paying attention and that you’re learning from experience. It represents an enormous opportunity to get more deeply in touch with who you truly are and to more fully understand what’s important to you. It is a chance to move your life to a higher level of awareness, achievement and fulfillment.

Stop playing the blame game

One of the most wasteful things you can do is to sit around blaming others for your troubles. Sure, it’s very easy to blame your spouse, the government, your co-workers, the economy, or a whole list of other outside influences for your situation. It’s easy and it’s useless. Blaming others accomplishes only one thing. It enables you, in your own mind, to escape responsibility. Yet in order to make progress, you must do the exact opposite. You must take responsibility for every little corner of your life. Of course there are all sorts of factors in your world over which you have absolutely no control. Sure, the actions of others have contributed to your situation. However, you are the person who must deal with that situation. Your best strategy is to get beyond the blame and to get busy taking the positive steps that will turn your life around.

Accept your present situation

In order to move forward, you must first be completely clear about where you are. There is nothing to be gained by fighting against what has already happened or by pretending that it never did happen. You are where you are and that’s a great place to be because it is the place where you can turn your life around. From here, you can go precisely in the direction you choose. To do so, you must put all your energy into positive effort. You can’t afford to waste that energy fighting battles that are already over. Calmly, peacefully, and gratefully accept where you are. Allow yourself to be ok with what has already happened, because there’s nothing you can do to change it anyway. It is what it is, and your mission is now to make your life into what you have chosen it to be. Acceptance of what has happened does not mean that you agree with it or that you resign yourself to live with it. Acceptance means that you see it for what it is and make positive use of it.

An attitude of acceptance puts you in a powerful position because it frees you from having to constantly worry about things that are outside your control. Instead of feeling like you must micro-manage everything that touches your life, remind yourself that you can adapt to whatever may happen. Instead of being paralyzed by the fear of what you cannot control, be confident in knowing that even the most difficult situations harbor positive possibilities.

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--Ralph Marston

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