What Matters Most

Who you are and where you’re from does not matter.

What matters is what you decide from this moment on.

Isn’t that horrifyingly simple?

We are lead to believe that we are our biographies, that our past will determine our future.

Things like,

but you can’t do this because you’re from a third world country,”

or something in the lines of,

you are not made for this,” …

these dialogues are thrown at us.

But why do we accept them?

We do what everyone is doing, because we are scared.

I remember being told that I am not cut out for business. I wanted to believe them, I kid you not.

I wanted to believe them because I knew that this was the easy way out: I am not doing what I want to do because “they” said that I can’t. And I believe them. So I can’t do this. That’s why I’m not doing this.

That would have been a good enough excuse. A good enough excuse to NOT live a meaningful, fulfilling, happier life.

Just like so many of us, I was also told that it is not possible to earn honest money. I was told that to go on adventures every three months is for teenagers with nothing to do. I was told that I won’t be able to finish this because “no one in my family has ever succeeded”. I wanted to believe them because I was scared.

I remember making this one simple decision, years and years ago. I wrote down: whatever happens from this day forth, it will be because I chose it, not because others chose it for me.

That one decision changed everything. I either had to “own up” to their decision, or I had to decide what I though was best.

By God’s Ultimate, Neverending Grace, that was one of the best decisions of my life.

Listen, I don’t want to sell you dreams. I don’t want to make “living life to the fullest” as this easy thing that you have to do. It’s not.

Once you take responsibility for your actions, once you stop blaming:

  • the economy,
  • bad genes,
  • bad partners,
  • bad company,
  • bad friends,
  • bad neighbors
  • the wrong family
  • the wrong family living next door and are now friends, always hang around, and you are married to one of them…
  • etc etc etc

… once you stop pointing fingers at others, and start making your own choices, life suddenly becomes clearer.

But it also gets harder. Looking inwards, owning up to your decisions — these things are for men and women, not boys and girls.

It’s like enjoying the rain: some people run off when it rains, hiding under the shade. Some enjoy the spectacle of nature by standing still under the downpour, smiles on their faces.

But make no mistake: they will get drenched.

The drenched will look at the dry, and swear that the benefits far, far outweigh the downside. The dry will look at their neat clothes and thank God they didn’t decide to stand out in the open.

It is my decision to be drenched. What’s yours?

You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.

May West

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