Doing This One Simple Thing Could Make Your Future A Lot More Clear
It comes down to the choices we don’t think we have.
Where I grew up, there were things I felt like I never had a choice over. That’s what this is about; making choices for ourselves. That’s all it takes to understand your future more clearly.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m very thankful for my upbringing and fortunate to have the parents that I do. They raised me to be a self-aware adult and for that, I thank them. But there were choices that felt so normal where I grew up, I never second-guessed them.
Choices made for me
Some of the choices that were made for me were trivial — like getting braces as an adolescent. Where I grew up, every awkward teenager had them. But at least everyone had braces, so it was no big deal. Now, I have straight teeth whether I care about it or not.
Then, there are some choices that could have really impacted my future. For example, I grew up in a non-religious household. My family never went to church, we never prayed before meals, and I never closed my eyes at night to talk to a higher god. That was just the norm for my family.
However, across the street from my childhood home, our friends were very religious. They went to church every Sunday, they read the Bible, and it became a staple in their lives. Now, even in their adult life, they continue to practice their religion.
Then, there were choices such as athletics over other interests. Playing sports was a staple activity for all young boys in my hometown. If you didn’t play sports, you got an unspoken reputation of weakness.
Whether I was interested in music or drawing or, even, reading — most of my time involved sports. I enjoyed sports in my youth, but I always wonder if I would have enjoyed something else more.
What if I had taken up a hobby that I could pursue in my adult years such as learning a new language? After all, it is much easier to teach a new dog new tricks.
Choices with lasting effects
Then, there are choices I had to make that severely impact my life today such as going to college.
I went to college when I was eighteen like 99.5% of everyone else I graduated with. When I got there, I had no idea what I wanted to do. They told me, “It’s fine, you’ll figure it out when you get there.”
Everyone told me this, so I thought it must be true.
Then, two years into university, still, with no passion for school-related learning.
I limited my potential endeavors to the list of degrees my university offered. The truth is, I wasn’t ready for college.
I hadn’t had enough life experiences to find my own passions. I wasn’t driven by the potential to learn more because I had yet to find something that I was deeply interested in.
What happened as a result?
So, what happened? I ended up changing my Major three times in four years.
I started in Business Management because that’s what they tell every student who feels lost to start in. Then, I thought I could be a Finance major because I enjoyed personal finances.
After a semester in Finance, I realized it wasn’t what I had expected. I tried a few Graphic Design courses and finally landed in Communication.
I had a dream of getting into baseball front office management. A communication degree seemed like the easiest route.
Right before I graduated, I started traveling. That’s when I found my true passion. Now, I understand the route for my future life.
I’m driven to explore and learn more about the world. I’m educating myself more every day. On my own.
That’s why I say, perhaps, college isn’t the right route for everyone. Not because of the struggle to pass. I passed every class handily. But I lacked the inspiration to want to learn.
Fortunately, I graduated without debt. Many people can’t. It gave me the opportunity to pursue my passion for writing without the pressure of paying off loans. Many people don’t have the means to pursue their passion if they haven’t found it by the time they graduate with a degree.
Why being content isn’t good enough
I want you (the reader) to try something for me. Do it with all seriousness, take your time to think about it, and be honest with yourself.
Close your eyes. No, I take that back. Wait until you finish reading, and then close them. Reading with your eyes closed would be a bit more difficult than I want this exercise to be.
Take a few breaths, don’t rush this part. No, we’re not meditating — not exactly, anyway.
Think about a time in your life when you had it all going. A time when you were happy for no other reason but to be content with everything.
What’s the moment you see in your mind? Think about what you had at that moment. What made you so content?
Think about what happened to that moment or period of your life. Where did it go? What events led to your circumstances changing? Was it something you could control?
Making your own choices
Are there things you would like to change in your life? Is it a result of someone else choosing circumstances rather than yourself?
I regret the choices I didn’t know I had. Looking back, I wish I did things differently in my youth. But that doesn’t mean we can’t change those outcomes now.
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** This article was originally published at www.adamcheshier.com **
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