After having created a life of consequence in the form of debt, health problems, addiction, wasted work experience, and isolation, I made one of the most important decisions of my life. It was a decision for myself alone at first, where I stood solid and firm as the decision-maker, in complete and raw self-honesty. I decided that I was going to stop living in such a way where the outflows of my choices, actions and decisions were that of consequence and self-diminishment and instead start the process of making decisions that would create myself as a better human being.
I saw that I had to do this for myself first, but that as a result I would be a better version of myself for those in my reality and thus, be a better human being in this world. I wrote out a list of self-commitments, such as:
"I commit myself to take complete self-responsibility for the decision that I make, and to stand within and as the decisions that I make, so that they are MY decisions.
I commit myself to stop seeking/wanting/needing/desiring validation and approval for the decision that I make.
I commit myself to making decisions and taking action based on the principles I decide to stand by, and not based on what’s easiest or what I’m in the mood for.
I commit myself to eradicate the fear of failure from my Life."
I also wrote out instructions for myself, guidelines based in principle that I could look to in moments when I would face those moments of wanting to abandon myself within the decision-making process.
Interestingly, when I decided to make decisions in this way, my life literally fell apart. I learned that I had been holding some expectations that things would get better because I was assisting and supporting myself to create a better self. What I hadn't considered was the fact that my entire reality had been built upon a habitual and patterned foundation of character, and now that I was changing myself at this foundational level, all the structures I had built upon it were crumbling.
I am grateful for this now though, because I can see now that in order to build the new, me must at the same time let go of the old. The things that I let go of were relationships that I had formed that were not best for me (either changed/altered or left completely), environments/living situations that were not optimal were left and new ones were created, career changes made, addictive substances were removed from my life, and many other changes, both internal and external took place.
Each of these actions of letting-go were a result of my new decision-making process. Each one taking away hiding places, dependencies and escape or avoidance mechanisms. This left me squarely in the face of the reality of myself. From this position I had to face many of my own weaknesses (strengths in the making!), I had to make many mistakes (mis-takes), and I had to step up or step out. Herein, another important decision: I chose (and continue to choose) to step up, I want to play, I am here to participate fully.
In my next post I will share how I dug myself out of the hole that was left, and began to build something almost entirely new.