I’ve had at least two, WOW, AH HA defining moments in my life, where I made a choice; to sink or swim; to quit or keep going; to leave things as they are or try another way. They were life changing moments, that revealed to me unambiguously that I had the power to choose the direction of my life. That the power to change my life, did not exist externally, but with me.
My first defining moment was the year after I had finished year 12. All of my friends had gone off to university, went traveling abroad or took a job in their gap year. I on the other hand, felt absolutely lost. All of a sudden, without the security of friends and the safe, comfortable routine of school, I was left to ponder me; who the heck was I and where on earth was I headed? I felt the full consequences of avoiding me and my past at that point.
Each day was long and drawn out. With nothing else to do, I struggled. I cried constantly and fell into a deep depression. Thoughts of hopelessness, despair and loneliness were a daily pattern. I tried hard to fill the void I felt. To find my sense of self and find a way out of the constant despair.
Nights were the hardest part. I felt incredible loneliness and isolation. My darkest thoughts and fears came out and haunted me to the point where I would question the point of even existing. I contemplated many times over the thought to end my life.
Rethinking those suicidal moments, I vividly remember knowing, almost like a sixth sense, that I had to hold on, that there was a reason I had to keep fighting. I could feel in those moments a deeper calling; that there was a greater purpose for my overwhelming pain and suffering. And that this was all a part of the plan.
After many months of fighting and struggling, being consumed by anguish and grief, I made one of my most defining decisions; I could go on suffering, with no end in sight, or I could do whatever it took to regain myself; to find myself, to work through the pain.
Before that point, I wasn’t taking action or taking control of my life. I wasn’t taking ownership of my life. Change and choice were not only external and beyond my grasp, but it wasn’t even an option I felt I had. The pain I felt and the thoughts I had were governing every part of my life. To me, I was a prisoner to what I was experiencing.
When you make a conscious decision to take ownership, to no longer allow the internal struggle to dictate your life, the effects are immediate. When you make that decision you have to OWN completely everything in your life at that point. You have to take full responsibility for where you are. And I was prepared to do that. Because I could see how choosing to be a victim would keep me locked in misery, struggle, pain and torment.
When I made that decision, I felt an incredible burden lift from me. I felt released, and instantly empowered to do something to change my life. All of a sudden, YOU have the power to choose, suffering or healing, to go forward to stay put. When it’s your decision to own, it’s an incredibly freeing experience.
It did not stop the pain or the struggle straight away, in fact it took many years. But I was now in control with how I chose to deal with it, instead of being held captive to it. And that for me was the defining moment.
We all have the power within to create change in our lives, when we make a conscious decision to take control and direct our lives with full awareness of the choices we make.
“When you make a choice, you change your future.” ~ Deepak Chopra
With the power to choose, you create the life you want. Do you sink or swim? Do you move forward or stand still. It truly is up to you.
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