We all have a life story we're trying to live. But the thing is that we never know how long we have to tell it, meaning it's that much more challenging to create your life story as you want it to be.
For example, I'm sure you've heard that the world is going to end this year. Well…probably. Okay…maybe not.
There is quite a bit of debate about it, but I think most agree that it probably isn't going to literally end. It may, instead, be the end of an era.
But what if the world really did end on December 21? Where would you want to be? Who would you want to spend your last few minutes with? What would you want to be doing?
I'm going to go out on a limb and say that you wouldn't want to be fighting with your spouse. Or yelling at your kids, or doing something mundane like watching old reruns on TV. You would like to be doing something significant and meaningful. You would like to have a special moment.
And who says you will? Statistics.
If you spend a lot of time currently fighting with your spouse or engaging in power struggles, pushing their buttons or bumping heads, statistics says there's a very high probability you will die that way. If you spend more time thinking loving thoughts about your spouse and you frequently show your appreciation for him/her, then that is more likely to be the theme playing out when the world ends. If you work a lot, frankly, you're pretty likely to die at your desk checking email. >shudder<
Activities you do frequently become habits. Breaking a habit takes a concerted effort. All activities have attitudes behind them, and those attitudes are fueled by beliefs. Beliefs are simply thoughts that you keep thinking, so why not change your thoughts? What attitudes or beliefs might be making you do the things you do?
Suppose you often fight with your spouse and you love to push his/her buttons. However, you can see that once you get going, he/she pushes yours and the two of you end up fighting. What attitude is behind your desire to push those buttons? Are you simply looking for a reaction? Are you angry about something else you are afraid to talk to him/her about? Are you frustrated with the lack of control you feel you have in your life? Are you frustrated because you feel like you are being manipulated? Spend a few minutes and boldly go where you haven't gone before — what are the attitudes or beliefs behind your actions? (Don't get sidetracked trying to analyze your spouse.)
Once you see a belief, you can look it in the eye and decide if you want to keep it. Beliefs, although often handed down to us from our parents, are optional. You can choose what you want to continue to believe and what beliefs you want to change. They are not facts! You can change a belief at any time, and if you want to do so, you have several options. You can punch holes in the belief with facts or things you know to be true. Ultimately, you will have to think new thoughts to counter the belief and replace it. Every time it pops up, you will need to remind yourself of your new thoughts/belief, so make some notes to yourself and do some journaling. This is similar to breaking a habit, and it could take up to three weeks to change, but keep at it.
Whether or not the world ends in December or not, we will all have a moment when it's time for us to go. Death is a part of life, and life is all about the invisible treasures — sweet moments with loved ones, memories of happy times and silly kids. You have the power to create your life story — and death story — exactly how you want it to be.