It's All About You

Would you describe your life as a roller coaster, a merry-go-round or some where in between?
Do you view life as a frightening, dangerous journey filled with uncontrollabe twists and turns?
Or do you view it as thrilling and exciting filled with oportunities to grow, learn and laugh?

If something in your life isn’t working you can change the thoughts you think, the words you speak, the emotions you feel, the choices you make and the actions you take. When you do you  impact every aspect of your life including relationships, work, prosperity and health.

In other words  your life… it’s all about you!

In order to live our best life we need to take 100% responsibility for the quality of it . If we don’t like our current circumstances it’s up to us to change them. Dr. Phil is famous for his one liner, “How is that working for you?” In recovery the line  “Nothing changes until something changes” tells us if we keep doing the same things we’ll get the same results.

Most of the time the only change I need to make which affects everything I need to change is my perception.

I belive our suffering never comes from the facts; our suffering comes from our perception of the facts.

When we let go of expectations, old grievances, control or the need to be right we experience a shift or change in our energy. By shifting our perception of a person or situation we have the power to  alleviate our own suffering. We then become free.

It’s true we don’t have control over everything that happensin our life; however, we do have control over the way we experience and react to those things.  We have an opportunity to stop whining, complaining and blaming others.

The following are 2 examples of how we make excuses:

 I could get a better job if it weren’t for the debt I owe and the bad economy.
Question yourself: Who put you in debt? Who chose the standard of living that caused the debt?
Who chose the job? It’s difficult to accept your current debt is the result of your past and present choices. When we own our own “stuff” we see there’s another way to live.

I wish I could lose weight. If I wasn’t so busy with kids, work, carpooling, sports…I would have the time to work out and eat right.” Question yourself: Who chose the responsibilities? Who prioritizes what needs to get done? Who choses unhealthy meals? When we own our poor choices we give ourselves the freedom to choose again.

My mom always said, “life is really what you  make it.”  I want to make mine fun, joyful and complaint and excuse free!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Keith September 12, 2009, 12:14 pm

    Hello Tess

    You have constructed an amazing article here, and I don’t just say that. It’s very informative and even has an ” authorative” feel to it, by which I mean you come across as an authority on this subject. Of course I believe you are!

    We must all take responsibility for our lives for we are the capatain of our “ship” and we CHOOSE the direction in which we sail. It’s easier, of course, to pass the blame off to something or someone else but as you say, we must OWN our choices.

    This article really speaks Tess. I wonder if this is a preview of the sort of thing that’ll be in your new book. 🙂

    Keep’em coming Tess, we need the things you’re sharing!
    .-= Keith´s last post…Your Mind The Helm, Your Thoughts The Rudder =-.

  • Julie September 12, 2009, 4:06 pm

    I love the tone of this, Tess. It’s warmly instructive. Asking ourselves questions is an effective way of seeing we’ve only ourselves to answer to for our positions.

    To change our perceptions, we can also offer alternative self-talk. For instance, you know I’ve been having a bit of a time with converting full-out to a plant-based diet. My husband’s supportive but still not going as full-tilt into this as I hoped (one should always dream!), and I’ve often succumbed to the many temptations he’s unwittingly provided (hm, he still thinks I’ve tremendous willpower). It dawned on me that instead of looking at “going clean” as a sort of trial to undertake, it occurred to me to pay attention to my original intention and then look at the outcome as if it were the Holy Grail I was seeking, the greatest reward ever. Well, ummm, Earth to Julie… I’m smarter than this; I should know better than to create a goal and then sabotage it with countering thinking.

    While we’re looking to ourselves for where to place the responsibility for the circumstances of our lives, we should also take an honest look at the conversations we’re having with ourselves, too. When we push aside the curtains, we can see clearly. …and the view’s pretty great. 😉
    .-= Julie´s last post…Honor Redux, with a Twist =-.

  • Positively Present September 12, 2009, 4:45 pm

    Really great post! You’ve really made me think a lot…and it was just what I needed today. Thank you!!
    .-= Positively Present´s last post…own your happiness =-.

  • Daphne @ Joyful Days September 12, 2009, 4:49 pm

    “I believe our suffering never comes from the facts; our suffering comes from our perception of the facts.”

    Truer words were never said! I believe this too, and it’s nice seeing you emphasize this. If only we could embrace this way of thinking, our lives would become the fun roller coaster ride it is! Well, I’m not fond of overly fast rides so I’d describe my life more like a walk in beautiful grounds – sometimes I run for the exhilaration and joy of it, sometimes I walk slowly to admire the surroundings, and sometimes I’m so winded I have to stop and rest. But always, the walk goes on!
    .-= Daphne @ Joyful Days´s last post…Why Letting Go is Hard and How to Let Go =-.

  • Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK September 12, 2009, 6:12 pm

    Yes, Tess, may we never see ourselves as victims of circumstances. May we always keep in mind that the choice is ours, and with that choice is the God-given power to claim our destiny. I myself am making a very important choice today, there are still certain fears of what might happen for there is no hundred percent guarantee that our undertakings will succeed, but within it also is excitement and hope that even if we do make mistakes, we still have to freedom to move to where we really wanted to be.
    .-= Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK´s last post…The Inspirer Has Dark Moods =-.

  • Lance September 12, 2009, 6:38 pm

    Tess,
    I’m laughing! And I am because of your mention of a merry go round. Just today, we went to the grocery store – my wife, my youngest son, and I. That doesn’t sound too strange…until I tell you that a round about was just put in the road near the store. And…we did a few loops in the round about (well…until my wife gave me a look that I knew meant it was time to stop!). It was so much like a merry go round! And so much fun!!

    Back on topic, though…
    The power to choose. And especially as that relates to perspective, so good. It has me thinking of someone who is poor and yet happy. While someone else could be wealthy and miserable. And perspective and choice both play a a part here. And when I start to really think about this, I start to again put things in perspective…
    .-= Lance´s last post…The Evolution of Our Heart’s Desire =-.

  • Wilma Ham September 12, 2009, 6:48 pm

    Hey Tess,
    What ??? You are saying;
    “We have an opportunity to stop whining, complaining and blaming others.”
    For me to stop meant that I first needed to become aware that I even did this!
    What bugged me was that this out-of-integrity behavior has been invisible to me for so long and thus I happily continued with my whining, complaining and blaming and living with the invisible consequences of that, the most important one giving my power away.
    Now that I am aware, and I am so pleased that that awareness is increasing thanks to articles like this and your book (I too agree that your book is a must read), I have started with observing myself and then step by step learning to correct this unsavory behavior with the support of great people around me.
    It is funny that the less you whine, the less you can put up with others who do this. In a way that is a good thing so they cannot pull you back into whining.
    Here’s to a great complaint free world.
    .-= Wilma Ham´s last post…Forget unfair and luck, integrity is what counts. =-.

  • Zeenat(Positive Provocations} September 13, 2009, 9:29 am

    Hi Tess,
    I am with you a 100%. This is my life and my choice…and it is indeed all about me. Your mum gives some profound advice….Mums have a way like that 🙂
    I would like my life to be a fun, happy and thrilling event, moment for moment….I am usually in that frame of mind…but hey…i am not perfect…so i do mess up and make some bad choices, but i learn from them sooner than later…and never ever make those same mistakes again.
    Life is too short to waste over things that arent important…The most important thing is my attitude today..and thats what has the capacity to make me happy or miserable. My choice 😉
    Lots of love.
    p.s. sent you an email through your contact page.
    .-= Zeenat(Positive Provocations}´s last post…On Compassion{Inspirational Quote of the Week} =-.

  • Hilary September 13, 2009, 10:41 am

    Hi Tess – it is up to us .. just occasionally others lives take over and we’re left in limbo land – I’m in that position now .. life is life – but I’m so pleased I don’t sit around and moan –

    Thanks – Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters Inspirational Stories
    .-= Hilary´s last post…Sting like a bee? Dance like a bee? =-.

  • Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord September 13, 2009, 12:19 pm

    Oh I am all for fun these days! I realized that throughout most of my life, fun has taken a back burner. There’s serious stuff to do after all, don’t you know? Well, the business of fun is a serious subject… One I’m seriously wanting to study and implement on the double!
    So what’s stopping me? “I need someone else to have fun with…” Really? And Dr. Phil would wonder how that’s working out for me, and I’d have to tell him, “Not as well as I would have hoped.” (smile) Oh and now I have someone to have fun with, but he’s really busy because he’s been out of the country for two years and might be headed out again in a couple months. (Do you like how I’ve made excuses up for him, too?! I’m so good at them! An excuse Rolodex, I tell you.)
    Another excuse I find myself using, “I’m not easy going enough to have fun all the time, in the ways others have fun.” Hmm, who said I had to have fun a certain way? Who said there’s a right way to have fun in the first place? No one but me.
    Looks like I have some excuses to shelve and some fun to get started on.
    Watch out world!
    .-= Megan “JoyGirl!” Bord´s last post…It’s a Jungle Out There =-.

  • Jan Lundy September 13, 2009, 3:07 pm

    I soooo agree with you, Tess, and mom too! It is all about choices. You know I have been writing columns for women’s mags for over 10 years now and it never ceases to amaze me that within each one is the invitation to make new choices. Our entire life is a series of choices! What I love to ask myself (and others) about any situation that presents itself in life is this:

    Am I reacting to these circumstances? Or responding?

    There is a big difference between the two. Reactivity provides no insight. No room for breathing, discernment, wisdom to come through. Responding does. We CAN choose how to respond to things and bring about powerful new circumstances, as you state here. The choice is up to us…

    Wonderful post!
    .-= Jan Lundy´s last post…Weekend Reflection … =-.

  • Stacey Shipman September 13, 2009, 4:24 pm

    When I first quit my job to go out on my own I thought, “I can’t afford XYZ.” Then one day I got sick of that and realized I could believe I can afford XYZ. Shifting the focus helped me also focus on creating more work and I did. Amazing how that happens.

  • Mary B Sheffield September 13, 2009, 7:42 pm

    I realize this could not come at a better time ! The outcome can never be different until we make it change our selves ! Believe me it is so much easier to blame others for our misfortune ! But when you have that one moment of clarity that only yourself is to blame . And you do try a different route wala !:) I truely believe only then you learn to celebrate you ! And with that comes a sort of reconition that you are in charge of your own destiny !
    Ok the blog is almost ready ! Good or Bad I am not sure ? Just the thought of putting myself and my writing out there scares the bajeeba’s out of me !
    Thanks for the nudge Tess !
    Mary B

  • Davina September 14, 2009, 12:01 am

    Hi Tess. Ooooooh… “letting go of expectations, old grievances, control or the need to be right…” Those are biggies. I find I have to continually practice all of these. One of these days the opposite will be come the default way of life.
    .-= Davina´s last post…Island Thyme Bed & Breakfast =-.

  • Jared | SpiritualZen.net September 14, 2009, 5:49 am

    @Lance – I love the round-about story! I actually just did that myself with my wife a few weeks ago when we couldn’t figure out which way to go… we just went around it for several minutes until we got dizzy!

    I used to “view life as a frightening, dangerous journey filled with uncontrollabe twists and turns?”

    But today I “view it as thrilling and exciting filled with opportunities to grow, learn and laugh”
    .-= Jared | SpiritualZen.net´s last post…You Are A Miracle, So Count Your Blessings! =-.

  • Peggy September 14, 2009, 7:49 am

    Tess – I’m jumping up and down with my Pink Princess Wand (or my imaginary pom-poms) I LOVE THIS POST (ok, I LOVE EVERY POST YOU WRITE)

    People often ask me for help in living a better, happier life. And then they give me a list of excuses. So I tell them a very simple truth: We make time for what we value.

    If you value being healthier, weighing less, and/or being more active, you will make time to eat better, exercise and make healthier choices.

    If you value being happy, you will find the things that make you happy and do them (write, throw clay and make pinch pots, sew, read, etc…)

    If you value decluttering your life, you’ll make the time to clean your office, your room, your basement (good advice for me right now!)

    I’m a HUGE fan of Bryon Katie (and you) and she has the remarkable book “Loving What Is” – I think I’ve recommended it to everyone on the planet (and other planets) because it is about perception. We suffer because we attach ourselves to false beliefs (“she should do that” or “he shouldn’t do this…”) When we live in the world of “should and should not” we are in direct conflict with WHAT IS. And that’s what keeps 99.9% (I made that statistic up) of the human race stuck in a life of miserable suffering.

    On another note – do you mind if I do a write up of your book on my blog? I am so loving your book – it’s highlighted and tabbed…and I’ve got notes all over the place.

    May you have a fabulous Monday!
    Peggy
    .-= Peggy´s last post…Your Moment of Bliss =-.

  • Jodi at Joy Discovered September 14, 2009, 9:18 am

    Hi Tess!
    Boy oh boy, you nailed this one. It is so true that for most situations, all we need to change is our perception or attitude. Isn’t that funny? Sometimes I laugh at myself for taking so long to come around on something that just needed to be re-framed in my mind.

    When I find myself making excuses, I look for one of two things: Either fear or some other emotion is holding me back and I need to change my approach, or, I don’t really want to do what I am feeling guilty about (usually it’s one of those things that is on my list because somewhere I picked up the idea that it “should” be) and so I need to let it go.
    .-= Jodi at Joy Discovered´s last post…Simple Pleasure: Family Movie Night =-.

  • Tess The bold life September 14, 2009, 11:12 am

    Keith,
    I agree but didn’t intend to sound like the authority however I am an expert A Course In Miracles states that a miracle is a shift in perception. I’ve been a student of the course for 18 years. Think of this post written for the spiritually mature!
    That includes you Keith!

    Julie,
    Huge undertaking what you’re doing with the diet. I commend you for taking responsibility for your health! It’s a process so take it slow and be easy on yourself. I agree the view is pretty grand from here as well!

    Positively present
    I’m happy to provide food for thought, heart and soul. Come back again soon!

    Daphne,
    I like your analogy of life. We seem to agree on most all our values, our beliefs and the way we live our lifes. I’m glad you are my friend.

    Jocelyn,
    You’re right we will will make mistakes and we will all keep getting up again and choosing our destiny. Choice by choice, moment by moment everyday.

    Lance,
    You have such a joyfull and fun perspective on life. The round about and my merry go round. I think we’re on the same page with a great perspective on life.
    .-= Tess The bold life´s last post…It’s All About You =-.

  • Mary007 September 14, 2009, 12:31 pm

    So true!! Changing my perception and looking at things in different ways does save a lot of energy and brain cells! Don’t be so critical and open your mind to bigger and better! Thanks for the great article!

  • Tess The bold life September 14, 2009, 1:36 pm

    Wilma,
    Are you forgetting time is an illusion? So it doesn’t matter when we learn things it just matters we do! Once you’re on the path you can fall back but you can’t stay there.
    How wonderful you have supportive people around you. Here’s to your growth and new perspective!

    Zeenat,
    I know you know! Some times we just forget you know. Yes we all fall down and we all make mistakes. When we learn from them life is grand!

    Hilary,
    It’s OK to be in limbo. I know exactly how that feels. Also time is an illusion so who cares?!?

    Megan,
    I’m happy your getting on the fun train! Don’t save it up for when your honey comes back. One never runs out of fun…just create more. I wish I lived near you because then we could have fun together.

    Jan,
    That is a wonderful question to ask, “Am I reacting or responding?” How easy can it get. If I’m reacting a few deep breathes can work wonders.

    Stacey,
    I can afford XYZ is a great mantra for one who is buisness for themseves. Way to go. Your an example for so many.

    Mary,
    You also have so much to offer. Let me know how I can help you out with your new blog. I’m 6 weeks away from my 1 year anniversary.

    Davina,
    What a great vision, changing our perception will be a default of life. You’re on the cutting edge and I’m right behind you.

    Jared,
    Your not only wise but FUN! How exciting!

    Peggy,
    Yes to my book I love your enthusiasm. We have time for what we value. How easy is that to understand. Too often we think we value something but don’t. It’s time to walk our talk and when we do we have that time and use it wisely.

    Jody,
    Yes look for the fear. It’s always lurking under out “stuckness.” And no to guilt. It’s a waste of energy anyway! You go Jody.
    .-= Tess The bold life´s last post…It’s All About You =-.

  • Karl Staib - Work Happy Now September 14, 2009, 3:53 pm

    My parents always told me the same things growing up. I always rolled my eyes at them as a teenager when they told me that. Now I’m going to tell my kid the same thing. I just know he will roll his eyes at me. I guess that’s how the game goes.

    When we create the life we want that’s when thoughts, feelings, and actions all work together to help us become happy, healthy and successful. I’m not all there yet. I have my good days and bad, but there are many more good days than bad. This trend seems to improve each year.
    .-= Karl Staib – Work Happy Now´s last post…Do You Conference? =-.

  • Patricia September 14, 2009, 5:40 pm

    I am just doing it – years of analyzing and studying, researching and listening, doing trials and following directions – I’m done with that!

    Having more fun too, yes siree! No time to waste
    Boldenfied

    I will read this post again, when I fall down – to dust myself up and laugh out loud, because I am not a perfectionist and I am human and loving it!
    .-= Patricia´s last post…Computer Glitch =-.

  • Walter September 14, 2009, 6:40 pm

    It’s funny how people are unaware that the greatest contributor of all our miseries are our own selves. We treasure grievances and allow it to manipulate our every actions. It’s wise to challenge this mindset in order to shift our ways of thinking. 🙂
    .-= Walter´s last post…Deciding point: conquering limitations =-.

  • Barbara Swafford September 14, 2009, 10:04 pm

    Hi Tess,

    Like you, I love Dr. Phil’s sayings. The “how is that working” is a great one and when he asks it, his guests are usually speechless. But, he does make them and his audience think.

    I totally agree with what you’re saying. We are the ones who are responsible for what happens in our lives and how we react. I always find it fascinating to watch different people reacting to the same situation – their reactions range from panic to a shrug of the shoulders.

    I love the line, “When we let go of expectations, old grievances, control or the need to be right we experience a shift or change in our energy.” So true.
    .-= Barbara Swafford´s last post…The 15 Minute Post =-.

  • Robin September 14, 2009, 11:44 pm

    Hi Tess – all so true – it all boils down to us, indeed. No use pointing the finger!
    .-= Robin´s last post…Immortality Of The Body =-.

  • janice September 15, 2009, 3:38 am

    It’s good to be back – and what an excellent post to find when I visited! A life coach’s guide to life in one wee post!

    I can’t add much to the brilliant comments above; I just wanted to say it’s good to read posts like these often. It doesn’t matter how well we know the theory; you need to keep drinking your whole life, absorbing and replenishing this way of thinking for ever.
    .-= janice´s last post…The House of the Thousand Horrormoans =-.

  • Daphne September 15, 2009, 12:48 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing this. I am struggling with these questions and I will return to read more of what you have to say!

  • Jessica September 15, 2009, 2:34 pm

    I just have to ask: is it The Bold Life just because or does it have anything to do with your family name? My last name is Bold (for serious! 🙂 ) so when I see references to “Bold” – like your blog title, it always makes me smile.

  • Sell Your Phone September 15, 2009, 4:31 pm

    Nice article. You are a great great write. Really appreciated reading this.
    .-= Sell Your Phone´s last post…Mobile Cell Phone Recycling =-.

  • Caroline September 15, 2009, 9:21 pm

    Your Mom was right! Life is what we make it! And, so much of life is perception. I have finally began to realize that all I have to do is change my thinking. Which usually requires some sort of action…but it’s good to be proactive. Thank you again for getting me thinking!
    .-= Caroline´s last post…Offering =-.

  • Jannie Funster September 16, 2009, 2:16 pm

    As to this post I have 5 words. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. And yes.

    Time and time again my thoughts show me that how I look at things is how they’ll be.

    If I’m whining and moaning, it’ll be tough. But if I open my consciousness it’s usually a breeze.

    Now, I hardly ever whine or moan anymore of course, because I’m so durn enlightened with all this blog reading. Actually, some have commented to me that I’m almost too enlightened to remain on this planet in my human form. So I often don my wings and flit among the stars. It’s ‘way cool out there.

    My only wish is for a roundabout close by.

    We do have a nice piano stool to spin on tho.
    .-= Jannie Funster´s last post…It’s All Picnics And Cartwheels Until The Fire Ants Bite =-.

  • Omar September 19, 2009, 9:24 am

    Life is fun and fascinating. There are good and bad moments. But we have to enjoy it. We don’t know when we’ll breathe our last breath.
    .-= Omar´s last post…SUCCESS =-.

  • Hilary September 20, 2009, 12:17 am

    Hi Tess .. yes – I’d have loved to be me today .. ie aged 30 or so .. in this day and age, then I wonder what my life would have been like? Being English, middle class and somewhat held back by my surroundings and expectations didn’t make things easy.

    However I always moved on and did different things not terribly successfully, and I probably didn’t learn – as the resources we have now weren’t available etc ..

    Now – life is interesting, full of challenges, full of opportunity despite two people now in hospitals .. my mother is amazing and my uncle too .. I’m lucky

    After I’ll need to put into action my ‘mapped’ future that I’ve been able to mull about during this time .. there’s not much time – but thoughts can be there all the time – do we make the most of our thoughts?

    Thanks – Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters Inspirational Stories
    .-= Hilary´s last post…What did the charcoal hawker start …? =-.

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