“It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”
—J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Choice is freedom. Choice means options. Choice gives us the ability to create anything we want in our lives. Choice is our paintbrush, and we are the artists—able to paint our masterpieces if we so desire.
Without choice we are prisoners, victims, puppets. We are without hope, vision or dreams.
In a nutshell, our choices = our life.
Our power to choose is really a massive gift, but it can also be our biggest roadblock to living lives we love.
Although we have been given this huge gift, we don’t always give it the appreciation it deserves. Sometimes, we actually have a chronic habit of making bad choices—choices that keep us separate from our greatness, our purpose and our happiness. Choices that render us unable to make real, lasting changes in our lives.
We become frozen, stuck and prohibited from creating our masterpieces.
It’s easy to get caught up in this trap, and it’s even easier to create excuses to justify why we can’t seem to change. Although on a rational level, we may think we really want to change, we really want that relationship, that job and that book deal—the reality is that change can be scary for most of us. When fear is in the mix, our default choice is often to play it safe and not change. We decide not to take chances so that we don’t get hurt, disappointed or rejected.
While this can be chalked up to the part of our brain that is just trying to protect us, there are times when we need to get through a bit of discomfort in order to change and get to the next “level” in our lives.
Sometimes, change means having to ditch the default choice of playing it safe, playing it small and hiding from our gifts in order get the results we seek.
I am not advocating the “no pain, no gain” mentality, but rather suggesting that there may be times in our quest for personal growth, spiritual evolution or happiness that we’ll need to challenge some of our old beliefs and choice-making patterns that have previously held us back.
This is the exact place in which I found myself about 10 years ago. After having gone to such lengths as traveling to Brazil to work with local shamans and taking part in healing ceremonies involving sacred medicinal teas, I had spent so much money, time and energy trying to find myself, yet I only felt more lost in the process.
I kept choosing to find answers outside of myself in the form of gurus, online courses or the next latest and greatest system. I kept making choices that only left me feeling more confused, less connected and further from my truth.
The solution came when I really accepted and came to understand that I had the power inside myself to choose my life. I found all of my answers in my realization and true appreciation of what choice really meant in my life….and finally owning that no one else was going to make those big changes for me. It was up to me. If I wanted to change, I had to choose a different way of being, thinking and feeling. I had to stretch my limits, go through a bit of discomfort and change how I had been choosing to think, feel and react.
I decided to make the most significant changes in my life, simply by altering how I chose to feel.
In order to create any significant change in our lives—be it related to our health, our prosperity or our overall happiness—it’s necessary to take a good hard look at the choices we are making.
Life is energy. We are energy (thank you, Albert Einstein). So to experience the change we desire, we simply (maybe not always so easily, due to those tricky default patterns of feelings and thoughts) need to change our energy by choosing to change how we feel. Our feelings are our strongest indicator of our energy.
It’s not about faking happiness or pretending to feel a certain way when we really don’t. But it is about committing to being choosier about how we feel and learning to recognize when we may be sliding into a chronic state of feeling bad or choosing thoughts that don’t really support our desires. For example, if we really want to change our financial situation, but we always feel nervous, negative or depressed about money, that is not going to help us attract prosperity. While going from feeling depressed about money to elated about money isn’t realistic, you can certainly take baby steps to improve how you think and feel about money.
You might start by appreciating what you do have and creating a detailed list or plan on how to bring more money into your life. Start spending more time around people who have the prosperity you desire (the idea is that we become like the people we spend the most time with). Start choosing thoughts, feelings and actions that are in alignment with what you want, not what you currently have.
To change something, we have to focus on the dream and not necessarily on what’s manifesting for us right now. Just be careful to not make it too big of a jump. It’s not productive to think that we go from feeling mostly horrible about money to thinking we will have millions in the bank tomorrow.
We can shape our lives by the choices we make. Not just the everyday choices that we all have to make as humans. But the bigger and more profound choices of how to feel, what to think and the type of energy we choose to put out into the world.
Here are a few reminders you can use to start using the power of choice to create change in your life right away:
- Start becoming aware of your choices. How do you feel most of the time, or in regards to specific topics? This is a great time to become more conscious about how you really feel about things. Remember, your feelings are the same things as your energy. And the specific energy you put out is primarily what you will get back.
- How you feel is a choice. Once you become aware of this and start to learn how to choose different feelings in order to create significant change, you will experience a newfound sense of freedom.
- Create a journal around exactly what you desire to change in your life and take the time to write about how you feel. Becoming more aware and conscious of something requires that we pay more attention to it. Journaling is one of the best ways to do this.
- Meditate. I know this is a huge one and many people have a lot of resistance to this (resistance can be a sign we are holding ourselves back from a bigger truth), but meditating —even if it’s just closing your eyes for 5 minutes at your desk and becoming more aware of your breathing —can really get you in touch with how you feel.
- Be picky about how you feel. Don’t fake feeing good, but get super committed to finding ways to feel better and improve your energy and vibration when things don’t feel so good. Just be a bit choosier about feeling good and finding ways to feel better in regards to things that may normally trigger you.
- Create a list of things that make you feel good fast. For me, it’s being in nature, petting my dog, hugging my kids and indulging in a bit of dark chocolate. Create your own feel good list!
Most of all, remember to have fun. Life is supposed to feel good, and we are meant to enjoy our time here.
What choices you can start making right away that can help you move closer to something that you want to change in your life?
Is it reacting differently to those slow drivers, or being more patient with your kids? How about creating a vision board, or taking those public speaking classes you’ve been meaning to get to? How about committing to sitting down (distraction free) each day and taking 1 hour to start on that book you’ve been wanting to write?
Whatever it may be for you, you can start to create the change you seek by making a few new choices today.
Share your comments below and let me know!
In love and appreciation,
Carrie Jolie Dale
Photo by natur.echt
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34 thoughts on “The Choice to Change — The Hidden Power Inside All of Us to Create Lives We Love.”
Hi Carrie, wanna say that this is a great piece of writing, uplifting and very helpful; has given me much inspiration and insights… thank you! :)
Thank you so much Shermin! I am so appreciative! And you are most welcome! : )
This is a great article! You must have read “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne and “Stop Saying You’re Fine” by Mel Robbins – Excellent books. I have been doing all of the things you have suggested in this article in the last year and a half and I am now witnessing the power of choice! If you get a chance, look up Robin Sharma. He speaks more of this as well! Thanks for the great read!
Thank you for the kind words Dan. So happy you have discovered the power of choice!
Haven’t heard of Robin Sharma—I will check him out!
Carrie, I could not agree with you more. I really appreciate you making note of the importance of taking baby steps for changing your feelings and thoughts. Hard to go from depression to happiness in a few minutes. I look forward to your book and wish you much success with it.
Thank Susan! Learning to take baby steps was huge for me. I think it’s such a common trap people fall into and also understandable! Of course we want to have money when we are lacking and happiness when we are depressed—but it takes changing our beliefs and feelings so that it feels real to us—not forced or fake.
Loved this post! I have joined a speaking club with a view to really improving my public speaking, I expect in a year from now to have made remarkable progress! I’m really pleased about that!!!!
I just started going to toastmasters, so I can relate. I look forward to seeing you on stage!
Carrie, your post struck some strong resonances with me. Ultimately, there is so much we have to take responsibility for by making choices. I think some of the key choices are what we beleive, what we value, whether we are going to live as our true selves, and moment by moment how we use the gift of our time here visiting the planet.
It is a huge responsibility and also a huge gift. Being able to choose how we feel, what we think and how we choose spend our time on this planet, is so powerful. Knowing who we are and what we want is key to being able to make the choices that support our paths, our truths and our authenticity.
‘Choice’ is the most powerful force in The Universe … why wouldn’t you use it for ‘good’?
I choose actions that energise my soul and give me excitement. Thankyou for putting this out.
Be good to yourself
You are welcome David! And thank you.
I love the fact that you talked about your personal experience in the quest for peace, happiness and your true self. I resonate with what you said about the power of our choices in regards to how we feel about a situation. I also have feel good triggers that include petting my cat and some dark chocolate :).
And I’ve realized the importance of the people I spend most of my time with and how hard it was to make all the choices to move away from the old circle of friends that did not suit my personal growth anymore in order to create the space for the new one.
Good luck, love and inspiration on your path!
I am sooooo with you on the dark chocolate thing! It’s one of my feel goods too.
And yes, I agree with you about the choices we make as far as people we spend time with. I always remember the saying that we become like the top 5 poeple we spend the most time with! I think that is super powerful to think about.
Thank you Raluca!
Hi! I believe that sometimes things happen for a reason. After a day in which so many things went wrong, I finally sat down to relax. Deciding to look up blogs about life, I “stumbled” upon this one. For someone so young, you are truly inspiring. Thank you.
Thank you Marie! Yes, things do happen for a reason! We are meant to feel good, meant to enjoy life and meant to be happy. I really do believe that when we ask for things in our lives and really line our energy up to receive those things—we will get signs, clues and guidance along the way.
One thing that helped me along my path of self discovery was to reframe when I felt things were going wrong, into learning opportunities. I would try to see the situation from another angle and also ask myslef “what am I being asked to learn from this experience?” This way, I was able to receive gifts from what I may have normally seen as nothing but negatives.
Making the right choices is the basis of becoming happier. People that have negative attitudes will often say that they can’t help the way that they feel. Most of them do not have any type of psychological condition that might hinder their growth, they are merely mimicking what they were taught.
There is a sad irony to the fact that expressing their sense of helplessness only reinforces their plight. Your personal journey is testimony to what can be accomplished when people that feel lost change their perspective and their attitude. Thanks for sharing your story, Carrie!
I couldn’t agree with you more Dave! I used to be one of those people that blamed outside circumstances for my life. It really wasn’t until I owned that I was making chronic bad choices…right down to the way I chose to feel about things—that my life did a 180.
This is a really powerful post. I too have often felt like I seek out the next class, book or panacea to fix what’s wrong in my life, always looking down the road for the cure. Only in the last few months, as I prepare to have my second child and for the first time REALLY take stock of what success, goals and dreams mean to me, have I started to realize the very thing you’re talking about: that the opportunity to change (or not) is inside of me. I recently read the wonderful book “The How of Happiness” by Sonja Lyubomirsky, and it opened my eyes to an important truth: changing the bits of pieces of my life — house, job, hobbies — only affects my feelings so much (about 10 percent), while changing my mindset can alter my perception of life happiness far more (up to 40 percent). Since then, I’ve endeavored to look inside for the change I want. Thanks for your amazing thoughts.
Thank Sarah! I just peeked at your site and I love it! All about dreams, how cool. That is a world I love to be in—the dream world!
And big YES to what you said about changing our mindset. When we realize WE are the ones choosing how we feel and what we think—the world all the sudden looks differently. For me, it was just this huge realization that no matter what happened, no matter how bad I felt it was—I could choose how to feel about it and how to react to it. Such a powerful + liberating place.
I agree that we have the choice to change. I too have tapped into that energy. Sometimes I wonder, however, if we forget that there is a higher power: call it God, the cosmos, Spirit, what you will. But that power might also have a say in how we live our lives.
Great point Dan…and one I have considered often. I guess my personal belief is that yes, our higher power does have influence in our lives, but then we are given the gift to choose how to react to things.
It’s the idea that we have life lessons that we are given and we either “pass” or we don’t.
I know many people don’t agree with this and the even bigger point, is…does it matter? Whether or not there is an outside force, isn’t really the biggest question in my mind. The biggest question for me is—”how do I want to live, think, feel and react in my life?”—regardless of what comes my way. Regarldess if it’s my life lessons, my higher power, or God, or me creating all of it. We cant really prove any of it beyond a shadow of a doubt, so I say, let’s just consciously feel good, be true to our values and beliefs and work on keeping our energy clear, pure and high vibraiton.
lovely and empowering article, Carrie! For me, I have found that when I set my intention on making positive change, unconscious resistance will pop-up, doubt, fear, a sense of not wanting to change. However, I have come to realize that when these feelings come up it is actually because I am hitting on something important for my growth and development. Owning that we all deserve happiness is so powerful because when fear sneaks up we can hold it with a new perspective and interact with it in new ways.
I totally relate to this. I have found that when I experience resistance, I need to get quiet and really see if it’s resistance that is actually keeping me from something that is harmful, or resistance that is keeping me from my growth, my path and my larger truth.
It’s a subtle and tricky difference. Have you read the book, The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield? It’s a great read about resistance in our lives. It made so much sense to me and now I have an enitre new appreciation for writers block (haha) It’s not really a block, but a form of resistance and now that I know that…..when I feel that urge to get distracted by FB or cleaning my closet ( that doesn’t need to be cleaned) I stop, refocus, write and it dissipates. And then the miracles happen!
I understand that GOD gave us the power to choose the choice in our life but believing in the choices you made is what separates those winners from losers. Whether is the right choice or wrong choice, it is another matter.
The truth is we need to believe and TAKE MASSIVE ACTION is the key to unlock the possibilities in life.
Agree! And the thing that has made the biggest difference in my life is realizing the choice of how to feel and think……as being the base.
I agree that inspired, conscious action is important, but our feelings are our energetic guide. They are the things that attract or repel things to us.
So, for me, I say the biggest changes occur in my life once I mastered my feelings, and thoughts…then the action part was more authentic and results oriented. because it was coming from a pure energy place.
Hi Carrie , that was really very motivating, it is so true that no one else is going to make those big changes for me. It is up to me. Bad choices will bring in negativity that hinders growth. So let us all try to have good choices in life , this choices will either make or break us. We only have one life to live, so lets all have a good one. Thanks for a wonderful article.
Thanks Sherill! I really appreciate your insights. Our choices = our life. If everyone could just remember that, and truly accept what a gift that is, then so many people would also wake up to their power and happiness in life.
Hi Carrie, I have always believed that the outside is a mirror of the inside and your experiences have seen this to be true, you did not see the changes you wanted until you went inside to make those changes.
I also agree with meditation as a tool to reach inside and find our true feelings and beliefs, then we can change those feelings and beliefs if they are not serving us.
A great post Carrie
Yes, meditation has changed my life and helped me to become less reactionary in life. I now know to stop, breath and be conscious about what choice I am about to make….and not just the action choices, but the choice in how I feel or think about something. The feeling/thinking part is such a huge part of our journey.
Thank you Robert!
Thank you. Great article!
You are welcome Monique! Have a great day!
Good article. You really hit the button when you talked about feelings about money. That’s my main concern. My feelings are all jumbled together. I’m going to take your advice, sit down, think and write about how I feel about money & try to change my attitude about it.
Loved your post, indeed very inspiring. We do have choices in our lives and the choices we make defines us. We have the choice to be happy and make the most out of the situation we are in instead of sulking and feeling depressed. It is our choice to stand up for what we believe in and to work hard to pursue our goals. Thanks for sharing!