How often do you find yourself saying, “I have to,” whether it’s go to work, or do the laundry, or any of the dozens of things we do every day, as if it were not something you wanted to do or chose to do, but something someone else made you do? Does it make you feel rebellious or resentful or powerless?
Where in your life are you saying, “I can’t?” I can’t take time off, even though I have vacation time saved. I can’t wear my hair like that. I can’t take that pottery class or management course. I can’t sing in public. How does it feel when you tell yourself, “I can’t,” about something you want—or even something you don’t necessarily want but are saying you “can’t” as though it were not possible or forbidden for you?
What if all of these were just choices you made, things you decided to do or not do, have or not have, just for yourself, because they made your life better or added something to the world? Choosing to do or not do something is a powerful thing. There is great freedom in choosing, whatever the choice made. You don’t need to be controlled by outside forces or other people’s judgments. You may choose to do or not do something because the alternative would create a consequence you don’t want, but it is still your choice.
Notice how many times each day you say “I have to” or “I can’t” and start replacing those statements with “I choose to” or “I choose not to.” See if this doesn’t make you feel more powerful and free. What if all you have to do is breathe and everything else is a choice?