Most of us can recall a few moments in life that “changed everything.” The birth of a child; the passing of a loved one; making a commitment; that amazing triumph; that unbelievable opportunity. Those moments seem to alter the course of your life—the pivot points before which there was one version of you and after which there was another. Although you can probably recollect some for yourself, the truth is that almost all of the pivotal moments in life have actually been forgotten. And that’s because EVERY single moment is one of them.
Every moment of your existence is a turning point in your life. There was a You before that moment, with an infinite number of possibilities based on the choices you will make in the next moment; and now there is a new You, gliding along one of those possible trajectories based on that last choice. Every moment is a conscious (or for most of us, unconscious) decision to do one thing or another. To take the next step forward. Or to stop, turn around and go back, or sideways, or jump, or stand still… You choose every action, and every action you choose comes with an infinite number of possible trajectories for the rest of your life. So how conscious are you in the choices you make at every step?
Are you walking blindly through life, unaware of the choices you’re making and feeling like a ragdoll being tossed about by the consequences of those choices? How often are you letting your emotions drive your behavior? When do you ignore your emotions and get stuck in your head? Where are you allowing desires to lead your actions? Where are you allowing your fear to lead you? Without becoming present and mindful in the experience of each moment as it occurs, you may be acting blindly, not realizing the enormous impact that every choice you make and every action you take has on the rest of your life.
Take a day to practice mindfulness. Become completely aware of every thought, totally present with every feeling, and utterly mindful of every action you choose to take. From the simplest next step along the sidewalk, to the most dynamic interaction with your co-worker, your spouse, and even your self. Be mindful of the words you choose and the behaviors you engender. Everything counts. Everything! Do not take this for granted. Your life is comprised of the infinite amount of choice you have made and are making in each moment. How will you create your life? What will you choose in each of your moments? Whatever you choose, make every one of them count!