My job is cool because sometimes my boss and I sit and have real life talks. Okay, it’s more like all the time. We’re constantly swapping stories about the various dramas that occur in our lives. But it’s great because we also swap nuggets of wisdom, and I usually learn something about how to be a better version of myself.
Today our discussion centered around choice, and I just want to share my takeaway like we’re in kindergarten and this is show-and-tell.
Everything we do in life is a choice. Some choices are inconsequential; whether or not you put jelly on your peanut butter sandwich isn’t a life-altering decision (unless you’re deathly allergic to jelly I suppose). But some choices are bigger. Some choices do affect our lives, and those around us, and our relationships, and our general well-being. In any given circumstance we can make the right choice, or the wrong one, or any variation in between. But there is always a choice.
The most interesting thing about choices is that the ones we tend to make are very memorable. They are what give us our reputations within our various social circles. What immediately comes to mind as an example of this is the movie 27 Dresses. It’s about two sisters with very different personalities, viewpoints, and approaches to life. The first sister, Jane, is sweet and kind, does anything she can to help those around her, and would never intentionally hurt a fly. The second sister, Tess, is a self-absorbed, dishonest, manipulative jerk who has no regard for the thoughts and feelings of anyone around her.
You see these opposing characteristics pretty strongly throughout the course of the movie, with Tess repeatedly getting everything she wants while treating everyone like crap, and Jane repeatedly getting hurt and screwed over despite her best efforts to do the right thing. The movie finally comes to a head with Jane exposing Tess for the liar that she is at a public gathering. Everyone, even her best friend, freaks out at Jane in a “HOW COULD YOU DO THAT?” kind of way. Which is absurd to me. Tess just spent the whole movie acting like a complete brat and no one bats an eye, but as soon as Jane steps up to prove a point, everyone loses their minds. Because Jane made a choice. And it was a choice that didn’t fit her reputation.
I find this to be an interesting phenomenon because I see it in real life all the time. People who try really hard and generally make good choices are held to a higher standard than people who do the opposite. I don’t think this is fair, and sometimes the injustice of it really bothers me. But I have the choice to either focus on what other people are doing wrong, or focus on what I can be doing right. I can walk around in a cloud of negativity, pointing fingers at people and trying to fix what I perceive as their flaws, or I could just peacefully live my life, and sometimes write a blog post about it. Every day I’m working towards more consistently choosing the latter. And I’m much happier when I do.
When all is said and done… life is a choose your own adventure. Every action is a choice, every choice takes you down a different path, every path brings you closer to the end. So make the journey one you can be proud of.