What you surround yourself with is what you will become. Do not underestimate our ability to be changed by our environment and our actions. Whether our environment and actions change us intentionally or unintentionally, it will happen. Whether I am intentionally setting about to make a positive change in my life, or I am just walking along, minding my own business and not giving any of it much thought, I am still being changed by my environment and my actions.
We think sometimes by not doing something that we are actually not doing anything and that this is a good thing, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Even not doing something is doing something. Let me repeat that. Even not doing something is doing something. This is where we must decide if we want to start living life on purpose or by accident. Either way we are living it, but one is with intention, and the other is letting it live you.
What you choose today, whether intentionally or unintentionally, will make a major difference in your life for many years to come.
What we have to know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, is that what goes in is what comes out. Period. It is a fact that is practically impossible to escape. We just have to know that it does not happen overnight. We must relax into it, giving way for our old “stinking thinking” to not get in the way, but just to slowly, day by day, one thought at a time, one action at a time, one brave step at a time, we stop focusing on changing and begin to focus on the things that change us, and then almost as if by magic, we wake up one day and realize how far we have come and realize that we are not even the same person at all, but in a good way.
I have seen these truths revealed in my own life over years of experiences.
I have always loved photography, but that did not make me a good photographer. I lacked the skill and my eye had not been developed. About 10 years ago, I decided to get serious about it. I immersed myself into everything photography related. I joined photography forums. I bought a ridiculous amount of books. I subscribed to photography magazines. I practiced every chance I got.
And one day, without even thinking about it, I realized that awful pictures and ridiculously cutesy fonts and posters physically hurt me. I did not even realize that what I was doing was changing so much about myself, not just in photography, but everywhere. I was much more sensitive to what was beautiful and what was not, just by slowly developing my eye by inundating myself with beautiful art.
Not to mention that during this time, I began to surround myself with beautiful photography friends. These were beautiful people outside of any world I had ever known. They walked soul first. It showed me that it was OK to be myself, that I could let myself come out to play. Before this time in my life, I seemed surrounded by pragmatic people just walking through life as if on auto pilot. Sometimes passion and emotion were even regarded as a bad thing. It hurts me now to even think of such things. I didn’t know another world existed, one where I belonged.
It all started because one day I chose to surround myself with something I wanted to become.
I had a similar experience about 25 years ago when I became a real estate agent. I signed up with a wonderful company that required us to read certain books and participate in seminars and workshops. I did pretty much whatever they told me to do. I read what they told me to read. Took the classes they told me to take. And one day, without even thinking about it, I realized I was not the same person anymore. I became a more confident and successful person in life.
Over the years, when you are out of the things that changed you, you have a tendency to grow a little lukewarm with them. You become immersed in other things. Other things, that change you.
But the great thing about this is now we know what we do affects where we are. So we know what to do to change our life.
Whether we are intentional about it or not, what we immerse ourselves in changes us. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but it will change you.
We often hear people say that is just the way I am or that is just the way so and so is. This implies we have zero control over who we are and what we do. The truth is we are the way we are because we do not choose to be different. Even by not doing something, we are doing something.
So what do we need to do?
12 Ways to Start Living the Life You Want
- Read positive & inspirational books. Take notes and tape them around your house or place of work
- Read educational books on skills you want to learn. (personalities, fashion, job skills, etc.).
- Write your goals down.
- Do the things that you think you cannot do. This empowers you to do more.
- Exercise. It gives you momentum and makes you feel empowered.
- Do things that make you feel alive.
- Create. Take up photography, music, writing, painting, or woodworking. Anything that moves your soul.
- Surround yourselves with people who are where you want to be or her share the similar life path on which you have embarked.
- Surround yourself with whatever you want to become, whatever moves your soul.
- Celebrate your successes. While you’re at it, celebrate everything else, too. Life is a gift. Celebrate it.
- Trust your instincts, but not always your heart.
- Be a giver. You are planting seeds of life into others when you do. You really have no idea what they are going through. If God put them on your heart, follow it.
And most importantly…
Know that you are not alone and that you are loved more than you could ever imagine. Feed your soul like you do your body. It is life changing. God loves you as if you were the only one.
What we immerse ourselves in, what we surround ourselves with…it changes us.
What are you going to do today that will change your life?