Everything is a Choice

When pursuing a life of wealth, it is important to constantly take stock of where you are in the current moment.

So… Where are you right now? If you’re truly honest with yourself?

Are you where you want to be, in all aspects of life? Or had you pictured yourself being in a different situation at this point, financially, health wise or personally? Most of us will agree something could always be better. Are you willing to take 100% responsibility for where you are now?

Life is full of setbacks, and of course, we do not cause these setbacks ourselves. You can’t control if you get sick, or if a hurricane destroys your home or store. It’s easy to say, “it wasn’t my fault.”

However, just because you didn’t cause something, doesn’t mean you don’t have control over it. Let’s use the example of the hurricane.

A small business owner sets up a store on the beach in Florida, selling custom jewelry. The man is hardworking, and his product is good. The company begins to pick up traction, sales skyrocket and he starts to have trouble filling orders in time. A celebrity even happens upon his shop and raves about it on Instagram. Just when things start to take off…a hurricane hits the coast. The storefront is flattened, much of his inventory and tools are ruined, and to top it all off, he’s also lost his home. The man is devastated. Surely this was completely out of his control. Right?

Well…not exactly. He couldn’t have stopped it. He didn’t cause it. That much is true. But he didn’t relinquish all control. The event was uncontrollable, but he can still take charge of his response.

Years before the hurricane hit, he prepared by taking out insurance policies. His home, the storefront, and the most valuable assets inside both properties are more protected because of his precautions. He was able to exercise control of the situation before it ever happened.

After the hurricane, he had to deal with lawyers, insurance companies, and apathetic customers who wanted their orders. He felt frustrated by the hurricane, and frustrated that no one seems to care this wasn’t “his fault.” But he handled it the best way he could. He was diligent and gracious with everyone he interacted with. Along the way, he learned how to better advocate for himself and his business, and how to handle conflict. He was being conditioned to handle many crises at once, by taking care of his family and contractors at home, talking to customers, and rebuilding the store.

It took him a long time and a lot of extra money to rebuild. It was difficult, and it set him back years. Or did it? Had the hurricane never hit, it’s easy to assume it would have been smooth sailing to success, but the fact of the matter is that the man can’t tell the future any better than the rest of us. Perhaps it would have been easier…or perhaps he wouldn’t have been able to fill orders and the business would have gone under before it ever really started.

Instead of dwelling on his hardship, the man reopened his business with adjustments based on what he learned along the way. He built his inventory up further in advance, and navigated contracts with his suppliers with far more expertise than he had before.

He even reached out to the celebrity who had posted about him on social media, and she encouraged her fans to support this business in its rebuilding. Again, the orders began to pour in. He had earned a reputation of resilience, and the business eventually became wildly successful.

Later, when the store owner was asked to speak on his journey, he did not complain “and I would have gotten there a lot faster if it hadn’t been for the hurricane.” Instead, he expressed how much he had learned from that experience. “I wasn’t ready for my company’s success, but after literally having to rebuild everything I’ve worked for from the ground up, I was so much stronger and more experienced than I had been before.”

There are a thousand ways this story could have played out, of course, but this story is meant to illustrate a person who took control of the situation by being prepared, and managed his response to the event, resulting in the most positive outcome for himself.

It is easy, when we are not where we want to be, to blame our circumstances. But time and time again, we hear people of great success cite their hardships as part of what helped them get to where they are. With the right reaction, even what was seemingly unlucky can serve a purpose towards your overall goals, be it a learning experience, a wake-up call, or a chance to go down a road we would have never thought of before.

Always remember the formula: Event + Response = Outcome.

There is so much power in E + R = O, because it means we have control of every outcome in our lives. We always have control of some aspect (the R) of the equation.

On your pursuit towards a life of abundance, never be reluctant to take stock of where you are in life, and then take ownership of that position. It is only once you’ve accepted credit for everything, the good and the bad, that you’ll be ready to propel your life forward to success.

Matt KingComment