I remember clearly where I was sitting and what I was wearing. I remember the music that was playing in the background when I heard this poem the first time. I shortened it to serve my purpose but I highly recommend you read the entire poem. It changed my life.
The Road Not Taken BY ROBERT FROST Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.
Why did it change my life? Why did just a verse of words touch me so deeply and make such a profound impression on me.
It is because I have always beat to my own drum as they say. I remember as a little girl, following my brother around wanting to do all the things he did and it seemed that every time I would get in trouble or hurt somehow and I realized way back then, that following someone else without seeing my own way was not very fun and at times painful. My brother was always pushing the boundaries. I learned so much from him. He was and still is in so many ways my hero.
But back to the realization that I wanted to choose my own path. I was different from the very beginning and actually we are all different and unique and beautifully created to be a one of a kind work of art. I knew it from such a young age.I just was never comfortable being just one in the crowd.
It is lonely sometimes to choose the road less traveled. There is comfort in crowds and in the status quo....but honestly, if it is the wrong crowd no matter how hard you try, you will not fit because it isn't your ideal best case scenario. It even might feel fine or good to have made that choice of who to spend time with or what to do with your time but if it isn't the best way to spend your time then you will never completely feel satisfied with your choice. Even if you have learned to talk yourself into it and accept the mediocre, there is that little voice inside your head that is telling you that it still isn't quite right.
This feeling of not being quite right can be true with relationships, friendships, career choice, environment, your home, even your attitude.
Did you end up here because you took the obvious road. The one everyone else took and they all seemed ok.
Yes, choices make all the difference in our worlds. I'm sure you have heard the good, better, best concept. There is always different kinds of choices. Sometimes the good, better, best choices are easy to recognize and sometimes they just really aren't.
The good news is that we can make changes and alterations if we have gone down a road that isn't quite right. The point is to turn around and find the right road. Don't stay on that road and beat yourself up.
I am directionally challenged which is a nice way of saying that I get lost all of the time. I remember one time I was on a road trip with my daughter and we had been on a certain road for awhile and finally she said "mom, i think we are going the wrong way." I was irritated because we had spent way too much time on this road. I wanted to think that somehow I would find the right road off of this long road we had been on but I finally had to admit that the only way was to turn around.
Yes I was bothered and yes it was a waste of time but I didn't pull over and cry or camp out for days feeling ashamed of myself for making such a bad decision. But we do this to ourselves and others. We make a mistake in life and we somehow think it is required to wallow in the mistake. We talk about it and attach unneeded emotion to it.
I wish I could get this message across loud and clear....When we make a wrong choice, recognize it and change it immediately. Learn from the mistake and the experience and move on.
For me in my life, I can look back on the choices I made and I can see clearly when I made a choice that lead me down a road that wasn't quite right. Looking back and seeing where we came from is only good if we allow ourselves to learn from the journey no matter what took place.
NO MATTER WHAT TOOK PLACE!! The secret to making our lives good, then better then best is learning from our choices and not regretting or feeling ashamed of the outcome. That does not serve us at all.
For a minute I want you to examine your regret level. Are you that person who holds on to your mistakes and allows yourself to live within a feeling of regret or shame or embarrassment or guilt? If so, the only way you are going to begin to make the right choices is if you raise your head up out of the darkness that is filled with those feelings and replace them with gratitude and faith and hope for a better future.
I know many many people who live their lives in bitterness. It can be because a loved one died or a spouse had an affair, or a child married into a family you didn't like. the list goes on and on. This is where choice is crucial to your very existence.
I literally know of a women who had a beautiful life. She herself was talented and beautiful and she had beautiful children and so much to be grateful for....her husband had an affair and she chose to be bitter, which is understandable but she camped out in her bitterness. even after she divorced her cheating husband she held on to the bitterness. She talked about it and became a victim of it. She could not let go of his indiscretion. The rest of her life she lived in the poisonous results of that bitterness. She chose to hold on to the past and the mistakes of another individual. She would not allow herself to choose forgiveness and to choose happiness and gratitude.
Happiness is not for the chosen few, but for the few who choose.
I would write that down if I were you. We walk around and say to ourselves, "Well I would be happy if I lived in that house too." or "I would be happy if I had those parents too" or "I would be happy if I drove that car, or dated that guy or or or....
Every person I know who seems to have it all, had to go through a struggle or two to get there. So the better thing to ask is..."Am I strong enough to go through the struggle required to have that kind of life that looks so good?" Because it takes effort and struggle and wrestling with your weaknesses. It takes an ability to choose to keep going and striving and thinking positive thoughts even in the face of hard adversity.
Choose to think positively. Choose to live the life that can support your dream. Choose to surround yourself with the kind of people who can teach you how to have that lifestyle or choose to be alone til you can find your tribe.
The most amazing gift God gave us is the gift of free agency and choice. This life is ours to choose what we want to make of it. Consequences are natural and we learn from them when we choose to learn and grow.
Take the good with the bad and learn what is best for you and then choose to live that way. Continue on the path to choose the best over the better. It is worth it. But make no mistake it isnt always easy. The more you choose to live at a higher level the easier it is to continue on that path.
What does living at a higher level look like. Choosing to forgive and forget yourself and others. Choosing to stay focused and do the job right. Choosing to be true to your inner feelings and follow your own path that is sometimes the road less traveled but it will make all the difference in the world. Choose yourself and your own path over the other that seems easier but isn't unique and special.
Choose happiness. Choose honesty to yourself and others ALL OF THE TIME. Choose integrity. Choose gratitude over anger. Choose faith over fear. Choose goodness. Choose to live a life that is full of experiences that you learn from.
I believe in you. Be kind to yourself even when it is hard to do because of a wrong choice. Be kind and patient and know that the lesson is valuable.
You've got this.