Going Inward to Make Powerful Choices
“One’s philosophy is not best expressed in words; it is expressed in the choices one makes… and the choices we make are ultimately our responsibility.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt
Do you find it hard to make a choice?
Research suggests that we are faced with making over 35,000 choices a day! That’s a whole lot of decision making.
Some of those choices are easy, such as deciding on our morning beverage. Other times we are faced with more difficult choices such as, “is it time to leave our job?” or “where do we send the kids to school?”
Often we are challenged to make difficult choices when we aren’t at our best – sleep-deprived, stressed and overwhelmed. Sound familiar? I know when I’m tired I make rushed decisions filled with emotion. And typically those choices never turned out to be my best ones. Or worse, when I haven’t been able to face making any choice because I’m just too tired, I don’t. And those are usually the moments, as I look back, where my life has detoured.
We create our life through a series of choices stacked upon each other over time, and often the choices that seemed inconsequential tend to carry more weight than we realize.
It is always easier to make a powerful choice when you are nourished, rested and relaxed. When we are in in a clam peaceful state we can make choices with intention and heart that lead us towards the life we desire.
The next time you are faced with a challenging choice take a moment to check in with your inner world and ask yourself:
1. Am I rested?
Don’t discount the importance of sleep when making a choice. When you are sleep- deprived the part of the brain that controls emotions, the pre-frontal cortex, malfunctions and the necessary cognitive skills for decision-making are lost.
2. Am I nourished?
Beyond making you cranky and impatient, it turns out that being hungry—or more specifically, having low blood sugar—may actually change the way that you make decisions. When we have lower blood sugar levels we are more likely to opt for immediate rewards. Take the time to eat and nourish your body with healthy whole foods and you’ll make better decisions as you plan for your future.
3. Have I moved my body?
When faced with a big decision, the worst thing we can do is let it paralyze us into stillness. Short bouts of exercise increase blood flow to the area of the brain responsible for executive brain functions, like making decisions. Get up and move your body. I have made some of my best choices while on runs through the mountain trails when I am connected to both my breath and my body.
4. Am I connected to my heart?
Fear can take over when we are faced with making a choice and the inner critic in our head gets loud and bossy urging us to avoid risks, keeping us in our heads instead of making choices from our hearts. If your living from your worried mind take the time to sink deep into your heart. When we focus on our hearts we will find our instinctual wisdom of what our next steps are.
5. Where is my breath coming from?
Our breath is the single most effective way of connecting with our bodies — and therefore, our truth. Joining the space between our bodies and hearts opens up a communication channel from which we can learn ideas, inspiration and truths behind making our choice. Slowing our breathing calms our mind and we are able to make more powerful choices.
We can’t avoid making choices in our life but we can make the most powerful decisions when we make space to nourish our body, our hearts and our mind.
The power of our choices defines our life. The choice is yours to create a life you love.
With love and light,