I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

Church bells on top of the Narikala fortress i...
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I know there are many people looking forward to the end of this decade hoping that the next decade will be so much better.  All you have to do is go on Facebook, open MSN, AOL or whatever your home page is, or even open a newspaper and you will see forecasts for what people think will happen in 2011.

There are so many things we have no control over, but there are still many things that are in our control.  I posted my feelings about choice recently and it always comes down to that.  The bottom line in everything that happens in our life is directly attributable to choice, personal choice.  Can you hear the bells yet?

That also means if we think things through and make better decisions we can have better lives.  We can be happier.  We can feel better about ourselves and we can even forgive ourselves and others for choices we made that are in our past.

I have been struggling emotionally with a decision I made recently and the emotional repercussions I received in return.  I had, out of guilt, reached out to someone I no longer wanted to be a part of my life.  (Ding! Dong!)   This morning I woke up realizing I was allowing someone elses choice to hold me hostage emotionally.  Once I heard those bells in my head I immediately realized that I could let go-their choice is no longer important to me.

Think about it – there are never any good valid reasons to allow anyone elses choices to make you miserable.  If a boyfriend or husband decides to move on it hurts BUT it is their choice to do that and you cannot control their choices.  Certainly it hurts, but hurt fades and it fades faster when you no longer allow yourself to be held hostage to someone else’s decisions.

I am not saying it is easy, I am saying it is easier when you realize you are only responsible for your own choices.  If you choose to cry for 10 days after a break up, that is your choice.  If you choose, for example, to wonder why someone can’t live within your definition of how you deserve to be treated you are empowering them.  Bells are ringing hopefully!

I know making decisions are not always easy but did you know by the time you actually tell someone what you have been thinking about doing that you really have made the decision?  You are just looking for validation when you share your decision or choice with someone.

The point is after you have talked about it out loud, it’s time to make the decision to stop talking about it.  Choose to move forward, choose to forgive, that’s even better.

It feels so good when you realize that you can only control your choices and if your choices were not exactly the best ones you could have made at least by realizing this you can forgive yourself and move on.  Don’t wallow in the pain of a bad choice, that wastes too much energy and time that could be used to make better choices.

One last thought about what to do when you have been a ding-dong, apologize one time and ONLY one time.  Let it go and move on, every time you apologize (again and again) you have picked the scab off the wound.  One time – remember that and then let it go and move forward.

You can also employ the 10-10-10 rule.  How will your choice impact someone, yourself or anyone in 10 minutes, 10 months or 10 years?  Sometimes doing that helps you filter through the process of what your choice will mean to you too.

I have a very nice friend on Facebook who has studied divinity.  She was the pastor at a huge hospital, she has a radio show, and a very successful blog and she shared a link with all of us yesterday that jump-started this blog for me.

In turn the person who shared it with her is now my friend on Facebook and he sent me the link so I am posting it here so maybe you all can hear some bells.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=US91nkO9Z7o

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