In my sober life, there are no small decisions. Everything is a Big Deal. One thing I have continuously struggled with the entire seven years and five months of my sobriety is making a decision. Any decision. And we all know that if we desire change, some variety of a decision must be made.
And today I desire changes.
Great Big Changes.
Before I was sober I could enlist the help of a substance to help me. I usually had no problem making a decision-or not. I made them all day long and late into the evening. Most of the time I had no fear or reservations. I wasn’t too concerned with consequences or what anyone else thought and that alone made decision making a breeze.
I made decisions when I didn’t even need to.
I sometimes experience that old familiar anxiety when faced with making a decision these days. Sometimes I don’t think I’m very good at it, especially if I have time to make it and lots of choices. I wonder, “what if?” What I just made the wrong decision? What if my other option is really the *right* one? I am much better at making decisions when there is no time to think about it and my choices are limited.
I changed my major half a dozen times in college. I never wanted just a “job” so I tried to choose a major that would enlighten me on my options. I was always fascinated with people and different cultures, traveling and exploring. I love writing and creating and discovered that I have a talent for making ugly things beautiful. I am not a 9-5 person, nor can I sit still at a desk for very long without going insane or losing my hair.
I married someone who was also decision making challenged. Together we would stand in front of a selection of ice cream for an embarrassingly LONG time weighing our options. Should we get sugar free? Fat free? Fat and sugar free? Pineapple or caramel? Both? Our eyes would glaze over. It was disturbing. That’s how we made every single decision, EVER. Other people were disturbed too. Would be around during the summer? No? Where would we be? We don’t know. We haven’t decided. We can’t decide. Maybe. *Maybe* was our favorite answer.
It was no wonder that we felt stuck so often.
We have come a very long way. This last year we have been making decisions left and right with so much more ease. It might not work out? Oh well, at least we tried.
I read somewhere that a lack of making a decision is also a decision. If we don’t make a decision, we are choosing to stay in the same place we are trying to get out of. I heard too, that it doesn’t really matter which decision we make, just make one and run with it. Don’t spend too much time in a state of indecision as life moves on without you and nothing at all changes.
Over the last two years we’ve made decisions that have greatly affected our lives. We moved to another state and moved back *home*. We needed to move because we needed to do something very different (we were *stuck*). We needed a change, a new perspective on life, a greater purpose, an adventure. We got all that and more. When we realized we couldn’t maintain our lifestyle much longer (living in an actual house, eating, buying gas etc…), we decided to move home and take care of some business. Making that decision was hard, but it was exactly the decision that needed to be made.
Moving back home proved to be quite a revelation. It was the right decision. We embrace our decision which allows us to accomplish our goals with confidence. A different path and purpose awaits but this is where we need to be to get there.
Every day I am much more conscious of how I am living. I know more about the life I need to lead to feel alive and purposeful. I try to make decisions every day that will bring that life closer to me. For example, I only have jobs that are extremely flexible because that allows me to take off if and when I need or want to. Choosing these jobs was a very deliberate decision. When I had the choice between a *career* or *jobs*, I pursued the *jobs*. I made my own jobs too. My reason for this choice is that I am very hesitant to commit myself to a full-time job requiring my consistent attendance on someone else’s schedule because my happiness and freedom are more important to me. There is nothing I love enough to rush off to work for eight hours a day. I am not making the money I would be if I had a career but I am in the process of learning how to do just that.
I want a life of creativity, self-expression, vibrancy, freedom and purpose.
I need to be available to the people I love when they need me without having to get time off approved.
I need to leave when I want to without stressing if I’ve accrued enough vacation days.
But, I also need money! Which is why I do other things on the side that are also flexible.
To earn extra money I have taught dance classes, cleaned houses, sold items on eBay, provided writing services and I plan to make and sell my jewelry and oil creations at our local market. All of these things I can do when I want to, which is exactly how I want it. I am fortunate enough to have a part-time *real* job where I can mostly make my own schedule as well. It is also a job that if I HAD to lose it, I wouldn’t be too sad.
Much about our life-styles are a choice requiring that we make decisions every single day.
Lately I have been practicing making decisions based upon what I want my life to look and feel like.
Today I have bigger choices to make. Choices that will affect my future and present well-being. Choices that will either give or inhibit freedom. Choices that will empower or enslave me.
Please feel welcome to comment on decisions you have made to bring the life you want into a reality.