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Hebrews 6:1 …let us go on unto perfection…
Matthew 19:26 But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.
As I shared in Part 1 of Choose Yourself (Which is on my blog), many people (one man said 95%) are waiting on someone else to choose them for things or to give them things. This goes for things such as a job, a promotion, financial security, a pay raise, an inheritance, etc. I propose, and have found, that one great way to ensure you get most or all of what you’re looking for in life is to choose yourself!
Breaking the Mold of the Paradigm
A paradigm is basically a pre-conditioned way of thinking. From a young age, our paradigms are shaped for us by such thoughts as: “It takes money to make money…That’s not how we do things…just get a job and settle down…play it safe and you won’t get hurt”…and any other myriad of pre-conditioning (and limiting) beliefs we may have heard or seen along life’s journey.
We may have seen our parents being fearful of certain things and it caused us to become fearful. We may have heard them gossiping and griping, and it caused us to gossip and gripe. We may have seen them being lazy and it made us think being lazy is the way to live life. We may have seen them working hard and it made us grow up to be hard workers.
Many of these paradigms have made us who we are, but many of them can and should be broken because, while we may think it’s other people holding us back, it may very well be these limiting beliefs that are holding us back!
Choosing yourself will go against not only the paradigms of society as a whole, but the very paradigms we are all conditioned to have by people in our immediate circle. There may be a part of us that likes to study, learn, and talk of doing BIG THINGS, but when it comes time to actually DO the big things, there is an almost invisible force that seems to pull us back to “safety” because, as the thought goes, “You can’t do THAT. You have to wait to be invited or included before you can do that! Who do you think you are?” or “That was fun to learn and think about, but you’ll probably never be able to actually do that in real life.” These all stem from these limiting thoughts; these paradigms that we grew up believing because of what we saw and heard. Therefore, it is not our fault, but it is our responsibility to address and overcome them if we are to develop into the person we were created to be.
What “Choosing Yourself” Does NOT Mean
Choosing yourself does not mean undermining or rebelling. Obviously, you’ll have to be given approval in order to advance to higher levels in life. There are review processes that take place and then recommendations after that. We’re not saying you should circumvent the whole process. But rather, when we speak of Choose Yourself, we mean to rise above the human nature status quo way of thinking and doing things. Do not go about it in hectic fashion or in some “rage against the machine” or “beating the system” kind of way, but rather doing it by creating a new pathway within the system…either a current way that could be improved upon or some way that no one has thought of yet. Nothing that is currently being done is being done in the best way that it could be done. So, don’t be afraid to explore other potentially better ways. You won’t be celebrated at first, nor should you expect or even look for that. Just move in the direction of betterment and betterment you will find!
Choosing yourself and breaking paradigms does not mean you won’t still do the basic duties that everyone else in your field is doing. The show must still go on and the job must still be done. It does not mean you’ll just be out there doing your own thing all the time with no regard for the system or structure that’s already in place. That’s called a “loose cannon” and no one can trust a loose cannon.
Choosing yourself does mean you will still do all the basic duties and then some…then some in quantity and most importantly in quality. Not necessarily a lot more in quantity, but more than the average quantity. Sometimes people use quantity as a source of fulfillment and they neglect the important factor of quality. Do more than is expected and do a better job than is expected. It’s not about how much you do or don’t get paid, it’s a mentality shift we are after.
As for quality, the more quality the better! Things can always be better so don’t burden yourself with that fact. Simply ask yourself “How can I make this thing I’m doing at least a little bit better?” and then get to work making it better, even if it’s in some small way. Again, it’s a mentality we’re going for not notoriety, attention, or recognition.
Steps to Take in Choosing Yourself:
- Select a destination (a goal)
- Start looking for pathways to that destination (more than one)
- Take ownership of the pathway there (It’s no one else’s job in life to make sure you succeed)
- Begin moving forward with the right intentions in the direction of your goal
As you travel to your destination, continue to learn about where you are going and prepare the best you can for interruptions along the way. If it’s a worthy goal, reality will prove it out. If it’s not an effective pathway or a worthy goal, the process will reveal that and you may then have to look for another pathway to get there or another goal entirely (no one gets it right the first time, or second time, or third time, or…).
By doing this, you will have prepared yourself for the possibility of great opportunities to be offered to you along the way. That’s actually what this whole teaching is about! “Choosing yourself” is qualifying yourself in the areas that you can control in order to at least be prepared and considered for opportunities along the way. Many people do not do this, and thus they disqualify themselves, and then of course blame someone else for it.
Choosing Yourself is a Process
Choosing yourself and breaking paradigms is a process, so go through it and stick with it. Let it scare you, but stay true to yourself and you’ll become an entirely different person than you’ve ever been. It’s the process that makes us who we are, not the position we hope to attain. The position is a byproduct of the process. Really, any position we attain should be used as a tool to help and serve others, not be touted as some trophy we’ve accomplished. What we are becoming is more important than the rank or title by which we hope to be called.
It’s the process that gives the purpose. It’s the process that reveals the promise of fulfillment. It’s the process that makes the professional. It’s the process that makes the person. Learn this, and you’ll break molds, you’ll break paradigms, and you’ll be unstoppable!
Your Preparation is YOUR Responsibility
Have you noticed how much responsibility you have for your own preparation? You have taken a good step by reading or listening to a teaching like this, but one teaching will not be nearly enough. It’s a good idea to read books and/or listen to personal influence and development audiobooks and YouTube videos. The lessons you learn from them will go into your subconscious mind and your subconscious mind will dwell on them, even if you are consciously doing something else. Again, only you can take steps to choose yourself and break your own paradigms.
When Faithfulness is Not Enough
Developing your personal influence and learning how to properly choose yourself takes work and dedication and this is why fully 95% are just waiting on things to be given to them. Their line of thinking is “Just fall in line and wait your turn!” or “Just be faithful in the little things and that’s all that’s needed!”. It is not all that is needed!
Faithfulness is needed for sure, but what does that really mean? While it’s true that if you are faithful when you only have a little responsibility, you will reap great things for that dedication, but that line of thinking, if not improved upon, will lead one to believe that it’s okay for the little things to just stay little, as long as the person is faithful in showing up.
In other words, they could think that “My just faithfully being here is enough”, when being faithful in the little things actually encompasses far more than just being there faithfully. It encompasses making those little things bigger, or if not bigger due to some uncontrollable limiting factors (COVID restrictions), at least making them better while you are there is a form of faithfulness too. A good question to ask ourselves is “Have the things or people been made better because they were in my care?” THAT is true faithfulness!
We’re not saying you should circumvent the whole process. But rather, when we speak of Choose Yourself, we mean to rise above the human nature status quo way of thinking. Do not go about it in hectic fashion, but rather doing it by creating (there’s an operative word) a new pathway within the system…either a current way that could be done better or some way no one has thought of yet. You won’t be celebrated at first, nor should you look for that. Just select a path, make it your own, and begin moving forward with the right intentions (meaning intending to help others and be a blessing) coupled with the right actions and eventually, if it’s a worthy goal, it’ll prove itself out.
Lord, I acknowledge that there are limiting beliefs that have held me back from being who You created me to be. I ask for Your favor and strength in breaking these paradigm molds in my life, never to use them again. I ask You for guidance in going through the process You have laid out for me so that I may not only be blessed, but learn to be a blessing along the way! Amen!