You Are the Author of Your Own Story
Today I’m inviting you to see your life as a story!
Episode 6 Excerpt
As we journey through life, we encounter many moments that are out of our control. I find that embracing those moments, seeing them as chapters of the great book of our lives, helps me to make sense of them and use them as a source of growth.
While you may not be able to control or even anticipate all of the things you will experience in life, what you can control is how you allow those experiences to embed themselves into your story. Will they be thrilling chapters of adventure and excitement, or tragic interludes that push you into new spaces and dimensions?
You are the author of your story — which means you get to make it the best story possible! I’ve always seen this as a gift and an opportunity. I’ve always been highly motivated to use my life to the fullest, to really grow in all of the ways I can grow. Stretching your wings to fly gives you the opportunity to live fully, even if you have to crash and burn a few times along the way.
But how do you truly commit to living your story passionately, honestly, and as fully as you can?
I say it’s a lot about perspective, gratitude, and being open to embracing all of life’s moments, as well as remembering three important things.
The important people in your life are the main characters in your story.
And, just like any character in a great and intriguing story, they’re important!
I have been blessed to have many important characters who have helped shape my story. One of them is my lovely wife, Currie. She stood by and watched as I toiled through the process (and the many rejections) of becoming an author. She saw me working to maintain a full-time job while waking at 4 am each day to get in some quality writing time and she saw me being disappointed time and time again when publishers turned down my first manuscript. Through it all, though, she believed in me — even when I began to doubt myself.
That unwavering support was crucial to my success. I was fortified by her belief in me and it’s exactly her belief that gave me the courage to leave a job I wasn’t passionate about and focus more wholly on writing a manuscript I could be proud of.
My first book was published within a year of us leaving my corporate life in NYC behind and I know I wouldn’t have accomplished that without the support of one of my all-time favorite story characters: Currie.
Your experiences, good and bad, are the key elements of your story.
Daily life gives us our material. That includes parts that are about heartache, parts that are about hope… parts that can be painful, difficult, and very challenging. And also parts that can be beautiful, nurturing, and lovely, as well as surprising. Usually it’s a mix of many of these parts that make up the story of our life.
That’s the material that we storytellers get to work with. Key elements of our story. So, add to that mix just as if you’re seasoning a soup, a sprinkling of herbs and spices, like gratitude, empathy, humility, and humor. I would say especially humor. That’s the basil in your soup that gives it that little bit of extra lift.
Then by the choices we make, and the attitudes we bring to every day, we can shape that material. We can affect how that story unfolds, always aware that this is our story, no one else’s, and we get to be the author.
The choices we make, even the small ones, matter.
That’s because we each matter.
The choices we make, small ones and large ones, really do make a difference. Some small decision you make today can go on to impact you and those around you in some huge way later. You may not plan it, and you definitely can’t predict it, but making a small change, a minute shift, or even the most minuscule alteration in your movements or choices today can have a seismic impact on something many moments or months — or even years — from now.
For some, this probably seems like an overwhelming and even frightening way of looking at things, but I choose to embrace it and look at it as an opportunity. I think about the beautiful possibilities that can bloom from the choices I make. Imagine the twists and turns it could add to my story!
The ending will be here before you know it.
I know, that sounds a bit macabre, but it is truly what has empowered me to live my life as a story.
The idea that life is so brief makes it more beautiful, even at the same time as it makes it more poignant and fragile. It is what has given me the courage to take big leaps into the unknown, to pursue far-fetched dreams and make them come true, and to look at rejection as just another stepping stone on my way to where I’m supposed to be.
At the end of the day, all we have — truly, all we have — is our time and our souls. Why not make the most of them as we tell our story with passion, honesty, and joy?