I heard a quote the other day from a friend. He didn’t recall who said it but he repeated it to me while we were having a conversation about self-improvement.
He said, “No one has the power over you unless you give it them, you are in control of your life and your choices decide your own fate.”
While I agree with the sentiment behind this quote, I always feel that it glosses over something incredibly important. The fact that your choices decide your own fate alludes to the fact that we have the ability to consciously decide between multiple options all the time.
But choice goes beyond choosing a mate, career, or car to drive. Choice is something that we do consciously but also something that we do subconsciously.
We are aware of our ability to choose when someone asks us what book to buy. What about the millions of small choices that we make over and over again but don’t think about?
Our daily habits and routines represent choices that we previously made and then reinforced over and over. These become the choices that determine the direction that we go in life. These are much more important than the big decisions, in my opinion.
The reason is simple. These form who you become. They decide how you view life. They determine what you do with your life.
The major decisions are all supported or contradicted by these daily actions.
Most people that I meet never put as much attention on these small actions as they do the major decision points in life. They focus so much on the major decisions that they let the tiny decisions manifest automatically.
In order to truly take control of your life you have to address these small decisions that happen without much thought. We have to own these to truly decide our fate.
If we want to be rich but develop habits that push us towards reckless spending we won’t be able to truly control the direction our life takes. It will move in a direction based on our actions, not our thoughts.
The systems and habits approach to improvement allows us to slowly take back control of these small daily actions. We start to gain awareness of them and then manipulate them to support the direction we choose.
This is how we can determine our own fate. This is how we truly control our life. This is how we align our desires and motivations with the necessary work to succeed. Because without this, our daily habits may just be contradicting all of our conscious choices and lead us to failure.