Decisions can be tough to make, and very often, you hear people saying things like, “Just do it. you only Live Once (YOLO). Enjoy Your life.” I used to prescribe by this philosophy and couldn’t figure out why my life and feelings were always in turmoil. Once things got way too crazy and out of hand, I was finally able to step back and look at why things felt so chaotic.
When you experience similar experiences wherever you go and in all your relationships, there is one common denominator, YOU! And when you keep making decisions the same way, living impulsively, and expect different outcomes, you’re officially insane. I took a step back to reevaluate some things in my life like how I was approaching my relationships, what my attitude was toward various parts of life and how I was making my decisions. Decisions are really the driver for all things in life.
I discovered I often approached relationships for personal gratification; what could I get out of it instead of what could I give to it. That was mostly true for family relationships. I was in romantic relationships to help me feel good now. My future hopes, dreams and life goals never played a factor. I was living for the life I had, not the life I desired in my future. Feeling good now always led to future disappointment because I entirely eliminated a vetting process to see if we are even on the same track in life. It’s not surprising I made many poor relationship decisions.
Feelings as Your Guide
People get lost in using their current feelings as a guide for decisions. Your current feelings are only good at telling you if you are having a positive or negative attitude. If you can use your feelings to be in a good positive attitude, you’re doing great. If you get stuck in your emotions, you’ve built your own prison wall because you’re allowing your emotions to control you. Feelings are important, but they should not be a driver for your decisions in life other than deciding to choose to be happy and positive.
Driver for Decisions
Lastly, when I reflected on my history and faced a clearing in my future to create new, positive, healthy things in my life, I had to go back to the core. What was driving my decisions? Those choices saying, “You only live once. Just do it. Enjoy your life,” came to mind. All of a sudden I could see everything I never saw before. Living a life impulsively and for instant gratification was no way to go about it and make decisions. Why? I’ll tell you. When you live for right now, you do the following:
- You end up with regrets. You ignore the feelings you desire for your outcome to have instant gratification.
- You waste yourself and your time. All your time and energy go to what you want now instead of making decisions to foster a healthy life, moving in a positive direction.
- You make constant mistakes that put you in turmoil.
- You’re indecisive. You can’t ever make decisions because instant gratification isn’t always possible. In other words, it’s not likely you can drop everything and move to another city tomorrow because you’re fed up with where you live now.
- You have unhealthy relationships.
- You disappoint the people who love you the most.
- You become eternally selfish and narcissistic.
- You lose site of what you really want to have what you want now.
- You create bad decision-making habits that are hard to break.
- You always have an excuse.
The list can go on and on. the YOLO philosophy sounds quite great. It’s romanticized. It is fun to live for the now, but after many years of not experiencing the life I wanted and seeing that I’m not where I thought I would or should be at my age, I see that I have the rest of my life to make better decisions and associate with like-minded people. The reason to be friends with people who think like you is because they will support you in good decisions just like people who “only live once” supported and encouraged many bad decisions.
You only live once, it’s true, and because you only have one shot at this life, you need to get the most out of it. Getting the most out of it is best when you have regret-free living. I may be more conservative in my decision-making, and I may factor in much more discipline that before, but I can honestly say I’ve been able to maintain a more positive attitude and balanced lifestyle without it being influenced by my impulse-driven emotions. I still have tons of fun, but I also have much more confidence and peace in where my life is going.