The Gift of Freedom
Today, in honor of the Memorial Day holiday, we’re talking about Freedom! What an amazing word!!
Let’s start with the definition, so we are all on the same page. Freedom – the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint. The state of not being imprisoned or enslaved. The state of not being subject to or affected by. The power of self-determination attributed to the will; the quality of being independent of fate or necessity.
WOW – right?!? So many variations. But, we’re going to start with one that for some reason wasn’t included in Webster’s. This holiday is set aside to remember those who fought for those of us in America to allow us the freedom of our democracy, our bill of rights and our declaration of independence. If you have a loved one that is fighting for us now, thank you and them for your service. For those that have served or sacrificed their life for our ability to march, and complain about who is President and all the other amazing freedoms that so many do not have the privilege to experience, we honor you and thank you for all that you have given to us. And please, forgive those who do not understand the sacrifices that have been made to wave our American flag.
So, freedom comes through sacrifice and service. It is also described as a power. In a previous podcast, episode 10 if you want to go back and listen, I go into detail about Free Will. We’ve all been given the power of Free Will and it is a privilege and freedom – a power to act, speak or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint. It’s what separates us from being robots or animals. Every second of the day, you are expressing your freedom to choose. From the moment you wake up, you decide – good mood or bad mood, coffee with cream or black, eat healthy or not, exercise or not – freedom to make decisions, all day, every day. There are no victims. I know that sounds like a general statement, but I’ve known people who have been in horrific situations, treated horribly, no food, literally locked in a closet with no access to a bathroom or food – but yet, they choose every day to be peaceful and happy. Free Will is an amazing gift.
The freedom I want to focus on today is the last definition. The power of self-determination attributed to the will; the quality of being independent of fate or necessity. Yes, it slightly crosses into the territory of free will, but I want to drill down a little bit further.
Currently, I have a group going through my 40 Days to a New You program. This program is a body, mind and spirit practice that requires a commitment to yourself for 40 days. If you want more information, you can go to my website, liveexcellence.com and go to coaching or you can go straight to it by going to http://bit.do/40dayjourney.
Why I’m focusing on this today is because I’m privileged to witness the journey as it unfolds for those going through this program. We are so accustomed to walking through life listening to this voice in our head that we use to make those “free will” decisions with. What people are missing is that we have a voice that actually has zero interest in seeing us grow. Yep, you heard me right.
That voice is our ego. Now, I can hear all my psychology people saying, but I thought the ego was what kept us safe. Yes and no. Clearly, if you are in physical danger, listen to it. But, other than that – true freedom comes from knowing your TRUE voice.
We are consumed with messages every day that keep us living small. When it comes to money, for example, there’s the “1%” label thrown around– well, okay, great, so thanks for letting me know the odds of me obtaining a certain level of wealth. I don’t know about you, but when you’re in high school and you’re contemplating your future and you hear those odds – it’s not very encouraging. I remember graduating from college with a degree and thought I had the world in my hand. HA! Thanks to that degree, I got an amazing job at Rich’s Department store starting out in sales at $6 per hour, oh wait, plus commissions. Now, don’t get me wrong – this definition of “the power of self-determination” and “being independent of fate,” yes, it definitely applies to my circumstances. Because this girl hustled. I worked my way into a management position within 3 months and eventually to managing the largest volume department in the largest volume store.
I’m not bragging, I’m telling you, I worked my butt off. You start out at $6/hour and watch how hard you work to get out of that!! HA! Now, after all that work, I made a series of decisions that altered the course of my life.
At the time, I thought I had not only destroyed my life but had brought my family down with me. What could have happened for me to feel that way? Well, let’s just say that I had made some free will, independent, self-determined freedom choices by listening to that one voice in my head that landed me in jail. Now, you will have to stay tuned to another podcast to find out the whole story behind that.
And that’s because this is about freedom. What happened on the other side of that story is a long journey of discovering who I really was and what I was really made of. Unfortunately, I spent a few more years listening to that voice – my ego – and continued to make decisions that kept me small.
I had somehow managed to convince myself that the BS running in my head, literally, this story line all the way back to when I was 3 and had to start wearing glasses, the story line that I was not worthy of anything better. Hearing me say those words doesn’t even sound like me because I’m so far from that person I was.
So, my point is – know your truth. Freedom comes in knowing who you are and why you are here. Yes, I know, that may sound so huge – too much even. But, I compare most things in life to my marathon running – it’s just one step. Just take one step forward, not two and definitely not backwards. Backwards looks like negative self-talk, shutting yourself off from others, and playing small.
No matter what you believe, we are all God’s children. Can you imagine how sad God was when he had to watch me make all those wrong turns? You know he wanted to just grab me up and shake me. But, He didn’t. And believe it or not, I’m thankful he didn’t. I learned so much not only about myself, but others. I wouldn’t be doing this podcast right now if I hadn’t made those decisions. I actually used the word wrong, which isn’t accurate. See, that’s the ego talking! They were simply decisions I made, period. Every decision has consequences that weigh on both sides.
So, you have to focus on listening to the true child of God in your heart and ask yourself, is this me or not? Your instantaneous answer is your true self. You hesitate, that’s your ego weighing in. This may sound foreign to you and if it does, then that’s totally fine.
You know truth when you hear it and now, you can’t un-hear it. So, you get to move forward and make decisions from this place know. This knowing that, “wait a minute, that’s not really me – I actually do want to do this.” The quieter you are, the more you can hear. The ego voice speaks first and speaks the loudest. So, if you need an answer to something, even in the moment, just take a deep breath and ask yourself quietly – you’ll hear the answer. I promise.
Freedom truly is a gift. When it comes to living your excellence, you have to know which voice to listen to. Don’t allow ego to alter your course just so it can stay in its comfort zone. Stay true to what brings you joy and you will have your freedom.
I do hope you’ve enjoyed our journey today!! The road to excellence is paved with many stories and it would make my heart sing to know that you spending time with me today has in some way, helped you see the gift that you are to this world.
Thank you for joining me today and until next time, Live Excellence.