21-Day Writing Challenge Day 7 – Taking ownership


It’s always much easier to play the victim than to take ownership. You know the drill: It’s not my fault, I failed because the exam was too difficult. I don’t have time to cook for myself or to make lunch, yet I spend hours watching series at night.

Some reasons why we can’t do something are genuine. There are many things that are out of our control, but most of the time, in my experience anyway, I’m the one slacking off.

We tend to think people are out there to get us. They are working against us. It’s someone else fault if we don’t get promoted if we don’t have money to travel or can’t lose weight. The truth is, most people don’t actually give a damn about us as they are busy figuring out their own lives. And most likely worrying and having the same kind of reactions to whatever is thrown their way.

It’s too easy to forget that we make our own decisions every day. I’ve had a lot of people tell me how lucky I was to be living the life I chose and how they wish they could but they can’t. Some of my friends actually can’t because of the passport they travel with, but any of my friends with a Canadian, American or UK passport could easily live exactly the same life.

Usually, when people tell me they couldn’t afford my lifestyle, they own a house, have one or two cars, brand new TVs, and furniture, etc. It’s true that with all of that there’s not much money left to travel. But it’s a choice. It’s not a matter of not being able to. It’s not wanting to. And it’s totally fine. As long as we are being honest with ourselves about the reasons we don’t live the same lives.

In the same way, sometimes I wish I’d have a career. Especially when I see my successful friends. But then I remember that I made the choice to work here and there and travel in between. In order to build a career, you have to stay somewhere. Work your way up the ladder. At least in most industries. So while I like the idea of being able to tell people I’m successful, I’m not actually interested in taking the steps to make it happen. I’m not ready for those concessions.

I do also like the idea of having a long-term relationship, however, my need to travel and explore the world is seemingly still stronger than the fantasy of having a couple unit. And while I know there are probably guys out there living a similar life as me who could also be looking for someone to share the lifestyle with, the chances of being in the same country at the same time and actually meeting up are rather slim!

I struggle almost every day to remember that while some things are indeed happening to me, most of it is my own doing. I’ve made many lifestyles choices, which means some things I’ll most likely never have unless I change my mind. Reminding myself that I do have a say in everything I do, helps me see that if something is not how I want it to be, there’s a pretty good chance I can actually do something about it!

As Bernard Werber said: We are all prisoners of our own legend, our own stories we tell ourselves. It’s easier to go with the flow, but when we feel a disconnect and feel like things are happening to us, maybe it’s time to make a new assessment and see if our life is still what we want it to be. Being more aware and making adjustments when necessary is so easy. In theory anyway! In practice, it’s more of a touch-and-go process. One step at a time getting closer to taking ownership and making regular conscious choices.

And with this, it is the completion of the first week of my 21-Day Writing Challenge. It’s not always easy to sit at my computer and force myself to write something. Certain days the inspiration is there, and other days I sit in front of a blank page for a while. Certain posts are a lot better than others, but since the goal of this challenge is not about writing something good, but simply writing something, I’m also learning to let my usual perfectionism go.

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