Is it really true that we are all just one choice away from a whole different life?

In May 2021 I made a choice to publicly share the story of my weight loss journey including some of my childhood experiences which were all connected to my 20+ year struggle to find peace within my own mind and body. Whilst parts of my story invoked some very real feelings of vulnerability in me, I wanted to share it with others because at the core of life, all human pain really is the same, it just manifests in different ways.

At the point in time I started writing my story, I could never in my wildest dreams have predicted the series of events that have unfolded in my life as a result of me making that one choice. Similarly I also have no idea about what might be likely to unfold next, that’s the juicy part of life.

Earlier in 2020 I had sat down and mind-mapped out all the new experiences and people I had crossed paths with during the last 4 years of my life since I walked away from my previous career and lifestyle choices. It was fascinating to see displayed on paper the sometimes seemingly random linkages between people who had connected me to these experiences and often to each other too. Someone I had met only once 25 years ago, remembered our meeting too and subsequently connected me to a new network of people, one lady who happened to live maybe 50m down the road from me but we had never knowingly crossed paths and I have a talent for remembering faces I’ve seen before. But once we did meet, for a period of time afterwards it seemed like every time I stepped outside my house regardless of the time of day, there she was.

These intricate webs of connection are always flowing all around us just waiting to be noticed, but when we are so caught up in ‘doing’ our lives and living out our ghost stories, we just don’t see them so they seem to not exist to us. We often have expectations about how things, people and life experiences should occur for us and if they don’t appear in ways we expect, we tend to ignore them.

Last week I picked up that mind-map again and extended it to cover the last 12 months. What was incredible to see was how previously unconnected paths had now merged based on choices that I had made and all my paths connected at one single decision point. And that decision point was the choice I made to write my story.

I ask again, is it really true that we are all just one choice away from a whole different life?

Choices – at the bare bones of it all that’s what our lives really are, just a continual stream of choices. Yes, some choices we are conscious about and we take the time to consider the options as we see them, but for the most part aren’t we simply just making unconscious habit driven choices every day?

“Choices, choices, choices” used to be my go to response when I would hear people continually complaining about their current life circumstances and/or comparing their lives with others around them. It wasn’t a response that people liked very much and often elicited some quite defensive retaliations as it placed them as the ‘choice maker’ firmly in the seat of responsibility, but at the heart of it all, if we were not actively choosing for ourselves then how do we end up where we do? Is life all just a big game of Fateful Snakes & Ladders that we are unwittingly constantly rolling the dice to see if we are destined to climb up the ladders or slide down the snakes for eternity?

What really happens when we wake up one morning and consciously make a different choice, which then puts us into a different place, at a different time with different people? Does this one choice really have the potential to change our entire life, just like the movie Sliding Doors?

How much control do we really have over our own life journey and how much control do others have over our experiences? When you strip life back to the basics of choice, doesn’t this then beg the question of why do we make the choices we do?

What I have learned from my choice to start writing again, is that I absolutely love writing. So whilst my weight loss journey is all done and dusted, my writing journey is definitely not. I’ve decided to create a new series all about choices, choices, choices! And where this choice might take me is anyone’s guess!

I’d love to have you alongside me on this adventure – what might you see in hidden in plain sight as you explore the choices that you make in your own life?