“Life is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you’re going to get.”

Forrest Gump

What’s your analogy for life? Is life a race to be won? Maybe a marathon to be endured? Or a rollercoaster ride to survive?

How you see life, even sub-consciously, affects how you approach life.

About eighteen months ago I signed up for a course by Gary John Bishop on www.creativelive.com called Stop Making Excuses.

In the course he teaches that by the age of twenty-five we have all come to three conclusions:

  • A Personal Conclusion: what we believe about ourself

  • A Social Conclusion: what we believe about other people

  • A Life Conclusion: what we believe about life

These conclusions show up as negative, limiting thoughts in our most challenging and difficult days. We then, subconsciously, create a hero persona to save us from these thoughts. Our lives become a circular pattern around the valley of our conclusion and the peak of strapping on the hero persona to defeat it.

I was shocked when I realized my conclusion about life is that it’s futile. I’ve always been a dreamer, glass half-full, rose coloured glasses firmly in place Pollyanna. How can I, who everyone describes as optimistic, cheerful, and positive, believe life is futile?

But I quickly recognized the pattern Gary talked about in my own personal struggles.

Valleys and Peaks. Defeat and Victory. Failure and Success.

We all face the same cycles, however it’s breaking the pattern that needs to happen. The Oola Framework equips us for change with Three Simple Steps:

  1. Know where you are - The Oola Wheel

  2. Know where you want to go - The Oola Plan

  3. Chart how to get there - The Oola Path

Step three, The Oola Path, is the simple but hard action necessary to escape these cycles.

My current Number One Goal is a Fitness goal: lose 10 pounds by Christmas.

I know where I am - ten pounds over weight.

I know where I want to go - to my ideal weight by Christmas

I know how to get there - exercise routine and meals planned

But life still happens, limiting beliefs still want a voice, and the hidden chocolate is screaming to be released.

If I wake up Monday morning, after a week of strict adhesion to the plan, just to find the dial on the scale hasn’t moved, life becomes futile. A cyclone of past failure and defeat tries to suck me down the familiar drain.

What can I do?

  • Say out loud, “I am designed for greatness and a purpose.”

  • Review my Oola Goals

  • Look at my Number One Goal

  • Remember my Why

  • Grab a 3x5 notecard and write down 3 steps I’m committed to complete today

  • Find someone to be accountable to

Forrest Gump may be correct. Life is like a box of chocolates. You never truly know what you’re going to get. However, you still have the final choice as to what to do.

Why not grab a 3x5 index card and call a friend. It’s where our excuses end.

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