How One Word Can Change Things

For most of my life I have recited an internal mantra, “I have to write a report.  I have to  help my neighbor. I have to take my child to school. I have to respond to emails. I have to make dinner. I have to call a client.  I have to write a book…”

I wonder about all the hours I have spent talking and thinking about all the things I had to do. While I have done a lot of things, I can’t say I have always enjoyed the journey.

James Clear, in his book Atomic Habits, shared that his college strength and conditioning coach, Mark Watts,  taught him an invaluable life lesson. Rather than saying, “I have to…”, we can switch one word and say, “I get to…”

“I get to write a report.  I get to help my neighbor. I get to take my child to school. I get to make dinner. I get to respond to emails.  I get to write a book.”

Can you experience the difference?  Rather than feeling stressed when I feel I “have to”, I  feel excited about the opportunities that I “get to.”  I feel thankful to be alive and to embrace the experiences.

I am continually reminded of my fortune and opportunity when I interact with people who are not capable of taking care of themselves. I appreciate that I have a wide range of choices and opportunities. We need to be aware of our inner narrative and the stories we tell ourselves. We are often unaware of the power of our inner dialogue and our related mindset.

Having an Open Mindset is about being open to opportunities. With an Open Stance I appreciate all that I chose and what I “get” to do.

Notice your mindset and experiment with changing one word. 

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