9AM Monday, at the office: I make my way to the kitchen, prepare my oats, and head back to my desk – passing my boss on the way. He scurries to his office and retrieves a packet of oatmeal.

11PM Wednesday, at home: “I don’t know if I should break up with her,” my roommate states. Silent, he awaits my response.

1PM Saturday, on the phone: “How should I respond?” my cousin asks me. He is texting a girl he met last weekend.

Monkey See, Monkey Do

Everyday I notice more and more examples of people living by social queues, a friend’s approval, and others people’s advice. They are essentially deferring their lives to others.

It is too easy to submit. To continue the trend. But are you really living?

We are all too familiar with the man who lives through other people. He has a boring, little life where the most exciting part of his day is listening to his friend’s latest adventure over a coffee. He is easy to recognize. But the man who lives under the influence of other people is not.

His life is structured around the preferences of others. And the scary part is that he doesn’t know.

Reaction vs. Creation

The book The Path of Least Resistance by Robert Fritz is possibly my favorite. It centers around decision making and the idea that you must create your life. Fritz proposes that it is our default behavior to live unconsciously and simply react to life’s circumstances. If you have not read it, I strongly suggest you make it your next book.

His message echoes mine. Reacting is following. Following the norm. Following advice. Expectations. It is taking what life throws at you and allowing that to dictate your path.

Creating is leading. Choosing what you want to do. What you want to create. Where you will go.

The Crown Is Yours

You simply have to put it on. The moment you decide to think for yourself and make your own decisions, you free yourself from the chains of others. You must decide what you want and then consciously choose to obtain it.  Don’t fall for the natural trap and submit to society’s expectations (the path of least resistance, if you will).

The beauty of a creation-based lifestyle is that others will naturally gravitate to you. The sheep unconsciously recognize the shepherd. They come to him for advice. They seek his approval. They follow him.

Read More: Dear Mr. Shepard