We all have Bucket Lists – a list of things we would like to do before we hit the bucket! The list keeps expanding as we are exposed to the endless possibilities life offers. If you have the means, you should go for all elements on your list – why not? Such pursuits grant pleasure and contentment, giving you goals and a sense of achievement. And then, such moments have the power of revisiting you in later years, building memories, which are the ‘bliss of solitude.’
But, do you also have a list of the things you would never do? Not the things you have tried and tested and found to be a waste of time or harmful, but things you know you would never attempt even once in your life. Not because you cannot, but because you choose not to. Everyone makes mistakes of course. And intelligent people know how to learn from those mistakes.
But I am talking of the ‘Never Ever’ List that comes from deep within you – which emanates from your basic principles and values. A list of things you have disciplined yourself not to do because of a deep-set belief system, a set of values that you hold dear. This list need not be a long one, but unless you are a complete pushover, you will know what you will never do under any circumstances. While a Bucket List is inspired by outside influences, this ‘Never-Ever’ list is inspired from within.
Rightly is it said that we all have choices in life. The choice between right and wrong is not as easy as it seems. There are just two things that can hold us back from going down the wrong path – one is our own value system and the second is the fear of getting caught and punished. The more dignified choice is of course to follow our principles, so long as we know what these are!
The principles we live by are an integral part of our growing up process – these do not shift easily. A number of decisions we make daily emanate directly from that space. Our words, actions and thoughts reflect the basic values we choose to embrace. Our values are the deliberate choice we make to enable us to build the kind of life we want for ourselves.
The first response of most when asked what they would never ever do is – harm themselves or their loved ones. That comes from an instinct of self-preservation and is a given. But we also choose our never-evers. We choose to be upright, honest, humane, kind, humble – or not.
A disconnect between one’s principles and actions brings about huge discomfort. Have you noticed how uncomfortable you feel after you have been forced to lie? Or, when you pass by a needy person without helping him/her? Sometimes you may not understand that feeling because you have not defined your principles to yourself.
Try defining your principles and values. Make a ‘Never-Ever’ list. A process of elimination often helps us make good choices faster in life. It will also help us understand ourselves better.
When you know what you would never do, what to do becomes an easy choice!
DISCLAIMER : Views expressed above are the author’s own.