A Lifetime of Decisions

Life is a lesson, you learn it when you’re through.” Lyrics from M:I-2 by Limp Bizkit

I have a fortune cookie that has been pinned to my work bulletin board for years. It says “Your life is the sum total of many choices.” Each of us make 100’s of choices a day, most of which are relatively small. We decide whether to get up at the first alarm or to hit the snooze. We decide what to wear and how fast to drive to work. At work, we decide what is a priority that day, like how much time to spend with our teams, analyzing the operation or thinking strategically. We decide what time to leave work at the end of the day and what to do with our families in the evening. We decide how to react to difficult situations or how to deal with not so nice people or our own internally generated frustrations. We decide our attitudes, our reactions, how to spend our time, our money, our energy. All day, every day, we make thousands of decisions.

Every once in a while, we also make decisions that change our lives forever. For me, these decisions included going to college, studying computer science engineering, marrying Timm, choosing to work for Procter & Gamble, choosing to leave Procter and work for Fidelity, and choosing to not have kids. Any one of these decisions, decided differently, would have me sitting somewhere else at this very moment. Any one of these decisions decided differently would almost assuredly not have allowed us to take this adventure at this time, and likely, if we’d take it ever.

I’ve thought a lot about decisions as we’ve gotten ready for this trip. I wondered a great deal about the path of life, how each of us wanders a completely different route to completely different destinations. I reflect on my decisions, both the good and the bad and try to objectively inform myself of my successes and failures in logic and emotion that contributed to them. I marvel and am fascinated by the journey, mostly.

Has the journey been rewarding, pleasant, peaceful? Have my decisions led me to a good place and am I pleased with the outcome? For me, the answer is yes. I have few regrets in the decisions I made. I’ve also been blessed with good luck. Who knows if that luck will continue? If it doesn’t, hopefully, I enjoyed the time that I had.

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