The Crossroad to Success

“To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life.” ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

Throughout our unknown path and journey in life, we will be faced with inevitable crossroads of daily decision-making that will determine our road to success. Crossroads are challenging and intersections are difficult, but life’s junctures are vital to our mental and spiritual growth. While we gaze upon our crossroads, it is up to us to choose which path will lead us to a direction of life success. Some junctures will branch out into many directions, but it is at the point of intersection where we must have faith in our decision and believe in providence.

Perpetual indecision is a cataclysmic fate to many, an immobile course of events that can lead to nowhere on our journey. Oftentimes, we avoid our crossroads simply due to this very reason… indecision. We know that crossroads are where daily decisions are made, but by staying in limbo, we are not deciding which way to go. We are not trying. We are often fooled into thinking that by staying in limbo, we’re actually “making a decision”, but regression is occurring here, not decisions. Reversion simply brings us to a state of stunted growth. Jon Bon Jovi once said, “It’s better to be ‘I did it and failed,’ instead of a coulda, woulda, shoulda.” Remaining still in thought is always productive before making decisions, but sooner than later, we need to look both ways and cross the road. It’s important to note, whenever we are in the process making a decision, that we’re well rested and clear-minded. Making choices when we’re exhausted is futile and should be avoided.

Fear is a huge factor that can keep us frozen in our tracks when decisions are present. We find it easier to return to what is familiar, good or bad, and remain in the past. We know what is behind us, we know where we came from, and it’s more comforting than what in front of us… the fear of the unknown. People from past civilizations used to believe the world was flat and if they traveled too far, they would fall off the edge of the earth. This belief changed when courageous seafarers gave the first observational evidence that the earth was not flat. It became okay to venture out into unknown territorial paths and that one would survive. Still today, not knowing what is ahead is what holds many of us back, but we will never know unless we try.

Many of us have also witnessed reckless decision-makers. People who act on impulse without thinking about the consequences. Those false choices will take us down a path of destiny, as well. Often times, foolhardy decisions will lead one to darker roads filled with regret, fear, anxiety, anger, and rarely to success. Rash decisions are never beneficial and can be our regrettable downfall. Irrational decisions are hard to undo and will create a disastrous results.

Over analyzing and uneducated decisions are frontrunners when we find ourselves at the crossroads of success, as well. It is important to take time to educate ourselves on the subject at hand prior to our decisions. Education will aid and speed up the process of indecision and over analyzing a situation. Statistics show we are confronted with over 200 choices to make daily for our well-being, career, family, relationships, health, education, finances, and life values. For many of us, the thought of making a simple decision can be overwhelming and as a result we can suffer from decision fatigue. No matter which path we choose or how we mentally prepare for our decision, our choices are all predetermined to fundamental change.

We each have our own opinions of what success means when making choices. For some of us, it’s about the achievement of goals and for others it’s about spiritual success. We all face different objectives to attain our own personal success, but it’s imperative to see the greater importance when we are at a turning-point. How we deal with decision-making and how we define success is a crucial factor when we are at a crossroad in our life.

The word success often becomes shrouded by society’s interpretations of what success should be for individuals as a whole, i.g., the type of vehicle we own, the amount of money in our bank account, the clothes we wear, the kind of technical equipment we own, the type of house we live in, and so on. But rarely, does society define success as: the type of individual we are within our human success. Society can be hard on anyone who doesn’t have a prominent job, fancy clothes, or a new car. They like to deem us as unsuccessful, yet never looking deeper to why we may not drive a current year vehicle. People can be quick to judge and harsh when they use their personal definition of success.

Due to the harshness of society, we often make decisions at the crossroads based on what other people would perceive of us and not by what we deem as successful. Even as grown adults… we are still succumbed by peer pressure. We are often pressured into making choices we would rather not make out of fear, ego, or self-esteem issues and how society will view us. It’s important to make decisions at our crossroads based on what we define as success, not what society believes is our success.

Society runs at a fast-moving pace and it’s easy to feel like we’re obligated to run as fast as everyone else on the “Society 500” racetrack. Oftentimes, we don’t feel we have time to linger at a crossroad for fear we’ll get run over! Slowing down to our own pace is a good thing, providing we don’t over analyze and remain stagnant. Learning about our success does not have to be upgraded as fast as technology is today! Lots of people feel their success is shown through technology. Their success is based on having all the latest upgrades on phones, notepads, televisions, Xbox, car stereo, iPads, fancy rims on their car, etc., simply to impress their friends and strangers to say, “Look how successful I am!” Many people define success according to how much they can show off, turn heads, and make people want what they have. Their success is ego determined and rarely does anything come from their heart. Ego-based success doesn’t last long, it always needs to be upgraded. Soul-based success doesn’t have to compete. No one says we cannot have nice things, but we must also remember to be humble and that our success is not defined by what model car or iPad we own.

Society, friends, and family put a lot of pressure on our decision-making process, even when it comes to choosing a career. When confronted with a crossroad, we often choose something based on what others will think or have and not what we want. There is a stigma that if we don’t have designer clothes or shoes, a noticeable job, or hoity-toity house that we are not successful individuals. Some of us dress down or live simply by choice because that is not what defines our success. We don’t let others define our success, we don’t have bills, we’re not in debt, we still live within our means, and our soul is successful.

Some people have a good job, a prominent position, a substantial salary check, insurance, retirement, but are afraid to lose everything if they change careers. They feel comfortable, but still don’t feel successful. Money and prominence are good things when used for the right reasons. Money doesn’t mean success… money pays bills and supports an individual or family. True success means soulful happiness and belief in oneself. When we no longer feel successful, we need to look at the deeper reasons behind our feelings. We need to ask ourselves, “Why?” and “What am I doing to change the outcome? Am I just doing doughnuts in the intersection, going around and around? Am I putting thought and effort into the decisions I made at the last juncture I was at?”

A person who is successful is one whose ego is in check, their mind, body, and soul are working hard and they’re free from another’s influence while at their crossroad. There is nothing wrong with having advice from constructive people, but ultimately, life’s decisions are always ours. Mind, body, and soul we are free to cross at our own volition. When we are ready for change, prayer is first and foremost at the crossroad to open new doors for us. When we ask for His will and turn our desires over to our higher power, they will be done according to Him and His time, not ours. Prayer doesn’t always grant our wishes immediately, but they are heard. There may be months of prayer and soul-searching, but when we surrender He will be there. When He is there at our crossroad, we will know it and feel it.

When we have a deep desire to do something more with our life success, we will cross to the next path. We must take a leap of faith and never look back. The past is not where we belong. We belong with progression, not regression. Where we are today is due to the many people who have laid years of courageous groundwork. The most successful people were humble in their success. We can all be successful because we all have choices… and the one thing that is free in this world is choice. It doesn’t cost anything to make a decision. Every day we are faced with choices and crossroads that will define our path to success. There is a quote by an unknown person that says, “Success! Work hard! Trust your instincts! Give yourself permission to win while staying true to what you believe”!

Success comes with work. And with work, comes success! In order to be successful, we have to first believe in ourselves. We have to have faith that we can have success at our crossroads. Don’t let fear prevail! Once we can do that, we’re on the road to success! When we believe and work hard for what we are passionate about… true success and fulfillment will follow.

“The secret of success in life is for a man to be ready for his time when it comes.” ~ Benjamin Disraeli