Give Thanks~Feel Joyful WK9- Independence


My first thought was, ‘we are born to develop into independent adults,’ however this is only a partial truth! So let’s re-word the statement more accurately. ‘I give thanks for the level of independence I have achieved in my life.’

Now we have a statement that nearly everyone can relate to. Everything is relative and independence relates to physical, emotional and social factors. Sometimes people have physical or mental conditions which effectively impose limitations upon their ability to exert independence and these can be temporary or permanent. In reality, most of us suffer at times with factors influencing our ability to be independent and the greatest of these tends to be fear.

We need to be positive about our lives and willing to break through barriers to achieve the level of independence that suits us. Of course, no-one is totally independent unless they are living in total isolation- maybe on a desert island! The fact is our world operates on mutual dependency through relationships, commerce, education, scientific advances, the health service and many smaller yet complex factors. Our level of independence also relates to the number of dependents we have, income levels and opportunity. As always we need to be thankful for what we have and identify how best to extend ourselves so that we have even more to be thankful for.

We are so fortunate to live in a ‘free society.’ Yes there are poverty traps yet how many millionaires have their roots in poverty? It is their independent spirits that have enabled them to progress to higher levels and those opportunities are available to everyone. What often contributes towards making a person successful is their ability to overcome fear and strive towards their goals. The more resourceful you are the more independent you can become.

Recognising progress is important as it spurs us on. Many things can deter us and this might include becoming dependent upon our partners. We can be emotionally dependent, financially dependent and in some cases lose our ability to make firm decisions. This is why it is so important to know who we are and what we want in life. If you are strong in yourself you will handle relationships very much better than people who are unclear about themselves and their desires. This applies to friendships and working relationships as well as family ties.

It is very good to develop independent thinking. This might sound obvious but how many people just parrot other people’s views to you? Sometimes people only have one side of the story or fail to understand the significance of a situation, especially hot political topics. It’s very easy to be brainwashed into a way of thinking if we do not do our own independent research. As a rule, I prefer to plead ignorance as opposed to spouting a half understood argument!

Being independent helps us to obtain peace of mind. If we know what we do and why we are doing it we become accountable to ourselves first and foremost. We may not always make good decisions but at least we know why we made them! We are then in a position to analyse our efforts and effect change. Having a great sense of independence and responsibility is the key to becoming an adult as opposed to a child in an adults’ body. In summary, when you can take full responsibility for your life you are living with mental freedom and are in a position to orchestrate change-and that is the joy of being independent.

Jaz McKenzie