Updated: Jan 4, 2022
Of the many things I’ve learned, discovered and distilled, one of the most impactful for me has been this:
“I am not bound.”
On the surface it comes across as a platitude, an observation and realization that is only superficial and has the same meaning as “I am free”. One of the many statements we plaster on our mental walls and then go about our daily lives.
We are all bound - bound by the choices we make, and that can be a good thing. However, two things usually cloud this.
The first is “I have no choice, I can’t.” We are not bound by the circumstances we find ourselves in. We always have a choice. So the actual statement is “I have the choice, but I don’t want to. It is not as important as the alternatives that I have at the moment.”
The second is we are bound by the needs and wants of others, it is not us who decides and we did not put the chains around ourselves. But it was our choice to put the chains on ourselves in the first place in exchange for what we are given - money, love, attention, responsibility, to overcome loneliness and fear, and for our self-worth - and we decided that the exchange was worth it. We had that choice and we made the choice for what we wanted, and often for the perceived betterment of our lives, and that’s not a bad thing.
But the point is we had the choice then, and we have the choice now - if the chains no longer serve us, we have the choice to leave them. It’s a prison that only has steel bars in front of us that we hold on to, with no walls.
In a nutshell, we are not bound by our lack of choices, and we can choose to be bound to whatever we want to.
We may not always have a buffet of choices, but we always have the choice.