In every moment we have the opportunity to choose the high road or the low road. With each choice we create an experience that leads us either to a good feeling or to a low mood. Each choice, like a snowball, gathers momentum as it rolls through the events of the day.
Whatever occurs, it’s not the event that decides our reaction but our take on the event, our perception, that decides how we respond. We cannot change life events. What we can change is our attitude and thinking.
There is evidence all around us of different attitudes. We all recognize when people see the glass half full or the glass half empty. What most of us often forget is that it’s a choice. When we are met with a circumstance that challenges our equanimity that maybe even shakes our world, we may forget in the moment that we have such a profound source of wisdom and well-being available to us. However, as we personally see more evidence of our resiliency and we experience firsthand our role as creator of our reality, we become better able to recognize that we truly do have choice. Bit by bit, we can catch ourselves sooner and avoid the “snowball” effect. We can opt for the high road more frequently.
It can be the smallest, seemingly innocent, things such as a rumour about a friend. When we choose not to engage in gossip or speculation, we have chosen the high road. We have avoided the trap of the low road and its incumbent low mood.
When choosing the high road becomes our stance—our attitude—more of the time, we have opened the door to many more options. We take a more impersonal view of life and are able to respond to each event and each moment from a perspective of wisdom and compassion. Life actually gets easier. There are so many fewer battles. In fact it seems almost laughable that we would compromise our well-being over some of what we may previously have viewed as vitally important issues.
The single most important aspect of our lives as humans is our capacity to choose our attitude, to broaden our perspective, to change our thinking. In every moment, in every interaction, there’s a choice to be made, a fork in the road. One way enriches and deepens our experience, the other narrows and limits our experience.
High or low? Only we can decide.