As you look at every area of your life, are you living by default or by design?

What I mean by that is, are you floating along, with your future controlled by the ebbs and flows of the world around you, or are you in control of your destiny, with a clear purpose and actions that are aligned with your goals?

It’s easy to float along and I can see the temptation, but living a successful life requires greater determination and taking responsibility for your current and future circumstances.

Some people have a career by default.

They aren’t quote sure how they ended up in their current job and they don’t really know what’s next.  They look at the economy and unemployment figures with trepidation, thinking that they are a victim of their circumstances.

Others have a career by design.

They have a plan and purpose and work diligently and consistently towards their goal.  They understand that they can’t control everything, but they are very aware of the things that they can take responsibility for.  They are able to adapt, learn new skills and are know that a great job won’t just fall into their laps.

Some people manage their health by default.

They eat what they want, choose not to exercise and justify to themselves that they will be one of the lucky ones who can get way with it.

Others manage their health by design.

They understand that they only have one life to live, so they maximise that life by being disciplined with their eating and exercise.  The extra energy and vitality that they have is not an accident, but is a part of their plan to increase their effectiveness and feel better about themselves.

Some people parent by default.

I shake my head sometimes when I see parents who have no clearly defined plan when parenting.  They are inconsistent with discipline, have conflicting values and don’t role-model required behaviours.  Strangely, it’s always someone else’s fault when their children misbehave or go off the rails.

Others parent by design.  

Children need consistent boundaries and discipline, and parents who provide this for their children set their kids up for success later in life.  One of the greatest gifts you can give to your children is to help them to understand that there are consequences for actions.  Mums and dads with a plan are able to provide the appropriate values to their kids, helping them to grow up with emotional intelligence, high self-esteem, solid values and an understanding of how they can contribute positively to society.

I could go on and add more categories, but I think that you get the point.

You can live by default and have your future dictated by the winds of chance.

Or you can live by design, with clear goals and consistent, disciplined action.

Which one are you?

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