What if Neo had chosen the blue pill? Every single event that occurred after he swallowed the red pill was a direct result of his decision.
At that precise moment in time, he had the free will to make a choice for all humankind. He didn’t understand just how monumental this one choice would be. He didn’t know that this choice would ultimately lead to a war in which hundreds or thousands might die.
He had no way to foresee the potential repercussions of his choice.
Just like the decisions you and I make each and every day.
Real life isn’t a movie. Most of the time in real life we have the benefit of having just a glimpse of the potential consequences to our decisions. We have the ability to discuss our options with those that are more experienced and wiser than we are. We can solicit advice from parents, mentors, clergy, friends, relatives, therapists, and many other people that have wisdom to share.
Although many in our relativistic society may disagree, there is such a thing as a bad choice. If your two options are driving sober or driving intoxicated, choosing to drive intoxicated is a bad choice. Likewise, choosing to drive intoxicated instead of taking a cab is equally a bad choice.
You see, no one really thinks it’s a good idea to drive while intoxicated… until they’re intoxicated.
Then, suddenly, their complete failure to plan ahead and prearrange for a ride was never an option at all.
And they aren’t the only ones making bad choices. People are jumping into relationships they should avoid and jumping out of relationships they should be fighting to save. People are quitting jobs because they get hard despite having no plans for employment elsewhere. People are digging themselves deeper into debt than ever before trying to impress strangers while their family is falling apart.
Look, I’ve made my fair share of bad choices. I spent a lot of time as a teenager skipping school and drinking. I used to move from job to job just looking for the easiest work at the highest pay and I was once in debt by more than fifty percent of my annual income.
But I don’t do these things anymore. Why? Because I grew up. I stopped allowing my heart to run my life and started to listen to my brain.
It was fun to skip school and drink. It was easy to quit a job once it got too hard. It was fun to buy whatever I wanted by putting it on the credit card.
Like most young people, I prized fun over practicality. Why work for the future when the future was so far away? I knew better but I let my heart guide my choices rather than putting my brain in charge.
You can’t expect to walk into a job and suddenly be the boss. You can’t expect your spouse to stick around no matter how you treat him or her. You can’t expect your kids to be perfect by chance. You can’t expect to own everything you want without paying for it.
Success in real life requires hard work and dedication regardless whether you’re talking about your family, your job, or any other aspect. The sooner you realize that, the better off you’ll be.
Unfortunately, it’s not just young people I see making bad choices. Adults that should know better are constantly choosing the easy way out or the fun things instead of buckling down, setting a goal for the future, and working toward that goal.
If you expect life to “just work itself out” and you make decisions based on this expectation you will find your life is a disaster area before long. Instead, put your brain in charge and make practical decisions that can positively affect your future. Seek the advice of wise counsel before you make any important decision and consider the advice without just discounting it as “old fashioned” or “no fun.” Consider the potential consequences of each decision you make.