Updated: Dec 5, 2021
Life isn’t happening to you; life is responding to you. Life is your call! Every area of your life is your call. You are the creator of your life. You are the writer of your life story. You are the director of your life movie. You decide what your life will be – by what you give out. ~ Rhonda Byrne
Recently, a friend pointed out to me how I often refer to my inability to cook. She reminded me that this is my story – a story I have told myself repeatedly and shared so often with others that it has become part of my reality. The thing is – I actually DO cook and I am not all that bad. I make a mean lasagna and my chili is fabulous. It’s not like I can share the recipe though because they taste a bit different each time I make them. The reason? I hate following a recipe – I find it tedious and boring and if I don’t have a particular ingredient on hand, then I wing it and use a substitute instead. The truth is, actually, that I’m NOT a bad cook. Rather, I simply don’t enjoy cooking for the most part. Sometimes, like today, I whip up two or three dishes and freeze them for later in the week. Generally speaking, it all turns out well and a tasty meal is enjoyed by all.
Being single into my mid-30’s resulted in me not being overly concerned with making elaborate meals on a regular basis. As a flight attendant, much of my time was spent traveling the globe and enjoying local meals in whichever city I found myself. Once I got home, I normally brought a bottle of wine to a friend’s house for dinner and enjoyed a home cooked meal in exchange. Since I have several friends who really enjoy cooking, it became unnecessary for me to cook. My husband also enjoys cooking so once we married, he took over the majority of the cooking duties.
The thing is the whole ‘bad cook’ story got me thinking – WHY is that a story I tell myself? WHO does it benefit? HOW is it helping me? And most importantly, WHAT other stories am I telling myself? One fairly insecure friend, in particular, thought of herself as an excellent cook and enjoyed the compliments and gratitude that her guests offered after a good meal. That was her story and if someone else did the cooking, she was critical and irritated. Since I spent a great deal of time with this friend, it benefitted me to let her story dictate my story. She was an excellent cook and I was a bad cook. Subconsciously, it was a win-win, and she got to feel good while I got a good meal.
Letting others decide what our story should be is a slippery slope, though. If we give the power of our story to others, we are in essence allowing them to shape our self image. Are there stories you have been telling yourself? That you don’t deserve the people or things in your life? That your job, relationship, weight or finances are out of your control? WHY do we internalize these stories? WHERE did these stories come from? HOW are they helping us to be the best version of ourselves? WHO do these stories benefit? WHAT do we gain by believing them? Ask yourself the tough questions and then choose a new story that better represents WHO you are and WHERE you want to go in life. You are the creator of your own story and you have the power to rewrite not just the ending but the whole entire story. Dream big, be creative and start writing!