Saturday, December 12, 2009

How Do You Filter Your Life?

During the middle of the night last night I awoke thinking of a quote from a sales pitch that I heard several years ago "You can either buy a water filter, or be a water filter." This is a powerful persuasive image, I am sure it has sold many water filters. However, that isn't what kept me awake. It was how the truth is that we are the filter with everything that happens in our lives, everything we read, hear, see, and do, or even have done to us.

The old saying rings very true, "It isn't what happens to you in your life, but how you handle it that makes all the difference." Isn't that part of that filter? We have been told that when dealing with things life can hand you, "We can be better or we can be bitter."

I guess it depends on what we choose to filter out, and what we choose to embrace as part of our ongoing lives. We are today the culmination of all we have experienced, and the choices we have made through them. Our tomorrows depend on our choices we make today.

Those things that come into your life, you can choose if you consider them challenges or problems, crisis or character building opportunities, those choices will greatly depend on how you filter them. The results of your life will depend on those choices. We all know people who are old before their times, while others seem ageless, most of those times their attitudes created the filters that determined their outcomes. When I was just a young man, I was taught the difference between being broke and being poor. The finances might be the same, but the attitude is the key. Being broke is a temporary pocketbook thing, being poor is a state of mind, and permanent until your thinking changes.

One of the worlds greatest teachers of this principle Viktor Frankl who survived a Nazi concentration camp, and who saw those who filtered the experience with a positive attitude would live, while those who filtered defeatist attitudes died, taught us.

“The one thing you can’t take away from me is the way I choose to respond to what you do to me. The last of one’s freedoms is to choose ones attitude in any given circumstance.” Viktor Frankl

Thank God, we have the choice, we get to set the filter, and that makes all the difference.

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