Chapter Four: Your Present

“The reason people find it so hard to be happy is that they always see the past better than it was, the present worse than it is, and the future less resolved than it will be.”
– Marcel Pagnol


The people and events of your past influence who you are today.  This does not mean you are a product of the past; this does not mean that your life is predetermined.

As a human being, you have the faculty of volition.  You have free will.  This means that you have the power to decide.  You have the power to use your faculty of volition to choose which parts of yourself you will use when making future decisions.  Whatever you choose, whatever your decisions will be, it is based on the enormously complex concept that is best summed up as your sense of life.

The sum that is “YOU” is so complex that no one can ever describe it accurately — the only adequate description is your actual physical person.  “You” is also a sum that is in constant flux.  Every second that passes changes you in some way.  Some of the things that are “you” can be easily identified and described.  For example, your sex, height, weight, hair and eye color are objective facts that you can easily verify.  But in order to fully understand who you are, we must dig deeper.

A mere description of what you do is not enough, nor is a description of your history.  To simply say that you are a carpenter, that you eat fish, and that you pay your bills is not enough.  To gain an understanding of who you are, we will have to find out why you do what you do.

The purpose of this chapter is to familiarize you with “you.”  Who are you today?  How do you look at life?  What is your lifestyle?  How fulfilled are you in the major areas of your life?  We will later come back to this material and use it as potential alternatives.

Finally, it does not matter where we have been; what matters is where we are going.  We all have unique experiences in life, and we all have empowering positive experiences and disheartening negative experiences.  So be a little humble as you do this.  Above all else, be sympathetic to who you are.

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Allowing Ourselves to Ask the Question

Table of Contents

I. Chapter One: Introduction to Life Planning

II. Chapter Two: Your Past

III. Chapter Three: The Influence Of Generations

IV. Chapter Four: Your Present

V. Chapter Five: Your Future

VI. Chapter Six: Your Alternatives

VII. Chapter Seven: Making The Decision

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