get to not have to

The words you speak create the house you live in. What kind of house have you built?

Language, spoken or thought, defines the way you (and I) see and experience the world. Many of us are at a point now where we know this to some degree, yet the language we use is so ingrained in our culture of busy-ness that we often aren’t even aware of how much it runs us. We paint a reality of hustle, grind, it’s hard, I’m trying, I have to, I’m broke, it’s too expensive, I know, someday — and the repetition makes it so that life becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. The more you say it’s hard, the harder it’s gonna be. If we cling to language that cages us, we feel caged.

After a long struggle, I’m finally in a place where I love my life and I’m grateful for what I do, but I still use language that shapes my day into a series of obligations. I “have to” wake up early to go teach a class, I have to spend time on marketing and accounting and things that I don’t love but that still have to get done when you’re an entrepreneur. I have to do laundry because I’m out of clean underwear. I have to stop by the grocery store on the way home. Consciously and unconsciously, the have to’s get heavy to carry and even with all the gratitude in the world, life becomes limiting and stifling.

If you haven’t met, I’d like to introduce you to Get To. These two little words change everything. Replace have to with get to, and life becomes a playground for possibility. Every moment becomes a gift and an opportunity.

Every morning, I get to wake up early to teach a yoga class and help people feel good! I get to spend time honing my skills so I so can help more people.  I get to do laundry and have a whole pile of fresh clothes to smell and wear. I get to stop at the grocery store and also pick up a treat!

What a shift.

When have to becomes get to, obligation becomes privilege.

Get to makes it easier to tap into gratitude and experience life with more joy. The only thing you really have to do is breathe.
The rest, even if unpleasant or uncomfortable, is temporary, and serves to teach you about resilience and commitment. You get to live your life. You get to show up every day and take on every challenge as an opportunity for growth. You get to turn mundane things into opportunities for play, curiosity and kindness. You get to participate in your life fully instead of going through the motions.
You get to say “I lived today!”