When life pushes you over, stand up and push back even harder. Where there is a fork in the road and choices to make, make the ones your future self will thank you for.

Choosing YOU. — Wearing a mask wears you out. Faking it is fatiguing. The most exhausting activity is pretending to be who you know you aren’t. No matter how loud their opinions are, they do not choose who YOU are. Choose YOU even if nobody else is choosing you.

Appreciating what you have. — Sometimes, when you make the most out of what you have, it turns out being a lot more than you ever imagined. A beautiful day begins with a beautiful mind-set. When you wake up, take a second to think about what a privilege it is to simply be alive and healthy. The moment you start acting like life is a blessing, I assure you that it will start to feel like one. Time spent living is time worth appreciating. Read The Power of Now.

Believing in yourself and your dreams. — The most difficult phase of life is not when no one understands you; it’s when you don’t understand yourself. Believe in YOU. Listen to your soul. Trust your instincts. Acknowledge your own strengths. Dream it and dare it. Do what you are afraid of, and capable of. Follow your vision. Know that anything is possible. Know you CAN.

Being positive. — You can’t live a positive life with a negative attitude. Heaven on Earth is a choice we must make, not a place we must find. Let every day be a dream you can touch. Let every day be a love you can feel. Let every day be a reason to live. Life is too short to be anything but positive.

Taking action. — The happiest and most successful people are usually those who have broken the chains of procrastination, who find satisfaction in doing the job at hand. They’re full of eagerness, passion, and productivity. You can be too. Remember, success in real estate is about location, location, location. Success in life is about action, action, action. Read Getting Things Done.

Letting go. — The only thing that makes it a big part of your life is that you keep thinking about it. The biggest step in changing the world around you is to change the world within you. Don’t cry over the past, it’s gone. Don’t stress about the future, it hasn’t arrived. Just live in the present, concentrate on the things you can control, and take one small step at a time.

Picking yourself back up. — Where you are in life is temporary; where you end up in life is permanent; how you get from here to there is entirely up to you. So don’t give up. Sometimes when things go wrong it’s because they would have turned out worse if they had gone right.

Ignoring negative people. — You are not a rug; some people may try to walk all over you, but you don’t have to lie there and take it. There are seven billion people in the world; don’t waste your time by letting one of them ruin your happiness. You are good enough, smart enough, beautiful enough, and strong enough. Somewhere someone is looking for exactly what you have to offer.

Staying in touch with close friends and family. — Having somewhere to go is what we call ‘home.’ Having someone to love, who loves us in return, is what we call ‘family.’ Having both is a blessing. There comes a time in life when you’ll have to leave everything behind for a while and start something new, but never forget the people who stood by your side, especially your close friends and family who never gave up on you.

Making time for fun. — Fun is way underrated. With all of life’s responsibilities, fun will sometimes seem like an indulgence. It shouldn’t be. It should be a requirement. It’s a happy talent to know how to let loose and play. People who make it a point to play around and have fun are twenty times more likely to feel happy in the long run.

Spreading love and kindness. — The amazing thing about life is that you choose what you allow into it and out of it — you choose how things affect you, and how you affect the world. The happiness surrounding you is greatly affected by the choices you make every day. So choose to spread love and kindness to at least one person a day. Imagine the amount of happiness you would create in a lifetime if you did. Read The Happiness Project.

Being the change you want to see in the world. — Don’t tell others how to live; LIVE and let them watch you. Practice what you preach or don’t preach at all. Walk the talk. The people who look up to you will likely emulate your actions and strive to become who you are; so BE who you want them to be. Life is like a road. There are long and short roads; smooth and rocky roads; crooked and straight paths. In our life many roads would come our way as we journey through life. There are roads that lead to a life of single blessedness, marriage, and religious vocation. There are also roads that lead to fame and fortune on one hand, or isolation and poverty on the other. There are roads to happiness as there are roads to sadness, roads towards victory and jubilation, and roads leading to defeat and disappointment.

Just like any road, there are corners, detours, and crossroads in life. Perhaps the most perplexing road that you would encounter is a crossroad. With four roads to choose from and with limited knowledge on where they would go, which road will you take? What is the guarantee that we would choose the right one along the way? Would you take any road, or just stay where you are: in front of a crossroad?

There are no guarantees:

You do not really know where a road will lead you until you take it. There are no guarantees. This is one of the most important things you need to realize about life. Nobody said that choosing to do the right thing all the time would always lead you to happiness. Loving someone with all your heart does not guarantee that it would be returned. Gaining fame and fortune does not guarantee happiness. Accepting a good word from an influential superior to cut your trip short up the career ladder is not always bad, especially if you are highly qualified and competent. There are too many possible outcomes, which you really cannot control. The only thing you have power over is the decisions that you will make, and how you would act and react to different situations.

Wrong decisions are always at hindsight:

Had you known that you were making a wrong decision, would you have gone along with it? Perhaps not, why would you choose a certain path when you know it would get you lost? Why make a certain decision if you knew from the very beginning that it is not the right one. It is only after you have made a decision and reflected on it that you realize its soundness. If the consequences or outcomes are good for you, then you have decided correctly. Otherwise, your decision was wrong.

Take the risk:

Decide: Since life offers no guarantee and you would never know that your decision would be wrong until you have made it, then you might as well take the risk and decide. It is definitely better than keeping yourself in limbo. Although it is true that one wrong turn could get you lost, it could also be that such a turn could be an opportunity for an adventure, moreover open more roads. It is all a matter of perspective. You have the choice between being a lost traveler or an accidental tourist of life. But take caution that you do not make decisions haphazardly. Taking risks is not about being careless and stupid. Here are some pointers that could help you choose the best option in the face of life’s crossroads.

Get as much information as you can about your situation.

You cannot find the confidence to decide when you know so little about what you are faced with. Just like any news reporter, ask the 5 W’s: what, who, when, where, and why. What is the situation? Who are the people involved? When did this happen? Where is this leading? Why are you in this situation? These are just some of the possible questions to ask to know more about your situation. This is important. Oftentimes, the reason for indecision is the lack of information about a situation.

Identify and create options.

What options does the situation give you? Sometimes the options are few, but sometimes they are numerous. But what do you do when you think that the situation offers no options? This is the time that you create your own. Make your creative mind work. From the most simplistic to the most complicated, entertain all ideas. Do not shoot anything down when an idea comes to your head. Sometimes the most outrageous idea could prove to be the right one in the end. You can ask a friend to help you identify options and even make more options if you encounter some difficulty, but make sure that you make the decision yourself in the end.

Weigh the pros and cons of every option:

Assess each option by looking at the advantages and disadvantages it offers you. In this way, you get more insights about the consequences of such an option.

Trust yourself and make that decision.

Now that you have assessed your options, it is now time to trust yourself. Remember that there are no guarantees and wrong decisions are always at hindsight. So choose… decide… believe that you are choosing the best option at this.

Originally published at medium.com