I was 15 when I had my first kiss, in a truck outside my house with George Michael’s “Father Figure” playing. It was totally awesome, the best combination of sweet and “wowza!!”
Every once in a while, Pandora plays this song and I think of this memory.
Over the years, that memory has changed.
More specifically, over the years, the way I think about the memory of my first kiss has changed.
Go ahead, think about your first kiss.
Recall how you thought about the experience at the time…
…then 1 week later…1 year later…10 years later…20 years later…
You get the idea.
I imagine your thoughts about your first kiss were different in the days following than they are now.
Our thinking about events changes over time, sometimes a little, sometimes a lot.
Which means that how you’re thinking about your life now…is very likely to evolve over the remainder of your life.
A memory may seem crisp and clear, yet the thinking about it is relative.
I love spending time with my past selves, and choose to do so every month or two.
In fact, my 15 year old self is one of the most remarkable people I know.
So we hang out. I ask her opinion about my life now. I ask for her opinion on decisions I’m making.
I get very cool answers from this version of me.
It helps me to connect with this truth: How I think about my decisions, big or small, will change over time.
And it won’t be because of the results, the “what happened.”
It won’t even be because of choosing to go through door 1 or door 2.
It will be because my thinking itself changes.
I’ve heard advice to look at decisions through short, mid-term and long-term lenses.
What will the decision look like in 10 days, 10 months, 1 year, 10 years?
Pausing to do this work removes intensity or urgency from a decision.
Knowing that how I think about a memory will change for the better as I change for the better makes me feel like it’s “easier” to say yes or no to opportunities.
The more I’m connected to my values, the easier it is to decide.
The more I’m committed to my health and growth, the easier it is to know which choice I prefer.
The more I decide from an inside place than because of external factors, the more likely I’ll tell a positive story about my decision in the future.
Plus I get to look forward to the memory that I’m making!
Have fun playing this thought experiment. Does reflecting on a memory like your first kiss make you feel courageous, uncomfortable, bold, amused or anxious?
All good information to have about yourself, yes?
Love you madly,