Liberty is not the same as personal freedom. Liberty means we have the right to do whatever we want when we want. It is possible to have liberty and not be free. In this day of instant everything, one can easily be dominated by one infatuation or another. Sex, TV, alcohol, food and other forms of activities and entertainment can easily slide into addiction and rob you of your personal freedom. This article discusses nine steps to retaining personal freedom.
Play within yourself – Do not attempt to be someone you are not best bondage toys . Be realistic about your strengths and weaknesses and live accordingly. This does not mean you should not set goals and stretch yourself to be the best you can be, only that you should not try to be more or less than you are designed to be.
Define your own reality – Do not allow others to dictate your lifestyle. Be you and no one else. You are a masterpiece of your own hand created to be the special person you are. You have your own unique gifts and talents as well as your own prolific style. When you attempt to keep up with the Jones’, you are robbing yourself and the world of your special fashion and flare. God did not use a cookie-cutter approach to make you; refrain from allowing the world to fit you into their mold.
Eliminate consumer debt – When you borrow money, you become a slave to your creditors. Living within your means allows you to be free and independent.
Learn to forgive – Let go of offenses against you. Human beings are far from perfect and now and then they will let you down. If you choose to hold a grudge, it is like taking a pair of handcuffs and joining yourself to the person who offended you. Not forgiving others causes you to drag that person along with you wherever you go. When you choose to forgive, you are releasing yourself from that person and enhancing your personal freedom.
Give generously to others – Giving both time and money breaks your bondage to material things. When you work hard, you come to think that you deserve the best you can afford. Often the drive for bigger and better can consume us and cause us to say the heck with the world. In this way, we become enslaved by our pursuit for the best toys available. When you learn to say “no” to your every want and desire and begin to direct your time and money to helping others, you break the chains the bind you to material wealth and set your heart free for better things.
Keep your appetites in check – We are born with natural appetites for basic necessities like food and drink, and sex. However, you were meant to be the master of your appetites rather than the other way around. When you allow these natural desires to control you, then you become a slave to those needs. Learn to keep your appetites in check and you will experience personal freedom.
Learn to laugh at yourself – Many people are addicted to their own image or reputation. This causes them to become embarrassed over the smallest mistakes. When you think too highly of yourself, others will attempt to avoid you like the plague. When you can actually laugh and even lampoon yourself with a pure motive, you will be free and others will like being around you more. Former Tonight Show host Johnny Carson made a career of making jokes about himself after he had goofed up. For nearly 30 years, people loved watching his show.
Develop one or two solid friendships – Good friends are those who really care about sharing their lives with you and are there in both the good and bad times. They have excellent listening skills and serve as a sounding board. They are able to keep you accountable with the other seven steps mentioned above. If you do not have any solid friendships, it may be a sign that you take yourself too seriously and make life all about you. This is another form of bondage. Close friendships keep you honest and take the edge off . This will help you gain personal freedom.