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FREEDOM IS ONLY A THOUGHT AWAY

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When my beliefs are right, my world is right, and when my beliefs are wrong, my world is wrong.  My beliefs make all the difference.  They are the single most liberating or limiting factor in my life.

The beliefs that I inherit from other people become the backpack of limitations that I carry through life.  The easiest thing to find on planet earth is someone to tell me all of the things I cannot do.  The world is full of experts who are ready to program their limitations into my mind.  I will not allow the limiting beliefs of the Life Long Disoriented to hijack my dreams.  Their limitations will not become mine.

I choose my beliefs carefully, and I donít allow the limiting beliefs of others to dominate my mind.  I will not capitulate my dreams and take up the second hand dreams of other people.  The only way to be truly free is to get my beliefs right and to live by them.  Freedom is only a thought away.

Copyright © 2013



FEEL THE FREEDOM
 

Freedom has many different faces.

 

I was born in a country in which freedom forms the cornerstone of our democracy.  We have a Bill of Rights that guarantees basic freedoms unknown in many parts of the world.  The truth is, everywhere on planet earth, people are free, but the consequences of exercising that freedom may be catastrophic.  I have been in countries in which the secret police are more than happy to watch you exercise your personal freedom, because it makes their job easier.  They know who they need to keep under surveillance.  Any country without a Bill of Rights is a scary place to live, and for that matter, any country eroding their Bill of Rights is turning its back on greatness.  To the degree they amend their fundamental freedoms, to that degree they have fallen from grace and trivialized the sacrifices made by all who have gone before that gave their lives to guarantee their freedom.

 

Many people don't understand the meaning of freedom.  They talk about freedom, but worship at the altar of irresponsibility.  They actually believe the world owes them the right to do whatever they want, irrespective of the impact it has on themselves or other people.  That's not freedom; it's anarchy and chaos. 

 

If you can take the Bill of Rights seriously without sliding down the slippery slope of irresponsibility, you are headed in the right direction.  That doesn't mean you are free, but at least you have a firm foundation on which you can build a life.

 

The Bill of Rights protects your freedom from being compromised by forces outside yourself.  But there is nothing in that document that makes you free, because true freedom comes from within.  Your culture has many powerful forces at work that would curtail your personal freedom, but they never march in the front door and put shackles on your arms and legs,  They come in the back door with their ball and chain, place them on the table, and let you put them on all by yourself.  They don't need to strong arm you or even intimidate you, because you will make choices that will shackle you more securely than a regiment of secret police ever could.

 

When you sign on the dotted line for a thirty year mortgage on an expensive house and a five year loan on a fancy car, you just put the shackles on, and it's going to be a long time before you have enough freedom chips to once again be free.  You know exactly what you are going to be doing in the foreseeable future, maybe even for the next thirty years.

 

Without realizing it, young people often make choices that last a lifetime.  Those who exercise their freedom to engage in promiscuous behavior and inject drugs often find themselves shackled to hepatitis B and AIDS, their new and unwanted life long companions who will not and cannot go away.  It's unfortunate that God didn't install a freedom meter in the middle of their forehead, so  they could take a look in the mirror to check out the long term consequences of the choices they make.

 

During most of my adult life, I have placed a high value upon maintaining my personal freedom to the greatest extent possible.  Nevertheless, most of the time, the choices I have made have limited my freedom to a significant degree.  There's not a lot of freedom when you spend four years in college, four years in medical school, five years in internship, residency, and fellowship training that made me into a board certified ophthalmologist, and retina and vitreous surgeon.  That's thirteen years shackled to the study carrel in the library, the emergency room, the operating theatre, and all that has to happen before I could put up my shingle and practice medicine independently in the real world.  Add to that the responsibility of raising a family and paying for their education all the way through university.  That's why I didn't dispose of my scalpel or take down my shingle until I was forty-seven years old. 

 

So what did I do to keep from going crazy in my world of limited freedom?

 

First, I chose to work overseas in international medicine.  This single choice opened the floodgates of freedom, the likes of which haven't been seen in the United States for fifty years.  Overseas, doctors are still held in high esteem, and I was able to practice my craft unencumbered by the dead weight of Medicare, insurance companies, and a legal system running amok.   When I worked overseas, my job was to help people. Period.  Not to fill out Medicare forms.  Not to argue with insurance companies for reimbursement.  Not to practice defensive medicine because I needed to cover my buns.  My patients knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I was their advocate, and I would move heaven and earth to do everything humanly possible to fix their detached retina, to restore lost vision.  They trusted in God, and they trusted in me, and rightly so.  If you can't trust your doctor and hand him your burdens, then you need to visit another physician.  Practicing medicine in the third world was an extremely demanding but very liberating experience, and if I had to do it over again, I would do the same thing.  Freedom to practice your craft in an unencumbered manner is worth its weight in gold.

 

Second, even though I lived and worked for sixteen years in Saudi Arabia, I had more personal freedom in Arabia than in any place I have lived in the world.  The reason is simple.  In Arabia, I lived in a parallel universe in which none of the rules affecting the Saudis applied to me.  At the same time, the long arm of my own culture didn't reach across the sea and control my daily life.  I had the freedom to be myself and live my life how I pleased as long as I showed up for work on time and practiced my profession with integrity.  Everyone who has been an expatriate in Arabia knows what I am talking about, and that's why so many of them worked there for such a long time.  The parallel universe can be a wonderful place to invest your life.

 

Third, the Arabian desert was one of the last places on planet earth where you could do expeditionary travel without fear of running over landmines or getting caught in a crossfire in a civil war.  Arabia was  peaceful, and you could get in your Land Rover Defender and drive off-road for 500 kilometers in any direction once you were outside Riyadh, and no one cared where you went.  They didn't even stop you at checkpoints.  They simply motioned you and your Land Rovers through the checkpoints, because the authorities knew you were not a threat; you were just going into the desert to have the adventure of a lifetime.  There is no place on planet earth that was safer or more accessible to people who wanted to drive off-road.  The Empty Quarter is the biggest sandbox in the world with sand dunes hundreds of feet high, and we spent weeks each year exploring this sandy playground.

 

Fourth, I saved freedom chips.  Each year that I lived in the magic kingdom, I saved up more freedom chips, so that one day I could buy a freedom machine, a catamaran, that I  would sail around the world.

 

Fifth, I chose to live the unencumbered life.  That means I kept my infrastructure to a minimum whenever possible.  I have only owned one house, but I have owned five Land Rover Defenders.

 

Finally, freedom is just a thought away.  You can't be free until you learn to think thoughts that result in freedom.  You must think and act freedom into your life.

 

When I sit behind the wheel of my Land Rover Defenders, I can feel the freedom start to bubble up in my mind.  And when I look at Exit Only anchored in paradise, I thank God that I live in a place and time in which I have the freedom to sail on the ocean of my dreams.
 


Zero Tolerance to Negative Thinking

Owner's Manual for Your Mind
   
Real Power: Maxing Out on God's Love Positive Christian Self-Talk
   
Positive Self-Talk Red Book Positive Self-Talk Purple Book
 

Maximum Strength Positive Thinking Cover

Unstoppable
How to Be Great
How to Make a Life
Change Who You Are
Positive Operating System
Empowerment
Resourceful Beliefs
Unlimited Potential for Excellence
Who You Are
What You Think About Expands
Ambivalence
Practice Being Great
What I Think About Matters
Think on These Things
Consistently Control Your Mind
When Will I Get Better
Positive Expectations
POS Version I - Operating System for my Mind
I Turn Bad Things into Better Things
Opportunity Is a Shy Visitor
I Am Potential Unlimited
There Is No Limit to How Good My Life Can Become
Say Yes to Life
I Can Still Make My Dreams Come True
Freedom Is Only a Thought Away
Exceptional Beliefs
The Meaning of Life
Every Destination Starts as a Thought
A New Beginning Creates a New Ending
I Change My Mind in an Instant of Time
The Power of Positive Focus
Ready for Change
I Am Willing to Do Whatever It Takes
Change First Happens in My Mind
How Change Happens
Endless Persistence
Do It Now
Semper Fidelis
No Reason to Wait
The Call to Action
Positive Action and Negative Thoughts
Failure Is Never Final
Pulling the Weeds and Planting the Seeds
I Build My Future Thought by Thought
Change Who You Are

Be Excellent

Limiting Beliefs Are a Choice
Limitations
Barriers or Hurdles
Make Your Limitations Disappear
Get a Fresh Start - Clean Your Mind
Toxic Waste Management
Fly Like an Eagle
Positive Focus
Repetition Hijacks My Mind
The Gift That Never Stops Giving
Put a Positive Spin on Your Life
Positive Thinking Is Not Enough
Calm the Storm of Thoughts
Feed Your Mind Three Meals a Day
Write Your Way to a Positive Mind
A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words
Listen to the Sound of My Dreams
Superheroes of the Mind
Association and Dissociation
Power or Paralysis
Statement of Purpose
Written Plan
Escape Limited Thinking
The Direction of Motivation
Affirmations
Count Your Blessings
The Recipe for Achievement
A Blessing That Lasts Three Lifetimes
Keep Your Goals in Perspective
Keep Money in Perspective
Handle With Care
The Positive Mind Pump
Negative Black Hole
Zero Tolerance to Negative Thinking
Negative Thinking Is a Warning
Conflict Brings Negative Thoughts into My Life
Give Up Your Need to Be Right
Negative Thoughts Are a Stop Sign
Never Argue With Negative Thoughts
What Do I Find When I Squeeze My Mind?
Miracles Happen
Cockroaches of the Mind
Guilt - Hazardous Substance - Handle With Care
Time Travel
Live As If You Are a Positive Person
Live As If You Are a Loving Person
Live As If You Are a Forgiving Person
Live As If You Are a Thankful Person
Live As If You Are a Tolerant Person
Never
Never Quit Working on Your Dreams
Keeping Adversity in Perspective
Surviving the Storm
Predestination
Fearosaurus Rex
 

 
 
 
 
 



 

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