The situation we find ourselves in at the moment means we are all having to compromise in different areas of our lives. Unable to see family, friends and loved ones, unable to go away on holiday, having to work from home, instead of being in the office with our teams and colleagues, unable to do a bit of retail therapy. The list goes on. We have all had to make huge compromises.

But…….even before this situation, when we were free to come and go as we pleased, shop where we wanted, travel, meet up with friends and all the other things we took for granted, there were still many of us not living life how we want to live it, because of the compromises we made!

 We start with high hopes and dreams and as our lives unfold, those hopes and dreams begin to disappear, as we compromise what we really want to do or be in order to keep others happy, through a sense of responsibility or duty, through guilt, to keep the status quo and not to rock the boat. Each time we compromise and tell ourselves that life is not all bad, those hopes and dreams we had for ourselves fade a little more, until they have gone completely.

How many of us have stayed in relationships or jobs, because to leave would have such a far reaching effect, that the guilt that would consume us and the responsibility we believe we have for other people’s happiness means it is not an option? So we stay. We live with feelings of sadness, despair, resentment, frustration and depression. We are deeply unhappy. And yet, we stay and we compromise our lives further, until our life is no longer our own.

Deep down inside we know. We know we would like to break free and live the life we dreamed of, we know we are worth more than we have allowed ourselves to be, we are painfully aware of all the compromises we made and as the years pass we then come to believe it is too late to change. We made our bed, now we must lie in it. It will be our death bed.

When we are betrayed by people we love and respect, we experience deep hurt and heartbreak and yet we betray ourselves every time we make a compromise in our life, that takes us further from the life we want to have. Is it any wonder when that happens we are unhappy, frustrated and angry? We are constantly being betrayed by ourselves. Breaking our own hearts.

Neale Donald Walsch the American author of the “Conversation with God” books says “More damage has been done to others by persons leading lives of quiet desperation (that is doing what they had to do) than ever was done by persons freely doing what they wanted.”

When we are desperately unhappy, when we have compromised, who is getting the benefit of our unique gifts and talents we were born with to share with the world? We were given these gifts, to make a difference!

He also says “Betrayal of yourself in order not to betray another, is betrayal nonetheless. It is the highest betrayal.” 

It is the highest because when we betray ourselves, we are destined to live that life of “quiet desperation.” 

When you give so much of your life in compromise, then you are unable to give others the benefit and value of your own unique true self. High betrayal indeed!

Many of us believe we are in a position where we have no choice and that we have to stay in an unhappy situation because of that.

The truth is though, there is always a choice! We are always making choices! If we decide to do nothing, that is a choice!  Often we will make a choice that will create or avoid an outcome!

When we say we have “No choice” we are choosing to believe that! Our choices define us!

It does not mean that all our choices are easy ones! We wish! Some are very tough! When hard choices have to be made it takes courage to make them! But we owe it to ourselves to make those choices and no longer live our lives by the compromises we have put on ourselves.

And yes, it is easy to blame the current circumstances for not living life as we choose and having to make compromises, but how many of us were not living that life long before this? How easy is it to blame what’s going on for that not to be happening? When the truth is, it gives us a great excuse not to make those hard choices and decisions that we need to make, so we are not living our lives by the compromises of our own making any more.

Neale Donald Walsch goes on to say “If you feel trapped, decide to live your life. How much of your life are you willing to give away? How much of your life are you willing to reclaim? Once you reclaim your life, how much more do you think you will have to give others?”

So are you ready to be one of the courageous ones? Will you live your life your way? Are you ready to reclaim your life and share your unique gifts and talents with the world? Will you define who you truly are by the choices you make?

Most importantly, are you willing to stop betraying yourself at the highest level and live a life free from your own compromises to live the life you want to live?

Of course you are!!!

Article Written by Janet Wilks, NLP Practitioner and coach

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