Prisoners of our fate or of our choices?

In [Are you waiting for something or someone?], I wrote that many people blame their fate for their loneliness, lack of money, lack of good-looks, poor health, etc. It is normal to feel unhappy about such things. I don't just tell people to be positive and be happy. Conversely, I think feeling unhappy about it is sometimes a good thing - it is the stimulus to make people want to do something to improve their current situation. The problem is: many people don't do anything. Either they are too lazy, they are afraid or they don't have a really good reason to make any changes.

People can choose to blame their fate. Or they can choose to think differently, or choose to work towards a better future.

A person who is not good-looking can learn grooming skills, get a good hair cut, wear appropriate clothes, exercise and get a fit-looking body. E.g. I have ugly duckling ex-secondary school mates who used to be unattractive who have become very attractive swans.

A person who is in poor health can improve his lifestyle and diet to minimise ill effects on his body causes by previous abuse or genetics. E.g. I have relatives who have to avoid alcohol because they are genetically prone to getting liver cancer.

People and relationships
We can't choose our family members but we can choose how we behave towards them and where we live. If you can't live with them, aim to earn enough money to live elsewhere - which was what I did.

Our choice of friends partly determine the other choices we make in life. If I choose to hang out with friends who have the wrong attitude in life, I might consciously or subconsciously get influenced by them. I'm not suggesting that you dump all your loser friends (because some of them might just be experiencing temporary problems and need some support) but remember to enrich yourself by interacting with people whom you can learn from and by reading. If you find yourself lonely, with no friends, then read this: [Why some people have no friends]

As for choice of sex/life partner, people can choose problematic people as partners to create some drama in their own lives (see [Happiness vs Drama]) or they could be
[staying in destructive relationships for reasons such as religion or obligation]. Do we not have the right to choose to leave or to be alone? I prefer to have no partner than a problematic one.

Work and Money
I'm sure all of us would rather be born into rich family but we know that it does not happen to the majority. How we earn, invest and spend money - not whether we were born rich - determines whether we'll be wealthy or poor. Earning, investing and spending are all active choices. Some people may be endowed with better business acumen or born with higher IQ. However, what they choose to do determines the outcome.

If people think they are earning too little or they hate their jobs, perhaps that's because they've never asked for a raise or they are working in the wrong type of company/job.

If people don't have enough savings, perhaps they have been spending too much on entertainment and buying objects as "rewards" for their hard work. People who have billions can buy a few Ferrari's for all I care; people who don't have $1,000 in their bank accounts can buy LV bags (by instalment) and take taxis instead of buses/MRT everywhere for all I care too. It's their rightful choice. [Frugality is a dirty word]

If people have lost money through "investments" perhaps it's because they had been gambling not investing, and being conned by bankers and insurance agents into buying "investment products" such as unit trusts/mutual funds or whatever stuff in the market and stuff that no longer exist.

Yes, [it boils down to luck] but if opportunities knock at your door while you were asleep and you didn't open the door, a "But I was sleeping! It's not my fate to have opportunities knocking when I'm awake" excuse for your situation is laughable.


Zane said...

Bravoly said

David said...


Very well said!

Those who blame fate for their life's outcomes are playing the victim card.
IOW, poor little me, if it were not for (insert blame here) my life would be so much better.

Most of us have esteem problems at one time or another in life. When one chooses to improve what one can, level of fitness for health, education to improve chances of a better job, or self-acceptance when realizing one will never be taller, more handseome or more beautiful, then one is likely to become more appealing to others.

Take a stand and believe in something and you will find like minded people who most often can become good friends.

The victim otoh, can only go where they percieve fate takes them.

YK, you have shared some wise words for anyone willing to read and understand!


Our Adversary majors in three things: noise, hurry and crowds. If he can keep us engaged in "muchness" and "manyness," he will rest satisfied.

-- Richard J. Foster