There is no greater feeling of empowerment than having the freedom to do what you want when you want.
Going through life with as much control over your own circumstances is the greatest form of freedom a man can have.
This freedom equates to having real power.
Far greater than the power of having control over people or an organsation. This form of power is usually saddled with responsibilities that load you down like a pack mule.
CEOs and politicians have what most people define as power but in reality it’s not.
These people have to tow the line even if it goes against their personal beliefs. Their public opinions have to be vetted to ensure they are ‘on message’ even on complex grey area topics which often come nuances.
Hilary Clinton famously said you need a public and private position on things.
Any revelation of wrong-doing or public scandal can end their career – and thus their power – in a second.
There is little freedom and a lot of fragility in this kind of ‘power’.
Having the freedom to say, do and go where you want without permission from anyone is the greatest kind of power.
Most men today don’t want this freedom. In fact they’re scared of it. Why? Because it means digging deep into your soul to figure out what you want out of life. It means working harder and opening yourself up to criticism and ridicule.
Most would rather fit into a system where there is less freedom and thus less personal responsibility.
They get the 9 to 5, they get into massive mortgage debt, they drive a depreciating car that they never own and they live hand-to-mouth on their monthly salary. They conform to a lifestyle they did not ultimately choose for themselves.
The Paradox of Choice
In his book, The Paradox of Choice – Why Less is More, psychologist Barry Schwartz argues that modern society, especially in the Western world, has given us so much choice we’re crippled by decisions.
When we have so many options open to us in life, be it girls, places to live, careers and so on, we worry in case we’ve made the right decision (or chose the right person).
It’s the ‘grass is always greener’ effect and has become more prevalent over the last twenty years as cheaper travel, more career options, less judgment on sexual promiscuity and technology have given us opportunities that previous generations never had.
Despite these extra freedoms people have become more anxious and depressed.
I’d be lying if I said I’d never felt this in the past. Once I cleared my life to have total freedom to do anything I wanted but for six months I didn’t take advantage of it as I should have. I was productive in many ways but I procrastinated in others.
Then I realised, time waits for no man and every decision I make is the right decision at the time. No sitting on the fence and no regrets.
If you don’t have goals and a vision you may as well have no freedom.
Sometimes when you have the freedom to do anything you become stuck. Why? Because you lack direction. You lack having goals and a vision.
This is where the hard work comes in and requires you to take action. Some are crushed with the ‘burden’ of being able to do anything they want. It’s too hard for them to decide.
What do you want to achieve? Where are the places you want to go? Who are the people you want to associate with? What kind of person will you be in the future that you can be proud of?
Having the power to do whatever you want paradoxically comes with responsibilities. But they are only to yourself.
In a world that is constantly trying to keep you in a system with rules, regulations and rewards, the true man will be the one who seeks to break free from this dogma to live a life that is true to himself.
That’s freedom. That’s power.