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Living Simple: What Are Your Priorities?

Updated on September 9, 2013
Contentment
Contentment | Source
Finding the right path is so important
Finding the right path is so important | Source
The search for inner tranquility continues.
The search for inner tranquility continues. | Source

Something I had to come to terms with five years ago was the matter of priorities. I had spent the better part of my life being what other people wanted me to be….a good son, a good husband, a good friend, and a good father….all admirable goals until I realized that “good” was defined by the expectations of others, and by extension if I didn’t meet their expectations then I wasn’t good. That may seem silly to you but to me it was very real.

It is a losing proposition when a person’s happiness depends upon the acceptance of others and it certainly is impossible to meet all of the expectations of others. The question then arose: when was I going to make me a priority? When was I going to take into account my needs, my desires, my goals, my dreams? The reality of my life was that I was slowly killing myself trying to be what everyone wanted me to be.

I had, in truth, forgotten who I was. It was only with the realization that I counted and that I had worth that I was finally able to take that first step towards inner wellness.

SUFFERING IS MY GREATEST MOTIVATOR

I wrote that a little over a year ago. I had just quit my job and made the decision to become a freelance writer. I had no idea what that meant but it sounded good and it had always been a dream of mine so I decided to do it. I first, however, had to do a personal housecleaning.

This is a difficult concept for most people. It is wired in our brains that we need to meet expectations. Most parents put their lives on hold for at least eighteen years while raising a child. Most children are so in tune to the expectations of their parents that they become physically ill when they think they have let their parents down. As workers we try to please our employers; as husbands and wives we want to keep our spouses happy. It is an endless cycle, day after day, year after year, of trying to live up to what others want us to be. How utterly exhausting!

ENOUGH ALREADY!

With that in mind I had to take stock of my life, put me first and decide what my priorities were. Through the lessons learned in AA I came to realize that my number one priority had to be my sobriety. This was a bitter pill for me to swallow and for others to accept. Putting my sobriety ahead of family, friends, and employment seems totally selfish and self-serving, and it certainly was the opposite of how I had spent my prior decades, but upon closer inspection it made complete sense. I had proven to myself in the past that if I return to the bottle I will lose all the things that are dear to me. Gone is the job, gone are relationships, gone are possessions….all gone. So in order that I might be a more complete father, friend, and possible husband, I had to concentrate on sobriety first and foremost. Because of alcohol I had already lost two marriages, two businesses, all of my possessions (twice), and two jobs I loved. The only course of action for me, then, was to stay sober and then I would be able to concentrate on the secondary priorities in my life.

LEAPING INTO ACTION

So how did I go about that? The most obvious change for me was to take the AA program seriously. That meant setting up a schedule that allowed me to attend meetings on a regular basis. I practiced the 12 Steps of AA daily and worked with other alcoholics to help keep them sober. I could go on indefinitely about the program and what I need to continue doing to stay sober, but I want to point out the secondary issues I needed to address. My second step was to weed out of my life negative people and surround myself with sober, positive people. Reinforcement of positive values is crucial if a person is to live a positive life, and that is what I set out to do.

Not only did I find it necessary to eliminate drinkers from my life but also those in the AA program who were not working a good program. Today I have a core support group of close friends. They are people who would do anything for me and know that I would do anything for them, and we share a crucial belief that love and good values are necessary in order to live a life filled with humanness.

But it doesn’t end with choices concerning friendships. I had spent the better part of my life thinking that the grass was greener on the other side of the fence. I would climb that fence, fall off, climb again, fall off, and upon finally reaching the grass discover that there was crab grass and weeds. So off I went looking for another patch of green to explore. I came to realize that the search was endless and ultimately meaningless. The search I should have been doing all along was inside of myself because that was where the answers were, and still are.

SELF-DOUBT WILL ALWAYS BE THERE

The task seemed monumental and I wasn’t sure if I was up to it. I had defined myself by so many different standards that I wasn’t sure I knew how to be me. Who was I before I became a husband? Who was I before fatherhood entered the picture? Who was I before I discovered that wonderful elixir called alcohol? If I didn’t know the answers to those questions how in the world did I expect to reach the goal I had established?

WHO WAS I? WHO AM I?

So began some serious soul-searching. I had to rifle through the memory banks to remember who I was prior to being derailed by life. What did I enjoy doing? Well, I knew I loved hiking and nature for sure. I knew I had always dreamed of writing. I knew that long ago I was a person who was honest and could be trusted. I knew that in days gone by I was a person who cared about others and tried to grasp an outstretched hand that was in need of help.

Close friendships had been important at one time and I had been quite emotional and loved that gentleness and empathy that so defined my character in my youth.

A VISION FOR THE FUTURE

So I now had a path to follow; it was just a matter of re-learning and making that path my priority. My journey of re-birth was made easier because I was no longer married and my son had grown to manhood. I did not have the daily responsibilities that are common for most people so that freed me up to take on the task at hand with singular purpose. Some would call my tunnel-vision obsessive but please remember that I was fighting for my life. I grasped hold of this new path as a drowning man a life preserver and never looked back on my old life.

I am quite certain that many out there do not consider this a realistic journey. Most out there are, as I once was, wired in a different manner. We look for a higher paying job, a bigger home, better car, and on and on we go, where we stop nobody knows. But while we search for a higher level of social status or comfort for our loved ones we are forfeiting time away from what should really be important, the inner well-being of ourselves and our loved ones. I finally reached the point in my life where that was unacceptable, and in order to survive I made drastic changes.

There are those who have told me that they can’t possibly do the same thing, that they have a house payment and club fees and credit cards to pay off and the damn car needs repair and you know what? It will always be that way unless changes are made.

IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE THIS WAY

As a society we seem to have bought into this lifestyle. Few people actually question the purpose of it all or if it is really working for them. My dad worked twenty-five years at a manual labor job he hated; each and every day he got up and worked eight to ten hours at a job he despised, all to provide a better life for his family. Now here is the million dollar question: what is the definition of a better life? My dad evidently defined it as meaning more money for the family, more possessions, more, more and more. I no longer buy into that way of thinking.

For me a better life equates to more quality time with my family and loved ones and more time to pursue that which is important to me. It really is that simple and it really is a matter of priorities.

To order my new Kindles book about Lifestyle Choices go to: http://www.amazon.com/Lifestyle-Choices-ebook/dp/B007ZV9G2U/ref=sr_1_3?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1336064586&sr=1-3

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    • winbo profile image

      winbo 5 years ago

      nice hub!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Winbo, you are a lady of few words. Thank you for those two lovely words and I look forward to your next hub.

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 5 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Well presented and inspirational. Things, jobs, can't make us happy since it begins with the kind of thought process and emotional maturity and will power that you have shown.

    • winbo profile image

      winbo 5 years ago

      ha ha thank you billybuc.

    • Rolly A Chabot profile image

      Rolly A Chabot 5 years ago from Alberta Canada

      Hi Billy... thank you for sharing your journey with us. I too have travelled that road and found my peace in te wilderness of the Yukon rather than meetings. We all face the demon in a different way. After the bottle I took the route of drugs, soft at te beginning then it grew into much harder drugs.

      Rock bottom is a place we all need to hit before we begin to climb out. A wise man once told me it is similar to a grave but in life the grave has both ends kicked out and we have a choice to remain there or slowly climb out.

      So blessed to know that you have found your way brother.

      Many Blessings to you

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You are very welcome winbo!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Xstatic, seeing the words "emotional maturity" in a sentence describing me is a new experience. :) Thank you for dropping by and commenting.

    • albertsj profile image

      jacy albertson 5 years ago from Pittsfield, Ma

      Wow. An other powerful hub. And the first part of kiving for everyone else felt as if you were writing my life story. Of course, however, in each of our, lives, we took different paths...yet the same in some ways. It sounds as if you're past all the "stuff" , and now, realize the true importance in life. Loved ones. And time for yourself. Once again, very inspirational my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rolly, you speak the truth and I appreciate your words and your following. Stay safe and try not to venture off of your path...now that we found the right one it would be a shame to get lost again. :) Peace!

    • profile image

      Ryan 5 years ago

      Well done Bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well, Jacy my friend, I thank you...and I concur...these are not feelings only I have had. I think we are by nature people-pleasers who want to do anything possible to make those around us happy. That is all well and good until we lose our own identity in the process. In case you didn't know it, I appreciate you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ryan, thank you very much, and I am appreciative of you taking the time to read this and comment.

    • cleaner3 profile image

      cleaner3 5 years ago from Pueblo, Colorado

      billy, very inspirational journey in life . I battle my addiction to narcotics every day, thank god for he has shown me how to fight it with my poetry. it really is a day to day battle. great hub!

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 5 years ago from Nepal

      The questions such as who am I, what do I want, where am I going are harder to answer. We can readily analyze others' character. But we need a mirror to know how we look like.

      I loved your point of view. This is an interesting read.

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Calhoun 5 years ago from Western NC

      This hub filled my mind with so many thoughts. I have long since questioned the rat race. I'm in it a little bit: I have a house with a mortgage. I often times wonder how my hubby and I can even get out of THAT. Consumerism - to me - has become the symbol of vile greed that pushes people to buy, buy, buy because they feel that is what's best. But that shiny new car in the driveway keeps them from being able to dig themselves out of debt. Oh, billy, I could go on and on about this. Maybe I'll make a hub about it. Hmm.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      cleaner3, I wish you well and may happiness follow you each and every day of your life. Thank you so much for loyally following my writings.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Vinaya, thank you and I agree with you...that mirror just will not lie to us if we really want the answer. Thank you for dropping by and I appreciate your comment.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      CC, I certainly hope you do make a hub about it because you are a damn good writer who should be heard and heard again. Go for it and in the meantime remember that your continued support means the world to me.

    • Natashalh profile image

      Natasha 5 years ago from Hawaii

      Your hubs always remind me of Walden Pond and the famous quotation about going to the woods to live deliberatly.

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 5 years ago from North-East UK

      Billy, an honest hub and I am glad that you have found your path. Thanks for sharing this with me.

    • sandrabusby profile image

      Sandra Busby 5 years ago from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA

      I am always amazed at how the AA program parallels the work of C. G. Jung. (I know, of course, that Bill consulted Jung before he founded AA, and that Jung told him he couldn't help him.) Anyway, AA has been a part of my life as I have had a father, a husband, and a son who struggled with alcohol, some more successfully than the others. If you are interested in the work of Carl Jung, I can recommend all the books by Robert Johnson, a Jungian analysis. The most pertinent being OWNING YOUR OWN SHADOW and LIVING YOUR UNLIVED LIFE. Best wishes. I'll be following you. Sandra Busby

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Natasha, Thoreau is one of my favorites. Talk about a man ahead of his time. Thank you so much for your faithful following. I appreciate your words and your kindness.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jools, I only know one way to be and that is honest. To do otherwise will mean a return to the old ways and that just will not do. Thank you for taking the time to read my hub.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sandra, I am familiar with those works and I agree with you, there are many parallels in them. Thank you for following along and if you don't mind I'll do the same with you.

    • Crystal Tatum profile image

      Crystal Tatum 5 years ago from Georgia

      Billy, I think you are very inspiring and I love that you figured out what matters and have dedicated yourself to living a meaningful life. I find myself in a very similar position right now, and grappling with how to make the right choices, even with what the right choices are. I'm glad to know there is a different way of doing things and it is possible to change, even when it feels impossible.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Crystal, thank you so much for reading...and you can call me Bill. I wish you well with your decisions and choices; in the end we have to be responsible to ourselves as you well know. Thank you for your lovely comments.

    • thougtforce profile image

      Christina Lornemark 5 years ago from Sweden

      An important message and an honest and personal hub that many can benefit from reading. We tend to connect who we are with our work, our occupation. As if that would tell others who we really are. I have asked myself the question "who am I" many times, but I had not found the answer. I don't feel that I have to change so many things but I would really want to stop meeting expectations from others. I am impressed by your strength and glad you have found your way.

      Voted up, interesting, and useful

      Tina

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      thoughtforce, I appreciate your words. It is so a part of us, trying to meet expectations. For me I either had to break the cycle or die. Once it is a clear choice like that it is amazing how quickly I will act. :) Thank you and I do believe it is time for me to go visit your site.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      You have shared some valuable insights on priorities and adjusting your view on life. It is nice when people notice our success but we should not let other's approval be our motivation. Thank you for sharing. Voted up!

    • angela martinez67 profile image

      Angela Martinez 5 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      beautiful! u just made my morning as i read thru ur hub & see myself in it. i know its not an easy path to choose our priorities simply because the definition of priorities depends on what we really wanted to put things first. family? friends? job? money??? but then ur right, there comes a point in this suffocating & routinary lives we have that we just wanna break free from everything & shout to top of our lungs, enoughhh as we get it on like the old Bon Jovi's famous song that goes...

      It's my life

      It's now or never

      I ain't gonna live forever

      I just wanna live while I'm alive...

      Voted up! Have a good weekend Bill. *huGs*

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you teaches, as always. Maybe we just have to grow a little older before we learn the really valuable lessons in life.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Angela, thank you so much. I love that song by the way. I wish you freedom from whatever is holding you back...if anything...have a great weekend yourself.

    • angela martinez67 profile image

      Angela Martinez 5 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      i should say, thanks to u Bill. have been tryin' to pick up some good points how to start me' life pretty soon before it weighs me down too bad. weekend (if i've no friends that needs my company) or time offs after work has always been a simple "hikikomori" mode for me. i'm ok...hoping to get better.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      And I am hoping that for you as well...what is a hikikomori mode?

    • angela martinez67 profile image

      Angela Martinez 5 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      i'll be fine, thanks again Bill. uhh..well, Hikikomori (????? or ?????, Hikikomori ? means literally "pulling inward, being confined", i.e., "acute social withdrawal") hikikomori means...a feeling of seclusion or drawing away from people, a feeling of enjoying loneliness perhaps...sort of solitary confinement (in my own words)*wink i'm alright tho' Bill, no worries ;)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you for the lesson Angela and I have no doubt that you will be fine.

    • picklesandrufus profile image

      picklesandrufus 5 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      your hubs on this topic speak to the truth of addiction that many of us have experienced in one way or another. Another vote way up!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pickles, it always means so much to me to see that you have taken the time to read my hub and comment. The time is long gone for hiding my alcoholism; now I need to speak out so that hopefully someone will pay attention and possibly learn from my experience. Thank you so much!

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 5 years ago

      Billybuc - I hope you feel the pride in yourself that you are so entitled to! And, I hope you feel it every day! You are a brave, courageous person - your journey was/is not easy - but - the path you chose is stunning! And now you choose to share it - brave again! I choose to tweet it to the world(or the 300 people in it that are considered 'friends') lol..

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      ImKarn, you do me a great service and your words are very kind. Thank you for your comments and I appreciate them greatly. Peace to you! 300 people is a fairly large sampling of the world. :)

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

      What a great victory you have attained. Your writing skill is superb. I am sure you will help many who are suffering with addictions. Thank you for sharing..

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Always, that was a very nice comment. I'm not sure what kind of talent I have in writing but I know it is a passion so I'll keep at it. Thank you so much!

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 5 years ago from Peru, South America

      So true. We have to examine ourselves to discover our priorities then we have to leap into action. Thank you for an insightful hub and for sharing your journey with us.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Vespa, my pleasure, and I'm glad you found something in this that you might use. Thank you so much for following along on my journey.

    • raciniwa profile image

      raciniwa 5 years ago from Naga City, Cebu

      i can feel your misgiving billy, growing up for me and fulfilling the needs of others first was my goal in life until my body couldn't take anymore...i succumbed to depression...giving in to others and forgetting ourselves, leaving it behind along the process, causes our body to suffer, for above all we too have our needs that need to be met...

      this is an inspiring hub and an eye opener...

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Raciniwa, very true indeed; if we do not have our own needs met we will eventually be incapable of happiness. I wish you well and may happiness always be with you.

    • Spirit Whisperer profile image

      Xavier Nathan 5 years ago from Isle of Man

      You continue to spread a very important message through your hubs. I have never read hubs that deal with this subject in such a powerful and convincing manner. You are the wounded healer and he is the best healer of all. Thank you. This hub will also be shared regularly like your others on Facebook and Twitter and I would urge your other followers to do like wise.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Spirit Whisperer, you are a kind soul and kindred spirit and I appreciate your words and your faithful following. Thank you and peace to you today.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 5 years ago from Orlando, FL

      I understand about your definition of "good." Good is basic. I remember one time my District Manager gave me a "good" for a review...well he didn't like my response and he changed his way of using good after that!:)

      I wish you luck with your journey, so far you seem to be doing just great!:)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I had principals do the same thing on my year-end reviews. Made me wonder why they even asked for my input. Thank you and I wish the same for you.

    • profile image

      iamaudraleigh 5 years ago

      Another great hub here Bill!!!

      Very potent what you said here..."I would climb that fence, fall off, climb again, fall off, and upon finally reaching the grass discover that there was crab grass and weeds."

      Voted up!!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Audra, thank you! Every once in awhile I surprise myself. :) I so appreciate you following me and I wish you a wonderful weekend.

    • jonsswagger1978 profile image

      jonsswagger1978 5 years ago from Birmingham Alabama

      My name is Leslie, I am Jon Paul's girlfriend. I am under his account and I was reading other's hubs. I found your hub very inspirational and I went through sort of the same thing but, instead of alcohol mine was a divorce. I have always worried about what others thought of me and I even though I didn't believe in divorce, I got divorced and surprised everyone. I kinda of regretted it at first even went to counseling for a while for some depression but, I am happier now than I have been in a long time and I have met the love of my life and we are planning to get married in the near future. Good luck to you in your endeavors!!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Leslie, thank you for that very personal message. There are times when the right thing to do is very difficult, but for our happiness it has to be done. Best of luck to you and thank you for taking the time to visit.

    • jenntyl99 profile image

      jenntyl99 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Billybuc, your last lines sum up what is most important in life, and that is spending quality time with family and friends, as well as determining what is important to you. I could not agree more with this statement, as we can never get time back on our side so we must cherish what we have now. Great hub!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jeenty, we are kindred spirits. It took me a long time to learn that lesson but it is one I will not forget from now on. Thank you for taking the time to leave a meaningful comment.

    • profile image

      jasper420 5 years ago

      Wow very powerfull enjoyed reading this and got alot out of it.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jasper, I'm so happy that you enjoyed this hub and its message. Thank you so much for your kind words.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      Oh yes billybuc how spot on are you???

      100% and I so agree with you and your values.

      As children we dream;and I think that it is only now that I feel my dreams have come true and hopefully will continue to do.You know one of these Billy so you are spot on there too.

      "I can just smell Apple Tart baking in my Aga and I have to bottle feed my pet lamb whose Mother could not feed him herself.

      He also loves the warmth of this godsend."

      You have also reminded me of some hubs I wrote about my oh so longed for farming life;I'm not sure if I unpublished them for some reason or other;I'll have to have a search;maybe it's time to give them a little makeover and publish them again.

      I vote up again and I would bookmark in with my Special Hubs but I can't from this end.

      Thanks for sharing this one too Billy and this is for all dreams to become reality.

      Take care Billy my dear friend

      Eddy.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eddy, you have no idea how much I have come to look forward to your words each day. Support like yours, coming from such an accomplished writer, is so uplifting for me. Our dreams will come true; of that I have no doubt. We have paid our dues and come out the other end refreshed and focused and in love with life. You are a blessing to me!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      You are so very welcome Billy;we support each other here and thank goodness for this wonderful community.I was going to say 'site' but it's more than that.

      You have given me an idea of starting anoher blog which will link with the rest;I'll let you know when it's up and running.

      Have a great day.

      Eddy.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Fantastic Eddy; I look forward to it. I'm taking a day off from writing hubs and already my brain is erupting with ideas for the future. I'll take care of customers today and tomorrow I'll tear loose from my self-imposed chains and see what comes out.

    • Suzie HQ profile image

      Suzanne Ridgeway 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      What a wonderful inspiring piece Billybuc, I thank you for your honesty that strikes a chord within. I too have spent so much time putting other's ahead of myself in order to be the perfect daughter, sister, partner, friend or boss and loosing my own identity along the stony path. Appreciate your words and look forward to more. Voting up, awesome and sharing.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Suzie, I think most of us have spent way too much time being something for everyone else....I could not find happiness until I finally re-connected with who I was. Thank you so much!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Bill, the timing of this hub is amazing or perhaps kismet? You and I have had recent personal conversations, so I know you're aware of my underlying message.

      What amazes me about reading this today, is I just a few minutes ago posted a poem I wrote last week for a friend's birthday. She's recently divorced (married for 30 years!), having made the decision to leave an emotionally abusive marriage. The message in the poem is to no longer live for who others' want you to be, but to live for yourself and your dreams.

      Kismet, my friend!

    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 4 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      And it is kismet that I am following my new friend, Shauna... "Imagine" that ...! I so totally agree with you both!

      Bill, the more I am learning of you, I see you have your priorities refreshingly straight. Thank you for this share, most inspirational.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Maria, I see you've done your homework! tee hee!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, I did see the poem, although I wasn't able to give it the attention it deserved. I happen to believe in kismet and you and I have it.

      Peace and love,

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Marcoujor, thank you my friend! You will enjoy Sha; she is one of the real people and a dear friend!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      See, Marcoujor, I can't keep Sha off of here. LOL

    • Diana Lee profile image

      Diana L Pierce 4 years ago from Potter County, Pa.

      I admire your self control. It's so encouraging to see it can be accomplished if we try harder to find our own happiness. Positive thinking has been a great help to keep me from falling back to the low self esteem I let rule me most of my life.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Diana, I think we all have done that from time to time. I know I like living in the positive now, much more than the alternative. Thank you for the visit!

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      I know this is an older hub, but I am just reading it. Very interesting how honest you are and willing to share your feelings. I am going to vote up and share.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Carol, thank you for the share. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Honesty is something that took a long time for this boy.

    • sarahshuihan profile image

      Sarah 4 years ago from USA

      This is incredibly inspirational. I admire your determination and how you made sure your priorities are met. I agree with you that too many people get caught up in a life that they think will make them happy, instead of really looking inside. I am going through a similar situation myself. I'm glad I stumbled onto this hub :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sarah, i'm glad you stumbled on this too. :) It took me a long time to come to these realizations, but now that I'm here I wouldn't trade it for any life. Thank you!

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