Episode 135: Getting the Most from Your Life ExperienceDec 02, 2021
What is life for? And what does God want us to do with it? I don’t pretend to have all the answers. But I want to offer some thoughts to help you reconcile the suffering and the opportunity for growth that exists in your earth life experience.
We are here to become and progress like God does. And what defines God? The perfect ability to choose. The perfectly managed mind. There is no one better than him at choosing. And we are here to learn how to choose like God chooses, not just in the theoretical, but in the practical. Within reality. Not just to survive, but grow and thrive.
And the mechanism of that growth is all here built into this earth life experience.
So what is here? Why is this earth experience perfectly designed to help us master the skill of choice?
- We are subject to natural law, which introduces trouble and pain and difficulty and consequences into our experience.
- We have opposition - provided by our brains.
- We have agency.
Here we are in a world out of our control. But the only thing we need to learn to control is us. All we can control is our experience of these things - and we can do that with the choices in our mind.
Welcome to the 100% Awesome Podcast with April Price. You might not know it, but every result in your life is 100% because of the thought you think. And that, my friends, is 100% awesome.
Hello, podcast universe. Welcome to episode 135 of the 100% Awesome Podcast. I'm April Price and I want to welcome you to December. Isn't it amazing? Like time just keeps passing, right? And I'm just reminded that like here we are in December, but really, our lives are just made up of individual days and those days add up. Here we are at the end of another year, but we got here just one day at a time. And of course, like our calendar and the way we divide up our time, and our years, and our months, and all of that is just arbitrary, like it's just our way of organizing the days that we have here on the planet. And so, I just want to offer you that it's the individual days that matter, the things that we do in those individual days that matter.
Like so many times, our brain wants to look at like the long term, like the big picture. And really, everything in our life is happening on a micro level on a daily basis, in the individual choices we are making, the choices that you make every day, every minute, every hour of that day. Particularly the choices that you are making in your own mind, minute by minute are what are creating your life experience? And we have to do something different in that moment of choice in those tiny moments of choice in our mind.
We have to think something different if we want like the the whole result of our life to be different than it is. So, I really want to invite all of you that want something different to decide that it's time to think differently about your life right now in this minute, right? In the next minute, right there. We're not going to let another minute, another day, another month, or another year passed by without intentionally choosing what we want to think.
And to help you with that, I just want you to know that my next coaching group starts in a month the first week of January. And you have probably, if you've been listening to this podcast, you've probably heard me offer my coaching group, and probably more than once you have even thought about making the choice to join that program. And for one reason or another, you have talked yourself out of it, right? Like your brain has told you now is not a good time, I should be able to do this on my own. It costs too much money. I need to do X, Y and Z first and prove that I can get changed, and that I deserve to like, sign up for coaching and spend this money on myself and my development.
Like, maybe your brain has said like, it's too hard, or it won't work for me, or it just can't be as easy as April makes it sound, or even like it works for her but like she's different than me, she's she is built differently. Or her brain works differently, or she's got it more together, which is like, actually, if you've listened to the podcast, you don't think that for sure, right? But some other kind of excuse that your brain has given you, and I just want to offer you that, like now is the time to choose for yourself, not what your brain wants, but what you want.
This is your life. The days are passing, the moments are passing and they all count. Now, is the time to change the story. Now is the time to change the thought. That thought that you're thinking right now is going to turn into a result in your life and you want to be intentional about it. Now is the time to change the trajectory and what's possible for you in your life. And so I want to invite you personally to join my program, to learn about yourself, to understand your brain and to change the rest of your life so you can sign up for the group right now. Like I said, the group starts in January, but the doors are opening and it will fill up quickly. There are already people that have taken a spot, and I keep that group small and limited. So, if you have been thinking about working with me for a long time, and kind of wrestling your brain about it, now is the time to make that choice and to choose what you want, okay? This group is going to be amazing. And if you aren't sure if coaching can help you, I would love to offer you a free coaching call. You can get on that call, and I will show you how a simple shift in your thinking changes everything, and you're going to get immediate relief as we talk on that call,, and you're going to just see how much is really possible for you to change when you change your thoughts.
So, you can go to my website to do both of those things, to sign up for the call or to join the group aprilpricecoaching.com and all of that information is on there. So, I just want to really encourage you to choose something different today. Right this moment, like it's going to happen a thought at a time your life is created, a thought at a time. And right now I want you to choose the thought that coaching is for you, that you get to create your life. And coaching is one tool that will help you do that better than any other tool I know.
Okay, so all of that brings me to our episode today, and I am so excited about this. I have been like thinking about some things that I really want to share with you. I want to offer you some thoughts that I think can have a really powerful impact on the way you see your entire Earth life experience. What you're doing here, and like that will kind of shift and change the way that you are approaching it and living your life. And it kind of came out of a conversation that I had recently with one of my clients who's going through some really difficult things. And she was just like saying, like, when is life going to be back to normal? Like, what is the point of all this trouble, and heartache, and suffering? And like, what is the exit strategy here? Like, do you just have to keep struggling, and keep trying to choose to think positively until I can, like escape this life, and go back to heaven where I can rest, and like, enter the heavenly spot, right?
Like she was just like, what is the point of all this right? And I know that she is not alone in her question. Like in so many ways like we are all lost, we are all confused. We are all like foreigners down here on Earth trying to create meaning from our lives. And on top of all that, this is a sphere of suffering. As it says in a job like man is born into trouble. This is a fallen world subject to natural law, and there is like pain involved in that. So, how do we make sense of all this? And at the same time that we are in the middle of that struggle, we also know we have a sense anyway that so much is required of us while we are here. Like, we know that this Earth-life experience is finite, and that there are certain things we came to learn, and that learning was the whole point of this whole creation. And so, then how do we make sure we're learning those things? How do we measure up to the responsibility of just being here, and being alive? And what is it that God wants us to do with our time here?
Okay, so I want to just start at the beginning with the question that, like every human has encountered, why are we here? Why am I here? Like it is just such a simple but universal human question. Why are we here? Now, there are a lot of answers to that, but ultimately I think we are here to grow up. I think we are here to learn to become like our Heavenly Father. We are his children. He is our father. And just like I didn't have children to just have children forever. I had children so that they could come, and grow up, and create their own lives so that they could have experiences as they build their own families, their own lives and contribute in the world in their own amazing, creative, powerful ways.
In the same way, I don't believe God has children just so that we can be his children forever. He knows that there is so much more than that. And as his children, we have the same potential for creation, and growth, and power, and glory, and love, and joy as he has. As the scriptures say, all that the father has is available to us. But in order to live a life like God does, we have to be like him. We have to grow up and be like him. And what is God like? I think God is perfect at choosing. He is perfect at choosing in every situation, no matter what happens, no matter what we as his children do. He is perfect at choosing his experience and he is perfect at knowing, and obeying natural law. He understands natural law, and he does all of his work, all of his creation exercises, all of his power within the bounds of those natural laws.
And what I want you to understand is that God doesn't control everything. Instead, God controls himself perfectly, and that is what makes him God. And for us to develop and become like him so that we can live an eternal life like he does, we have to have those same skills, not the skill of controlling everything, but the skill of being able to control ourselves, to be able to choose perfectly, to be able to choose for ourselves and to be so good at that choosing that we can create anything. And I really want you to think about this, God is the most powerful being in the universe, but he doesn't use his power to control us, even though, like, really and truly, it could be argued that it might be better if he did right. Like the humans really make a mess of things. You hurt each other. We create suffering for each other, but he doesn't control that. He doesn't control us. He doesn't intervene, right? Like, I think about this every time I see a movie about war, I hear a story about human suffering, like, I'm always just amazed that the actions of very few can create pain for so many, can create pain worldwide, even in like, I can't help. Like when I watch a movie about World War Two, or I see a documentary about nine eleven about like how things could have been so different if the agency of just a few people could be controlled and changed, right? And like, gosh, for that matter, just in my own life, like how much pain and suffering could be alleviated in the world just in my own sphere.
If God controlled me and made my choices for me, like the people in my life would have less suffering for sure. But he doesn't intervene. He doesn't control us. Instead, he controls himself. He controls his own thoughts, his own feelings, his own actions. He doesn't have to control my actions so that he can love me, instead, he controls his own thoughts so that he can love me, no matter what I choose. This is so powerful to understand, right? God is powerful because he can perfectly control himself instead of needing to control everything else instead of needing to control us or the laws of nature, right? Like, we live in a reality in a fallen world where there are natural consequences and where there are weather patterns that create disaster and death, there are viruses that create suffering and loss. There are laws of motion that we can use. They're helpful, they get us places when we use them for us. But they also can create accidents, can create pain and suffering and death and all those things. And notice how God doesn't control any of that. He doesn't intervene with the laws of nature, even in the face of our suffering. Because he is controlling himself within those natural laws. He doesn't subvert those laws to reach his purposes. He uses those laws and obeys those laws to achieve his purposes.
God is perfect at managing his own thoughts and feelings. And he's also perfect at knowing and obeying the laws of nature of the universe and using those to create. And this is what this is, his gift to us, he created this life experience for us. And offering to us the very same opportunity to learn, to choose to master our ability to choose like he does. Like, he put us here in a world that we cannot control. Think about this, he's trying to teach us how to choose. And so, here we are in a world that we cannot control so that we can learn to choose our experience, to control the things we can, which is just us. And when we master that, then we can have like more power, right? Because we won't use it to control other things and things outside of us. We will just like have mastered controlling ourselves, right? Like we are here in a world that we cannot control. Now, God could control it, but he doesn't because he has learned to control himself. And we are here again, we can't control it, and that is for our good. That is for our benefit because it sets us up in a situation in which we can practice choosing where we must be required to control ourselves because we cannot control the world, we must learn to control ourselves.
And that is what this Earth-life experience, that's what this opportunity presents to us. In this world subject to natural law in this world where other people get to choose and their choices impact you and you can't control any of that. In this world, you are presented the perfect opportunity for you to learn the lesson you came to learn, to choose for yourself, to control yourself, to learn, to choose. In fact, like God chooses to control what you think, what you feel, what you do. When you can't control anything else so that some day millennia from now, eternity from now, when you can control more like God does, you will do it by controlling yourself. By what you think, by what you feel, by what you do like as you get better at the skill of choosing, the more you become like God and the more power you have in your own life to create the experience you want, and that on a micro level is preparing you for things so much greater for the life that God lives.
This is what God is offering us, this is what this is, why we have the suffering, this is why we have agency, we have a chance here to practice choosing so that we can become more like, can we have a chance to grow up? We have a chance to grow in capacity and creative power by practicing choosing in a world that we cannot control. And the better we get at that, the more we become like him.
So, I want to give you a few examples of this so that you can really like get your mind around it. So, the other day, I heard this interview with Jason Caldwell. Jason Caldwell is an open ocean rower. He's rowed across the Atlantic Ocean twice like, wrote a rowboat you guys from the Canary Islands off the coast of Spain to Antigua in the Caribbean. Now, normally when they do these races, you do it with like a four man team, right? Two of you row at a time, and while the other two are sleeping, and then you switch off and you row around the clock from Spain to the Caribbean, two hours on, two hours off you row for two hours and then you rest for two hours.
And the first time that he rowed across the Atlantic, actually two of his teammates on the boat had to be evacuated. So, he and his friend did the whole thing alone. The second time, he rode a four man team, and beat the world record for this ocean crossing. He's also rowed across the Pacific, from Monterey Bay in California to Hawaii, in a rowboat on the ocean, with huge ocean swells, and storms, and weather, and seasickness and all the things. And like they estimate for this Atlantic row that it takes more than one and a half million strokes during a race to get from Spain to Antigua, and the rowers are burning like 5000 calories a day, they cannot walk by the time it's over because their leg muscles atrophy so much. They've been sitting in that boat and then they walk three steps over to the bunk to sleep, and then back to the oars, right back to their positions. And their bodies just don't use their leg muscles and their bodies start burning all those muscles for fuel. And in the interview, he talked about how exhausting, how bad it hurt, like because of sitting in one position, making the same movements over and over again and the salt water right? They would get sores on their butts and their ankles in their hands.
Like, remember when I talked to you about Ross Edgley about swimming in Great Britain, and the sores he got because of the exposure to the saltwater and those repetitious movements? Right? And so, at one point in this interview, Jason Caldwell was talking about the excruciating nature of this adventure, right? And he was talking about all the preparations they were making for the boat and everything and getting ready for it. And and then he kind of just casually says, like, so like, finally, we were ready when he said all that was left was the suffering. And like, that's really what it was, right? Like in order to do this thing, he was going to have to be in immense amounts of suffering, all of which his brain was going to like use against him to get him to stop like his brain all the way across the ocean was going to be relentless in its petitions to get him to stop, to rest, to give up, to just be evacuated, right? His brain over, and over, and over would ask him, like, what in the world are we doing here? And they would tell him over and over that none of that mattered. Tell him he didn't have to do any of this. Why was he out here in the middle of the ocean, in the middle of the night in a rowboat with open wounds and like tendons on his hands that were stuck in a claw position because the constant pulling motion, he can no longer straighten his hands, right?
But here's the thing, this is the natural law of rowing the ocean. If you row the Atlantic, it's going to take a million and a half strokes, and the ocean is made of saltwater. You're going to get open sores, and sitting in a rowboat for two hours on and two hours off is going to wreak havoc on the human body, that is natural law. And because Jason Caldwell is a human, he cannot magic any of that away to reach his goal because Jason Caldwell is a human, he only has one choice if he wants to do this thing. He has to master his mind. He has to conquer his brain. He has to choose what he wants. Despite the relentless protests of his brain to be able to keep going and to be able to complete this goal. And the very fact that Jason Caldwell cannot control natural law, he cannot manipulate the elements and change the tides or the weather, or turn so water into freshwater works in his favor.
If the goal is to learn, to choose, if the goal is to master himself, if the goal is to like, acquire the ability to not control the world but to control himself. And listen, you might be saying like, yeah, April, but I'm not going to row across the Atlantic, and I get it. But in so many ways, just in your regular life, you're being presented with opportunities to learn, to control yourself. Like, I was thinking about my pregnancies and my pregnancies I've told you before we're just like, very, very difficult. I was so sick, and just almost nonfunctional, and so miserable. And like, if I had had the power to, I would have like magic to that away. Like, I'm just being honest with you, like, if I could have erased it, if I had the power to, like, subvert natural law and get around it, I would have done anything to do that, right? Because I had not learned to manage myself and manage my brain through that suffering. I just would have wanted to change the natural law, right?
But like because I can't change the world, because I can't change the law, and I can't change how my body reacts to pregnancy hormones because I can't control that, instead, I have to figure out how I am going to meet this challenge within myself. And that is the power of our Earth-life experience, like we have to come here and experience like the affects of natural law, the things that happen in our body, the things that the disasters, the things that happen in the world, the things that we cannot control so that we learn to manage ourselves, find our own way through, find our own happiness, find our own joy, find the way that we will manage and overcome those challenges without changing the circumstance itself, without controlling those natural laws.
Same with other people, right? Other people get to come, and they get to act, and they get to behave how they want. And if we could, we would love to just go in and control them. We would love to change their behaviors in the way they show up, in the way they treat us. But like God doesn't do that. Even though I guess technically he could. He could control me, but he doesn't do that. Instead, he controls himself, and he manages his own mind with what he wants to think about me. He manages his own emotions about me, like regardless of my actions. And that is the practice that we are doing as we interact with other humans, right? L
Like, this experience is so perfectly designed for us to practice choosing because we cannot control any of it, we can't control other people and we can't control the things that happen to us. But we learn the lesson of controlling us. Managing our own mental and emotional lives so that we can handle any circumstance presented to us. All of this exists so that you can exercise your agency to control what you can, which is all inside of you, which is your thoughts, and feelings, and actions. Everything that is coming from your interpretation of your experience. You exercise your agency with the choices in your mind. Your brain provides the opposition that makes that choice challenging. That that offers an alternative that on default, that like feels so much easier and so much more natural.
And so, as you go against that natural default choice that your brain is offering you, you are strengthening your ability to choose. And in that way, you are becoming more like God, who has the perfect ability to choose. Every time you choose what you want over what your brain wants, you are expanding your capacity and your skill to choose. And like your life is going to present moment, after moment, after moment for you to practice doing this. People are going to use their agency and it's going to impact you. Natural Law is going to create circumstances that are hard and challenging. Each of us and your brain is going to find the problems in all of that and think the answers to your happiness and your power are controlling all of that. The answers are outside of you, and they are not. They are inside of you. They are available to you, by the way, you choose to think about what happens here, what happens to you the way. Like all of that is determined inside of you on the way that you insist on making your choice over what your brain wants over that easy default response of your brain. And that is what will allow you to become more like your heavenly parents.
And so, this is why I love coaching, because for me, it revealed the true nature of my choice to me, it gave me the awareness of the choices I was making unknowingly the the choices that my brain was just offering me and I was just going with it. It gave me the power to interrupt the default choices of my brain and take an active role in creating the life I wanted in creating the experience I wanted in, in making me better at the skill of choosing. Like, I feel like coaching and the skills that I've learned, and like all of these principles that I come out here and I tell you about, I feel like it revealed the reality of my life experience. To me, what was really happening down here, what I was really doing day in and day out. And most importantly, it gave me the skills and the tools to be able to, like, get better at it, to get better at choosing in a practical way.
So, to give you an example of that, I just want to like kind of think about marriage for a minute. Okay, so David and I fell in love, right? And and we thought, like at the time, I just thought like, Oh, this is the way to be happy, right? Like, the way to be happy is to be with the person that I love all the time, right? However, what we were really covenanting to do when we agreed to get married was we were covnenting practice, making the hardest possible choice together. And the hardest possible choice that any of us makes, is love. And the reason that is so hard is because our brain is always offering us the opposite. It's always offering irritation, and anger, and frustration, and and betrayal, and resentment and all of that, right? So, as David and I got married, like what we were covenanting to do here on this Earth-life experience is to experience all of this experience the natural world together, experience each other's agency and the choices each other would make, right? And in that we would then be able to practice together, making the hardest choice of choosing love.
And for so many years in my marriage, I didn't know how to do that. Like, I've wanted to do it, I wanted to love. I wanted to choose like God did, I wanted to choose love, but I didn't know how. Instead, I just found myself nagging, and resenting, and complaining, and blaming. And then I would just hate myself for all of that because like I, I loved him, and and I wanted to do this with him. And yet I just couldn't figure out how to like, change the way I was making the choices I was. And coaching showed me how just showed me that every time I'm not feeling love, it's because I'm choosing a thought that isn't creating love for me, and that's 100% on me.
It doesn't have anything to do with him. It doesn't have anything to do with his agency or his choices. It doesn't have anything to do with the difficulty we are facing. Whatever, like natural law is at play that's creating like sickness, or or accidents, or like, you know, entropy when the dishwasher breaks or whatever. Like, it just showed me that my power to choose was there all the time in my own mind, I just didn't realize it. And coaching showed that to me. It revealed the reality to me, and it showed me how to choose something different.
Okay, so that's just one example I can think of so many in my life, right? Like I was thinking about my body, and I was thinking about the changes that I have made in my body to like lose weight and to be able to, like, really increase my strength. And like my body was always following natural law. I think it just was like, like, first of all, the cancer that grew in my body was following natural law, that was like an alteration in the in the cellular structure. And then that cell expanded and like multiplied and created a malignancy right like our bodies are always following natural law. And like when I was out of shape and heavier than I wanted to be, like again, my body was just following natural law, like based on like inputs and outputs, right? But when I got better at choosing what I wanted instead of what my brain wanted, I could use natural law to create a reality that I wanted and that, you guys is what we are learning here.
We are learning to choose in order to create the reality we want, whether it's in a relationship, whether it's in our body, whether it's in our money, like all of that is created because of what we are choosing in our minds. You are here in the work. This life is presenting the work of becoming like God every single day, every single day, every single moment you have an opportunity to choose. And that is the work that we all have to do to learn, to choose like he does when we learn to choose like he does. We have to do it in a reality because he is choosing in a reality. God is not making his choices in the absence of circumstances, but he's making his choices in the presence of all the circumstances. It's not like he's removed into this bubble, where it's really easy to choose because like, nothing bad ever happens. But in fact, all the bad things happen in front of God. He sees all of our suffering. He sees all the effects of natural light.
He sees all the affects of people exercising their agency, and he doesn't intervene because he's managing his own mind about it. He is not removed from reality. He's choosing to love us right now as he sees our actual choices as he sees was actually happening. I read a speech by Francine Benyon the other day, and she says it better than I can, she says. If we are to be like God, we cannot live forever in fear that we may meet something that will scare us or that will hurt us. We have to be able, as he is, to meet what comes of others agency and of living in a lawful universe that allows creation of a habitable planet only when it allows also the difficulties that come in natural operations of such a planet, right?
Like Christ's work, I want you to think about his work to love he did in the presence of the horror, in the presence of our mess, in the presence of the ugliness. His love was not removed from that. He wasn't loving, like in theory, away from all of our mess and all of our mistakes, right? His work was loving us in all of our mess, in all of the mistakes and life is presenting the very same opportunity to you, for you to learn, to choose with in the reality of pain, of sorrow, of suffering, of other people's choices. Things don't have to be perfect for you to be happy or to love other people. The fact that it isn't perfect and that people are a mess and hard to love is the very mechanism you need to learn to choose like God does. This is what God does. He makes his choices in the face of our choices, right? He cannot love us. He cannot watch us. He cannot see us here and be comfortable all the time. But he has learned to manage his own experience of that. And that's what makes him God. He knows how to choose his experience, regardless of what we choose. And that is what we came to learn.
To learn, to act and not be acted upon when bad things happen, when other people act in ways that we don't agree with when our brain says no and I don't want to. And we decide to do it anyway. All of this is learning to choose for ourselves. And of course, I think the very best way to learn to do that is through coaching. You know, my program is called Made for More and the like little subtitle says, get the most out of this life and the next. And they just want you to know that I truly believe that. Like, yes, as you learn to choose, this life gets fuller, it gets more enjoyable and kids more loving, more opportunities to exercise your capacity. Open up to you. Your relationships get sweeter. Your reality gets more enjoyable. But it doesn't end there. These are skills that impact eternity. These are skills that allow you to better exercise your agency and choose like God does. You have everything you need inside of you to fulfill that eternal destiny and grow up to be like your heavenly parents? And that, my friends, is 100% awesome! I love you for listening, and I'll see you next week.
The next round of my coaching program Made for More starts the first week in January, and I want you to be a part of it in coaching. I will show you the simple way to change your brain, to create more joy, more love and more accomplishment in your life. Your Earth-life experience is precious and finite, and there is so much more available to every one of us in this life and the next, and I would love to show you how to get it. Go to aprilpricecoaching.com to sign up.
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