Lessons We Can Learn From Nature: The Superpower of Choice

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Jellyfish can’t choose their behavior but they are happy mindlessly floating around with no direction. Illustration by Everestt.

All Organisms Have Superpowers

The unifying principle amongst all these animals, however, is that they don’t have a choice in their superpowers. Nearly all organisms are born with a few basic abilities and lack the power to do anything differently. Except for humans. Human beings have the best superpower of all; the power of choice. The power to create. The power to be anything we want to be.

A bear might see a bird fly away and wish it could fly knowing it will never be able to. Humans see the same thing and choose to create that for themselves in the form of an airplane, hang glider, wing suit, etc. A fish sees an electric eel electrocute another fish and wishes it could electrocute the eel right back to save its fish friend, but a human sees that and chooses to create a taser or a stun gun. In fact, we see a fish breathing underwater in the first place and choose to create scuba gear. The list goes on and on but the point is that we can choose to create anything we want in this world, which is pretty much the power of the gods.

But ironically most humans see themselves as animals and plants being victims to their limited mindsets. Having the power of choice is like getting granted a wish from a genie and wishing for infinitely more wishes. You could wish for the brain of an animal and only be able to do a few basic behaviors to survive and reproduce, or you could wish for a human brain and unlock all the doors of possibility beyond just survival and reproduction.

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Just a fish doing simple fish things. Not a bad life. But humans need more than that in my opinion. Photo by @Matthew_T_Rader on Unsplash

Don’t Make Excuses or Life Will Excuse You

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It was really difficult to learn how to find bird nests for the research project I was woking on but with lots of daily practice and effort I eventually became an expert and got to see these beautiful newborn Wrentit birds up close on a private wildlife reserve comepletely alone, just me and nature. These were some of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had to date but it took a lot of effort (including a college degree) to get there. Photo by Everestt.

We Choose Our Actions

We have to first recognize where we have been living on autopilot and to be realistic about how much effort is required to take back control of the autopilot system. Here are a few basic factors to contemplate:

~Age: The older you are the more ingrained your behaviors are and thus more effort will be required to enact radical change in your life. It’s harder to teach an old dog new tricks but it’s still a dog and therefore it can always learn new tricks.

~Passion: If you don’t really care to change then it’s going to be really hard to actually change. You have to CHOOSE to take action to create your new life. If you take an action towards bettering yourself then you care and you need to hold on to that feeling.

~Tools: Do you have access to the tools you need to change? Well if you’re reading this then that means you have a smart phone or a computer or some sort of highly technologically advanced device which also means you have access to YouTube, Apps, etc which are some of the best tools ever invented for reinventing yourself as you choose to create your new self. If you don’t have access to all the tools you need then you’ll have to put in a lot more effort to make the money to acquire the tools you need, but often times there are options that don’t require as much money as you might think.

I’m a passionate music producer and one of the best lessons I’ve learned about producing music is that it has very little to do with the equipment, but has everything to do with learning how to be creative and to practice using the equipment as much as possible. So as long as you can get your hands on some sort of tool to allow you to practice the changes you want to make, then its up to you to put in the time and effort to learn it which brings me to my next point.

~Time: Do you have a family, do you have a soul sucking job, do you have a million obligations and feel like you literally have zero time to choose to do something differently? Chances are you can find at least one hour a day to take an action towards learning your new skills. If not, then you might want to consider radically changing your situation to make time for your new self. This ties back to the passion factor. If you really care to change yourself more than anything else then you will find a way to reorganize your life even if that means choosing to find a new job or waking up an hour earlier or giving up other unproductive activities and friends that are distracting you from becoming your next best version.

Based on these factors, it will be more or less difficult for you to choose your actions wisely and take the steps necessary to creating your new life. Fortunately, all it takes is a little bit of daily effort. You don’t have to quit your job and go full time into learning your new skills, although if you have the money to do that then go for it because the more time you spend taking the actions to become your new self, the faster it’ll be achieved. But for most people, spending just an hour a day every day for years will eventually accumulate in you being a brand new you.

Hearing that it might take years to become who you want to be might sound discouraging but it’s actually not discouraging at all. Having a realistic outlook on your expectations should be encouraging and hopeful because then you won’t be disappointed when you’ve only made a little bit of progress in a few months. It’s not about how fast you achieve something, it’s about actually achieving something before you die. Luckily, humans have a pretty long life span so a few years really isn’t that long. If you completely reinvent yourself every few years then you’ll achieve farrrrrr more than most people will ever achieve by being on autopilot for 40 years.

So realize in this moment that you are a superhero. You have the best superpower that any organism could ever dream of having. You have the power of the gods. You have the power to create the life you’ve always dreamed of. You’ve been granted a human brain, instead of a chicken brain. You don’t have to be a slave to your subconscious program. Choose to take advantage of your power to create. Choose to be the authentic you.

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Photo by Mai Moeslund on Unsplash

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