Freedom to Choose

two stuffed happy face dolls sitting on a bench together

One of my favorite books is Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. It’s a must read. Frankl posits the concept that between a stimulus in our environment and our response lies our ability to choose how we want to respond. It’s the exact opposite of, “The devil made me do it.” It’s also dreadful for those of us who like to blame others for our problems, me included. It means that we are responsible for how we look at the world. If someone yells at us, we can choose to be angry and defensive if we want or we can choose to not take it personally.

What would this actually mean for most of us in our daily lives? It would mean being responsible for both the cause and effect of the circumstances around us. We can look at a tough day as something bad that happens to us or as a challenge that we can overcome. One is likely to drain our energy and the other to increase it. This, however, is easier said than done.

Taking Control of our Responses

So how do we do this? We stop and ask ourselves, “What will be the healthiest way for me to respond to this?” And then we literally choose our response. Choose between being a warrior or being a victim. Why would we want to respond as victims versus warriors? Victims might get more attention, but ultimately they will feel weak and hopeless. Warriors see problems as temporary and as something to overcome. They get stronger, whereas victims get weaker. Stand like Superwoman for a few minutes, and then take on the challenge. What’s the alternative?

Choose between being a warrior or victim. Stand like Superwoman & then take on the challenge. #self-determination Click To Tweet

Choosing our responses makes us more powerful and not at the whim of our nasty mindsets. Catch what you are saying to yourself about challenges and then ask if what you are saying is of benefit to you or anyone else. If not, are you ready to make a change? It takes practice but it’s worth it. Try it today.


Lisa Kaplin Psy. D. CPC

Lisa Kaplin Psy. D. PCC

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Smart Women, Inspired Lives: How to Be Happy & Confident

by Dr. Lisa Kaplin
Do you long for more energy? Do you wish you could walk into any room and feel happy and confident? Do you simply want to enjoy your life more – personally and professionally? You can. Too many women today are doing more, but feeling less satisfied. Life doesn’t have to be that way. With small tweaks and simple strategies, you can enjoy a great life with soaring self-confidence, a good sense of well-being, and plenty of laughter. This easy-to-read yet profoundly impactful book will be all you need to join the tribe of smart women living inspired lives. Your life gets better right now.

About Lisa Kaplin, Psy. D, PCC

headshot of Lisa KaplinCertified Life Coach and Psychologist at Smart Women Inspired Lives.

I’m the proud owner of Smart Women Inspired Lives, where I help overwhelmed and exhausted women move from the feeling of being “stuck” into a life filled with calm, confidence, and joy. In addition to the posts and articles I write, I offer individual and group life coaching sessions, classes and speaking engagement opportunities.


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Gain the Confidence You’ve Always Wanted

Are you stuck in a place where you don’t feel good about yourself, feel stuck, and don’t feel happy or fulfilled?  Whatever it is that keeps you from happiness can be solved.  It’s true! And it can usually be solved within a short amount of time.

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