Destiny Or Decision?

decision or destiny?I was recently told “You are very much a daughter of destiny.”

It’s an interesting statement. It begs the question; Are our experiences and life-events destined or are they a result of our own decisions?

It’s a little of both, do you agree? When we are faced with a ‘big’ decision in life, typically we mull it over for a long while before finally pulling the trigger. We don’t normally make a hasty decision that we understand to have long lasting consequences. On the other hand, we are sometimes forced to make a quick decision that may have great impact. For example, let’s say your spouse has a job offer in another city, clear across the country. Now, you’re forced to make an important decision within a short time. Either way, our decisions large, small, hasty OR deliberate have a bearing on our future (unless we’re talking about which flavor ice cream to choose).

You probably know where I’m going with this. Divorce. Yes, one of the biggest decisions a person can make with life long ramifications. Some good and some not so good. Maybe it wasn’t your decision. If it wasn’t yours to make does this experience fall under the destiny category?

des·ti·ny
ˈdestinē
noun
the events that will necessarily happen to a particular person or thing in the future.
  1. “she was unable to control her own destiny”
    • the hidden power believed to control what will happen in the future; fate.
      “he believes in destiny”
      2. a predetermined course of events often held to be an irresistible power or agency

     

    Have you ever heard someone refer to someone else’s problems as their own ‘fault’?

    “She chose to ___________, so she deserves what she had coming.” OR “Well, I guess she should have thought of that before __________.”

    I consider that sort of talk…kind of gossipy, victim blaming. Who are we to judge someone else’s problems? Furthermore, I don’t believe our problems are 100% due to our own decisions. There are too many factors involved in our life events to isolate one decision and make IT the sole cause.

    I’m not saying we shouldn’t take responsibility for our challenges, mistakes or decisions. We definitely need to take responsibility and mitigate damages or losses where we can. However, there are many situations that don’t turn out the way we envisioned when we made that decision in good faith. Sometimes we don’t even understand why things are happening. We question God or a higher power and ask why?

    This is where destiny comes into the picture.

    We cannot possibly understand our unfortunate events or difficulties until we’ve passed through them. In hindsight everything is 20/20 as they say. Once you reach that point, you couldn’t imagine your life without that experience or piece of the puzzle, no matter how difficult it was. Why something happened becomes clear one day and we finally have the answer.

    When shit happens or destiny calls (a nicer way to put it) we can only take control of our own reactions and do our best to make decisions we think are right for us and our future. How things turn out consist of many variables and therefore are not completely within our creations.

    Have you felt the hand of destiny in your life or are you in full control of the outcome so far?

    In my book, I write about an extraordinary interaction that I encountered on the beach. It was an example of the Universe giving me direction through a stranger. A conversation was exchanged that helped me make a decision I was struggling with. The conversation was about love.

    This confirms my belief that life experiences and outcomes are about BOTH our decisions and destiny.

    WE make it happen BUT things happen to us. We act and others REact. We suffer and then we UNDERSTAND. It’s all about balance, faith, choices, action and fate…

    “A person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it.” Jean de La Fontaine

     

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36 Replies to “Destiny Or Decision?”

  1. Before I read the end I was going to write it. I believe it’s BOTH destiny and decisions. I truly do. I always have. And it’s an odd mix. Like chicken or the egg?
    On a side(ish) note, my friends got divorced so quickly last year and I wonder sometimes if they meant to do it. Like.. did they not realize how permanent it might be?

    1. Hi Tamara, great analogy. The chicken or the egg…Divorce usually takes longer than we expect so it must be a bit shocking to get it done quickly. I always say it’s a process and not an event. The advantage to getting it done quickly is that there tends to be less fighting and bitterness. Hopefully that is true for your friends. 🙂

  2. –I believe in destiny.
    I believe we are meant to meet the people we are meant to meet, experience what we are meant to experience, and that God will utilize us with His ultimate plan. I DO NOT believe in coincidence. NO NO No
    I believe God has GREAT plans for you, Lisa! xxx

    1. Hi Kim,

      Me, too. Some things are just meant to be and we don’t know why until after. Aw, thank you, Kim! xoxo

  3. I’ve made many decisions or choices in life that haven’t turned out as intended. I agree with you that sometimes the only part of life we can control is how we react to the challenges we would have never chosen to experience.

    1. Hi Vanessa, I think our decisions, no matter how well thought out can take us somewhere unexpected. Our reactions are 90% of the equation. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts!

  4. Hi Lisa,

    There was a time when I didn’t believe that destiny can change our decisions or give some unwanted twist to our life. I would scoff at those who blamed the destiny for their misfortunes. I didn’t even believe the famous dictum…”youth is vain”…

    Life changes our perspectives, molds us through its turbulent storms and we look around mutely when we see destiny stepping in! All those self-beliefs and convictions go out of the window, unawares!

    There is no doubt that destiny meets us on the road to give us a rude shock. We shrug it off but can’t shun it as it is intertwined so weirdly that we bruise our own selves if we try to avoid it.

    You have conveyed this harsh truth so well… wonderfully told story. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Hi Balroop, I like how you’ve described destiny. First it’s a nudge then if that’s ignored it can be a rude shock as you say. Thank you, Balroop!

  5. Hi Lisa,

    Wonderful post indeed 🙂

    I think our life is a combination of both – destiny and the decisions we make in our life, sometimes they turn out bad, and sometimes good. Your post reminds me of the life-threatening accident I’d had a few years ago – was it destined? Or perhaps I was destined to live as my work on this Earth isn’t over, nor my responsibilities.

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

    1. Hi Harleena, I didn’t realize you had a serious accident! I’m happy to see that you’ve recovered so well and yes, you were meant to finish your work here. Have a nice week!

  6. I can’t agree more with you Lisa. I do believe in Destiny. Things do happen for a reason. We meet people who help us realize that it’s time to make a choice, whatever this choice is. We find books that talk to us at the right moment. We learn and remember who we are and what we want in this life.

    Destiny knocked on the door and I took a life-changing decision 3 years ago. It felt like the most painful one at the time it happened. Today I know some angel help me to leave the situation that was destroying my life and myself. I am feeling blessed and happy for this.

    Much love from Paris Lisa.

    1. Marie, that is amazing. I believe in spirit guides or better known as angels. It’s the most painful decisions that are often the best ones. You made the right choice! Thanks for sharing your experience, Marie. I know your story will inspire many 🙂

  7. Hey Lisa,

    You are so spot on with this post, just like your others. Decisions are definitely hard to make however, isn’t our path (our destiny) already paved out for us?

    Thanks for sharing!

    B

    1. Thank you, Bren! I think in many cases it is. Our decisions help manifest our path. I love these kind of discussions and hearing everybody’s experiences and opinions.

  8. I made the choice to leave my marriage…so I can’t say it was fated to happen. I can’t imagine what was fated to happen if I had stayed though.

    1. Good point, Liv. Sometimes things happen leading up to that decision that really reinforce that you’re making the right one. 🙂

  9. Wonderful question, Lisa. I agree with you on others blaming others that on decisions that they made. We are not all perfect and don’t have all the answers in the world, and sometimes we simply make decisions because we are innocent and don’t know better. I really hate saying, “I told you so” to someone – mainly because I hate bringing them down and also because perhaps this negative outcome might actually turn out to be a good experience for them.

    As for which one I believe, I suppose a bit of both. When I was a kid, I wrote a lot and wanted to be a writer and published author. When I was a teenager, I had no time to write but fell out of it, but still the passion to write burned inside me. A few years ago, I was feeling restless and had time on my hands…so I picked up writing again and started blogging, paying careful attention on crafting my words and now, I’m writing my first book. So maybe in the end, it will be meant to be 🙂

    1. “…sometimes we simply make decisions because we are innocent and don’t know better.”—that is so true, Mabel. And I really dislike blaming people for their decisions. It would be presumptuous of me to draw a conclusion as such. (It was 3 tries to get correct spelling of ‘presumptuous’—now I’ll remember how to spell it) 🙂 I agree that sometimes a negative outcome can teach us a great deal that we wouldn’t have otherwise learned.

      You are clearly meant to write, Mabel! Your passion shows in your writing. I look forward to reading your book when it’s published! Is it fiction or nonfiction?

      1. Now I know how to spell “presumptuous” too! 😀 Negative outcomes can be hard especially when they come from our own rash decisions. It’s something that I’ve been guilty of one too many times recently… Patience often helps when it comes when making decisions.

        My book will be non-fiction, about my life in Australia and finding my identity as a writer. For my second book, I hope it will fiction 🙂

  10. Hmm interesting question Lisa and great responses by everyone. I live day to day making decisions – that’s the part that I have control over. Destiny I leave up to the universe which I don’t believe I have control over. I do my part and leave the rest to up to the unknown 🙂

    1. Hi Vishnu, that’s a healthy attitude. I think the struggle comes when we can’t see the difference between destiny and our decisions. It’s a bit of a guessing game at times. Decision making is a skill we get better at with experience. Sounds like you’re making some good ones!

  11. Destiny’s Child. 😀

    I’ve always been in the middle on this. I believe that our life events are destined in some way, but we have to make the decisions to get there. As Vishnu pointed out, we make decisions daily, so maybe the universe knows what we’ll decide and has our destinies waiting for us.

    1. You’ve described that so well, Chrys. I agree that our decisions have a huge effect on the twists and turns our life takes. Maybe the universe knows….I believe so. Destiny’s Child 🙂

  12. I used to believe in destiny–now I believe we can take many paths. Maybe there’s no such thing as a “wrong choice.” Our choices just take us through life and help us become stronger for what we go through.

    1. Hi Stephanie, that’s an interesting point of view. We get stronger from all our experiences, good and bad. Definitely! Some events make no sense and that’s when we question whether things are simply ‘random’. Thanks for sharing!

  13. I’ve always found that things happen at timing that may not immediately be understood (or appreciated!!!), but as you said, in hindsight it really does seem like fate/destiny/serendipity.

  14. Hi Lisa,

    As I was reading through I though it could be both destiny and decision, but glad you mentioned that at the end of the post. Although we may think we are in control of everything, in reality we are not. It’s sort of a balance I think.

    If someone wants to divorce you, and you tried to work things out, but it just didn’t then it is how we react to the situation.

    Many things happen in life from divorce, to financial problems and even sickness and death. In the end it is all about how we react to it.

    Just my two cents!

    -Donna

    1. Hi Donna, I agree it’s a balance between decisions and a path set out. Our reaction is 90% while what happens to us is 10%. At least, it’s a great reminder that we can control our reaction to unpleasant things in life. Financial problems are certainly correlated with divorce but they’re usually temporary (I try to keep a positive outlook :D).Great to see your smiling face!

  15. Hi Lisa

    Very interesting topic indeed.

    Some people say our decisions make our destiny while many other believe it is our destiny that makes us take good or bad decisions.

    Either of the ways we should do whatever we can do and leave the lest to happen by itself. Every one has his own weaknesses and strengths. So he needs to best use his strengths keeping in view of his weaknesses to get the best possible results. Beyond that one can’t do something more.

    Many thanks for sharing such thought-provoking post.

  16. It is an interesting argument for share and I think that both play a very major role in the way our lives take shape. I also am a firm believer that to some extent you get back what you put out, meaning that if you are a good person and you treat people with kindness you will often be rewarded for it (and as we all know, there are some grumps who always think bad things happen to them, but really it’s all a matter of perspective). That’s obviously oversimplifying things… It’s not to say that you do good you always receive good in return, but I hope you know what I mean here.

    Anyway, I do hate when someone’s circumstances as being their own fault. Not always the case–some people really can’t catch a break in life and it has nothing to do anything they’ve done.

    As always, your writing Lisa is refreshing and honest and it’s a pleasure to be here <3 Hope you're having a great week!

    1. Hey Charlotte, your comment got lost in the pending folder. Sorry I only found it tonight! I agree that if you give or put in the good it usually comes back to you. If it doesn’t though, it may be time to take a good look at your situation and ask ‘why’? If we’re trying our best and no good is coming from it, then that’s usually a sign we have to change something.
      I know, some people just face difficult circumstances due to no fault of their own…and I really hate when people try to put blame. UGH>
      Thanks Charlotte, for coming by and reading and sharing. I always enjoy hearing your point of view!

  17. Great post, Lisa! I believe both destiny and decisions coexist…in ways that I can’t fathom. I think our behavior and decisions are our own, based on what our head and hearts tell us, some maybe think more with their hearts than heads, or vice versa. And at the same time, we’re floating out here in the universe, where miracles can and do happen, where tragedies strike, and maybe it all has a reason and a meaning beyond what we can see with our eyes or hear with our ears. I think chance encounters and meaningful relationships are accompanied by both destiny and decisions–we decide how we respond like you so eloquently wrote. I like to believe that I can choose; I also believe in the magic of the universe and God and love.❤️ Yes, I guess I’m just a big old softie!!

    1. Hi Jane, I totally agree with you. I like to think there’s a balance there somewhere. We can sometimes experience the magic of destiny but also have some control…otherwise we would drive ourselves crazy thinking we have no control over anything. I believe in the magic of the universe, too! <3

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