By Leonid Afremov
I, like all human beings am an individual...there is likely no other person on the planet exactly like me. Most of the time I think that is probably a really good thing then something will pop up and I'll think: "Maybe if more people thought and acted this way the world just might be a little better place". That is the difference between my self-opinion today and that of several years ago: Today I recognize that there is some good in me where before I was convinced I was just a vile, mean-spirited son of a bitch.

That may not sound at first read like that big of a deal or a change but trust me, for someone who HATED themselves the way I did...and blamed themselves for every bad or negative thing that happened to me or those around was a HUGE paradigm shift. It completely changed how I viewed myself and my place in this world.

Before...I honestly pictured myself as sort of a human "undesirable" as far as a person.  I could literally see NO redeeming characteristics in myself...I believed this so strongly that I actually tried to exterminate myself...first slowly through drug and alcohol addiction and later through suicide. Both attempts failed of course, thanks to a loving CREATOR...but all that was left in the aftermath of that tragic chaos was that I was but a mere shell of what I once was....a vibrant, loving and caring human being.

I write about this subject this morning because lately  I have been thinking about what makes each of us human beings the kind of people, we are. I am now convinced it is a combination of heredity...what we are at birth: our physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual DNA as it were. Add to that all of our life experience...beginning with day #1 and continuing to this very day. It is the combination of those two entities that makes up what we ARE at any given moment. 

If this theory is indeed true and I believe it is...that means are lives are constantly in flux, that we are constantly changing who we are just by living our lives...and there really is no way to stop it until we die. We have what we are born with, on one hand...then we have our life experience (if we choose to use it that is)...on the other.

I use to just accept my fate, believing I was trapped in a world that was NOT of my choosing and I rebelled by simply drowning myself in booze/drugs and hoping it would all go away...that I would go away. Now I see how simply tragic and sad that was....I have the gift of this life, whether I like it or not and I can change what I am about if I choose to do so....Human life, even with all it's heart-ache and SORROW is still a gift from GOD. 

I now realize that I no longer have to wallow in guilt and self-pity because I am this person who tries hard but always ends up hurting people (especially those who love him) in the end. I don't have to live that way anymore....I now have a choice.

And it is by working and growing in those four areas that make a human being what they are: the Physical, Psychological, Emotional and Spiritual aspects of life, that can completely change who we are. I sounds like a MAJOR stretch...I more then likely wouldn't have believed it either if I hadn't EXPERIENCED it for myself.   

But trust me my friends...I believe it now and can't stress enough how critical I feel it is for us to SHOW UP for life each day, with an open mind and HEART and LIVE life passionately to the very best of our ability.

 Each person may have there very own way of doing this....I have learned through harsh, hard experience that it begins and ends..ALWAYS for ME, with a strong, personal relationship with GOD, My Creator and my spiritual life. And everything else seems to fall in line for me after that. Really...after all that thrashing about intellectually trying to find life's answer through Drugs or booze or sex or philosophy or money or success, etc....ultimately the answer for this tortured SOUL...laid within.  

That is what works for me, that IS what LIFE IS for me today, my relationship with my may be something entirely different for someone else. But I think it is critical to remain open and willing to change...I think many troubled lives have been transformed by starting at just that place by being open-minded and willing to try something we may initially don't like.  

All I know is that a few short years ago I was all but DEAD in every aspect of my life...I was but a mere shell of a human being Spiritually, Emotionally, Psychologically and even Physically. Today that couldn't be further from the truth...