When was the last time you took an honest look at the life you’re in today? Does your life represent a path you’ve chosen for yourself? Is it based on your dreams and created by decisions you’ve made about how you want to live each day?

Or did you simply happen into your current life as a result of circumstances. Maybe you’re living a good life, not all that you dreamed it would be, but it’s okay. After all a lot of other people have it tougher, right?

There Are Two Ways to Live Your Life

You can glide along and let things happen, reacting to whatever (and whoever) comes your way, simply going with the natural flow of things … good luck, bad luck, whatever the fates happen to serve up; in other words, living life by default.

You get up in the morning and go through your daily routine, busily meeting the demands of work and family, going through the motions but not really fully engaged or energized by what you’re doing.

Often we recognize something needs to change, and we want to change, we probably even know what we need to do. But we don’t do it.

The days, months and years fly by, and while life is okay, occasionally in the back of our mind, we wonder if this is all there is; if there isn’t something more to life. Then one day we wake up and wonder, “How in the world did I end up in this life?” But by this time we’re so deep into commitments, routines and habits that meaningful change feels impossible and overwhelming. So we just keep on because we simply don’t know what else to do.

It's never too late ...

The second way to live is by choosing to be an active participant in creating your own life experience — making intentional choices and decisions, creating focus and direction and turning dreams into reality. Of course this requires more work, and no small amount of courage, but the rewards are also far greater.

Living Life by Design Requires That You Begin Paying Attention to What is and isn’t Working in Your Life

The interesting thing is that as you begin to pay closer attention to what is happening in your life, you’re going to make some surprising discoveries. You are going to find that there are things in your life that no longer serve you. You may have gone years – or even decades without consciously realizing you were wasting time and energy on something that you no longer have any interest in whatsoever; things in your life that are just taking up space.

It is important to emphasize that choosing to live with intention is not about turning your life upside down. Nor is it about manifesting change simply for the sake of change. It is about coming to a realization that there are things that you would really like to have more of in your life. Things you didn’t even realize were missing until you started paying attention.

Intentional living is also about doing everything you do with complete and total awareness of what it is that you are doing and why; while fully acknowledging that you are making these choices in order to become the person you are meant to be.

In fact, as you begin living with intention you become more aware of the power you have to choose, how to take advantage of the opportunities in adversity, cultivate the confidence to determine the direction of your life, and the courage to own your choices – no excuses, no regrets.

Remember ... doesn't matter where you are in life now, you are nowhere near where you are capable of going!

Author's Bio: 

Marquita Herald is a transformation guide, the creator of the life by design blog IGG-Tips, Tools & Tantalizing Ideas, and the author of three books, Stepping Stones to Greater Resilience, Inspirational Words of Wisdom for Challenging Times, and It's Your Time Now - A Guide to Living Your Life by Design.

She writes to inspire readers to reach a little beyond what's comfortable to achieve goals that matter ... refuse to accept simply "getting along" in life out of fear or limiting beliefs ... cultivate the skills to become stronger and more resilient ... learn to master the self-motivation skills that will keep you energized and moving forward ... make the choices each day that will over time create the fulfilling life you really want for yourself ... and to choose happiness, each and every day.

Marquita's professional background includes a successful 20 year career in hotel sales and marketing followed by a decade as a life and small business coach.

To learn more about her books and living your life by design, please visit her at http://www.inspiredgiftgiving.com