So much of the good and bad in life all comes down to how we choose to view it.

Two people can experience the exact same event and have two completely different reactions. One may think it was the greatest thing in the world while the other thinks it was awful and a waste of time.

There is quite a bit that goes into why people see things differently, and that is a story for another day.

Today, I want to call attention to a question that we need to ask ourselves more often.

Do we have to do something?


Do we get to do something?

Hopefully those two questions look very different, but if not, let’s take a moment to break them down. When you have to do something, there is an underlying meaning of having to do something you don’t want to do. So how excited or in the moment will you be when you have to do that thing? Speaking from my personal experience, probably not very present or excited to be there…

On the other hand, when you get to do something, there is a feeling of excitement and anticipation. You look forward to doing it and are likely to be far more in the moment and present, and the people around you will likely feel that excitement and positivity too.

Now that we’ve highlighted the difference, I want to dive into the question of today: What would things be like if you started saying “I get to do xyz” by default and cutting “I have to do xyz” out of your vocabulary? How could your life start to become different?

I wish I could say that this post was inspired by my ability to live a get to mindset day in and day out. The truth, is that this post was actually a wake up call from me living a very have to existence over the past month or so.

This happens to all of us – we get stuck in a swirl of to-dos, deadlines, commitments and personal or professional commitments where we no longer feel like we are in control of our world. When this happens, we quickly build up a brutal have to list that intensifies and prolongs this beat down and negative mindset.

We will all have these periods of busyness or overwhelm. The question, is whether we will let those periods own us, or whether we take control of the situation and our mindset to turn them into the best periods of busyness or overwhelm as possible.

We have to be careful in the have to mindset because it can quickly turn things that, on a good day, we would enjoy doing into something that we dread.

So how do we break out of this draining and destructive mindset…

Let’s start by walking through the examples below and see where we end up. Any of these sound familiar?

I have to do the laundry.

I have to pick up the kids from daycare.

I have to write a proposal for work.

I have to make dinner.

I have to work out.

I have to wake up early.

Ugh… that all sounds exhausting. And I’m sure we can spend another couple hours growing this list.

What’s interesting about shifting to a get to mentality is that you begin to see an implied deeper meaning around why you get to do things. Let’s take a look…

I get to do the laundry (because we are fortunate enough to have clothes to clean).

I get to pick up the kids from daycare (because I’m lucky to have a family and have the means to send them to a good school to grow and learn).

I get to write a proposal for work (to help grow the business and create new opportunities).

I get to make dinner (because I am fortunate to have the means to put nutritious food on the table and bring the family together for a meal).

I get to work out (to create lasting health and a higher quality of life for myself today and into the future).

I get to wake up early (to get a head start on my day and invest time in working on myself through fitness, meditation, quiet time, studying, etc.).

These are the same events yet sound very different when I read them. More so, that underlying ‘why’ after each get to can create energy, drive and purpose to put more of yourself in those events and therefore, get more out of them.

So how can we start creating more get to opportunities in our life? What is stopping us from shifting this mindset today?

Start Small: This is no small mindset shift, so start small. It is so much easier to take the have to mindset and not have to dig a little deeper to bring out the silver lining of why you actually get to do that thing.

Take Notice & Ask Questions: Start by noticing yourself when you say you have to do something. As you continue to notice these instances, begin asking yourself what would need to change or be true so that you get to do that thing.

Switch Your Language: As you begin to notice and question yourself, you can start to shift away from the have to language and create a life where you get to do so much more! Start using get to by default and rephrasing if you slip into a have to statement. That change of phrase will make a huge impact.

Start noticing and start building a get to mindset! You and those around you will thank you for it! Take control of your mindset and your fulfillment in life and get to it!

Discussion Question: What is one thing that you have to do today? How can you change your mindset and perspective so that you get to do it instead?

Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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