I recently turned 28 years old, and in my 28 years of life, I am still determining where I am headed. Being unsure of where I am going caused me to think and reflect on how far I have come from where I was as a teen, growing into the man I am still becoming today. Yes, I am still becoming a man because I learn as I go along in life. There were times when I questioned, others questioned my manhood, and I used to take offence – but I no longer do. In life, we grow as we experience things; we become better and learn from our choices, which is what I am doing and improving on.

Everything I have experienced has brought me to where I am today. Every situation I have been in has made me who I am – and those situations and experiences come from my choices of how I reacted to them. Do I regret my reactions to some things? Of course, I could have handled many situations better than I did. But I also know that I have learned from my choices and mistakes.

I would say that I used to be an impulsive person with how I reacted to things, impulsive with a short temper. That is how I was growing up. It’s funny. I was talking with friends a couple of weeks ago, and they told me that I used to have serious anger issues by breaking my chain and punching walls. I could only laugh when they said it because back then, my way of taking out my anger was taking it out on myself. I couldn’t communicate, I still can’t properly, but back then, all I knew was to take it out on myself. I didn’t write and didn’t have anyone to express myself to. Am I proud of doing that? Not at all, but looking back, I didn’t know any better, and it was the only choice that I thought I knew.

We live in a world where everyone tends to blame others for their choices based on others’ actions. In life, we choose how we want to be as a person. Now, of course, everyone’s situations vary. But how we react to a situation is always a choice we make, whether good or bad.

I believe that I am where I am today is down to the choices I have made that have gotten me here. The good choices and the wrong choices. The times where I have been petty in my life (the majority of times) was/is a choice I decided to make. As much as I will say others’ actions caused me to do it – it is down to me to choose to be petty.

If I slip off on my healthy diet and lifestyle changes – and choose not to go to the gym, there is no one else to blame other than myself because it was my choice and decision to fall off. There could be others around me who don’t make it easy for me to keep on track – but it is not down to them; it’s down to me. It is down to me when I overspend my monthly budget and have been careless with my finances. I can’t put it on anyone else for my choices.

Pointing blame at others for your actions is just a way to deflect the truth we all know within ourselves. I have tried to better myself by realising that I am who I am because of the choices I have made in my life. I admit that I still struggle with pointing the blame at others because I am human, and it is easier to deflect away from myself. There are/were times that I would point the blame at others around me, but what good did that do for me? How could I grow as a person and as a man? I couldn’t. Pointing the blame at others hindered me from growing and bettering myself in all aspects of my life.

I want to end this by saying to stay true to yourself. Every action and choice we make leads you to where you are in life – a simple choice on whether you have breakfast or a piece of clothing you wear could, funnily enough, impact your day. A choice of leaving your house without a jacket could lead you to being soaked in the rain. That may be an extreme example of our choices – but I’m sure you understand what I mean.

I would just say, choose to impact someone’s day positively rather than negatively – because our choices and decisions truly lead us to where we are.