Today’s wisdom: “You have chosen wisely.”

– The Grail Knight in Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade

A while back a young gal had a bad accident. She had fallen out of a moving boat and gotten her leg entangled with the propeller, ultimately losing the leg just below the knee. Her name was Cortney and she was a Minneapolis news anchor.

I can imagine that most folks would be pretty upset about experiencing that sort of life altering injury. Bitterness, anger, depression and despair are all emotions that would be natural and normal to encounter in her situation. I have seen those responses from people as both a police officer and a health care administrator. Cortney, though, had a different plan.

Quoted in the newspaper, she stated, “I’ve chosen positivity. You can let this bring you down and take you into a deep depression, or you can try to find the good in it. I’m choosing the latter because I’ve always been positive.”

One of the things I have learned is the power of the paths we choose in our lives. Cortney opted for the path of “positivity.” She could have gone a number of other directions. She could have just accepted whatever state won out over her emotions. She could have pursued anger and depression in a big pity party. But she didn’t. She took an active role in her emotional state. She chose positivity. It will be a powerful force in her life and the person she is to become. I think Cortney will be just fine.

I used to see those choices first hand, and quite frequently. As a police officer, the bad situation was often me. As I approached a vehicle I had stopped, the driver had only seconds to decide the path he or she would choose. Many choose poorly, with generally poor outcomes. I also recall many nice chats with folks who chose to be pleasant and positive. These generally had good outcomes.

We all have the same challenge that Cortney faced. While we aren’t likely to lose a leg, as older adults we are a target-rich environment for unpleasant situations. We face the same choices as she does. How we select our path will have major consequences on our lives. Choose wisely. I’m just sayin’.