I had recognized for a long time that I was responsible for my life, that every choice produced a consequence. But often the consequences seemed out of line with my expectations. That's because I was thinking one thing but intending another. I wasn't aware of the consequences of my deepest intentions. My intention of always trying to please other people, for example, produced an unwanted consequence: I often felt taken advantage of and used.

So I decided to become aware if my every intention in order to create a different outcome. That meant doing only those things that came for the truth of who I am—and only doing for others what pleased me to do.

What I know for sure is that whatever your situation is right now, you have played a major role in setting it up. It is you who have created your circumstances. With every experience, you alone are painting your own canvas, thought by thought, choice by choice. And beneath each of those thoughts and choices lies your deepest intention. If you are feeling stuck in your life and want to move forward, start by examining your past motivations.

What Oprah Knows for Sure


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