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What Does Independence Mean to You?

Jul 04, 2023

As the U.S. celebrates Independence Day, on the 4th of July, I’m reflecting on what independence means to each of us.

My parents raised me to be very independent. There is an advantage and a disadvantage to that. I started babysitting as soon as I was able and went to work the day after my 16th birthday. As a kid, I loved the idea of saving my money and letting it accumulate. I was taught to make my own decisions and to live with the consequences.  My parents trusted me and didn’t ask too many questions. I realize today that may no longer be practical. So, how do you teach someone independence?

Independence still seems like a worthy goal to me. I’ve worked hard to achieve it, maintain it, and to offer it to others in my circle.  It’s neither an easy nor a perfect process. And there are trade-offs, as with everything in life.

Think about your own situation.  How do you define independence? Is it financial? Is it about the ability to do what you want when you want with whom you want? Is it freedom from responsibility? And what about the relationships in your life – to what degree are you dependent on them?

When I think beyond my own experience, and look at the state of the world, I recognize the value of freedom and independence. I realize that I often take it for granted. And so, today, this week, this month, I’m appreciating freedom and independence. I’m grateful for all I’ve been able to do with my freedom of choice.  I’m even grateful for the mistakes and lessons learned as a result.  It’s all good. And, I’m wishing the same for you. 



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