The beginning is the most important part of the work.” — Plato, classical Greek philosopher and mathematician
Did you ever notice when you read a book or watch a movie that the tone set at the beginning carries through to the end?
Don’t misunderstand. Things change along the way, for sure, especially with the main character. It’s called a character arc. The person starts out as one kind of person with thoughts based on a peculiar outlook on life and the world in which they live. As the story progresses, things happen to and around the person, affecting them and changing the way they view and think about things. By the end of the story, they are different in some significant way, usually a good way.
What doesn’t change, however, is the tone of the story. A comedy is funny from beginning to end. A drama is serious and a romance revolves around love.
It has to be that way so that we feel safe and comfortable enough to believe that the transformation of the character could actually take place.
The same is true in life, for better or worse.
The kind of life we have as children we tend to continue in different variations as adults. And then we impart the same on our children, and the cycle is continued for generations until someone is wise enough to recognize it and brave enough to break it.
The question is, are you living the kind of book or movie that you want to be? That you would want your children to be? If not, change it. Burn the script. Start over completely. Right now. Today.
You don’t have to be just the main character in your story. You can also be the writer and the director.
It isn’t easy. The tendency will always be to slip back into what is comfortable, what feels safe, even when it is harmful.
Guard against that, and you will be able to keep your character arc on course in whatever style of life you choose to live. And like a good book or movie, you will have the kind of life you hope never ends.