11/15/2013 11:32 am ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

The No. 1 Thing You're Doing Every Day That's Ruining Your Life

I've been attempting to stop making so many assumptions in life.

Recently I was traveling back from Europe and I opened up the American Airlines in-flight magazine -- quite the page-turner, I know! But lo and behold, I read a letter written by a guy telling a story about how he recently was running late to catch a flight. He bought a newspaper and a pack of pecans at the airport and when he boarded the plane, he threw his newspaper and nuts in the middle seat between himself and a woman sitting on the aisle.

As the plane took off, he settled in and ate his pecans. The woman next to him glared at him. He eventually placed the bag back in the middle seat and the woman grabbed the bag and ate some pecans. The man was so surprised, he grabbed the bag back and before he had finished them, she grabbed them once more, ate the last pecan, and then stood up and went to the bathroom. They didn't speak the rest of the flight. WTF!

When the plane landed, the man reached into his jacket pocket, looking for his car keys and what did he find -- you guessed it -- his bag of pecans. OMG!

This story blows my mind because of the reminder that assumptions about things are often our worst enemy.

Life is constantly trying to show us. That's the lesson right there!

Show us what? That we are co-creators of our experience. That our assumptions about life shut out possibility and the wonder that life wants to reveal to us. That each moment is an opportunity to express and share ourselves. To communicate. Even if that communication is crunchy and weird at times, it is through this practice that we move from listening to the things that we tell ourselves in our head (untruthful assumptions) to becoming available to the actual presence of the moment.

We move from being a passerby to an actual participant in our own life's creation.

Stop stealing from yourself. Stop being a thief, robbing yourself from your empowerment and joy by assuming the worst and selling yourself (and others) short. Stop hiding your light underneath a rock because you've made assumptions that people aren't ready for your brilliance, or can't handle it, or it's too much. Stop making assumptions about what's possible and what you think life is -- or isn't.

Stay open. It can be hard because we're accustomed to being closed. That's what assumptions do. But life will open up along with you as you more consciously choose thoughts, ideas and actions that affirm life.

"What each moment of life is trying to show you is yourself."