I'm sure you know this phrase is quoted from Henry David Thoreau, an author and others. That got me thinking, basic needs of a man a century ago and today still remain more or less the same. Man still requires food, water, shelter and human interaction between one another for sustenance. The only difference between today's world and the past is the technological advances which has improved our lives. And if you look at the bigger picture, you'll realize that things have not changed much, but people do.
Over the years, I've come to a realization that man is constantly improving himself for the better. Unforeseen events that occur around me affect me in my decision making, but ultimately, it's my decision that makes the difference. For example, when I was younger, I skipped classes which I felt were boring. I would sometimes sleep or skip off to the library where the time came for the subjects I disliked. The school disciplinary board came down hard on me and gave a an ultimatum, change my ways or be expelled from school. Although one mighty say that with friends, teacher and parents around encouraging and scolding me for the change, I believe that the most important push and motivate would be myself. When one is at the crossroad, who makes the decision in taking which path? You, and no one else. Once the decision is made, there is no turning back, as Robert Frost would have put it,
"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And I did. And that made all the difference to me. :)