Do you consider yourself intelligent, capable, and kind? Is your life in perpetual chaos and you don’t understand why? It’s possible that you’re living your life on accident. Avoid allowing luck to rule your life. Put your foot down, make a plan, and choose a direction for your life.
Take responsibility for your future:
1. Examine your current situation. How did you end up where you are? Are you living in the home or apartment you’ve always dreamt of? Why not? How did you end up there? Was it the result of long-term planning? Or was it the only place that you could find on short notice that would accept a $99 deposit because you were short of cash?
Consider all aspects of your life. That includes your career, friends, fitness level, finances, intimate relationship, and so on. Did you choose what you have, or did you just grab at the best opportunity that happened to wander by your awareness?
2. Determine the type of life you want to lead. What type of job do you want? Where do you want to live? How do you want to spend your evenings? How much money do you want to earn? Describe your social life. Take the time to thoroughly examine the future you’d like to experience.
3. Put the first things first. Money isn’t the only thing, but it’s an important thing. Money is great for solving many of life’s challenges. It’s also a necessary resource for doing many other things. If you’re having financial struggles, it would make sense to work on your finances first.
Make a logical progression for each part of your life you’d like to change. If you need to lose 100 pounds, going for a daily walk and eliminating high-calorie drinks would be a good start. After a month of walking, you could add in additional exercise and diet changes.
Focus on financial and health issues first. After you’ve gained some momentum, you can address the other parts of your life.
4. Be brave enough to choose. Why haven’t you made decisions about your life in the past? Is it possible that you were afraid to make a choice and possibly fail? It’s true that you can’t fail if you never try, but you can’t ever experience success and happiness either.
5. Have enough discipline to choose. When you’re confused and uncertain, it feels easier to avoid making decisions. You don’t want to make the wrong decision after all. However, this type of thinking is a trap. It’s better to make a reasonable choice and give it your best effort than it is to not make a decision at all.
6. Realize that luck isn’t on your side over the long-term. When you don’t put energy into something, it will tend to fall apart over time. Whether you’re talking about a fence, a sand castle, or your life, luck isn’t kind. The natural way of the universe is to move from ordered to disordered.
The only cure is concentrated effort and energy. A wooden fence only survives if you repair it and paint it at regular intervals. Even then, it will still have to be replaced at some point. Your life is no different. Without energy and intention applied regularly, your life falls apart just like the fence.
Now is the time to take control of your life and make decisions that matter. Choose a course for your life or allow entropy to slowly destroy it. Take control while there’s still time to create an exciting life.
Small wins pay off big. Social scientists and business experts agree that modest victories can provide major inspiration.
You may have heard of the progress principle. Researchers at Harvard Business School conducted a multi-year study of what makes employees happy and productive. They found that daily progress on meaningful work was the most powerful factor by far.
Take a look at the general principles behind this foolproof formula for success, along with practical examples about how you can apply a small wins strategy to your life.
General Principles Behind Small Wins
1. Keep a journal. Writing in a journal will help you recognize and celebrate miniature milestones that you might otherwise overlook. You’ll also be able to track your progress and understand the conditions that affect your performance.
2. Create catalysts. According to the Harvard team, there are two kinds of actions that encourage small wins. The first, catalysts, are related to how you work. Set clear goals, budget your time and resources, and practice open communications.
3. Seek nourishers. The second kind of action is called nourishers, and refers to interpersonal support. Surround yourself with friends and colleagues who provide validation and constructive feedback. Participate in groups that share your interests, whether it’s a faith community or professional association.
4. Set intermediate goals. Lofty goals can be overwhelming. Break any project down into tiny tasks. You’ll feel invigorated each time you check something off your to-do list.
5. Learn from setbacks. The flipside of small wins is the discouragement that can follow running into an obstacle. Acknowledge your feelings. Turn mistakes into valuable lessons.
Practical Examples of Small Wins Strategies
1. Eat more vegetables. Sticking to a healthy diet may be easier than you think when you focus on only one change at a time. Work your way up to 9 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. Mix spinach into your eggs at breakfast. Snack on baby carrots and hummus.
2. Cut down on sugar. If you like sweetened coffee, use half your usual amount of sugar. The savings will add up.
3. Go to bed on time. Adequate sleep keeps your body and mind in top condition. You’ll probably accomplish more even if you shorten your waking hours.
4. Exercise for 5 minutes. Are you tired of lapsed gym memberships? You’ll be exercising for more than a half hour by the end of the week if you start with 5 minutes and add just 5 minutes a day to your home workouts.
5. Memorize a few lines. Maybe you’d like to speak Russian or recite poetry, but your busy schedule gets in the way. Ty practicing just 5 vocabulary words or one stanza a day.
6. Extend your network. Whatever you do for a living, networking is essential. Introduce yourself to a new contact or reconnect with a former colleague.
7. Dazzle a customer. Similarly, you can make any work more meaningful by focusing on those who use your products or services. Give someone a sneak peek at your new line and ask for their feedback.
8. Listen to your child. Show your child how much you love them by giving them your full attention. Empathize with their struggles in Algebra or congratulate them on making the soccer team.
9. Surprise your spouse. Brighten your partner’s day with a fun surprise. Take out the garbage when it’s their turn. Put a love note in their briefcase or pick up a carton of their favorite ice cream on your way home from work.
Grand visions are the sum of many small wins that help you translate your dreams into action. Taking a small step forward each day will bring you success and happiness.
Determining our purpose in life can be one of the hardest questions that we as humans must answer. In this article, we will be going through a step-by-step process, exploring your feelings and options, and by the end, you should have a fairly solid tool you can immediately employ in your life to help give it a meaningful direction!
There are three steps to the process of discovering the purpose of your life:
Understanding the principle of choice
Creating your “underlying principle.”
Aligning your life with this underlying principle
Understanding The Principle of Choice
Norman Vincent Peale has this to say about the power of choice. “The greatest power we have is the power of choice. It is a fact that if you have been groping under unhappiness, you can choose to be joyous instead. And, by effort, lift yourself into joy. But, on the other hand, if you tend to be fearful, you can overcome that misery by choosing to have courage. So the whole trend and the quality of anyone’s life are determined by the choices that are made”.
“Choosing” is the most important activity of your mind, because by making a choice, you are proclaiming your desires to your subconscious mind. Once the subconscious mind gets to know your desires, it is going to do anything to manifest them in your life. The choices you make in your life become your goal. And, if you are sincere in pursuing them, there is no reason why you should not accomplish them.
On the other hand, indecision creates frustration and anxiety and can also confuse the subconscious mind about what you want. But the choices you make must be made by you, following your true desires, purposes, and aptitude. Many of us let others make choices for us or make our choices according to what we think is ‘correct,’ even if that means that we go against our wishes. What is right for someone else may not be right for you, and the way to know this is by listening to what your heart says.
So, to begin with, make a list of things that interest you; things that you have always enjoyed, which make you feel better, which inspire you to surge ahead, no matter what obstacles you face. For example, do you like doing something creative or something artistic? Do you enjoy nature? Do you like the sea? Do you enjoy helping others? Do you get pleasure out of making a difference in other people’s lives?
Whatever it is that interests you, write it down and answer these questions:
What thing do you love to do?
What is it that you love in this thing and why?
How could you do this for money and make a living out of it?
Creating Your Underlying Principle
The next step is to examine the list you just made and find out if there is any recurring theme. Maybe, it is the contribution that keeps coming up, or an effect to seek or give love, or to help your parents cope with old age. Whatever it is, try to identify the central theme of the things you love to do and try to put it in a short and precise statement. This will be your ‘Mission Statement.’ It may even be a quote by a famous person or a philosophy that has influenced you. Of course, as you grow up, this statement could evolve, but its soul will remain the same. Now, write down your Mission Statement.
Aligning Your LIFE With Your Underlying Principle
The final step in this journey is to map your path to your ultimate purpose and begin implementing changes that help to align your daily life with your underlying purpose. By making these little changes in your lifestyle, you will begin living this principle out each day. It might take a few days, but by becoming aware and intentional of this underlying principle of your life, you will certainly start to feel the difference in your enthusiasm for life as a whole. For example, if you realize that you love being amidst nature, plan out your holiday. Maybe an outing with your children could be enough to recoup your energy. If you discover that you enjoy helping those in need, start to look for opportunities to volunteer in your community. On the other hand, you might even want to change your job or start a new business that is more in line with your mission.
So there you have it! By following along with the steps outlined above, you will be on your way to finding and living out your purpose. And, as you go through this process, remember, “You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it courageously.” - Steve Maraboli.