All our lives we are taught to better our lives. As children, we dream of what jobs we will have, who we will marry or how many children we want. Though those thoughts are very real, by the time we become adults, we often fall into a life pattern. Jobs become a necessity as opposed to a fulfilling career. Balancing children and spouses are always on your mind.
Personal goals often take a back seat. Yet, daydreaming of a better life is ever present. A recent study conducted by Harvard University showed, “People’s minds wandered about 46.9 percent of the time, and no less than 30 percent of the time during most activities.” Many respondents claimed high stress moments and unhappiness led to daydreaming.
So, instead of focusing on the “what if,” let us look at the top ten tips to better your life starting today:
1| Conquer Your Inner Fears
Nothing can be as scary as our own personal anxieties about life changes. The unanswered questions of how this decision will impact your life, how it will affect those around you, and what if it does not work out can all be your biggest worries.
A study conducted by Penn Medicine News reported, “Everyone fears something. In fact, it is estimated that more than 19 million Americans suffer from a specific phobia, such as spiders or public speaking.”
Perhaps there is a new position at your company, but you see that they require heavy use of Microsoft Excel. Though you have seen this program, your skill set with Excel is extremely limited. Inner fear says to bypass this job out of reluctances of learning the software. Instead of thinking of the program as whole, break it down to steps.
Make the goal of learning a new example each day by using online tutorials. In short order, you will begin gaining confidence and new knowledge worth keeping.
2| Accept Your Faults
As humans, we are meant to err. This is how we learn and improve in life. Without mistakes, we cannot grow as individuals both mentally and physically. We often openly admit our blunders to those around us by utilizing the most used phrase in the dictionary…I am sorry, yet we often sweep it under the carpet to ourselves to protect our self-esteem.
This is a good time to write it down. Acknowledge one fault at a time. Let us say, you enjoy your nieces and nephew’s visits, but it seems you are often babysitting them instead of enjoying your time with them.
With multiple hours being needed by you to entertain and feed the children is starting to be overwhelming, leading to a shorter temper. You often just try to sleep it off and chalk it up to family necessities. By writing it down this gives a chance to look at in words.
Put the “Short temper” in a bubble, now express what is causing those emotions. Keep branching off till you feel you understand where this began. Now study the tree. Use that understanding to stand up for what you are feeling and experiencing to your family. Suggest small changes for everyone’s comfort. Then begin enjoying your time again with your family.
3| Modernize Your Life Goals
During school years, young adolescents are often asked by teachers, mentors, and employers where they see themselves in five or ten years. The answers vary, but often fall under familiar categories, career, and family.
Yet, a study conducted by the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU) found, “Only 55 percent of students attending high school feel prepared to enter the real world”.
Look back on your goals when you graduated high school and acknowledge where you stand with those long-term targets. Did you accomplish each milestone, or did life changes cause a detour? Detour is the key word.
While the five-year goal of graduating College was the plan, it does not mean this cannot be obtained. The “tree root” method is a good way to work toward that life goal. Put two pieces of paper together top to bottom.
Write down that five-year goal you had in the middle. Now, write down each barrier that you had to accomplishing the plan in the “roots” below. Do the same on the top half as how you can reach that goal. Read through each one from bottom to top. The lesson learned is, the roots are what has made you, but the new branches are who you could still be.
4| Look To Others For Understanding
It can be an internal struggle to ask others for help or advice between self-ideal and reality. As adults, we become accustomed to certain emotions or actions, rarely diverting from specific behaviors.
Almost always all decisions are made by yourself, without outside factors. By only having our own opinions, we miss the mistakes that are often repeated.
Maybe saving money is your nemesis. You find yourself spending most of your paycheck the moment you see it in the bank. When critical moments come up such as car repairs or unforeseen health problems, the money is not there to pay the bill, causing you constant anxiety.
Instead, head over to your local bank and work with an account specialist who can guide you to a better option to begin saving your money. Set up automatic withdrawals to better understand your spending habits compared to amounts available.
5| Respect Your Own Time
With busy schedules and family obligations, many people have felt they had little time for their own care and needs. This often leading to burn out both mentally and physically. Prior to the pandemic, multiple reports claimed adults were the least likely to go against the proverbial grain of life.
Making little attempts to take time out for themselves and often falling back into the cycle of no personal care. Respectfully, a new study conducted by OnePoll.com concluded, “More than seven in ten Americans (73 percent) were more conscious of needing self-care in 2020. 69 percent plan to do more self-care in 2021 than they did in the previous years.”
Start simple. If you have a new art class you want to attend, but you find that the demand of family is too overwhelming, make your plea. Explain to your family why this is important to you and why you ask for their help in achieving that goal. Make them your cheerleaders instead of your barriers.
6| Invest In Your Hobbies
While hobbies change throughout the years, the satisfaction of obtaining a small goal is always yearning. Some hobbies require more time and funds, which make them a larger goal. Smaller achievements can be made to acquiring that top objective instead, allowing you satisfaction of working towards a reward.
As a young adult, you found that knitting baby blankets was a fun and emotionally gratifying hobby. The goal was to enter a blanket into the county fair. Then, as life often does, the string and needles went into a box and the goal was forgotten. This is a great time to dust off the yarn and begin knitting again. Even if it is only twenty minutes at a time. Use this personal hobby as a break from outside stimulants to reset your mood.
7| Seek Joy
Happiness, laughter, and joy feed your soul and promote general wellbeing. Life is not worth living without joyful moments, so seek them out, plan them and chase after as if your life depends on it, because really it does!
8| Honor Your Morals
While we often choose our morals early in life, the boundaries are crossed when reality happens. Family obligations, career demands along with personal achievements take precedence over how strongly you feel about an acceptable limitation.
If one of your morals was to not judge others around you, but have found yourself making comments about their behaviors, leading to personal anxiety and soured mood when they are present, try taking a step back. Is it the behavior you find unacceptable or the person?
Do they repeat the same offenses that cross your personal moral boundaries? Tell them. Explain that why you accept their behavior but do not condone the risks. Often time, the misunderstanding can be solved leading to a stronger friendship.
9| Limit Taking It Personally
Think about all the types of people you come across during a day, each with a different personality. It can be taxing to navigate those emotions over long periods. Though, it seems to come in waves. When the morning seems discouraging, this sets the stage for the rest of the day. We become conditioned to those feelings and take it personally.
This can happen in traffic, often. The guy who cut you off getting on the freeway or the lady who backed out when you were clearly in the street. The reaction being honked horns and shaken emotions.
Remind yourself, that you do not know what is going on in their day to cause such behaviors. While the moment was emotional, it does not set the rest of your day. Give them space and move on.
10| Be Proud Of Yourself
This can be difficult when you feel stuck and tired from life. We tell others, like children how proud of their behavior we are, but rarely complement our own. We encourage others around us to achieve greatness, yet the reward is depleted internally.
At the end of the day, look back over your day and compliment yourself on all your achievements. Maybe it was as simple as prepping sandwiches for tomorrow’s lunches or finishing all the laundry. The goal does not have to be big, just the idea.
Remember the goals you create for your personal well-being. Find time to keep learning and accepting others around you. Keep your promises and treat yourself right. As American author Jim Rohn once said, “Your life does not get better by chance. It gets better by change.”