Every day we are hammered with messages telling us what we need to do to be living a good life. Advertisers say it is simply a matter of buying the right washing up liquid. Social media tells us it is accumulating more fame and wealth. Will any of these things help you to start living an OUTSTANDING life?
I believe that a large part of the variation in the quality of and the satisfaction we experience in our lives stems from our choices and activities. Our circumstances and genetic characteristics are difficult or impossible to change, but how we approach our lives has the power to change how happy we are.
Is it time to take charge of the direction of your life?
Is it time to take charge of the outcome of your life?
Indulge me and take a few moments to imagine the best life that you could lead.
How does that feel? Ready to take action to start living an OUTSTANDING life?
Living your dream
Life tends to be challenging and uncertain, and even more so when faced with the prospect of change.
Although change is the key that will alter the path of our lives, we shy away from it for fear of entering into the unknown.
When we enter the unknown, we leave our comfort zone. Unfortunately, most people don’t want to leave their comfort zone even for the prospect of living an outstanding life.Frequently fear robs us of our ability to make choices. Choices that can close the gap between where we are and where we want to be. Click To Tweet
Fear and freedom work antagonistically against each other. The greater your fears, the less freedom you experience.
We need the courage to combat our fears. The courage to move outside of our comfort zone. The courage to venture from the known to the unknown, but to do that we must sacrifice certainty.
There is a video on Youtube from a Navy Admiral. It is about embracing the fears of life. It made me reflect on how important hope is.
People will persevere against impossible odds if they have hope. And people will only change if they have hope. That makes HOPE the foundational principle for all change.
Living your life
Who is responsible for the changes that you make in your life?
No one but you.
Give me the good news?
You can change your life if you want to.
And you can improve it.
You can make it better.
And it all starts with changing your internal world to change your external world. What the heck does that mean?
You need to change the way you think.
So I have to ask, are you ready?
Step 1: Get dirt honest
What are your excuses?
You may be unhappy in some areas of your life but complaining about it does not create change.
Some adopt the victim role. Some play the victim role so skillfully they don’t realise they are doing it.
As I wrote earlier, if you to stay stuck due to fear, then the change you want is not going to appear. Is there a chance that you are just skillfully playing the victim role?
Be honest with yourself. What are the excuses and logic that you apply to keep you in your life as it is?
Take responsibility for yourself
Only one person can change you. And that is you.
The desire, the motivation to change must come from within.
Take responsibility and look closely at what part of your life has kept you from your potential.
Don’t blame your refusal to make changes based on external factors.
When you do this, you give the responsibility for you to things outside your control, and you will never take responsibility for yourself. For me, I used to tell myself that I would have realized more of my potential but no one was interested in mentoring me.
A person who makes excuses for everything will never succeed.
Do you know some individuals who have an excuse for everything? Why they could not, should not, did not, would not, have not, will not?
A recipe to not reach your potential is to make excuses for what you are doing, excuses for where you are, and you to allow exceptions. Excuses never become possibilities.
Step 2: Accept Risk
Accept that change involves risk
Change is a well-accepted fact of life. And as I said earlier, participating in change means a step into the unknown. It means taking a risk, uncertainty and fear.
Would life be boring if we always knew the outcomes before we took action? If there were no surprises?The riskiest step is always the first. But with every move in the right direction, your courage builds and gets stronger. Click To Tweet
Realise that risk leads to growth
Growth involves risk and risk involves fear. Therefore growth involves fear.
Too many people wait for a guarantee that everything will work out just perfectly before they act. They won’t take action until they feel all risk has been removed.
Sadly, they fail to grow and instead stagnate. Never moving from where they are.
This is your life. Don’t stay a benchwarmer, waiting on the sidelines to be invited to participate. The world will pass you by.
Our beliefs control our actions. What are your beliefs about risk?
Step 3: Focus Your Priorities
Value your needs
Many busy people spend all their time, effort and energy meeting the needs of other people. I used to be a ‘people pleaser’ – valuing other people’s needs more than my own.
Where do your own needs fit in your decision-making hierarchy Failing to focus on your priorities will mould you to your environment.
And you will stagnate.
Value your time
Do not play the ‘when-then’ game.
Many people tell themselves, “When the children are grown, then I will do something for myself.” Or, “When I have learned a bit more and can make a difference, then I will find a job I enjoy.”
Some people wait their whole lives for a when that never comes. Value your time and do not assume you have until forever to take a risk and make a change that can accelerate your life in new directions.When you change your expectations, you change your attitude. Click To Tweet
Step 4: Regenerate
Living rather than ageing
I have come to realise that worrying about growing older is a waste of time.
Celebrate that ageing brings an insight and personal growth that is only intensified through life experience. Instead of ageing, evolve.
Evolving changes your focus from fearing a loss to celebrating an accomplishment. What you have learned throughout your life can enlighten current and future generations.
Having an evolving attitude inspires authority to regenerate yourself and make whatever changes will lead you to that renewal.
Connect rather than wait
We are human beings, social creatures. When you connect with others, you connect to a larger perspective and broaden your thinking.
As we get older, connection becomes even more important. Ageing typically, brings fears about health, loneliness and isolation. Positive relationships provide strength when we feel we are weak.
They encourage and bring courage to make new and better decisions throughout any life transition.
Step 5: Face Up To Your Fears
Act before any crisis
Fear, at its simplest and most benign, is merely an internal warning that danger is nearby. Rather, it is an alert that something is looming that we had better do something about.
Many times it takes a significant warning signal like a marriage failure or a medical diagnosis to realise we need to make changes.
Do not wait for that disaster to occur to wake up about the quality and value of your life. If you begin making changes now, you will be more prepared if any disaster happens.
Do not let comfort rule youMove past the comfort of your fears. Click To Tweet
Because we repeat our fears, they seem familiar. As such, they can mislead us into thinking they are an integral part of who we are.
When we turn them over in our minds, they will control us, and cause us to live in a state of self-preservation.
While life cannot be a 24-hour a day thrill ride, you deserve more than just being content. Expand your comfort zone and allow inspiration inside.
When you change your behaviour, you change your results.
There is a phrase, ‘Most people would rather live with old problems than new solutions.’ Is that true for you?
Would you rather be comfortable than correct?
Would you rather stay in a routine that doesn’t serve you than make changes?
Even when the changes are going to be better for us, we often don’t make them because we feel uncomfortable or awkward.Don’t let your desire for comfort limit your actions. Click To Tweet
Step 6: Use Your Imagination
Imagine the worst
What, are you fearful about? Give it a name. Say it out loud.
Then ask yourself, What is the worst thing that could happen if I take this risk?
Even if you run smack into an immovable wall on your way to making a change, then at least you will have gained insight and knowledge.
You may even find this knowledge gives you the courage to tackle more risks. No matter what the scenario, you will have gained the power and influence to decide your response.
Imagine the best
Imagine how your life will be different and better once you initiate change in your life.
Expect the joy, the excitement, and the empowerment that comes from being the leader in your own life.
Begin with small steps, but always take action.
No miracle shortcuts to an OUTSTANDING life
It will take time to see results.
The only instant change you can make is in your attitude.
What helps you get through those hard times and on course to living an OUTSTANDING life?
Drop a comment below and let me know how you will use this six-step plan. Now get out there and live an OUTSTANDING life!