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What can you do to make life more meaningful and successful? Perhaps the answer lies in making a few changes.
I used to rely on willpower to experience my goals and dreams, but more often than not, it didn’t work out well for me. Leaving me feeling frustrated and disappointed.
Achieving success and a sense of fulfillment requires more than just willpower alone. When the results we experience fail to match the energy we have expended on our goals, it can be disheartening. If this sounds familiar, consider asking yourself specific questions to help you gain clarity and focus on manifesting a more meaningful and successful life.
What works and what doesn’t work to make my life more meaningful and successful?
We often invest time in doing the same thing that hasn’t worked in the past, yet think that repeating it is a good idea! Or worse, the fact we’re repeating unsuccessful behavior isn’t even on our radar.
So starting tomorrow, what would you stop doing?
And what would you start to do or do more often?
The main thing here is to avoid setting yourself up for failure with unrealistic expectations.
Tiny makes mighty. Taking tiny steps and starting small with one thing you would stop doing or start to do more often will bring quicker results. Little new habits combine over time to bring about transformation.
Am I a good listener?
It’s easy to make significant mistakes in conversations with others. But unfortunately, listening errors can hurt relationships in one way or another. And prevent gaining insights into what others are thinking?
Am I guilty of interrupting more often than I should when talking to others?
This is something I’m guilty of more than I would like.
Or do you multitask or look at your phone when in conversation? Doing either of these begs the question. “Am I truly focused on the other person?
Being a better listener makes for happier work and personal relationships.
How self-reliant am I?
Creating a meaningful and successful life starts with self-reliance. It is essential to recognize that no one can provide the peace and assurance you need but you.
So how would you answer the following questions, “Do I need someone else to make me happy or blame others for my unhappiness?”
And am I relying too much on outside sources for fulfillment or success?
If your answer is closer to a yes than a no, then one thing that can help is to write down what you’ve achieved in the last 24 hours at the end of each day.
This stops your brain from focusing on your dependence on others for your happiness and start focusing on your own personal achievements.
An added bonus is you feel good at the end of each day. That feels like a self-reliant place to be.
Do I argue for limitations?
Limiting yourself can be detrimental to making your life more meaningful and successful.
So what would you say to the following questions:
Am I being limited by my excuses that things are unlikely to work out and are unfeasible for me?
And what can I do to move forward more positively with opportunities that arise for me?
Many years ago, I was a smoker. I didn’t smoke a lot, but it had become a hard habit to break, mainly because I had heard it was hard, and went on to tell myself it was hard. I consistently argued for my limitations.
Forcing myself didn’t work too well. I could make it for a day if I was lucky. So I found something that did work.
I imagined myself being thrilled I was no longer smoking. And from that future me, I got an idea to try. So I promised myself a cigarette after I had done….something…anything else first.
And a tiny habit was born. I kept putting off the cigarette until I finished my chosen task, the next one, and so on. Soon after, this new habit lasted longer and longer, and the desire for the cigarette faded more and more.
Can you find a tiny habit to help stop arguing for one of your limitations?
Do I design my day to get that one crucial thing accomplished?
Forcing yourself to use that thing we call willpower is not only overrated, it often doesn’t work worth a damn. Certainly not in my world.
Instead, ask yourself – what steps can I take to ensure that I stay focused on my goals and reduce the chances of getting distracted?
Try designing a good prompt. And post it where you can’t miss it. Keep moving it around with you if necessary.
For example, write on a sticky note that one thing you want to get done. That one thing that is crucial to live a more meaningful or successful life. Be it work or relationship related or anything crucial to your day.
You don’t have to do it instantly. Your creation of a prompt allows your mind to relax and not overthink. You’ve set yourself up for success with this one simple act.
We automatically do many things in our day that we don’t need prompts for. This little act makes it more likely that we’ll accomplish that major thing without getting distracted.
Would my life be more meaningful and successful if I used my intuition?
According to experiments conducted by Vinod Vincent, an associate professor at Clayton State University in Georgia, intuition paired with expertise is an excellent combo.
Are you using your intuition to support your choices based on knowledge? If not, try getting in touch with your emotions more regularly and find the source of your feelings.
Over time you’ll find it easier to discern when you’re receiving an accurate signal from your intuition.
And though our gut feelings might never be completely fool-proof, with some practice, they can become an essential part of your decision-making process.
Am I a procrastinator?
The answer is likely yes. Because 85% of us are procrastinators at heart to some degree or another.
And if you’re stuck on procrastination, here’s one technique I became aware of and practice to this day.
It’s the cliffhanger technique. And was used by Charles Dickens when he first published his novels as serials in newspapers.
It’s also used by tv programs to ensure you tune in to the next episode and discover the outcome of the previous show.
It works because our brain is looking for resolutions. The mystery of the last show is rumbling around in the back of our minds, our subconscious busily looking for answers.
So to help avoid procrastinating so much, just begin something.
This acts like a Zeigarnik effect. Once something has started, you’re more inclined to go back and finish it because it’s nagging away in the back of your mind. It’s the ‘I’ve started, so I’ll finish syndrome.’
Encourage one another.
You are so right, Elle. Having the life you want requires taking a hard look at yourself, asking questions, and making changes accordingly. The question I need to as myself most often is “Do you argue for your limitations?” Too often, I do. Thanks for the reminder to stop.