We all feel lost from time to time. Society has a way of beating us down with its arbitrary life rules and expectations. Just when we think we have it nailed, the rug can be pulled from below and we end up with a crushing realisation that actually, we don’t have it all figured out.
Questions arise, and you find yourself doubting your very existence.
“Am I in the right career?”
“Do I have the ability to rise through the ranks and increase my income?”
“Is this it for me?”
I felt all of this and more. Until the age of 31 I felt trapped in a menial customer service position that began to eat away at my soul. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but I knew with absolute certainty that something had to change.
It did. When you back an animal into the corner it has no option but to come out fighting.
I quit my job and it was the scariest moment of my life. Would I sink or swim?
Well, 2 years later I have my own guitar tuition business and while it definitely wasn’t easy – the lessons I have learned on the way will be invaluable as I continue moving forward.
Hopefully, if you’re in a position where you are seeking to change your career or to start your own business, you can take a little something from the following 10 life lessons, such as…
Life Lessons Learned From Suddenly Quitting My Job
1. There is no such thing as the right time
Do you have a crazy life changing idea that you are putting off because the time just doesn’t feel right? You’re not the only one. I wrestled with my mind for years before I finally plucked up the courage to quit my job, and you know what?
It was a colossal waste of time.
Preparation is overrated. No matter how much thought, planning and care you put into something, you will always come up short.
Life doesn’t give a damn about how prepared you are. It wants people with the balls to make something happen.
2. People will think you are crazy but that’s ok
We’re fragile beings. Our ego likes to protect our little selves from all the bad people in the world. Even though we don’t like to admit it, many of our life decisions are taken because we care about what other people think.
It’s human nature.
After quitting my job it didn’t take long for the naysayers to crawl out of the woodwork and mock me for having ideas above my station. I heard it all;
“You can’t do that. How will you survive?”
“You should have found another job first. You’ll regret it.”
But you know what? You soon learn to ignore the haters and it’s impossible to please everyone, so in future it’s best to just live life by your own standards.
3. You learn to become responsible for your own actions
Doing something as drastic as quitting my job without really thinking it through, led me to a profound realisation;
This is all down to me.
I don’t have work colleagues to drag me down or a narcissistic manager to crush my soul on a daily basis. There is no one to blame but myself if this goes down the toilet.
That’s the beauty of taking control of your life; you’re fully in the driving seat and the motivational surge you receive as a result of grabbing life by the balls is astounding.
4. Every problem faced becomes an end of level boss to defeat
Is life easy once you quit your safe job for a life of uncertainty? Hell no. It feels like an endless assault on the senses. You’ve heard of treading water? Well imagine treading treacle.
Just keeping your head above the surface is a herculean task by itself. Forget trying to run a fledgling business. Putting food on the table and paying the rent suddenly become the only goals worth bothering with.
But you learn to cope.
And then you look for the next challenge that passes your way. You defeat that one too.
In fact, you quickly learn that life isn’t that hard after all. It’s just a videogame and you’ve got invincibility mode enabled.
5. Life isn’t a linear process – there is no beginning, middle and end
I’ll admit; I believed that once I picked up a few students and started making a bit of cash, everything would sort itself out.
Just when things seemed to be moving forwards I would suffer a setback. The few students I had on my roster suddenly quit. No feedback, no apologies, nothing.
Gone, just like that.
And then I waited.
It took me 6 months before I found a few more students to take their place. That’s a long time to wait around without any proper income. Even now, I have good months and bad months, but I have come to realise that it’s all about the process, not the destination.
Life is too big to concern yourselves with. The present moment is all that counts.
6. You can make up the rules as you go along
Who in their right mind would give up a safe job, their own apartment and independence for an uncertain life as a guitar teacher?
On the face of it, it’s crazy. But I’ve always teetered on the edge of conformity – peering over the edge to see what is possible.
Who quits their job at the age of 31 and moves back home? Who starts a degree at the same time because it seemed like a good idea? Who fills their days with German study sessions and rigorous guitar practice when they aren’t working?
Me. I do that, because I can.
I’ve learned that confusing people with your day to day activities just means that you’re doing something right with your life.
7. Nobody can order you around, but you still need discipline
I have worked under some ridiculously inept managers in my time. Borderline psychopaths, bullies, bumbling buffoons and many other things that begin with the letter ‘B’; but they all have one thing in common…
They can’t tell me what to do.
Except, this led me to a strange realisation; without the structure and discipline of a full time job I became lazy. I needed my alarm clock and the threat of dismissal for not turning up on time to fuel my day.
This is something I still struggle with. I am slowly improving but the procrastination monster still rears its ugly head from time to time.
I’ve learnt that whatever we choose to do with our lives requires discipline to achieve greatness.
8. Fear is necessary for growth
I’ll let you in on a little secret.
Life scares the hell out of me.
I used to think that there was a big difference between successful people and the likes of me. That somehow they were born with superpowers that enable them to surge through life with confidence and swagger.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. Fear doesn’t discriminate. It engulfs us all. In fact, successful people experience more fear than anyone else because they are putting their balls on the line every single day
If you’re feeling scared then it’s a good sign. You are pushing yourself further; stretching your comfort zone and experiencing something new and exciting.
Accept and embrace fear because it’s the friend of exceptional people.
9. There will never be enough hours in the day
We always want more.
If it’s not money, then it’s time.
If it’s not time, then it’s success.
If it’s not success, then it’s respect.
If it’s not respect, then it’s money. It’s a vicious cycle – an addiction.
Life is a never ending quest to seek more of what we already have. But here is a novel idea… what would happen if we simply made better use of what we currently have? Of course, seeking to improve ourselves or our life situation is desirable but what is the point of acquiring more money if you can’t manage your current finances?
What’s the point in more time if you don’t make use of what you currently have?
What’s the point in building a reputation if you allow complacency to set in?
Everything; time, money and respect must first be earned and then utilised effectively. Do you only have $50 in your account? Stop binging on fast food and use that money wisely.
Do you only know a few people who trust and respect you as a businessperson or as a brand? Word of mouth is powerful; keep these people on side and you’ll reap the rewards later.
Do you only have 2 hours in the evening to spend with your loved ones? Make those 2 hours count.
Successful people make the best of what they have whilst continually striving to improve.
10. Excellence is 100% – everything else is failure
For years I coasted through life – doing the absolute bare minimum. Hoping that no one would notice how my whole existence was a master class in incompetence and laziness.
Everything from playing the guitar, my job, training in the gym and even my social interactions were all accomplished with this mentality. I felt like a fraud.
I needed to change, and fast. To do this I had to take a long, hard look at myself and accept that the only way I was going to be able to achieve anything is with complete transparency.
No more lies. No more covering up the cracks. It was time to get brutal.
I’ve discovered that success is a habit forged through a combination of time and effort. There are no shortcuts. Is it possible to put 100% into one area and then coast in another? For a while maybe, but eventually the lesser activity will start dragging the others down.
Consistency is the key. Eliminate the fat from your life and put 100% into whatever remains. Cement the habit and don’t settle for second best.
Since implementing this mentality my output has improved dramatically. My guitar playing has improved. My business has more students than ever. I’m finding that my studies and my assignments are getting easier. I am training harder than ever before and my diet is in check.
It’s not a coincidence.
By suddenly quitting my job I have finally learned how to live my life.
Try it. See what happens.
These 7 Daily Resolutions Can Change Your Life
We all strive to be better every day. Most of us want a new day to bring something new, and we plan for it as well. Of course, the execution is debatable as procrastination is real and it becomes an overwhelming feeling at times. Also, not to forget the customary practice of making resolutions on new year’s eve! All of us are fascinated by the thought of preparing long lists of resolves to mark the beginning of a new year. Not sure how many people are able to translate these resolutions into functional realities. (more…)
4 Reasons Why Content Is Pivotal For Mental Health Healing
One of the most important things for an entrepreneur’s mental health is expressing their feelings, thoughts, and emotions. This is where content creation and writing becomes pivotal. Whether you read something that resonates with you or you write a compelling blog post, the act of expressing yourself through content can help to put a smile on your face and make you feel better about things.
Most entrepreneurs don’t spend as much time taking care of their mental health as they should. Over the course of your career, you will experience a lot of ups and downs; these emotions have the potential to take a toll on your mind and body if you don’t learn to manage them properly.
Here are four reasons why expression through content is pivotal for healing, slowing yourself down, and giving yourself grace when the going gets tough.
1. Content can be a form of self-expression
When you are an entrepreneur, you frequently face feelings of insecurity, doubt, fear, apathy, and exhaustion, just to name a few. Some days it feels like no one is on your business’s side and everyone else has it all figured out. On those days some of us try to look at our website’s analytics to cheer up.
But an even more freeing task is creating content. You create content to improve your business and reach more people’s lives. But, there is something special that happens when you write with the intention of expressing your thoughts and feelings — you open a door to yourself.
Content is inherently personal, which means content creators open themselves up when they share their thoughts on a platform. Everything from the title of the post, the keywords they choose to include, and even the content itself helps you to understand who the author of that post truly is. And as an entrepreneur, this can be an important experience because it allows others to empathize with you.
As you think through what to write about and how to express yourself, the process of self reflection is a valuable step you need to go through. You’re able to reflect on the blessings you have, assess what you learned from the negative experiences, and create a plan on how to maintain the positive experiences you’ve had.
There are a few ways that self reflection can help you with mental health healing. The act of reflecting on your experiences helps to create clarity in feelings, thoughts and emotions which will eventually lead into acceptance for what has happened or is happening currently without feeling overwhelmed by it all. This process also leads people towards finding new things they enjoy doing. Self reflection is therapeutic and can be implemented anytime you feel the need to overcome overwhelm.
“Writing in a journal each day allows you to direct your focus to what you accomplished, what you’re grateful for and what you’re committed to doing better tomorrow. Thus, you more deeply enjoy your journey each day.” – Hal Elrod
3. A sense of belonging and camaraderie
It is important to have a support network of people who will listen and understand what you are going through. When you post a blog or upload a video on YouTube, there are others who feel the same way and experience a sense of connection with you.
When you put time, attention and thoughtfulness into your writing, it is amazing when someone reads what you’ve written and comments on it thanking you or expressing how they resonate with what you’re going through. It’s hard to put into words how powerful it feels when someone who has gone through the same experience and reads your words then reaches out. There is power in expression but miracles happen when people bond over a similar experience.
4. Library of content to share with more people
It can be very difficult to know what content to share with people as the symptoms of mental health disorders (anxiety, depression, etc.) vary from person to person. But as you accumulate more and more content, this will increase the number of articles or videos available for readers to choose from depending on their specific purpose. It also builds your personal library of resources you’re able to share to different people you encounter or engage directly with.
As chaotic and distracting social media can be, it can also be a beacon of hope with the right content. Many people share viral posts, or content that interest them. Since your content is valuable and personal, the more you share it, the more likely it is to be shared with the right audience.
You never know who is watching (reading)
Your content is speaking to someone and even though they may not be actively engaged, their experiences with your work are impacting them. Think about the last time you watched TV: did everyone in the room have something entertaining to say?
You never know who’s watching because there’s always somebody reading your posts or viewing your videos-even if they just skim through it briefly. This is why creating content worth consuming is critical, not only to get you out of your funk, but also to serve your audience. Be authentic and stay true to yourself; make every post count as an opportunity for connection with your best self and for potential readers to bond with you.
5 Ways To Invest In Yourself and Change Your Life
Warren Buffett once said, the best investment you can ever make is in yourself. Time and money spent on bettering yourself are never considered a waste. Whether it’s through learning how to make money online, exploring new ways to increase your financial security, or watching TED talks to expand your knowledge. Do not be stingy when it comes to self-improvement because it will definitely pay off in the end.
Need some ideas to get started on your journey to becoming a better you? Here are 5 ways to invest in yourself and transform your life.
1. Change Your Self-Concept
Having a negative self-concept can have a tremendous impact on your life. Limiting beliefs and self-doubt are some of the main reasons why many never achieve or attempt to pursue their dreams. Take a moment and think about all the negative thoughts you have repeated to yourself throughout your life. How have these thoughts impacted the way you live life? From now on, create a new self-image by turning these negative thoughts into positive ones and appreciate your good qualities.
2. Sign Up For An Online Course
If you’ve been wanting to brush up on your Photoshop skills or learn how to code professionally, this is the perfect time to get started. As long as you have a stable internet connection, you can access an endless amount of valuable information online. For example, sites like Coursera and Youtube are both awesome resources for online learning. With a few search strings and clicks, you can find all the information you need.
3. Learn From a Mentor
No matter which stage of your life you are currently in, working with a mentor can help you stay motivated and focused on your goals. Not only can they guide you in the right direction, but also transform your vision, provide you with new insights, and connect you with amazing resources. If you’re feeling unmotivated or unsure about what you want to do in life, consider finding a mentor to help you navigate this process.
4. Start A Side Hustle
The salary from a 9-5 job would rarely allow you to reach your maximum income potential. Why not achieve financial success while pursuing your passion by starting a side hustle? Whether it’s through starting an ecommerce business, freelance writing on the side, or starting a Youtube channel. There are infinite numbers of ways to make money, and there is bound to be one out there that fits your passion and skills.
5. Nourish Your Body
As many may say, “health is the new wealth”. Without a healthy and functioning body, living a fulfilling and comfortable life becomes difficult. To take care of your body and prioritize your wellbeing, start with small habits such as eating healthier foods and exercising regularly. Bike or walk to work instead of taking the car, and opt for a healthy protein bowl instead of greasy burgers at Burger King. With time, these small habits can make an incredible difference.
Check out the infographic below, to see more ways you can invest in yourself:
How to Turn Inward and Detox Your Mind
When we are overwhelmed by confusion, our psyche tries to establish certainty to alleviate our discomfort. This is usually accomplished by mentally imagining and acting out a plot. Unfortunately, much of the time, we mentally visualize pessimistic (or worst-case scenario) scenarios to provide certainty. (more…)
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