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5 Ways To Transform Your Life In Less Than One Year

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5 Ways To Transform Your Life In Less Than One Year

Everybody wants to transform their lives and achieve all of their biggest dreams, but how many will actually stick to that idea and do everything possible to make it happen?

Below I have listed 5 Ways to do just that:

 

1. Quit your job

This may sound dramatic, but unless you are in a job you 100% want to be in for the next five years, you should quit immediately. There will always be 100 reasons to postpone. But no matter how long you wait, you’ll never feel ready. It will always be a leap of faith. There will always be unknowns.

Leaping before you look involves high risk. The bigger the risks you take, the more likely you’ll enter a state of flow—which is the optimal conscious state where you feel and perform at your highest level. When you take huge risks, you’re required to think in innovative ways because the consequences of failure are high.

Quitting your job will be the best thing you ever did. It will free up mass amounts of energy and time. You’ll be startled by the inflow of insight you’ll get almost immediately. By quitting your job, you’ll be making a personal proclamation that from now on, you’re going to live life on your own terms.

For example, Pat Flynn, a professional blogger on the topic of creating passive income was working a 9-5 job back in 2008. Then he got laid off. Although he loved his old job, he immediately started creating a business online. He was forced to think creatively as the bread-winner for his family. In a very short time, he was making more money in less time doing something he loved even more. Now, he makes millions of dollars online. This money is automated, meaning, he makes money whether he works or not.

What if he would have quit his job a few years earlier?

“We’ll never be ready if we keep waiting for the perfect time to come.” – Mat Kearney

2. Sell everything you don’t need

Most of the possessions you own, you don’t use. Most of the clothes in your closet you don’t wear. Get rid of them. They are sucking energy from your life. Also, they are dormant value waiting to be exchanged for dollars.

Getting rid of unutilized resources is like injecting motivation and clarity into your bloodstream. While all of that untapped energy gets removed, a new wave of positive energy comes into your life. You can use that energy in more useful and productive ways.

 

3. Uproot your current routine and get away

If you need a transformation in your life, it’s because you are not fully congruent. According to identity theory, before a person fully achieves their ideal identity, they need to spend a lot of time exploring. You need to see the world, meet new people, have new experiences, and experience new worldviews and ideologies.

Until you’ve challenged your current paradigm, you’ll never know if you really believe it. Without conviction and passion, you are without identity. Just a reflection of everything around you. There are several cheap ways to travel and experience the world. A primary difference between well-traveled people and non-traveled people is that well-traveled people are willing to go wherever is cheap at the present moment.

There are always incredible deals going on. You just need to be flexible. If you’re willing to go wherever is cheap, rather than an exact location, you’ll be able to see a lot. My wife and I were able to take a 20 day tour of China with airfare, hotels, food, and tours included for less than two grand each. China wasn’t exactly on our radar, but we saw an insane deal getting ready to close and jumped on it.

Another option is wwoof.net. Wwoof is an acronym standing for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. It’s a marvelous program that allows you to live and work on farms all over the world. Want to live in Hawaii for free? Work on a Pineapple farm 5 hours a day. Want to live in Greece, or Chili, or New Zealand for free? Work on a farm. Generally with wwoof, you get room and board. Also, depending on the farm, you can get weekends off to go explore.

My wife and I spent the entire summer after graduating college wwoofing in Ireland. We lived on a remote island called Cape Clear Island (officially known by its Irish name: Cléire) at a blind goat farmer’s house. We only worked like 3 hours a day. We milked and fed the goats. Then we led them to their grazing area. Our only other duty was to go get them at the end of the day and put them back in their pens.

So, we had all day to do whatever we wanted. We walked all over the island eating European gummies. Listened to 3 Ender’s Game audiobooks. Laid on the grass looking at the ocean and clouds. Read books, wrote blog posts. Whatever we wanted.

While on this trip, I had so many eye-opening experiences. I broke out of the shell I created during college. I was able to let go of all my prior pursuits and re-examine what I really wanted in life.

Go see the world, explore. It is necessary to eventually reinvent yourself and achieve your ideal identity.

Confucius

4. Write down your one year, five year, and 25 year plan

The 25 year plan is basically your bucket list for life, your vision. The five year plan is far enough out that you can literally do anything you want in that time. The one year plan is right in front of you.

This is how you create your ideal vision for your life. One of Stephen R. Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is “Begin with the end in mind.” It is based on the principle that all things are created twice—there’s a mental creation and a physical creation to all things.

If you’re building a house you plan every detail with architects drawings, builders and landscapers according to what you want to create. Only then does the physical work begin. This is how we must live our lives. You’d be utterly shocked at how much your life can change in one year of intentional creation. You are the architect of your life. You get to design it.

Fill your days only with those things that build toward your ideal vision. Get rid of everything that pulls you away from that.

 

5. Start a blog or write a book

No matter who you are, you have something remarkable to say. There is someone out there who will resonate with your worldview and experiences. Even if no one reads your blog, the process of writing your ideas and experiences will transform you.

You don’t have to write your story if you don’t want. You could dive into a topic you are interested in or passionate about. You could become an expert about what you love.

Brian Tracy, one of the world’s leading experts on success, explains that in today’s world of business, books are now what business cards used to be. Everyone writes books now. We all have our unique stories to tell. The internet allows us to tell those stories, publish and market them.

This is the future of business in general. You need a platform. The internet isn’t going away. It’s only becoming more relevant and fundamental.

“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, and magic and power in it. Begin it now.” – Goethe

Conclusion and a few extra ideas

You absolutely can change your entire life in one year. You could be living in a different part of the world. You could be doing a completely different line of work. You could completely reinvent yourself. You could be a millionaire or a monk. Whatever you want.

A few extra ideas:

  1. Start Writing A Journal Daily
  2. Read One Book Per Week – this will change you
  3. Join New Social Groups
  4. Launch A Small Company Using Crowdfunding
  5. Move To A New Culture And Simultaneously Learn A New Language
  6. Sign Up For An Exercise Event And Get Into Amazing Shape
  7. Do A 20, 30, Or 60 Day Juice Cleanse – if you’re overweight, you won’t be for long
  8. Meet With Missionaries Or Ministers Of Different Faiths To Learn New Worldviews
  9. Get Really Good At Social Media And Learn How To Make Money Using It
  10. Decide Two Or Three Habits Your Really Want And Master Them – don’t do too many
Thank you for reading my article! Everybody will see things in their own way but I hope that everyone understands the main point. Transform your lives!

Benjamin Hardy is the foster parent of 3 children. He’s pursuing his Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology. He’s the author of Slipstream Time Hacking. You can connect with him on Twitter @BenjaminPHardy or visit his website: http://www.benjaminhardy.com/

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7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. sim hendricks

    Jul 30, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    Waooo thanks wonderful article.

  2. Jo

    Jul 8, 2015 at 10:18 pm

    I loved this post! Thankyou so much! So spot on 🙂

  3. Jonathan

    Jul 6, 2015 at 9:21 am

    Thank you so much for sharing this! As someone who is almost 20 and at the beginning of adulthood complacency and doubt can get the best of me if I’m not careful. These are great ideas I can put to use.

  4. 4OSUkids

    Jun 30, 2015 at 1:55 am

    GREAT article and so are your others. Very inspiring. Not quite ready to do ALL those things but you’ve got me thinking in that direction and I’ll be 60 this year!

  5. saugat

    Jun 22, 2015 at 5:30 am

    good one

  6. saugat

    Jun 22, 2015 at 5:30 am

    really awesome idea

  7. Lifestyle Accountant

    Jun 20, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    This is such a great list! I already started crossing things off by starting a blog, quitting my job last month, selling my house and downsizing to a studio apartment while getting rid of many things, and traveled to Mexico for a few weeks to explore. It’s amazing the amount of mental capacity that opens up when leaving a 9-5 job behind. I too am trying to break out of the shell that I created for myself in college. I’m now stepping out of my comfort zone as I am focused on creating an accounting business. Things I didn’t think I was capable of doing are easy now. It all starts with just starting and changing your mindset. Great reminder to re-read 7 Habits again. Thanks!

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Life

9 Personal Growth Lessons I Learned From Being Bullied

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Wherever I went, bullying seemed to follow me. Whether it was school, work or even family, I could never seem to find any kind of escape. For years, I was stuck in the victim mindset, constantly asking myself what I did to deserve this kind of behaviour towards me. I decided to turn my struggle into a personal growth strategy to help others who might be silently struggling with what I did.

Here are some of the key personal growth lessons I learnt from my harrowing experiences:

1. Be the victim

Be the victim but put an early as possible expiration date on this. Realise that it is okay to feel sorry for yourself; it is okay to validate yourself by reinforcing the fact that you didn’t deserve what happened to you. This will help you give yourself the compassion that you need in that moment. Recognition of the hurt and validation are the first steps towards starting the healing process, but the key is not to hang around there for too long otherwise you will be stuck with a victim mentality.

2. Why?

This is a question that is often asked – why did this happen to me? Were the stars misaligned or is this karma for sneaking the last doughnut from the party? Rather than getting bogged down analysing why you went through the harrowing experience, focus on what you learnt from the experience. Sometimes, it can be something as simple as finding your voice and setting boundaries. Every difficult situation offers an opportunity to learn.

3. Focus on the lesson, not on the pain

Whenever faced with a tough situation, ask yourself, “What am I learning from this?” Often, when drowning in dire circumstances, we cannot see light and we fear that any light might be an oncoming train. The best way to deal with this fear and overwhelm is to refocus your thoughts. Oftentimes, the lesson falls under one of the following categories: perseverance, patience, consistency and my personal favourite – staying true to who you are.

4. Control the controllable

Within every difficult situation, there are always factors you can control: your responses, your disposition and your actions. Using what you can control, redirect your energy on what you CAN do instead of what you can’t do. Sometimes, what you can do is simply getting through your day and giving everything you can. This helps in building self-confidence and self-esteem.

“Once your mindset changes, everything on the outside will change along with it.” – Steve Maraboli

5. You do you

It is a normal human desire to be liked by those around us. Avoid trying to change who you are based on what others say about you. It is very tempting to do this because we all want to feel accepted and want to feel that we belong. The more you do you, the more you will attract people who love you for the “real” you.

6. It is not about you

When people criticize you incessantly, recognise that they are battling their own demons and they are easily triggered. You are not the real reason for their hurtful behaviour, they are filled with fear, anger and hurt which they vent out to others. You can only give what you have and if fear, anger and hurt is all you have, it is the only place from which you will function.

7. You have the power to choose

It is easy to forget that we always have the power of our choices and decisions, while our circumstances may be overwhelming, we can still make wise choices so as not to become victims of our circumstances. We should never forget this power as this is what keeps us afloat and breathing when caught in a flood of difficulties.

8. Revenge is not the answer

While it is perfectly normal and human to wish revenge on those who have hurt us, it is crucial to note that what we wish upon others, mirrors back to us. Wishing your culprits to battle incessant sneezing while stuck in traffic controlling explosive diarrhea might give a moment of satisfaction, but is this something you are willing to risk mirroring back to you? I certainly am not. Put quite simply – negativity breeds negativity while positivity breeds positivity. Remember, you have the power to choose.

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” – Wayne Dyer

9. Forgive

Don’t gasp so loudly. Yes, forgive those who have hurt you. Why? It definitely doesn’t absolve them of the hurt they caused you, but it releases you from the chains of negativity that are binding and rooting you in place preventing you from moving on. How do you forgive? Ask whatever higher power you believe in to filter those who have hurt you out of your life, sending them blessings and healing wherever they may need it in their lives while also blessing over positive outcomes for all of you.

I have used this technique personally and I swear by it. Sending blessings and healing while asking for positive outcomes, results in all these wonderful things happening to you as well. Giving what you have mirrors back to you. You have the power to forgive, let go and move on. This is a choice that you also happen to have the power to choose.

The next time you feel stuck and overwhelmed by your circumstances, revisit these personal growth lessons and apply them to your unique situation. You will be glad that you did.


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6 Reasons Why You Should Never Glorify Failure After You’ve Failed

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Many people are ashamed of failure. If they so much as smell a whiff of failure, they quit instantly because the public notices it quickly. But you shouldn’t be ashamed of failure. A lot of people have failed. I’ve failed over and over again in my career, business, relationships and more. Yet, I keep trying because failure isn’t the final verdict. (more…)

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Life

How to Move Forward When All Seems Lost

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A few weeks ago, the relationship of my venture with a long-term client turned rocky. Losing them would mean a huge loss for my business, but it appeared like that’s where we were headed. My mind raced with unpleasant thoughts. Maybe the client had figured out that I couldn’t lead my team well. Maybe I was not good enough to be an entrepreneur. Maybe I was not good enough to do anything.

Why was the world so unfair?! Within moments, my anxiety had shot through the roof and my heart was racing faster than an F1 car engine. But I know I’m not the only one who feels like this.

Why Problems Overwhelm Us

As human beings, we’re good at solving problems, so they shouldn’t stress us out. Yet, they do just that. Why?

Consider some of these situations in life. When a relationship is headed for troubled waters, we wonder whether our partner loves us anymore. Our mind unearths memories of when we got dumped or rejected. We blame ourselves for falling for the wrong people and tell ourselves that we’re not worth receiving love.

How do you think the relationship will steer after that? If we cannot stick to a diet, we think of other times when we gave up. We remember what people said about things that we couldn’t do and ask ourselves, “were they right?” We tell ourselves that we don’t have what it takes to succeed at anything.

Do you think we’ll find the grit to stick to the diet after this? So here we are… thinking we’re not good enough to be entrepreneurs, to be loved, to get promoted, or to achieve our personal goals. Notice a pattern yet? We move in the wrong direction. The destination is to achieve the goal. And unless we stop giving into emotions and start addressing situations, we’ll keep failing to get there.

Negative emotions (and even extremely positive ones) blur our vision. The more we focus on them, the deeper we go into how we feel. We either get angry because things aren’t the way we want them to be, or get paralyzed by the fear of the worst possible outcome. This means we pull away from the one thing we must do to set things right — take action.

“If you can’t sleep, then get up and do something instead of lying there and worrying. It’s the worry that gets you, not the loss of sleep.” – Dale Carnegie

How to Take Action in the Face of Problems

Most human beings are good at solving problems. Where we get blindsided is at diagnosing the right problem. To diagnose the right problem, we must address the situation instead of emotions. We must see things for what they are, collect facts on what we’re worrying about, and then ask ourselves, “What should I do next?”

In his book “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living”, Dale Carnegie wrote: “Neither you nor I nor Einstein nor the Supreme Court of the United States is brilliant enough to reach an intelligent decision on any problem without first getting the facts.”

To address the tricky situation with my client, I took the following three steps:

1. First, I acknowledged the feeling

Solving a problem doesn’t mean ignoring emotions. It’s important to acknowledge how you feel because it reveals the path, but domesticating your emotions is more important. I acknowledged how I felt by saying, “I feel anxious because the client might not want to work with us anymore and this will be a financial loss for us.”

Note how I said “I feel anxious” and not “I’m a loser.” If I had given into negative chatter, I wouldn’t have uncovered the direction to move in (the part after “because”). This is why domesticating emotions is crucial.

2. Next, I prepared for the worst

We often run from our worst fears rather than facing them despite knowing that the worst outcome rarely comes true. The result is that we stay stuck in fear instead of pushing beyond it. And we never discover what we’re really capable of, which sucks.

In my case, the worst meant losing the client. It would hurt but it was the truth. However, we could get more clients. Plus we already had other clients who helped us pay the bills. In other words, I wouldn’t have to live on the street.

The moment I accepted this, a huge weight got lifted off my chest. This prepared me for the third and final step.

“Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.” – Zig Ziglar

3. Lastly, I examined the situation

Examining a situation means setting aside your emotional baggage and focusing on facts. When you trust that you’ll be okay, you become better at diagnosing the real problem. Once I felt lighter, I could see things clearly.

I used the 5 Whys Technique (asking “why” five times) to figure out the real reason for the client’s dissatisfaction. Then I collected data on the issue and on what we had previously delivered.

Finally, I reached out to the CEO of the client and held a detailed and constructive discussion based on my findings. Within four days, the CEO and I were back to the way things were before.

The best way to prepare for tomorrow is to give today your best. I’m not sure whether the issue with the client got resolved for good or whether the client won’t pack up and leave one day. However, I am sure that I’m prepared to handle such cases better today than I was yesterday.

Control your emotions instead of letting them run amok. Accept things for what they are instead of what you want them to be. Be realistic instead of delusional. Address the situation instead of succumbing to emotions.

Don’t preempt what lies ten miles ahead and get paralyzed by fear. Address what lies clearly in front of you and keep moving. One day you’ll be surprised about how close to your destination you are.

How do you move forward when all hope seems to be lost? Share your advice below!

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8 Effective Tips to Improve Your Emotional Wellbeing

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You know what they say, “Health Is Wealth”. But, more often than not, we only mean it in the context of physical health. There’s no question that being fit is the world’s greatest treasure. Unfortunately, not a lot of us take time out to look after our emotional health and wellbeing.

Let’s not forget – it’s ‘Mind Over Matter’. So, if you are able to take control of your emotions, thoughts, how you feel through the day and how you respond to myriad situations; there’s nothing quite like it. When you become the master of your emotions; health, prosperity, and basically all good things are bound to follow you.

With that said, here are 8 surefire ways that will improve your emotional wellbeing:

1. Practice Mindfulness

Half the time, we don’t even know what we’re thinking or how we’re feeling. That’s because we let our minds operate on autopilot. It’s time to take control of your mind. Be aware of what and how you feel throughout the day. The upside to this practice is that you can detect negative emotions right on the onset and quickly change them and their corresponding feeling.

Feelings of anger, jealousy, hatred; they are not good for the mind, soul, or the body. Paying close attention to the spectrum of emotions you experience throughout the day, will help you detect the negative ones and kick them away before they fester deep enough to take away your happiness and emotional health.

2. Stay Physically Active

As you engage in physical activities, your brain produces a whole bunch of feel-good hormones such as endorphins and dopamine. These hormones are what causes the ‘elated’ or ‘euphoric’ feeling. Being physically active uplifts your mood and your outlook towards life. It readies you to take the challenges more head-on instead of becoming overwhelmed by the littlest of inconvenience.

You are better able to analyze tough situations and take a more proactive rather than a reactive approach. It’s no question physical health is in direct proportion with emotional health. A healthy mind resides in a healthy body and vice versa.

“Caring for the mind is as important and crucial as caring for the body. In fact, one cannot be healthy without the other.” – Sid Garza-Hillman

3. Get Sufficient Sleep

Ever noticed how you feel depressed and cranky, and just out of focus the day you fail to get a good night’s sleep? Well, if you fail to get sufficient sleep for a couple of days, you are bound to feel more depressed, cranky and eventually more prone to a host of negative emotions. Research shows that sleep deprivation sends amygdala – our brain’s emotional response center into overdrive.

Amygdala controls our immediate emotional responses. When it becomes overactive, we become more reactive rather than active. We become more irritable, angry and anxious. A good night’s sleep is vital to improving your emotional wellbeing.

4. Develop a New Hobby

Learn to swim. Try arts and crafts. How about painting? Swimming is a ‘happy’ activity. You get to make new friends and stay fit. Arts and crafts, as we all know, tends to have a relaxing effect on the mind and the nerves.

Just the process of creating something from scratch makes you confident and gets those creative juices flowing. Similarly, painting helps you express yourself. All these factors together create a ‘happy you’. The one who likes to engage in new things instead of resisting change or difficult situations.

5. Eat Healthy

Ever heard of the phrase, “You are what you eat”? Well, it’s true to the last syllable. When you eat foods rich in salt, sodium, fat – you are bound to feel lethargic. It takes longer for the body to digest such foods. That means the body is forced to deprive organs of blood and use it for the digestion purpose.

Result? You become lazy, moody, not ready to take any responsibility which leads to feeling cranky and irritable. On the other hand, eating fibrous vegetables, fruits, salads, and complex sugars keeps you upbeat and healthy.

6. Laugh Your Heart Out

Laughter is the best medicine. That is why they have a dedicated ‘laughter session’ in yoga studios. You don’t even have to mean it. The simple act of spreading your cheeks and pretending to laugh sends a signal to your body that you are happy.

And what happens when you are happy? Your brain releases happy hormones like dopamine, serotonin and what not. In fact, many studies have gone so far as to stipulate that laughter alone is capable of treating all kinds of physical ailments. Why should emotional ailments be any different?

7. Try Relaxation Techniques

‘’Visualization technique’’ where you imagine yourself in a happy place is a surefire way to calm your nerves if you find yourself distressed. You may also try praying to elate yourself. Praying is good for the mind and the soul.

Controlled breathing or ‘biofeedback technique’ are some other relaxation techniques that can tame how you feel and even your bodily functions. Try surrounding yourself with aromatherapy or scented candles because the smell is a big factor in governing how we feel.

“Positive emotional energy is the key to health, happiness and wellbeing. The more positive you are, the better your life will be in every area.” – Brian Tracy

8. Count Your Blessings

We all have so much to be thankful for. It could be a friend who stands by you or a happy family. Good health. Financial freedom. Make a list of all the things that you feel grateful for in your life. If it’s a person, be sure to communicate your feelings and express your gratitude.

You will feel so much happier. Happiness is the diet of a healthy mind and an intelligent emotional response mechanism. You could also try writing a poem or simply expressing your gratitude through the power of prayers.

There are so many ways to become emotionally intelligent and not one of them requires any investment or special skills. Practically anyone and everyone can do it. All you need is the will and the desire.

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