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8 Reasons Why Nothing Ever Seems to Make You Happy

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not happy about life finding happiness through success

“Money may not buy you happiness but happiness can help you get rich.”
- Jim Loehr, author of Power of Full Engagement

Do you sometimes feel like you should be happier?

From the outside you’re the picture of success, but on the inside you feel miserable, with happiness just out of reach.

You used to think that success would bring contentment, but now you’re filled with doubt.

Well, let’s change that. The following are some answers to why you are not happier even when everything in your life is running smoothly.

 

1. You’ve been sold someone else’s idea of happiness

• Do you already have a good car and want an even better one?
• Have you been thinking about joining an exclusive club?
• Have you been thinking about getting a more expensive house even though the one you have is perfectly fine?
• Do you have a great partner but you can’t stop criticizing all of their little flaws?

You likely want more because you’ve bought into Madison Avenue and Hollywood images of success, happiness and perfection.

Unfortunately, the goal of Madison Avenue and Hollywood movies is to sell the hope of happiness so that you open your wallet and buy.

Solution: Don’t be seduced by advertising and movie images of the good life. If you are not happy in the now, you need to discover the real reasons why you are not as happy as you want to be — before you acquire more money, status and stuff — and work to uncover what will make you feel good about yourself now.

 

2. You’re acting like you’re still in high school

• Do you ever compare yourself to the Joneses?
• Are you ever seduced into getting the fancier car, house or partner just because your peers did?

Wanting to keep up with the Joneses and feel like you are a member of the tribe is normal because love and belonging are hard-wired human needs.

You want to feel like you are part of the in-crowd; adult life is a grown-up version of high school after all. The only difference is that the characters have wrinkles, gray hair and a few extra pounds.

If everyone else is accumulating more and more, you feel pressured to keep up. If you don’t keep up, it can remind you of memories of rejection and humiliation from school. That’s one of the reasons why you feel the need to keep up with the Joneses.

Solution: Find a new tribe that’s not as focused on materialistic things and are more focused on making a difference in the world. Stop thinking about yourself, give back to the community and find a cause you are passionate about.

 

3. You have no clue how to connect deeply with people

• Do you feel lonely despite having lots of Facebook friends, LinkedIn connections and community acquaintances?
• Are you dying to have real friends you can share your deepest thoughts, feelings and fears with?

Realistically, most of your peers feel as lonely as you and they crave real heart-to-heart connections too. They are just waiting for someone else to start the vulnerable conversations.

Solution: Get together for coffee or lunch with an acquaintance you’ve always wanted to know better. Look for an opening to share your deepest thoughts. Ask questions such as, “What makes you happy? What are you afraid of? What are your goals? Why are these goals important to you?”

 

4. Your past demons are driving you

• Growing up, did anyone ever make you feel you were not enough?
• Do you feel like you are trying to prove something to someone?

Who are you trying to prove your worth to?

• Your mother?
• Your father?
• Your sister or brother?
• The bullies on the playground?
• The teacher that humiliated you?

Through your drive for success, you may be subconsciously trying to show them that you are enough and that you are somebody important. That’s because the #1 desire of human beings is…

… to be validated.

To feel that you are perfect just the way you are.

To feel worthy.

To feel good enough.

You may be unconsciously driven to accumulate more money, more status and more stuff in the name of showing those who have hurt you that, “Look, I’m enough, I’m somebody important.”

Solution: Understand where your drive for success comes from. If it comes from a part of you that feels like you are not enough, you can update that part with what you have accomplished and let it know that you are enough. When this part finally realized that you have been successful, it will give you permission to slow down and smell the roses.

Happiness Journey Picture Quote

 

5. You’re in emotional jail

Are you afraid of feeling like a wimp if you admit you need help?

The stigma attached to seeking professional help to improve emotional states prevents many from seeking help. “I’m not a wimp; I can deal with this.” So you deal with it by going along with Madison Avenue’s definition of happiness — buy more stuff. Or you deal with it by drinking too much or eating too much and numbing your true feelings.

But you’re only hurting yourself if you do this. When you fail to deal with your emotions, they can blow up as anger, irritability, anxiety, rage, hostility, depression, and numbness. And not dealing with your emotions can cause health issues such as cancer, heart disease, thyroid problems, obesity, and autoimmune diseases, and wreck your relationships and hold you back from living to your potential.

Solution: If you cannot cope with life and are severely depressed or addicted, please seek the help of a licensed mental health provider so you can go from dead to good. If you are psychologically stable and you want to go from good to great, a coach may be the better option for you.

Talk to a trusted friend or your doctor. Share what’s going on. They should know a coach, healer or therapist you can talk to.

 

6. Your addictions keep you stuck in misery

• Are you guilty of working, drinking, eating, gambling, shopping, or exercising too much?
• Do you ever feel angry, irritable, sad, anxious, depressed, or numb?
• Are you a perfectionist?

These addictions and feelings are more than likely protective mechanisms to help you avoid old painful memories and feelings of humiliation, rejection, unworthiness, and abandonment.

Could you also be hurting your partner, kids, parents, siblings, peers, or employees as a result of these addictions and feelings?

Solution: Find a coach or counselor that can help you get to the bottom of why you are miserably stuck in these less than desirable behaviors and feelings.

 

7. You believe happiness is always one more goal away

• “If I just make more money, I’ll be happy.”
• “If I just buy my dream home, I’ll be happy.”
• “If I just get a hot and sexy partner, I’ll be happy.”
• “If I just get rid of the last 15 pounds, I’ll be happy.”

You are fooling yourself if you keep thinking that the next monetary, status or material possession will finally be the ticket to joy.

You’ll get high temporarily and then go back to your old miserable state shortly thereafter. Then you’ll convince yourself that the goal wasn’t big enough. The next goal will finally be the golden ticket.

The Law of Paradoxical Intention says, “You must have goals, but your happiness cannot be tied to those goals. You must be happy first before you reach your goals.”

This means if you want something so badly, that wanting creates a negative vibration and so the Universe will give you the opposite of what you want. So if you think you will be happy as a result of reaching a goal, this law says you won’t get it because you’re trying too hard.

Solution: If you are not happy now on the journey to achieving your goals, look inward and ask yourself what events from the past are keeping you stuck from happiness today? Why do you need something outside of yourself to be happy?

 

8. You don’t love yourself unconditionally

“I love you so much … you are perfect just the way you are!” Can you look in the mirror and say this?

If you can’t love yourself, just know that this is a major root cause of misery for many.

Psychologist & Life Coach Wayne Dyer said:

“You will not attract into your life what you want, you will attract what you are.”

What you are is a function of what’s in your subconscious. Your subconscious is 90% responsible for what you attract into your life.

If your subconscious is full of negative chatter such as, “I’m a loser, I’m fat, I’ll never be as good as my brother”, these negative thoughts will emit negative energy.

Negative energy sucks the life out of people, and others will avoid you like the plague and you’ll end up alone and miserable in your old age, even if you have all the material trappings of success.

When you love yourself, the inner chatter will be positive and you will be happier. When you are happy, others will be drawn to you like bees to honey. Nothing is sexier than exuding unconditional self-love and confidence in a non-narcissistic way.

So how do you get rid of negative chatter and negative core beliefs such as, “I’m not lovable, I’m not worthy and I’m not enough,” so you can show up happy and sexy?

By accessing and healing negative memories at their source. These memories can be as minor as the bully that called you stupid or as major as emotional and physical abuse from caregivers.

Take yourself back into the painful memories and access those parts of you that hold feelings of shame, rejection, and worthlessness. These are the parts that hold you back from joy.

Tell those parts that you love them unconditionally. This is self-led re-parenting. When they feel love from you, they will delete the faulty beliefs they acquired from bad experiences and these parts will help you feel happy now because they no longer feel ashamed, rejected or worthless.

You can watch self-led re-parenting in the movies. The last 20 minutes of the movie The Kid with Bruce Willis demonstrates what I outlined above. The character played by Bruce Willis spent his whole life trying to forget his bad memories. Then his 8-year-old self shows up and Bruce heals that young part of himself through self-led re-parenting. He went back into the traumatic memories with his 8-year-old part and was able to give his younger part the love he needed that he never got when the original negative experiences occurred.

Bottom line:

If you are still miserable despite your successes, more than likely the burdens of the past are what make you feel like crap even though nothing seems to be wrong.

If you keep trying to push down old toxic memories, they will inevitably come back to haunt you and hold you back from authentic happiness (kind of like trying to make a beach ball disappear underwater).

When you feel good about yourself from the inside out, more money, status and stuff can be the icing on the happiness cake.

Are you happy now on the journey of living to your potential and making a difference? If not, what is keeping you stuck from being happy?

Emily Filloramo is a Success and Happiness Catalyst. Go from good to GREAT! Emily guides you to permanently boost happiness, self-esteem and confidence through discarding old emotional baggage. Get your free copy of 3 Steps To Discard The Emotional Baggage that Keep You Stuck.

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24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Peter

    May 8, 2017 at 1:59 pm

    so amazing and excellent article i really thank you for sharing this important information. When i visit I feel very happy.

  2. Adam

    Sep 6, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    Great work Emily
    The complete post is awesome but the most important part i liked is “You have no clue how to connect deeply with people”

    Thanks for this and keep doing good work

    To your Success
    Adam

    • Emily Filloramo

      Sep 6, 2016 at 11:05 pm

      Thank you for the compliment Adam. 🙂 The people who have no clue how to connect deeply with others are not connected to themselves. They need to do some major self-awareness and inner work.

  3. rehan

    Aug 10, 2015 at 7:25 am

    thanks for sharing this amazing sort of information …
    well i think being happy is a great thing .. live happy make happy .

  4. UMOZ

    Jul 6, 2015 at 11:41 pm

    thank you a lot of info here keep going to the best 😉

  5. Pritish

    Mar 5, 2015 at 7:38 pm

    Really Great article !
    Mentioned Every Point apply on Me. Now I will Try to Recover From all These Rather than Archiving Other Goals 🙂

  6. Soh Sontsele

    Dec 14, 2014 at 5:52 am

    Now I realise how I messed my life ending up making up loans and credit thinking that if I could buy that, I would be happy. Ending up more depressed becoz I have material and debt. Bt no peace

  7. Caro

    Oct 10, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    Emily this was so well written and explained! Thank you for this. It’s so easy to feel as if you aren’t measuring up even when you have loads of accomplishments and successes under your belt. Thanks for your transparency and empathy in clearly outlining ways to overcome these feelings.

    • Emily Filloramo

      Dec 13, 2014 at 1:04 am

      So happy that this was helpful to you Caro. We often climb the ladder of success because that’s what we’ve been conditioned to do… until we reach a point in our lives where we can’t figure out why the trappings of success are not curing the feelings of disconnection, emptiness and angst. Now you know why.

  8. Dahlya

    Aug 26, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    Hi Emily, great article 🙂

    I’ve been struggling to find the first steps/occupation that makes me smile working everyday, I feel little connection to many jobs out there/available. I’m holding faith that something will come, but it’s disheartening having waited so long. I’m unsure what to think/do, would you have a quick minute? 🙂

    • Emily Filloramo

      Dec 13, 2014 at 1:05 am

      Hi Dahlya,

      I think a career coach is more of what you need. There are so many coaches (and books) you can find on the internet that have free resources where you can start to get come clarity.

  9. Carlos Reitzer

    Apr 20, 2014 at 10:14 pm

    I feel so bad because I believed for years I was good as a designer, now I’m 42 years old and I realize I’m not that good, I don’t know what should I do. Like a painfull prank of life.

    • Emily Filloramo

      Apr 22, 2014 at 3:40 am

      Carlos, have you considered hiring a career coach to figure out your next steps?

  10. Julian Sado

    Apr 16, 2014 at 8:49 pm

    Emily, I am a life and wellness coach for many people and if you don’t mind, I will direct people to your article. It’s always good to have like-minded information to confirm truth. Thank you for the article.

    • Emily Filloramo

      Apr 17, 2014 at 11:40 am

      Julian, of course you can direct others to the articles. 🙂

  11. margaret

    Apr 15, 2014 at 4:14 pm

    i have been empowered. happiness inside will lead to greater things

  12. Gabes

    Apr 15, 2014 at 10:36 am

    Grate Post Emily

  13. Koko

    Apr 13, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    Great article Emily. I tweeted “You will not attract into your life what you want, you will attract what you are.”, although I liked each and everything 🙂

  14. dotchamou

    Apr 13, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    Thank you for this post, I will quote Jim Rhon to express my thought
    “Happiness is the art of learning how to get joy from your substance.” — Jim Rohn

    “The greatest source of unhappiness comes from inside.” — Jim Rohn

    • Emily Filloramo

      Apr 13, 2014 at 6:44 pm

      Thanks for these great comments from Jim Rohn. Now if just more people would live their lives happy in the now and not after they have bought more stuff…

      • Jumana

        Dec 10, 2014 at 9:15 pm

        Amen to that. I despair sometimes when I see people buy into that facade of instant gratification when they think they’ve brought a bargain. I think you hit the nail on the head with this article..

    • June Nies

      Apr 25, 2014 at 5:45 pm

      I like that dotchamou… Happiness is an art of learning to get joy… Jim Rohn is a favorite of mine! I’ll never forget seeing & talking to Jim Rohn; such an impressionable person to never forget! I’ve also had the privilege of meeting Emily Filloramo in person and Emily is following in his footsteps! Thank you Emily!!!

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Life

How to Get Better at Anything by Using This Self Encouragement Practice

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self encouragement

Whether you’re turning your sidehustle into a career, sculpting a fitter body, or perfecting your favourite sport, getting better at anything requires a simple yet specific sequence:

You do it, you encourage each of your efforts and then you repeat this process every day without cease.

Now think about the goals you’ve set after, and the habits you’ve tried to hone. If you aren’t exactly where you want to be in your growth curve, you’re skipping one or two of these simple steps. Which is it for you?

I used to be really good at starting things—step one. But, back before I began my self-improvement journey, I didn’t have the slightest concept of self-encouragement—step two. I figured that once I did something well enough, I’d get all the congratulations I needed from other people. It didn’t work out that way.

When things got really tough in my new business ventures or educational endeavors, I’d crack. I didn’t have someone orienting me toward the future, coaching me, and approving my efforts. I didn’t have me in my own corner.

Self encouragement is like the protein you consume after a workout

Lifting weights is hard on your muscles, right? The resistance/stress breaks down tissue. But if you don’t replenish your body with protein after the workout, your muscles won’t grow, which makes regular workouts frustrating and pointless. The same is true for self-encouragement and your personal growth.

You need that reflexive “good job!” or “you’re kicking ass!” to rebuild confidence after a big effort. But when you don’t get that positive self-talk, you won’t feel good enough about yourself and confident enough about the future to persist in your success effort.

“A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after success.” – Unknown

After landing back at my parents (for the third time) when my business venture in California went bust, I decided I would no longer succumb to the forces that had sabotaged my previous efforts. So I read all that I could from Tony Robbins and Zig Ziglar. The one thing I learned was that I had to become my own biggest supporter, otherwise, I’d continue to bring myself down with negative self-talk and inconsistent effort.

That’s when I started planning self-encouragement

My greatest weakness is that if I don’t plan something out and have an action step I can check off, I just won’t do it. This weakness ended up becoming my biggest strength when I decided to take ownership of it.

Since I wasn’t encouraging myself enough to grow consistently as a writer, I started writing out ten checkboxes for self encouragement in my daily planner. That’s when I literally got addicted to success.

Before, I’d write an article and then think to myself, “Yeah…probably not gonna make a difference anyway.” This attitude prevented me from taking risks and consistently doing my best, which is crucial for any kind of success. But when I started creating self-encouragement rituals to conclude my writing sessions, I got high off of the positivity.

“Thank you so much for kicking ass today! Thank you for doing everything you need to do to be successful and to make a difference. I’m so grateful for your efforts, and so excited to see where this effort takes you. Keep it up!”

This was instant gratification in the otherwise-delayed gratification process of achieving success, and it ended up giving me the confidence and positive attitude I needed to persist, to learn from my mistakes, and to grow in the ways I desired.

Three months after I planned for daily self-encouragement, I had my first full-time job as a staff writer at a major publication. That was no coincidence. When I continued my success sequence, do, encourage, persist, it was only another year before I was on each of the major magazines I’d dreamed of writing for.

“In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” Albert Einstein

I gained a following. People began seeking me out for coaching, to help them gain similar success in wherever they wanted to improve their own lives. But more important than anything, I established an identity as my own greatest supporter, which will help me to succeed in anything I set my mind to: marriage, expanding my business, etc. I owe my successes and my career to ten self encouragement checkboxes.

Here’s how to start your self encouragement practice today:

1. Start a morning routine of affirmations

Before your mind can drift to negative thoughts, immediately set yourself to positive affirmations. I mean literally right after you wake up, don’t skip a beat! Pick out the forty affirmations that you need most. “I am worthy, I am persistent, I am successful” and write them down on a 3×5 index card. Then, recite them to yourself in a mirror as soon as you wake up. Keep up the habit until you have all forty memorized.

Once you start this practice you’ll become sensitized to your inner dialogue and you’ll begin to hear everything going on between your ears, including the negative. When you start to hear you beating yourself up, that’s when it’s crucial to fall back on the positive affirmation. You’ll cement this habit by scheduling regular self-encouragement checkins in a daily planner.

2. Create ten checkboxes for self encouragement in your daily planner

If you don’t already have a daily planning habit, you won’t get the life you want until you start planning for it every day. You don’t need to plan much, just your top five to eight goals, and the habits you intend to do every day (self-encouragement being the most important one). After you list your first three or four goals at the top, break the page up with “encourage yourself!”—followed by ten checkboxes.

As you check off your goals, make sure to encourage yourself for your efforts. For example, if one of your goals were to run five miles in the morning, when you check that goal off you’ll immediately applaud yourself and then check off a self-encouragement box. “Thank you so much for taking care of my body and making me feel good about myself, you’re doing awesome!” Check.

When you refer to your planner throughout the day, you’ll notice that there are more checkboxes than you have goals. Use those empty checkboxes as reminders to affirm yourself. “I am generous, kind, patient, uplifting, creative, dependable, perseverant, etc.” Check.

Keep this up over the course of a month and you’ll be on your way to mastering whatever it is you want.  

By holding yourself accountable to a self-encouragement practice, you’ll grow the resilience and confidence you need to persist in the things you love and to master the skills and habits you desire. All it takes is a blank sketchbook and the routine of planning out each of your goals at the beginning of a day, including ten checkboxes for self encouragement.

What self encouragement practices do you do? Comment below!

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Life

The 4 Dimensions of Personal Energy You Need to Adopt to Deliver Extraordinary Results

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personal energy

Managers tend to look at humans as productivity units. Energy is invested into prioritizing what’s on the to do list, with an attitude of do more and accomplish more. Work is translated into more hours and the human experience tends to be minimized, criticized or diminished.

As the demands of the workplace keep rising, many people respond by increasing their hours at a rapid pace, inevitably leading to burn out that costs both people and business. Many businesses invest in developing people’s knowledge and skills yet very few help build and sustain their capacity – their energy. When you invest in your people, they have greater capacity to make it possible to get more done in less time.

In today’s world, business leaders generally feel it is the employee’s problem to practice healthy behaviors. Given the amount of time people spend at work, a shared responsibility embarks on both the business and the employee. Where possible, workplaces must facilitate the development of healthy practices to create a mutually beneficial and sustainable environment. Individually, you are responsible for how you manage your energy, the workplace is responsible for creating a workplace where people are energized, and their creativity unleashed.

When workplaces invest in their people across all dimensions of their lives, magic happens. People turn up at work energized, more productive, and execute the shared vision to deliver results.

When you are fully energized, you accomplish more in less time. When you feel fulfilled, you become more engaged, effective and contribute without expectation. The human experience includes four dimensions of personal energy that need to be cultivated to increase these levels of energy and deliver extraordinary results across workplaces.

1. We function best when we feel positive

Most people tend to perform best when they feel positive. I’m not talking about the eternal optimist and rah-rah noise, I’m referring to the people who re-fuel their positive energy by identifying their trigger points to what drains their energy and then refocus on a solution. Creating a resourceful functional state where you can think clearly, logically and reflectively.

Building habits into your day avoids you slipping into negative emotions or moving through them quicker. Diffusing emotions through deep breathing, expressing appreciation and gratitude as the brain can only do one thing at a time. Adopting self-reflection techniques such as upgrading the lens approach creates opportunities to refocus your energy – How would l like to see this situation in 3 months’ time? What lessons can l learn from this situation?

“When you are enthusiastic about what you do, you feel this positive energy. It’s very simple.” – Paulo Coelho

2. The human spirit

The human spirit transcends the individual human being. When you are clear about your purpose, what really matters, you focus better, feel more positive and feel a deeper commitment to contributing to humanity. To access the energy of the human spirit, explore what you do best and enjoy most at work and in life. Allocate time and energy to these areas and make a conscious decision to live your core values every day.

3. Sustaining your mental energy

Multitasking is a great way to kill your mental energy. When you lose your focus, or move from one task to the next, you increase the amount of time required to complete the primary task. Building simple rituals into your day can prevent mental fatigue.

Reduce interruptions by allocating uninterruptible 50-minute blocks of time to focus on the one task, respond to emails, voicemails at designated times during the day and identify the most important task for the next day. Robin Sharma, author of The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari, suggests focusing for the next 90 days, the first 90 minutes of your work day on creating your new piece of code that will revolutionize the marketplace.

4. Physical energy

We all need nutrition, exercise, sleep and rest. It is part of the human condition. If you want to sustain your energy levels, the four essential components will increase your energy levels to enable your focus on your single most valuable project and manage your emotions. Your will power may be highest first thing in the morning, your energy may peak in the afternoon or your mental focus may be the sharpest late at night. Capitalize and build a pocket of time so you use your highest value hours for your most valuable activities.

“Energy and persistence conquer all things.” – Benjamin Franklin

Prioritizing healthy eating, engaging in movement activities and committed to deep restful sleep are the keys to sustaining your physical energy. Consistent sleeping times with undisrupted sleep is critical to your ability to maintain your energy levels. Power naps, removal of digital technology from bedrooms and investment in sleep transition activities such as reading non-work-related books, listening to a guided meditation or focusing on breath work are great practices to invest in re-building energy levels.

When you are physically active, mentally agile, emotionally stable and spiritually charged, you can balance different aspects of your life with ease. Adopting rituals to manage your energy on all dimensions daily creates an environment where you are leading you, not the other way around. Manage your energy, not your time.

What techniques do you use to maximize your energy? Comment below!

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Life

5 Simple Things to Do Right Now if You Feel Stuck in Life

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feeling stuck in life

As a success-blogger, I normally have a great deal of clarity about what I need to be working on. I’m also really driven by a sense of purpose in helping others get unstuck and make an impact in their lives. There aren’t many times that I find myself at a loss for what to do next.

Nonetheless, I recently hit a dry spell. I felt entirely stuck and a little burnt out. It felt like I was in a pit, emotionally unempowered and unable to move forward. Due to this, I decided to sit down and write out a list of ways that I could get myself moving and build up some momentum again.

Here is what I came up with and I’m sharing it with you in the hopes that if you, too, are stuck it will make difference for you:

1. Get An Empowering Mindset

When we start to feel like we can’t move forward we often get down on ourselves. We begin to feel incapable and think we must be the cause of all the inaction. This puts us in a negative mindset that is self-reinforcing. To break out of that limiting mentality, try the substitution game. For every negative thought that comes to mind, remove it and replace it with a positive one.

For instance, instead of, “I just can’t figure this out—I’m so stupid,” remove and replace it with, “I’m ALWAYS supplied with a way through at just the right time.” Affirmations like this will keep you positive and put you back in the driver’s seat. Keep at this hard because it is relatively easy to do and you can gain traction quickly.

“Growth hacking is a mindset, and those who have it will reap incredible gains.” – Ryan Holiday

2. Do Some Housekeeping

When I’m really humming along in life, I’ve got no time for cleaning up files and putting things in order. This has to be done sometime and the time when you are stuck not doing anything else makes as good of sense as any.

More than that, however, I’ve also found the process of simplifying and organizing my notes to be very empowering. The very act of setting your mind on “cleaning things up” clarifies your mind. It’s an outward expression of something that changes your experience internally as well.

I’m of the opinion that if we need direction in our lives, we need to make room for it. In this way, we welcome that which we really need. By putting our work in order we prepare the way for new ideas and inspiration.

3. Find Some Quick Results To Encourage Yourself

No matter how stuck you are there is always something you can do that will bring about a measurable result. Even small victories help you feel like you are gaining ground. As you do this, keep these tips in mind:

  • Set simple goals and breeze through them. Think of things you can accomplish in five-to-ten minutes. As you complete them you will gain a sense of momentum.
  • Make this a visual activity. I like to write each of my tasks out and put a little box in front of them. Work to check each item off as quickly as you can. It should be fun so treat it as a game, marking complete as many as you can in an hour, for instance.

4. Get Back To Doing What You Love

To keep growing, I have to keep looking forward to the bigger picture in what I do. Right now I’m spending a lot of time preparing content for future books and courses, but that level of stretching has produced a little burnout. I’m always tunneling forward into territory that I’m not as familiar with so it saps my energy and mental resources.

It’s good to tackle these types of things so that I keep pushing myself. But when I begin to feel like I’m burning out, it’s good to step back into what I’m best at and most comfortable in…for me, that’s writing blog posts. It brings a refreshing sense of fun back into my life.

This gets a sense of positivity flowing again. We have to keep a deep feeling of joy with what we do. Jump-starting that by getting back into your element can get you on the road again.

“Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.” – Rumi

5. Work On Something New

Sometimes we just get bogged-down and burned-out with what we are working on. It becomes drudgery, but there is always something related that we might not have begun to work on yet. Maybe we didn’t feel ready or we were just too invested in other things to take the turn down that road. In times like this, pull those things out and start working on them.

For me, that recent thing I began to do was guest posting on Addicted2Success. It was something that I had always wanted to do because I believe in everything that they are doing, but I hadn’t gone down that path yet because I didn’t feel ready.

In my period of trying to get unstuck, however, it began to feel like the perfect time to venture into new territory. Now that I’ve had the opportunity to focus on this avenue I have renewed energy and have come closer to fulfilling my overall dream of being a successful blogger.

If you just aren’t getting anywhere in your normal routine, it could be the perfect time to break into something else you’ve been holding off on.

What have you done to break free when YOU are stuck in life? Comment below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Life

5 Subtle Things You Do When You Lack Confidence

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lack of confidence

Confidence is a belief in one’s abilities and sense of competence. There are certain subtle things we do when we lack or have low confidence, and you need to be aware of these actions as they are quite subtle and can be easily skipped over. Even worse, we don’t identify the root cause of the problem and then spend years trying to fix something without any effect.

To prevent that, here is a list of 5 subtle things you do when you lack confidence:

1. You begin settling

You have it good enough in life so you settle for less because you think you don’t deserve it. The quote Jim Collins said about good being the enemy of great was focused on companies, but that can also apply to your life, your job and your relationship.

You got a job that you kind of hate. The job itself is okay but the boss is horrible and promotion/growth is not possible, but the salary is okay and the job is “just good.” When you lack confidence in your ability, you settle down. There are always other opportunities out there, so push forward.

The only thing worse than this is if the situation becomes permanent. Evaluate your life now and figure out where you are just floating by in. Believe in your ability to do better and take the risk. Learn new stuff and improve your life.

2. You avoid exposure

You think your ideas are not good or that your personality is not good enough. This is only fueled by your lack of confidence. You stand near the walls at a party to feel protected. The center of attention and the room is 2 meters away, but in your head, it’s a million miles.

Exposing yourself means showing other people who you are. To do that, we need to accept and love who we were. If we can’t, who can? For you to accept yourself continuously, do an exercise called “The Wheel of Change.” The exercise has 4 simple questions you need to answer for yourself giving you the building block of your confidence.

  1. What do I eliminate from my life?
  2. What do I create in my life?
  3. What do I accept in my life?
  4. What do I preserve in my life?

“With confidence, you have won before you have started.” – Marcus Garvey

3. You use distractions instead of solutions

The difference here is the belief. Zorro played by Antonio Banderas, couldn’t defeat his arch-enemy, Captain Harrison Love, because he just didn’t have the skills or knowledge at the time to do it. Due to this, he started drinking.

The drinking led him to despair and he almost gave up, yet a mentor played by Anthony Hopkins taught Zorro how to gain his confidence back and take out his enemies. The main thing was to master things in “The Zorro Circle.” That circle is small, but it’s a place where you have full control. When you master that circle, you expand it. The same things happen with your confidence.

You indulge in distractions, get overwhelmed and then quit. Nonetheless,  the main thing here is to do small things which are in your control. Use solutions instead of distractions and at some point, you will be able to solve problems which were out of your control when you started.

Don’t fall into the trap of rationalization, explaining why you are where you are in life. Just start working small, use solutions instead of distractions and you will get there.

4. You are a one-trick pony

A man came to see a psychologist and told him: “Doctor, I’m always depressed. I tried everything but nothing works. Please, help me out.” The psychologist told him to stand up and come to the window with him. “You see that tent over there?. That is the circus and they are really good. There is this one clown in particular who is really funny. He makes everyone laugh so hard. You should go and see him and you won’t have any reason to be depressed.”

The man turned to the psychologist and said, “Doctor, I am that clown!” You are not a one-trick pony but your friends perceive you like that. You are the funny one that cracks jokes or the trivia guy who has interesting facts around the water cooler.

At a certain point, this becomes who you are, and then, you are scared to show anything else to people around you. At some point, it becomes unbearable and you crack. To prevent this, you need to know that it’s okay to show your full personality.

You are not a one-trick pony. You are a human being with a full range of emotions, character-traits and personalities that must be shown to the world. This is the way to confidence. The other way brings you to the story of Robin Williams who tragically ended his life, so show yourself fully.

“Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.” – Bruce Lee

5. You lack tears in your eyes

It’s when you are aligned with emotions – when you respect how you feel – that you are truly free to feel the freedom of your emotions. You must love and cherish them when they occur by shedding happy yet sad tears as well.

When you acknowledge what you feel and own it to your deepest level, that’s when you’ll feel the biggest confidence. Don’t run away from your emotions, but own them. Let them go through your body and mind and acknowledge what’s happening in you. Feel it. They are sometimes pleasant and sometimes not, yet they are yours. It’s not how you feel, it’s how you feel about how you feel.

What do you do when you lack confidence? Let us know in the comments below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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How to Get Better at Anything by Using This Self Encouragement Practice

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Whether you’re turning your sidehustle into a career, sculpting a fitter body, or perfecting your favourite sport, getting better at anything requires a simple yet specific sequence: (more…)

Daniel Dowling is waging a war against distraction at MillennialSuccess.io, where he teaches the art of planning and making sh!# happen.

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24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Peter

    May 8, 2017 at 1:59 pm

    so amazing and excellent article i really thank you for sharing this important information. When i visit I feel very happy.

  2. Adam

    Sep 6, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    Great work Emily
    The complete post is awesome but the most important part i liked is “You have no clue how to connect deeply with people”

    Thanks for this and keep doing good work

    To your Success
    Adam

    • Emily Filloramo

      Sep 6, 2016 at 11:05 pm

      Thank you for the compliment Adam. 🙂 The people who have no clue how to connect deeply with others are not connected to themselves. They need to do some major self-awareness and inner work.

  3. rehan

    Aug 10, 2015 at 7:25 am

    thanks for sharing this amazing sort of information …
    well i think being happy is a great thing .. live happy make happy .

  4. UMOZ

    Jul 6, 2015 at 11:41 pm

    thank you a lot of info here keep going to the best 😉

  5. Pritish

    Mar 5, 2015 at 7:38 pm

    Really Great article !
    Mentioned Every Point apply on Me. Now I will Try to Recover From all These Rather than Archiving Other Goals 🙂

  6. Soh Sontsele

    Dec 14, 2014 at 5:52 am

    Now I realise how I messed my life ending up making up loans and credit thinking that if I could buy that, I would be happy. Ending up more depressed becoz I have material and debt. Bt no peace

  7. Caro

    Oct 10, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    Emily this was so well written and explained! Thank you for this. It’s so easy to feel as if you aren’t measuring up even when you have loads of accomplishments and successes under your belt. Thanks for your transparency and empathy in clearly outlining ways to overcome these feelings.

    • Emily Filloramo

      Dec 13, 2014 at 1:04 am

      So happy that this was helpful to you Caro. We often climb the ladder of success because that’s what we’ve been conditioned to do… until we reach a point in our lives where we can’t figure out why the trappings of success are not curing the feelings of disconnection, emptiness and angst. Now you know why.

  8. Dahlya

    Aug 26, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    Hi Emily, great article 🙂

    I’ve been struggling to find the first steps/occupation that makes me smile working everyday, I feel little connection to many jobs out there/available. I’m holding faith that something will come, but it’s disheartening having waited so long. I’m unsure what to think/do, would you have a quick minute? 🙂

    • Emily Filloramo

      Dec 13, 2014 at 1:05 am

      Hi Dahlya,

      I think a career coach is more of what you need. There are so many coaches (and books) you can find on the internet that have free resources where you can start to get come clarity.

  9. Carlos Reitzer

    Apr 20, 2014 at 10:14 pm

    I feel so bad because I believed for years I was good as a designer, now I’m 42 years old and I realize I’m not that good, I don’t know what should I do. Like a painfull prank of life.

    • Emily Filloramo

      Apr 22, 2014 at 3:40 am

      Carlos, have you considered hiring a career coach to figure out your next steps?

  10. Julian Sado

    Apr 16, 2014 at 8:49 pm

    Emily, I am a life and wellness coach for many people and if you don’t mind, I will direct people to your article. It’s always good to have like-minded information to confirm truth. Thank you for the article.

    • Emily Filloramo

      Apr 17, 2014 at 11:40 am

      Julian, of course you can direct others to the articles. 🙂

  11. margaret

    Apr 15, 2014 at 4:14 pm

    i have been empowered. happiness inside will lead to greater things

  12. Gabes

    Apr 15, 2014 at 10:36 am

    Grate Post Emily

  13. Koko

    Apr 13, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    Great article Emily. I tweeted “You will not attract into your life what you want, you will attract what you are.”, although I liked each and everything 🙂

  14. dotchamou

    Apr 13, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    Thank you for this post, I will quote Jim Rhon to express my thought
    “Happiness is the art of learning how to get joy from your substance.” — Jim Rohn

    “The greatest source of unhappiness comes from inside.” — Jim Rohn

    • Emily Filloramo

      Apr 13, 2014 at 6:44 pm

      Thanks for these great comments from Jim Rohn. Now if just more people would live their lives happy in the now and not after they have bought more stuff…

      • Jumana

        Dec 10, 2014 at 9:15 pm

        Amen to that. I despair sometimes when I see people buy into that facade of instant gratification when they think they’ve brought a bargain. I think you hit the nail on the head with this article..

    • June Nies

      Apr 25, 2014 at 5:45 pm

      I like that dotchamou… Happiness is an art of learning to get joy… Jim Rohn is a favorite of mine! I’ll never forget seeing & talking to Jim Rohn; such an impressionable person to never forget! I’ve also had the privilege of meeting Emily Filloramo in person and Emily is following in his footsteps! Thank you Emily!!!

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Life

How to Get Better at Anything by Using This Self Encouragement Practice

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self encouragement

Whether you’re turning your sidehustle into a career, sculpting a fitter body, or perfecting your favourite sport, getting better at anything requires a simple yet specific sequence:

You do it, you encourage each of your efforts and then you repeat this process every day without cease.

Now think about the goals you’ve set after, and the habits you’ve tried to hone. If you aren’t exactly where you want to be in your growth curve, you’re skipping one or two of these simple steps. Which is it for you?

I used to be really good at starting things—step one. But, back before I began my self-improvement journey, I didn’t have the slightest concept of self-encouragement—step two. I figured that once I did something well enough, I’d get all the congratulations I needed from other people. It didn’t work out that way.

When things got really tough in my new business ventures or educational endeavors, I’d crack. I didn’t have someone orienting me toward the future, coaching me, and approving my efforts. I didn’t have me in my own corner.

Self encouragement is like the protein you consume after a workout

Lifting weights is hard on your muscles, right? The resistance/stress breaks down tissue. But if you don’t replenish your body with protein after the workout, your muscles won’t grow, which makes regular workouts frustrating and pointless. The same is true for self-encouragement and your personal growth.

You need that reflexive “good job!” or “you’re kicking ass!” to rebuild confidence after a big effort. But when you don’t get that positive self-talk, you won’t feel good enough about yourself and confident enough about the future to persist in your success effort.

“A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after success.” – Unknown

After landing back at my parents (for the third time) when my business venture in California went bust, I decided I would no longer succumb to the forces that had sabotaged my previous efforts. So I read all that I could from Tony Robbins and Zig Ziglar. The one thing I learned was that I had to become my own biggest supporter, otherwise, I’d continue to bring myself down with negative self-talk and inconsistent effort.

That’s when I started planning self-encouragement

My greatest weakness is that if I don’t plan something out and have an action step I can check off, I just won’t do it. This weakness ended up becoming my biggest strength when I decided to take ownership of it.

Since I wasn’t encouraging myself enough to grow consistently as a writer, I started writing out ten checkboxes for self encouragement in my daily planner. That’s when I literally got addicted to success.

Before, I’d write an article and then think to myself, “Yeah…probably not gonna make a difference anyway.” This attitude prevented me from taking risks and consistently doing my best, which is crucial for any kind of success. But when I started creating self-encouragement rituals to conclude my writing sessions, I got high off of the positivity.

“Thank you so much for kicking ass today! Thank you for doing everything you need to do to be successful and to make a difference. I’m so grateful for your efforts, and so excited to see where this effort takes you. Keep it up!”

This was instant gratification in the otherwise-delayed gratification process of achieving success, and it ended up giving me the confidence and positive attitude I needed to persist, to learn from my mistakes, and to grow in the ways I desired.

Three months after I planned for daily self-encouragement, I had my first full-time job as a staff writer at a major publication. That was no coincidence. When I continued my success sequence, do, encourage, persist, it was only another year before I was on each of the major magazines I’d dreamed of writing for.

“In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” Albert Einstein

I gained a following. People began seeking me out for coaching, to help them gain similar success in wherever they wanted to improve their own lives. But more important than anything, I established an identity as my own greatest supporter, which will help me to succeed in anything I set my mind to: marriage, expanding my business, etc. I owe my successes and my career to ten self encouragement checkboxes.

Here’s how to start your self encouragement practice today:

1. Start a morning routine of affirmations

Before your mind can drift to negative thoughts, immediately set yourself to positive affirmations. I mean literally right after you wake up, don’t skip a beat! Pick out the forty affirmations that you need most. “I am worthy, I am persistent, I am successful” and write them down on a 3×5 index card. Then, recite them to yourself in a mirror as soon as you wake up. Keep up the habit until you have all forty memorized.

Once you start this practice you’ll become sensitized to your inner dialogue and you’ll begin to hear everything going on between your ears, including the negative. When you start to hear you beating yourself up, that’s when it’s crucial to fall back on the positive affirmation. You’ll cement this habit by scheduling regular self-encouragement checkins in a daily planner.

2. Create ten checkboxes for self encouragement in your daily planner

If you don’t already have a daily planning habit, you won’t get the life you want until you start planning for it every day. You don’t need to plan much, just your top five to eight goals, and the habits you intend to do every day (self-encouragement being the most important one). After you list your first three or four goals at the top, break the page up with “encourage yourself!”—followed by ten checkboxes.

As you check off your goals, make sure to encourage yourself for your efforts. For example, if one of your goals were to run five miles in the morning, when you check that goal off you’ll immediately applaud yourself and then check off a self-encouragement box. “Thank you so much for taking care of my body and making me feel good about myself, you’re doing awesome!” Check.

When you refer to your planner throughout the day, you’ll notice that there are more checkboxes than you have goals. Use those empty checkboxes as reminders to affirm yourself. “I am generous, kind, patient, uplifting, creative, dependable, perseverant, etc.” Check.

Keep this up over the course of a month and you’ll be on your way to mastering whatever it is you want.  

By holding yourself accountable to a self-encouragement practice, you’ll grow the resilience and confidence you need to persist in the things you love and to master the skills and habits you desire. All it takes is a blank sketchbook and the routine of planning out each of your goals at the beginning of a day, including ten checkboxes for self encouragement.

What self encouragement practices do you do? Comment below!

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The 4 Dimensions of Personal Energy You Need to Adopt to Deliver Extraordinary Results

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Managers tend to look at humans as productivity units. Energy is invested into prioritizing what’s on the to do list, with an attitude of do more and accomplish more. Work is translated into more hours and the human experience tends to be minimized, criticized or diminished.

As the demands of the workplace keep rising, many people respond by increasing their hours at a rapid pace, inevitably leading to burn out that costs both people and business. Many businesses invest in developing people’s knowledge and skills yet very few help build and sustain their capacity – their energy. When you invest in your people, they have greater capacity to make it possible to get more done in less time.

In today’s world, business leaders generally feel it is the employee’s problem to practice healthy behaviors. Given the amount of time people spend at work, a shared responsibility embarks on both the business and the employee. Where possible, workplaces must facilitate the development of healthy practices to create a mutually beneficial and sustainable environment. Individually, you are responsible for how you manage your energy, the workplace is responsible for creating a workplace where people are energized, and their creativity unleashed.

When workplaces invest in their people across all dimensions of their lives, magic happens. People turn up at work energized, more productive, and execute the shared vision to deliver results.

When you are fully energized, you accomplish more in less time. When you feel fulfilled, you become more engaged, effective and contribute without expectation. The human experience includes four dimensions of personal energy that need to be cultivated to increase these levels of energy and deliver extraordinary results across workplaces.

1. We function best when we feel positive

Most people tend to perform best when they feel positive. I’m not talking about the eternal optimist and rah-rah noise, I’m referring to the people who re-fuel their positive energy by identifying their trigger points to what drains their energy and then refocus on a solution. Creating a resourceful functional state where you can think clearly, logically and reflectively.

Building habits into your day avoids you slipping into negative emotions or moving through them quicker. Diffusing emotions through deep breathing, expressing appreciation and gratitude as the brain can only do one thing at a time. Adopting self-reflection techniques such as upgrading the lens approach creates opportunities to refocus your energy – How would l like to see this situation in 3 months’ time? What lessons can l learn from this situation?

“When you are enthusiastic about what you do, you feel this positive energy. It’s very simple.” – Paulo Coelho

2. The human spirit

The human spirit transcends the individual human being. When you are clear about your purpose, what really matters, you focus better, feel more positive and feel a deeper commitment to contributing to humanity. To access the energy of the human spirit, explore what you do best and enjoy most at work and in life. Allocate time and energy to these areas and make a conscious decision to live your core values every day.

3. Sustaining your mental energy

Multitasking is a great way to kill your mental energy. When you lose your focus, or move from one task to the next, you increase the amount of time required to complete the primary task. Building simple rituals into your day can prevent mental fatigue.

Reduce interruptions by allocating uninterruptible 50-minute blocks of time to focus on the one task, respond to emails, voicemails at designated times during the day and identify the most important task for the next day. Robin Sharma, author of The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari, suggests focusing for the next 90 days, the first 90 minutes of your work day on creating your new piece of code that will revolutionize the marketplace.

4. Physical energy

We all need nutrition, exercise, sleep and rest. It is part of the human condition. If you want to sustain your energy levels, the four essential components will increase your energy levels to enable your focus on your single most valuable project and manage your emotions. Your will power may be highest first thing in the morning, your energy may peak in the afternoon or your mental focus may be the sharpest late at night. Capitalize and build a pocket of time so you use your highest value hours for your most valuable activities.

“Energy and persistence conquer all things.” – Benjamin Franklin

Prioritizing healthy eating, engaging in movement activities and committed to deep restful sleep are the keys to sustaining your physical energy. Consistent sleeping times with undisrupted sleep is critical to your ability to maintain your energy levels. Power naps, removal of digital technology from bedrooms and investment in sleep transition activities such as reading non-work-related books, listening to a guided meditation or focusing on breath work are great practices to invest in re-building energy levels.

When you are physically active, mentally agile, emotionally stable and spiritually charged, you can balance different aspects of your life with ease. Adopting rituals to manage your energy on all dimensions daily creates an environment where you are leading you, not the other way around. Manage your energy, not your time.

What techniques do you use to maximize your energy? Comment below!

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5 Simple Things to Do Right Now if You Feel Stuck in Life

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As a success-blogger, I normally have a great deal of clarity about what I need to be working on. I’m also really driven by a sense of purpose in helping others get unstuck and make an impact in their lives. There aren’t many times that I find myself at a loss for what to do next.

Nonetheless, I recently hit a dry spell. I felt entirely stuck and a little burnt out. It felt like I was in a pit, emotionally unempowered and unable to move forward. Due to this, I decided to sit down and write out a list of ways that I could get myself moving and build up some momentum again.

Here is what I came up with and I’m sharing it with you in the hopes that if you, too, are stuck it will make difference for you:

1. Get An Empowering Mindset

When we start to feel like we can’t move forward we often get down on ourselves. We begin to feel incapable and think we must be the cause of all the inaction. This puts us in a negative mindset that is self-reinforcing. To break out of that limiting mentality, try the substitution game. For every negative thought that comes to mind, remove it and replace it with a positive one.

For instance, instead of, “I just can’t figure this out—I’m so stupid,” remove and replace it with, “I’m ALWAYS supplied with a way through at just the right time.” Affirmations like this will keep you positive and put you back in the driver’s seat. Keep at this hard because it is relatively easy to do and you can gain traction quickly.

“Growth hacking is a mindset, and those who have it will reap incredible gains.” – Ryan Holiday

2. Do Some Housekeeping

When I’m really humming along in life, I’ve got no time for cleaning up files and putting things in order. This has to be done sometime and the time when you are stuck not doing anything else makes as good of sense as any.

More than that, however, I’ve also found the process of simplifying and organizing my notes to be very empowering. The very act of setting your mind on “cleaning things up” clarifies your mind. It’s an outward expression of something that changes your experience internally as well.

I’m of the opinion that if we need direction in our lives, we need to make room for it. In this way, we welcome that which we really need. By putting our work in order we prepare the way for new ideas and inspiration.

3. Find Some Quick Results To Encourage Yourself

No matter how stuck you are there is always something you can do that will bring about a measurable result. Even small victories help you feel like you are gaining ground. As you do this, keep these tips in mind:

  • Set simple goals and breeze through them. Think of things you can accomplish in five-to-ten minutes. As you complete them you will gain a sense of momentum.
  • Make this a visual activity. I like to write each of my tasks out and put a little box in front of them. Work to check each item off as quickly as you can. It should be fun so treat it as a game, marking complete as many as you can in an hour, for instance.

4. Get Back To Doing What You Love

To keep growing, I have to keep looking forward to the bigger picture in what I do. Right now I’m spending a lot of time preparing content for future books and courses, but that level of stretching has produced a little burnout. I’m always tunneling forward into territory that I’m not as familiar with so it saps my energy and mental resources.

It’s good to tackle these types of things so that I keep pushing myself. But when I begin to feel like I’m burning out, it’s good to step back into what I’m best at and most comfortable in…for me, that’s writing blog posts. It brings a refreshing sense of fun back into my life.

This gets a sense of positivity flowing again. We have to keep a deep feeling of joy with what we do. Jump-starting that by getting back into your element can get you on the road again.

“Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.” – Rumi

5. Work On Something New

Sometimes we just get bogged-down and burned-out with what we are working on. It becomes drudgery, but there is always something related that we might not have begun to work on yet. Maybe we didn’t feel ready or we were just too invested in other things to take the turn down that road. In times like this, pull those things out and start working on them.

For me, that recent thing I began to do was guest posting on Addicted2Success. It was something that I had always wanted to do because I believe in everything that they are doing, but I hadn’t gone down that path yet because I didn’t feel ready.

In my period of trying to get unstuck, however, it began to feel like the perfect time to venture into new territory. Now that I’ve had the opportunity to focus on this avenue I have renewed energy and have come closer to fulfilling my overall dream of being a successful blogger.

If you just aren’t getting anywhere in your normal routine, it could be the perfect time to break into something else you’ve been holding off on.

What have you done to break free when YOU are stuck in life? Comment below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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5 Subtle Things You Do When You Lack Confidence

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lack of confidence

Confidence is a belief in one’s abilities and sense of competence. There are certain subtle things we do when we lack or have low confidence, and you need to be aware of these actions as they are quite subtle and can be easily skipped over. Even worse, we don’t identify the root cause of the problem and then spend years trying to fix something without any effect.

To prevent that, here is a list of 5 subtle things you do when you lack confidence:

1. You begin settling

You have it good enough in life so you settle for less because you think you don’t deserve it. The quote Jim Collins said about good being the enemy of great was focused on companies, but that can also apply to your life, your job and your relationship.

You got a job that you kind of hate. The job itself is okay but the boss is horrible and promotion/growth is not possible, but the salary is okay and the job is “just good.” When you lack confidence in your ability, you settle down. There are always other opportunities out there, so push forward.

The only thing worse than this is if the situation becomes permanent. Evaluate your life now and figure out where you are just floating by in. Believe in your ability to do better and take the risk. Learn new stuff and improve your life.

2. You avoid exposure

You think your ideas are not good or that your personality is not good enough. This is only fueled by your lack of confidence. You stand near the walls at a party to feel protected. The center of attention and the room is 2 meters away, but in your head, it’s a million miles.

Exposing yourself means showing other people who you are. To do that, we need to accept and love who we were. If we can’t, who can? For you to accept yourself continuously, do an exercise called “The Wheel of Change.” The exercise has 4 simple questions you need to answer for yourself giving you the building block of your confidence.

  1. What do I eliminate from my life?
  2. What do I create in my life?
  3. What do I accept in my life?
  4. What do I preserve in my life?

“With confidence, you have won before you have started.” – Marcus Garvey

3. You use distractions instead of solutions

The difference here is the belief. Zorro played by Antonio Banderas, couldn’t defeat his arch-enemy, Captain Harrison Love, because he just didn’t have the skills or knowledge at the time to do it. Due to this, he started drinking.

The drinking led him to despair and he almost gave up, yet a mentor played by Anthony Hopkins taught Zorro how to gain his confidence back and take out his enemies. The main thing was to master things in “The Zorro Circle.” That circle is small, but it’s a place where you have full control. When you master that circle, you expand it. The same things happen with your confidence.

You indulge in distractions, get overwhelmed and then quit. Nonetheless,  the main thing here is to do small things which are in your control. Use solutions instead of distractions and at some point, you will be able to solve problems which were out of your control when you started.

Don’t fall into the trap of rationalization, explaining why you are where you are in life. Just start working small, use solutions instead of distractions and you will get there.

4. You are a one-trick pony

A man came to see a psychologist and told him: “Doctor, I’m always depressed. I tried everything but nothing works. Please, help me out.” The psychologist told him to stand up and come to the window with him. “You see that tent over there?. That is the circus and they are really good. There is this one clown in particular who is really funny. He makes everyone laugh so hard. You should go and see him and you won’t have any reason to be depressed.”

The man turned to the psychologist and said, “Doctor, I am that clown!” You are not a one-trick pony but your friends perceive you like that. You are the funny one that cracks jokes or the trivia guy who has interesting facts around the water cooler.

At a certain point, this becomes who you are, and then, you are scared to show anything else to people around you. At some point, it becomes unbearable and you crack. To prevent this, you need to know that it’s okay to show your full personality.

You are not a one-trick pony. You are a human being with a full range of emotions, character-traits and personalities that must be shown to the world. This is the way to confidence. The other way brings you to the story of Robin Williams who tragically ended his life, so show yourself fully.

“Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.” – Bruce Lee

5. You lack tears in your eyes

It’s when you are aligned with emotions – when you respect how you feel – that you are truly free to feel the freedom of your emotions. You must love and cherish them when they occur by shedding happy yet sad tears as well.

When you acknowledge what you feel and own it to your deepest level, that’s when you’ll feel the biggest confidence. Don’t run away from your emotions, but own them. Let them go through your body and mind and acknowledge what’s happening in you. Feel it. They are sometimes pleasant and sometimes not, yet they are yours. It’s not how you feel, it’s how you feel about how you feel.

What do you do when you lack confidence? Let us know in the comments below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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