Updated: Feb 14
Instead of tips from self-help books, google articles or any other sources, here are my 10 tips on what worked for me. I hope these will ring a bell with you, to not give up on your dreams and get better every day. Let's roll..
Written by Sharon Swathi Gaddala
1. Rewire Your Brain
It all starts from your mindset. You need to alter the way your brain functions and the good news is, rewiring is possible. Science, “Neuroplasticity” refers to the brain’s ability to restructure or rewire itself when it recognizes the need for adaptation. In other words, it can continue developing and changing throughout life therefore avoid having a fixed mindset, limited belief system and rigid boundaries, a person with these, avoids growth, challenges and drowns in stress living a stressful life.
Have a purpose, have goals, move out of your comfort zone and take risks, of course calculated ones, this will challenge your brain. Do something you have never done before and see how enlightening it will be, it opens you up, don't set limitations, limitations only inhibit you in getting to know your potential and capability.
Train your brain of mindfulness, have positive thoughts. I know it's easy to say but I also know it is not hard to practice. Think of what best you can do in present situation, how should you respond to the situation and how to process your thoughts. When you practise this, over a period of time, your brain gets adapted and inadvertently you transform into a positive and a mindful person.
2. What You Practise, Grows Stronger
Where your energy goes, that will grow, stronger and stronger. So, practise gratitude, confidence, mindfulness. Start with small things, in a small way and later scale, take one step at a time. Practise what can get you closer to your goals and align with the purpose of your life.
Practice to believe in yourself. Nothing is more powerful than listening to your intuition. Pay attention to your inner voice try and understand why you have those voices inside you, there must be a reason. Accept that negativity will be a part of life, practise and have a strategy to cope with negativity. You can do this by asking, how can I not stress about it? what will be the consequences of this? what can I learn from this experience? instead of asking why this happened to me? Have affirmations, say to yourself that whatever happens it is for my good, i will do my best, I will take things positively no matter what the outcome of a situation is.
Practise on how to ignore things which are trivial, ignore what's not impacting your life in a major way. This will not only save your energy, it will also help you focus on things which are important for you. Prioritize what matters to you and ignore what does not. Practise having a goal oriented life. If your goals are complex, break it down into smaller goals, set timelines and measure them from time to time.
Practise forgiveness, forgive people who hurt you, forgive yourself for not prioritising your needs, forgiveness sets you FREE, from resentment, anger, frustration and agony. Set yourself FREE.
3. Make Some Me time
We all have 24 hours within this time from your busy life make room for yourself, just you, thats ME time. Remove and refresh by sorting things around you. One thing at a time, one after the other. Write down a list of to do things, it could be as simple as going to a salon, getting that trendy haircut, those boots , that car, hiking, scuba diving, anything which will make you happy and this only you will know. Write down how much time it will take for you to learn a new skill, put a list of what you use to like as a child or an adult which you probably stopped.
Pursue a hobby, if you are not sure which hobby, then try whatever you can grab on and see if it holds your interest and keep trying until you halt at something. Once you write them down, plan to tweak this in your 24 hours. How many of you hold onto things and people who only cause stress and add agony to your well-being? Remove and refresh, remove things and people who no longer add value to your well-being.
Decluttering is freeing space, in your mind and around you, free yourself from things which no longer you feel for or does not add value to your life, allow new things, they teach you that you are capable of more, more than till now, more than you anticipated. New experiences help us have a different perspective towards life. Move forward.
4. Improve Your EQ (Emotional Quotient)
When it comes to happiness and success in life, EQ outweighs IQ though both are imperative. Our emotions impact our mood, behaviour, performance, actions and reactions. With the ever increasing stress, how do we cope?
Know your values and beliefs, challenge what you don't agree with and follow the ones you agree with. When someone puts their opinion do not outrightly reject or ridicule their opinion rather if you disagree, you can ask them questions by probing on how`s and why`s to understand. Its ok if you like something which is against your belief system, that's the beauty of every individual. Each life is so unique, I bet there are no 2 individuals who had exactly same experiences throughout, not possible.
Be honest to yourself with what you like, dislike, tolerate, accept and compromise etc. Introspect, self-examine and write them so you have clarity. Clarity always wins over confusion. Plan on how you react to a stressful situation at work or in personal life. Do you freak out when you hear a disappointing news? Self-awareness of your emotions make you confident in managing them effectively.
At work, receiving honest feedback from colleagues, managers and peers, this is an opportunity for self-awareness, they may not be 100% correct however just accept their outlook. Your emotions and behaviour comes from you therefore take responsibility.
Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom ARISTOTLE
5. When In Doubt, Take The Next Small Step
We may never see the end of the tunnel therefore we start doubting, did I make the right choice? Am I in the right direction? Is that person right for me? Is this right for me? How will this end? the list is endless..
Visualize this, when you start a car with the light you only see a few meters, when you cross that, you see the next few meters, and so on till you reach the destination. It is organic to doubt, but just take the next small step and then the next one, you will see your destination only when you keep going. When you reach there, you will only have pride on how you took those small steps and made it all the way. If you don't get to the destination then for sure you will have clarity of which direction you have to steer.
6. Never Stop Learning
Growth comes from self-development. Use tools and technology to learn, these days there are plethora of information available either for free or with affordable cost, make use of it. The best investment you can make is by investing time, money and energy on yourself.
Make a list of the courses, certifications, qualifications, skills, hobby, you would like to pursue, set aside a budget and plan on when and how you will manage time, finances and energy to accomplish. It's time you add weight to your name.
Remain a lifelong student, don't lose that curiosity Indra Nooyi (Ex-CEO of PepsiCo)
7. Stand Out
If you need to dress for success, master on how you can stand out. With wrestling competition in every field, how can you stand out in your team, at work? Etc.
Have goals which will help you stand out. For example, observe your peers, their qualification, certifications, experiences and then analyse on which ones you will be interested in accomplishing, upgrading thru continuous learning is the key to stand out. Standing out is not a sign of seeking attention or acting different, it's upgrading yourself.
Acquire skills and knowledge which will help you be an outstanding performer in any field. Be disciplined and unconventional, it's fine, stick to your plan and believe in yourself even if the entire world is against you. If there is someone who needs to believe in your plan, that is just YOU.
8. Learn From Your Experiences
You must be in your teens, 20`s, 30`s, 40`s or more, I am sure all of us had good and bad experiences in life. No one is immune to failure, we all make mistakes, we will undeniably fail and crash at some point, every experience is an opportunity to self -reflect and learn with which we can become a better person.
Fear means you are afraid, especially of the unknown. Coach yourself that everyone in this world have failed, at something. Failure is inevitable. Instead of being afraid, you should accept the outcome of failures, use this experience to get better at it and eventually succeed. Remember, Failure will make you better, it is an imperative part of the growth. For a free coaching session click here
9. Change Your Response
Change your perception towards anything you cannot change. Our response to an event can change the outcome itself, yes. You have that irritating boss, you cannot change him/her but you can change your response to him/her. You have those pesky family members, change your response to them, Examples are many, core focus is change from within.
10. Always Look At The Brighter Side
Did you ever whine about not getting that promotion? My manager is a biased person, I have a hard time working with my boss. My boss and I always have problems? Are you grieving for passing away of a family member or a friend? Are you in Financial mess Or just stressed amid Covid times?
Always look at the brighter side no matter how devastating the situation is, focus on what you have rather than what you don't. What you experience today than what you may experience tomorrow. No one knows what tomorrow holds for us, so, why stress? Own your moments, mistakes and every single thought and action. Ensure not to commit the same mistake again since you know the consequence and repercussions. Be cautious while decision making but be brave. Keep calm in getting back to normalcy.
Life is about balance, nature balances everything. You lose some and gain some, just be aware and accept what you will lose, what you will gain, if you are satisfied with that gain, stop pondering over what's lost. No one can have both sides, just pick a side and get going. At the end of the day, everyone pays a price to achieve something, nothing is free. We all thought Oxygen was free until Covid isn't it?
Make the best out of every situation, stop bickering. Be a part of the solution, not the problem. Be a problem solving person. This will help you professionally and personally too.
BE WORK IN PROGRESS
This article is an opportunity to enhance your life from here on, start from tomorrow, start slowly or just 1 tip at a time, become the next better version of yourself. Become a better person than yesterday, every day keep trying. It is possible. No competition or no comparison, only a better version of YOU. Remember and keep reminding yourself that you have the power to choose, the power to change. When you wake up, be thankful for what you have and live the way you want. Free from any oppression, exploitation, discrimination, boundaries, rules and limited beliefs.
I would like to ask this question and wrap up, are you stopping yourself from living a life you dreamt and envisioned for yourself?