man-painting-a-picture

Photo by Ari He on Unsplash

 

article by Marisa D. Aceves

Admit it.
Lately, you’ve struggled with the meaning of life.
It isn’t fair. If it were, everyone you know would be happy, confident, and successful. While you love reading about rags to riches phenomenons or perpetually positive people overcoming incredible odds, you can’t manage to picture yourself in their shoes.
How do they do it?
No matter what they do or where they go, everybody loves them.
They walk into a gallery, a theatre, a bookstore, etc., and steal the show.

Then you may ask yourself, like David Byrnes, is this my boring life, crappy job, or failed business venture?
When the answer is always a resounding yes, you should consider your thoughts.
What do you think of yourself?
All the challenges you face, the trials and tribulations are never as bad as your mind would like you to believe.
It’s not laziness or lack of ambition that gets in your way, it’s the endless worry about what could go wrong that keeps you from planning for the future and taking action.

But, how do you begin to change the negativity in your head so you can produce a more positive outcome?

You may not always feel like you can take control of your life or make better decisions. Yet, the power is in your hands. Don’t dwell in the past, dreading the future. You can choose to love the life you live right now, even if it doesn’t feel like a lovable life. Better planning and small imperfect steps toward your goals will help you to overcome your natural resistance to change.

 

woman-smiling

Lesly Juarez on Unsplash

Decide To Be Happy

People always confuse happiness with feeling happy. They get lost in the mood of the moment, believing that life will never get better. To get out of this all-to-common trap, you must deliberately choose to be happy. What does this mean? Concentrate on what is positive about your experience.
Learning so that you can grow in understanding is more important than winning a prize or receiving an award. Meditate on the things that are working in your life. Maybe you have strong family support. Contentment comes from knowing that the present mood, happy or sad, will pass, but gratefulness and a positive attitude will help you to survive even the toughest challenges.

 

people-running-in-desert

Photo by Jed Villejo on Unsplash

Run From Perfection

The world sells perfection. Experience tells us this isn’t the case. To learn what not to do, you have to make mistakes. People forget the majority of successful people failed several times before they succeeded. Acceptance is crucial to moving forward despite discouragement and many failed beginnings.

 

woman-sitting-near-bridge

Photo by Juliana Malta on Unsplash

Stay In The Moment

There’s nothing as soul-sucking as choosing to approach the present as if you were living in your past. Many people find themselves revisiting old hurts and disagreements. Their refusal to trust others keeps them from making new, healthy connections. If you’re concentrating on the past, you miss out on the beauty of the present. Don’t let unfortunate events from the past steal your joy. The key to emotional freedom is learning to react appropriately to your surroundings.

 

man-reaching-out-to-homeless-man

Photo by Tom Parsons on Unsplash

Give More Than You Get

Share your gifts and blessings with others in need. You could promote a local charity or spend time with people that have difficulty reaching out. The simple act of giving puts you in a different mindset. You’re active, not passive. Giving keeps you from being self-centered and lonely. Discovering the small impact your continued generosity has on peoples’ lives helps you to see your worth, and the worth of others.

 

black-board-with-love-yourself-written-on-it-and-red-roses

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Value Yourself So You Can Value Others

When you value yourself, you avoid enabling people who are only in your life to get something from you. Spending time in an abusive, one-sided relationship makes you bitter. Being thoughtful and forgiving doesn’t mean you should settle for doormat status. If you seek out caring, well-adjusted people, they’re more likely to appreciate your contributions.

 

coffee-cup-with-planner

Photo by Estée Janssens on Unsplash

Make a Plan

A careful, laid out plan to achieve your goals will help you to concentrate on the areas that will get you the results you want. You can spend countless hours multi-tasking, convincing yourself you’re making progress, but are you? The shot-gun approach to marketing, finding your targeting audience or networking only results in failure and frustration. By answering important questions about what you want to achieve and what it takes to get there, you can determine the best course of action. Plans change based on your needs. Make sure you’re flexible when challenges keep you from following your original plan. Perhaps there’s a newer, better way to reach your goal or goals.

people-jumping-in-air

Photo by Zachary Nelson on Unsplash

Applying these helpful tips takes practice. It’s never easy to break habits or routines that don’t benefit you, especially when it comes to the way you approach life. However, it’s possible. I believe in your tenacity and ability to make positive changes.

 

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