By Hanan Awaad
Many of us struggle with life, between broken relationships, jobs we hate, activities we don’t enjoy and dreams that are not ours. And at times we feel that we are spinning around to fulfil many obligations and demands.
Sometimes we get stuck in hectic schedules, but before thinking about streamlining our schedules, we need first to get in contact with our true selves. To centre yourself and step back and take a look at our life from the outside.
TURN YOUR FOCUS INWARD
The first step in turning your life around is to turn your focus inward. When you feel that in every day you are falling further behind your dreams and at that moment when you reach the climax of your anxiety and weariness listen to your inner voice telling you “I don’t want to live like this anymore, I have to do something to change my life.”
To change your life, you don’t have to do big dramatic changes all at once. Thinking of big changes always discourages us from taking the first step of making any effort at all. In many cases, not everything in your life needs to be changed. When you focus on small changes or improvements, you can turn your life around.
To do so dedicate one day to this process that I will outline later. I recommend during a weekend and have a notebook and a pen and retire to a quiet place.When it comes to changing our lives, there are two mindsets; the first is to withstand or endure the hardship or the challenge and hope that one day the circumstances will change, the second mindset is to find and escape and go to another place (metaphorically or literally), and our lives will change.
Withstanding or enduring your current situation might be a favourable strategy at times, especially when you have to take the hardship or the challenge for a short period; like enduring years of studying to get your degree, or enduring your time at the gym to get fit. However, this strategy might not be valid all the time. Like enduring an abusive relationship waiting for the abusive partner to change, or staying in a low-paying job and expecting to become wealthy.
In those situations, feelin stuck will not turn your life around, and change is a must. Our decisions and choices create our lives. Decisions allow certain people our lives; decisions guide your lifestyle and decisions guide your focus. A simple example is when you are hungry and reach out to a healthy food vs an unhealthy option. It is your choice, and your body and quality of life will be affected.
It’s crucial to differentiate between our feelings at the moment and our lives as a whole. When we feel down, the mind tends to focus on what is missing not what we have or what we are capable of doing. The truth is nobody on Earth has everything. In every person’s life, there are one or more parts that are chaotic or dysfunctional.
In those dark moments, we cannot see our gifts or skills. But I believe that you are the CEO of your own life. And CEOs are excellent at spotting gifts and skills.Your external environment rubs on your life, and you as well can change your external environment and turn your life.
Every day you are given 24 Golden Opportunities to move forward to a better destination. And every phase of your life has three stages: beginning, growth or progress and completion. Completion creates joy or pleasure, but you need to begin first and keep progressing before reaching the completion stage.
If in the past you had creates a perfect day, you can do it again and create your perfect day, every day and eventually your perfect life. But beware that your perception of a perfect day will keep changing and evolving as your life evolves and your goals change.
IDENTIFY YOUR ULTIMATE GOAL
We spent quite some time discussing the first step in turning the focus inward, but it is important as this is the foundation for the whole process. The second step to turn your life around is to identify your ultimate goal.
On a daily basis we might want to accomplish many goals, but most of the time, these are just tasks not goals. And even goals are not ultimate goals all the time. For example picking the kids up from school is a task, submitting an assignment is a task, responding to a client’s request is a task, none of them are goals. So, start by identifying your ultimate goal.
CHANGE YOUR MINDSET
The third step is to change your mindset into a growth mindset. What you do today is an investment in or a withdrawal of your future. And always remember, you need to plant the seed today to taste the fruit tomorrow. In Corporita Bonanza we have a full episode on seven investments you should do today for a better tomorrow. You will find the link to that episode in the description box.
MAKE YOUR DOMINANT VALUE THE THEME OF YOUR LIFE
The fourth step is to name your dominant value in life and make it the theme of your life. For example, if you appreciate and value having an impact in life. Make the value of “impact” the theme of your days. Every day, ask yourself what the one thing that I can do today to create the impact I desire.
VISUALIZE YOUR PERFECT DAY
The fifth step is to visualize your days. Imagine that you are standing in front of and talking to your life. Tell your life how it should look like. See it, feel it, speak it and write it down. Visualizing your life and your days is like having a rehearsal or a demonstration of your decisions and their results.
FIND YOUR SUPPORTERS
The sixth step is to name one to three people in your life, who can help you turn your life around. People might help but will not do what you are supposed to do. For example, your teacher will explain the information, but it is you who has to study and work to pass the test. Your consultant might guide you along the way to establishing your business, but it is you who has to run the business.
FORGIVE AND LET GO
The seventh step is to forgive and let go. Start with yourself. Accept that you’re human. Yesterday you might have lied, cheated or acted lazy or took the wrong decision, but today you can decide not to act like yesterday. Accept the flaws in you and others. Holding to the pain sucks your energy until you run out of energy to do what you’re supposed to do. You have your weaknesses, so do others.
The eighth step is to build systems; establish morning, evening and night routines. Standardize your life, declutter your place, clean your fridge of junk foods, dedicate times in your workday to stop distractions and actually work on your job and excel in it. Create a life total quality system. With standardizing parts of your life, you eliminate decision fatigue without depriving yourself of fun energy.
WRITE … WRITE … AND WRITE
The ninth step is to write and keep writing. Create your inspiration board. Your board might include songs, sayings, photos of role models or pictures of places. Think of things that excite you. Journal your ideas, write your to-do list, create your goals log. I’ve talked to many people who claim that they don’t like to write down their goals or journal their feelings. Writing is a skill or a muscle that you need to train. Start today with a simple list of things you want to accomplish.
REESTABLISH YOUR PHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT
The last step which is as important as all the other previous steps is to clean and clear up your place. A cluttered environment is just the way to fill a void. Cleaning and decluttering your environment will instantly lift your spirit up and create harmony in your life.
Once you start the process of turning your life around, be careful and limit your focus to the most important aspects of your life. Limiting your focus will give you a chance to rest and de-stress and feel calm and reassured. And remember, you can always reset your life and turn it around.