Find Purpose and Meaning in Life

Finding-Your-Purpose

Find Purpose and Meaning in Life

If you ask the average person if their life has purpose and meaning, you’re likely to only receive a few nods. People really do lead lives of quiet desperation. It’s common to feel dissatisfied with life and to believe that your life lacks purpose and meaning. This doesn’t have to be a permanent condition!

There’s no set recipe for a meaningful life. Your values and perception of the world are unique. The most meaningful and purposeful life you can lead is specific to you. Have the courage to create a life that potentially lies outside the norm.

Live a life filled with meaning and purpose:

1. Help someone. The most satisfying life is one that serves others in some way. You could be an author that writes interesting novels or a high school math teacher. You might volunteer to coach youth baseball twice a week. A life devoid of service to others isn’t as meaningful as it could be.

2. Do something new. Most people spend their time living a small bubble, that bubble where you’re only concerned with short-term pleasure and pain. Change your life up a little bit and do something new for a change. Do something that interests you, even if it makes you uncomfortable.

3. Drop television for a week. Watching TV is addictive. It’s a very distracting and an easy activity to do. It also steals valuable hours from your life that could be spent doing countless other things.

  • You could go back to school, learn to speak Japanese, spend time with actual people, or write a book. What will you get from another year of watching TV every night?

4. Write your own script. Too many people feel compelled to live by the “rules” of society. There’s a compulsion to go to college, get married, have kids, and have a sensible career. But how can you find purpose in your life when the main structure of your life was determined by society and not yourself?

  • It’s never too late to break free from the mold that society has created. Does the typical conventional life appeal to you? Make your own rules.

5. Push beyond your comfort zone. An interesting and exciting life is beyond that comfortable place you like to reside. The comfort zone is a breeding place for mediocrity, which isn’t purposeful or meaningful. A meaningful life lies beyond the limits of your current sphere of comfort.

6. Follow your gut. Your gut is tuned to your interests, experiences, and perception of the world. Let your intuition guide you in the big decisions.

7. Know your values. Are you keenly aware of your values? What matters the most to you? Can you live a meaningful life that isn’t built around your values? Unlikely. Be aware of your values and take them into consideration when making all of your decisions.

  • Make a list of all your values. The list might be quite long! Now put them in order, with the most important at the top of the list. Circle the top six.
  • For the next month, make all of your decisions with these six values in mind. If you can’t do it, you might have to rearrange your values!

Be aware of your strength and passions. By combining your values, strengths, and passions, you can create a meaningful life. Serve others along the way and you’ll have a surefire winner.

Become familiar with your values, strengths, and passions. You’re more likely to build a meaningful life with knowledge of these pivotal areas. The right lifestyle is specific to you. If your life lacks purpose and meaning, it’s time to create a new life. You don’t have to live a life of quiet desperation.

Dont Buy Another Frozen Dinner Until You Read This

frozen-dinner

 

Convenience may be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about frozen dinners, but a recent study suggests there’s more to it. On the other hand, whatever your reasons for buying a meal in a box, there are probably more nutritious choices.

Researchers from the University of Minnesota and Duke University decided to find out why processed foods are so popular with parents, considering they’re usually higher in calories, sugar, salt, and saturated fats than natural foods. While 57% of the participants said they were trying to save time, they had other reasons as well.

About half said their families liked frozen dinners, about one-third said they wanted their kids to be able to help prepare meals, and about one-quarter thought they were saving money. Researchers also discovered that many adults lacked confidence in their cooking abilities.

Fortunately, there are simple solutions that make whole foods as simple as a frozen pizza. Before you buy another TV dinner, read this.

Master Simple Cooking Skills

Microwave it. Your microwave can handle a lot more than popcorn. It cooks vegetables almost as well as steaming because it needs minimal water and time. Heating up leftovers is also a breeze.

Shop frozen foods. You can still visit the frozen aisle for ingredients like vegetables and fruit. In fact, frozen produce often has more vitamins than fresh items that have spent a long time in shipping.

Make one pot meals. Soup and casseroles can use up whatever you have on hand in your kitchen without trying to coordinate multiple procedures. Plus, you only have one pot to clean.

Eat more fish. Most experts recommend eating fish at least 2 to 3 times a week. That’s easy once you realize you can often grill it or bake it in 10 minutes or less.

Teach your kids. Encourage your children to develop healthy eating habits with age appropriate tasks. Even toddlers can shred lettuce or help set the table.

Save Time and Money on Healthy Meals

  1. Try beans and legumes. Beans, lentils, and peas are packed with protein, and amazingly versatile. They’re also a great bargain, especially if you purchase them in bulk.
  2. Buy generic. Compare the store brand unsweetened breakfast cereal with the pricier options. You may find that you and your family like it just as well.

Shop around. There can be a huge price difference on the same items at different markets. Plus, many whole foods have a short shelf life so you can get salad greens at half price if you’re using them the same day.

Stock up on sales. Do you love saffron and extra virgin olive oil? Buy expensive items when the prices are reduced. Just be sure you’ll be able to use them before they reach their expiration date.

Eat less meat. There are plenty of protein sources less expensive than steak. In addition to beans and legumes, consider dairy and soy products.

Cook in batches. One big time-saver is preparing multiple meals at once. Freeze the leftover lasagna or chili for future quick dinners or lunches.

Skip cooking. A balanced meal can be assembled rather than cooked. How about hummus with pita triangles and cut vegetables or a salad with sunflower seeds or thawed shrimp?

An occasional frozen dinner is fine, but making whole foods the mainstay of your diet will provide more balanced nutrition for you and your family. In fact, the more you eat natural foods, the more you’ll start preferring them to processed fare.

Discover the Power of a Food Journal

food-journal

Imagine a free weight loss tool that doubles your chances of taking off pounds. That’s how powerful a food journal can be. Researchers at Kaiser Permanente studied participants in a weight-loss program, and found that those who kept daily food journals lost twice as much weight as those who didn’t.

Of course, keeping a journal does require some time and work. See how these tips can help you stay on track.

Benefits of Keeping a Food Journal

1. Increase your awareness. A food journal puts an end to mindless snacking. You become more aware of how much you really eat.

2. Resist temptation. Knowing that you’ll need to jot down those bacon bits on your salad or that extra slice of birthday cake may be all you need to stop you in your tracks. Making nutritious food choices becomes automatic.

3. Increase your knowledge. Your journal is educational too. You’ll learn about calorie counts, fiber intake, portion sizes, and new recipes. In fact, MyFitness Pal, a popular weight loss app, claims that their users who log recipes lose 40% more weight.

4. Target your efforts. Once you spot your triggers, you can change them. You’ll notice the times of day when you crave something sweet or your tendency to eat the whole donut when you meant to take just a bite.

5. Eat healthy. Remember that your food journal can help you do more than take off pounds. You can identify allergies, monitor your blood sugar, or do just about anything that involves food and your overall wellbeing.

How to Keep a Food Journal

1. Act quickly. Writing your meals and snacks down immediately is ideal. You’re less likely to forget important details.

2. Aim for consistency. Make entries each day if possible. If you slip once in a while, get back on track as soon as possible. The more weeks and months of data you collect, the more valuable your journal becomes. If the time commitment seems daunting, remember that you’ll probably get faster as you go along.

3. Tell the truth. Be honest even if your lunch consisted entirely of French fries. You can keep the entries for your eyes only if it helps.

4. Be specific. Details matter. Mention each ingredient in your sandwich. Notice how much cream or sugar you’re adding to your coffee. Pay attention to the calories you drink whether you indulge in pumpkin lattes or margaritas.

5. Look at the big picture. Your diary can encompass more than food and beverages. Write about your emotions and how they affect your eating. Include information about other relevant factors such as exercise, sleep, and health conditions.

6. Choose your format. Buy a pretty blank book or use an online template. Maybe you want something that’s easy to tote around or perhaps you prefer to keep it on your nightstand.

7. Take pictures. Photos make your journal more fun and productive. Include before and after shots of your shrinking waistline. Use images to help you remember and recreate your favorite slimmed-down dishes.

8. Review frequently. Rereading your diary will help you evaluate your progress and make healthy changes. Looking back gives you a chance to reflect and gather any information you want to share with your doctor or other professionals. You can also use your diary to chart your future as you think about the next milestone you want to reach.

Keeping track of what you eat is an effective way to lose weight. As long as you’re consistent and accurate about food journaling, an occasional slip won’t stand in the way of your eating healthier and looking slimmer.

Create a Life Plan and Stop Living on Accident

life-plan

Do you consider yourself intelligent, capable, and kind? Is your life in perpetual chaos and you don’t understand why? It’s possible that you’re living your life on accident. Avoid allowing luck to rule your life. Put your foot down, make a plan, and choose a direction for your life.

Take responsibility for your future:

1. Examine your current situation. How did you end up where you are? Are you living in the home or apartment you’ve always dreamt of? Why not? How did you end up there? Was it the result of long-term planning? Or was it the only place that you could find on short notice that would accept a $99 deposit because you were short of cash?

* Consider all aspects of your life. That includes your career, friends, fitness level, finances, intimate relationship, and so on. Did you choose what you have, or did you just grab at the best opportunity that happened to wander by your awareness?

2. Determine the type of life you want to lead. What type of job do you want? Where do you want to live? How do you want to spend your evenings? How much money do you want to earn? Describe your social life. Take the time to thoroughly examine the future you’d like to experience.

3. Put the first things first. Money isn’t the only thing, but it’s an important thing. Money is great for solving many of life’s challenges. It’s also a necessary resource for doing many other things. If you’re having financial struggles, it would make sense to work on your finances first.

* Make a logical progression for each part of your life you’d like to change. If you need to lose 100 pounds, going for a daily walk and eliminating high-calorie drinks would be a good start. After a month of walking, you could add in additional exercise and diet changes.

* Focus on financial and health issues first. After you’ve gained some momentum, you can address the other parts of your life.

4. Be brave enough to choose. Why haven’t you made decisions about your life in the past? Is it possible that you were afraid to make a choice and possibly fail? It’s true that you can’t fail if you never try, but you can’t ever experience success and happiness either.

5. Have enough discipline to choose. When you’re confused and uncertain, it feels easier to avoid making decisions. You don’t want to make the wrong decision after all. However, this type of thinking is a trap. It’s better to make a reasonable choice and give it your best effort than it is to not make a decision at all.

6. Realize that luck isn’t on your side over the long-term. When you don’t put energy into something, it will tend to fall apart over time. Whether you’re talking about a fence, a sand castle, or your life, luck isn’t kind. The natural way of the universe is to move from ordered to disordered.

* The only cure is concentrated effort and energy. A wooden fence only survives if you repair it and paint it at regular intervals. Even then, it will still have to be replaced at some point. Your life is no different. Without energy and intention applied regularly, your life falls apart just like the fence.

Now is the time to take control of your life and make decisions that matter. Choose a course for your life or allow entropy to slowly destroy it. Take control while there’s still time to create an exciting life.

Accept Responsibility for Your Life and Regain Control

regain-control

There’s a comfort that comes from having an excuse for your challenges in life. Whether you can blame your issues on poor parenting, a boss that hates you, or the universe in general, it’s soothing to have an excuse. However, that excuse has a cost. By putting the blame and responsibility outside yourself, you take away your power to change your situation.

Is everything you’re fault? Of course not. But it is your responsibility. If you don’t fix it, who will? Even if you had horrible parents, there’s nothing they can do about it now.

Choose to see everything in your life as your responsibility and start making some changes. You’ll eventually enjoy the power that comes with responsibility.

Accept responsibility for your current situation and take control of your life:

  1. Be aware of how you’ve contributed to your own challenges. Maybe you made poor decisions. Maybe you failed to take action. Look at the least satisfying parts of your life and determine how you created them. Be sure to also look at the great parts of your life and give yourself some credit, too.
  2. Build your self-esteem. The more self-esteem you possess, the easier it is to deal with life’s challenges. If you’ve been avoiding responsibility, your self-esteem has been suffering. Taking responsibility builds self-esteem. They go hand-in-hand.
  • Remember all the wonderful things you’ve accomplished in the past. Imagine how great you’ll feel when you turn your life around.
  1. Remember that not everything is within your power to change. You can’t make your boss like you. But you can find another job. You can’t make your spouse stop drinking. But you can demand that they seek help and choose to leave if they don’t comply. In the end, you can only control yourself. Avoid worrying about the things that are outside your control.
  2. Take responsibility for the little things. The big things are more exciting, but the little things are important, too. In fact, not taking care of the little things often leads to the big things. Take responsibility for the everyday tasks that you face on a regular basis.
  3. Be the best version of yourself. Hold yourself to a higher standard than anyone else would ever demand of you. This is the ultimate way to take control, because you’re accepting the highest level of responsibility. Being the best version of yourself means doing what needs to be done whether you feel like it or not.
  4. Avoid blaming yourself. Taking responsibility and taking the blame are two different things. Does it matter who’s to blame? You’re taking care of business, so it doesn’t matter if it’s your fault or not. You’re solving the problem, regardless of the cause. Blaming yourself makes you less effective.
  5. Expect to be uncomfortable. Taking responsibility is the opposite of avoiding responsibility. Why did you avoid responsibility? Because it’s more comfortable than being responsible. With responsibility comes discomfort.
  • Take comfort in the fact that your discomfort will provide significant rewards. Do you think that ultra-successful people deal with more or less discomfort than the average person?

It’s natural to avoid responsibility whenever possible. Accepting responsibility results in more work, at least for the time being. It can mean less work down the road, though. Handing challenges today ensures that they don’t grow into even bigger challenges later.

Failing to take responsibility comes with a heavy cost. You feel as if you lack the ability to change the course of your life. You lose respect for yourself and increase the likelihood of suffering from depression.

It’s time to take responsibility for your life and regain the control that’s so important to your success!

8 Ways to Unlock Your Potential

unlock-your- potentials

8 Ways to Unlock Your Potential

Do you wonder why you haven’t accomplished more with your life? Do you feel that you have great potential locked up inside of you? Most adults feel this way. No one ever truly reaches their potential, but it’s discouraging that so many of us never even scratch the surface of our potential. Are you ready to find out what you can do?

Find out what you’re really capable of accomplishing:

  1. Be bold. This is the number one tip for unleashing your potential on the world. Your limited achievements are likely due to the fact that you’re timid. If you were out there doing your best each day, you’d be too busy piling up successes to read an article like this. Stop caring about the opinions of others and show the world what you’ve got.
  2. Have bold goals. To live up to your potential, you need goals. Goals provide a direction for your energy and effort. Effective goals are motivating, which is great if you’re going to set bold goals! Avoid overwhelming yourself. Goals should be bold, but not overwhelming.
  1. Combine your strengths and interests. Do you really care about maximizing your chess-playing potential if you don’t enjoy playing chess? You’ll have the most potential in the areas where you show natural strength and have a high level of interest. What are you good at that you also enjoy?
  2. Get expert assistance. Some of the leading experts in the world still have a coach or mentor. The right mentor can help you to reach your potential faster than you can do it alone. Spend the time necessary to find a good mentor. It’s like putting your progress on the fast track.
  3. Make progress each day. A small amount of progress, accumulated over time, can result in amazing progress. Avoid overwhelming yourself by setting a schedule or goals that you can’t maintain. But, be sure to make some progress each and every day. The amount of progress you can make in a year would be staggering.
  4. Develop habits that help you accomplish your goals. Keeping with the same theme of making progress each day, your habits are those things you do each day. An effective set of habits all but guarantees success.
  • Examine your goals and determine the habits that would make success likely. The hardest job you have is creating habits. Once the right habits are in place, there’s little else to worry about. Create an effective routine and stick with it.
  1. Determine your obstacles. There’s always something in the way. It might be a lack of time, money, or other resource. Maybe you have a spouse that demands a lot of your time. Maybe you live in the wrong place. After all, it’s not easy to maximize your surfing skills in Missouri.
  • Create a plan for dealing with your obstacles. What can you do to overcome them, or at least minimize them? What do you need? What do you need to stop doing? How can you alter your life to make success more likely?
  1. Expect success. If you expect failure, you’re bound to fail. Why not give yourself the benefit of the doubt and expect good things? If you have solid goals, good habits, and a smidge of discipline, there’s no reason to doubt yourself.

Making a few decisions, acting boldly, and finding a mentor are just a few of the things you can do to unlock your potential. Make today the day you start living at your highest level. What are you waiting for?

18 Graceful Delights to Share with Your Aging Parents

aging-parents

Looking after of your aging parents can be hard work, but there are also great joys. Remember how lucky you are each day that you still have your mother and father in your life.

“To care for those who once cared for us is one of the highest honors.”
Tia Walker, The Inspired Caregiver: Finding Joy While Caring for Those You Love

In fact, it’s natural to want to find some way to give back when you think about all that your parents have done for you. Use this list to get you started on creating your own moments of love and happiness.

Graceful Delights That Take Less Than 15 Minutes

  1. Listen closely. Give your parents your full attention. Let them know that you value what they have to say.
  2. Send flowers. Brighten their home with flowers or a plant. No special occasion is needed.
  3. Share photos. Even if they check Facebook regularly, your parents would love a printout of a cute photo of their grandchildren inside a pretty frame. If you can’t pick just one image, make a photo book.
  4. Sing along. Buy them a CD of golden oldies. Bring back memories of high school days or summer road trips.
  5. Dance around. Get up on your feet. Try a little ballroom dancing or the twist.
  6. Experience nature. Watch a sunset or listen to chimes ringing in the breeze. Notice trees changing color in the fall or sparkling with ice in the winter.
  7. Laugh out loud. Tell a joke or a funny story about what happened at work. Reminisce about the silly things you did growing up.
  8. Hug each other. Touch is essential to our emotional wellbeing, but the longer we live the less we tend to receive. Wrap your arms around each other or squeeze your parent’s hands when you’re coming and going.

Graceful Delights That Take a Little Longer

  1. Read a book. Read out loud from a novel or the newspaper. Pick up large print books if your parents like them.
  2. Watch TV. Families used to gather around one giant device. Turn on an old sitcom.
  3. Write a letter. Letters are more memorable than email. Drop one in their mailbox.
  4. Adopt a pet. If your parents’ circumstances allow, help them find an older dog or cat to love. If not, bring your dog over to give them some affection and entertainment. Call around to see if there are therapy animals in your area that could visit them.
  5. Work out. Take a walk around the block. Offer to drive them to senior exercise classes.
  6. Eat as a family. Prepare lunch together. Sit down in the dining room or out in the back yard.
  7. Gussy up. Grooming becomes trickier in the later years. Invite your mother along when you’re having a haircut or a manicure. If your father prefers privacy, buy a kit so you can give him a cut and a shave.
  8. Clean the house. Chores can be fun. Agree to vacuum the living room if they’ll treat you to cookies and tea afterwards.
  9. Volunteer together. Show your parents that they can still make a contribution. Teach English to recent immigrants or sort food at a local pantry.
  10. Plan an outing. Fight loneliness and isolation by suggesting activities outside the home. Take your mother and father out for an afternoon at a local museum or shopping mall. Maybe your local library shows free old movies where you can mingle with other families with the same idea.

Each stage of life has its own special pleasures. Even when you and your aging parents may be struggling with your changing roles and the loss of independence, facing the transition together draws you closer.

Healthy Ways to Deal with Loneliness

loneliness

Following a love relationship breakup it can seem easy to drown your sorrows in the Muddy Road or spend your evenings stalking your former lover all over Social Media. As tempting and maybe fun as it may seem, that will not get you anywhere…as a matter of fact, it will do you more damage than good. It can be painful when relationships breakdown but you can rise above it by dealing with your loneliness  in a more positive manner.

“Yet it is in this loneliness that the deepest activities begin. It is here that you discover act without motion, labor that is profound repose, vision in obscurity, and, beyond all desire, a fulfillment whose limits extend to infinity.”
–  Thomas Merton

Use your time wisely by preparing how you are going to move on without your ex. The ideas below are great tips to help you speed up your recovery and ease your heartbreak.

You Need to Overcome Isolation

There’s a big difference between being alone and being lonely. Still, social support and interactions are essential to your mental and physical health. Here’s how to stay connected when you find yourself uncoupled.

1. Talk it over. Your friends and family can give you the comfort and encouragement you need. Ask for what you want whether it’s a hug while you cry or a sounding board as you figure out what to do next.

2. Check your contacts. Fill up any empty hours by reaching out to old friends and colleagues. Invite a former coworker out to lunch.

3. Volunteer your services. Participating in a charity softball game or fundraising drive is a great way to extend your network and shift your attention away from your ex. As a bonus, focusing on others will help you to feel happier and more satisfied.

4. Pursue common interests. Find new places to hang out. Join a Meetup group or go to a concert where you’ll be surrounded by others who share your love for science fiction or French cooking.

5. Reach out. Challenge yourself to connect with others. Chat with the waitress at a coffee shop. Tell your neighbor that his lawn looks beautiful.

Start Changing Your Thinking

It’s great to have friends and family on your side, but you also need to look at your relationship with yourself. Adjusting your perceptions protects you from loneliness regardless of what’s going on in your love life.

1. Accept your feelings. You’ll probably experience some uncomfortable emotions like anger or jealousy. Facing up to the truth enables you to learn and grow.

2. Write it out. If your feelings are intense and conflicted, it may help to keep a journal. Notice any obstacles that tend to keep you isolated. Maybe you feel embarrassed about being single or you’re avoiding mutual friends because you don’t want to run into your ex.

3. Look for inspiration. Heartbreak is a common condition. Listen to songs that remind you that you are not alone. Pick out role models who have built a happier life after a relationship ended.

4. Stay active. Fight the blues by working out or admiring the beauty of nature. Even running errands or pulling weeds can distract you from memories that are a little too sensitive right now. Give yourself bonus points for trying something new.

5. Laugh and play. It’s easier to attract others when you’re radiating joy and energy. Participate in activities you love and look for opportunities to brighten someone else’s day. Force yourself to smile and soon it will become automatic.

6. Live in the moment. Keep in mind that your situation is temporary. Take it one day at a time instead of dwelling on the past or projecting into the future.

7. Pray about it. Your spiritual faith and community can be a source of strength. Contemplate your purpose and what kind relationship you are seeking.

It’s natural to struggle with loneliness after a romantic relationship ends. Look for practical ways to reconnect, and treat yourself with kindness and compassion. Dealing with loneliness constructively will help you to heal and find the new love you deserve.

11 Tips for Creating and Maintaining Meaningful Relationships

Some people seem to attract others like moths to a flame. Some of us struggle to attract and keep people in our social circle. There are many simple tips that anyone can implement to increase the number of meaningful relationships they enjoy in life.

By ensuring that people feel good in your presence and maintaining a positive attitude, you’ve already won half the battle.

Create and maintain meaningful relationships:

1. Make people feel like a million bucks. The way people feel about you is a reflection of how you make them feel. If someone feels interesting, confident, and capable when you’re around, they’re going to like you. If they feel insignificant, unintelligent, and anxious around you, the opposite occurs.

* Ask yourself why you like the people you like. Then ask yourself why you dislike the people you dislike. You can learn a lot this way.

2. Be a great listener. One of the simplest ways to make others feel important is to give them your full attention. Keep your focus on the other person and listen to the best of your ability.

3. Be reliable. We treasure those we can count on. Be on time. Keep your word. If you say you’re going to do something, do it. Be that person that we all respect.

4. Maintain regular communication. Relationships fall apart without regular communication. The level of comfort and familiarity drop over time if you go too long without speaking to each other. At least once a month, pick up the phone and maintain contact. It can be work, but the rewards are worth the effort.

5. Be open. Most of the communication that occurs between people is boring and frivolous. Forget about the weather as a topic. Share something interesting and encourage the other person to do the same.

6. Find mutual ground. Determine what you have in common and put your energy into that. You might only have 5% in common with someone else, but that can be enough to build a strong and meaningful friendship. Put 100% of your effort into that 5%.

7. Help them succeed. What’s important to the other person? Help them succeed at whatever it is.

8. Be positive. We all secretly like that person that always seems to be in a good mood. We all dislike that person that’s always in a foul mood. Be a ray of sunshine for everyone you meet.

9. Compliment others. Giving too many compliments can be counterproductive, but the occasional, sincere compliment is always appreciated. Compliments are even more powerful if given in front of others.

10. Share experiences. You always feel close to that person that you’ve shared experiences with, even negative experiences. Make an effort to spend time together doing something meaningful, and hopefully, positive. It can be as simple as going to the State Fair, eating cotton candy, and riding the Ferris wheel. Neither of you will ever forget it.

11. Ask questions. People enjoy talking about themselves, and it makes them feel important. Ask a few questions about their day, their life, or their hopes and dreams.

It can be that easy. Show a sincere interest in others, be open, maintain regular contact, and focus on making the other person feel good about themselves. Be wary of giving “constructive criticism.” While you may have the best of intentions, negative comments can weaken relationships.

There’s no need to sit back and be upset about the lack of meaningful relationships in your life. Now you know how to enhance your social life and your relationships!

What if You Are Allowed to Live Today Over and Over?

Do you have big plans and aspirations for the future? Do you act on those plans and aspirations each day? Exciting goals are easy to imagine. They even feel good. But putting them into action is another story. Too many people live their lives in a way that only preserves the status quo. How happy are you with the status quo?

Live each day in a way that changes your future:

1.  Imagine your average weekday. Use yesterday as an example, unless something unusual happened.

  • Consider what you ate and drank.
  • How much exercise did you get?
  • What did you do with your social life? Did you spend time with anyone else socially?
  • Did you call any friends?
  • If you’re single, did you ask anyone out on a date?
  • If you’re married, what did you do to enhance your relationship?
  • Did you do anything to increase your income or advance your career?
  • Did you learn anything new that would be useful in the future?

2.  Consider your average weekend. Ask yourself the same questions.

3.  Imagine living those same days over and over for the next 10 years. Where would you end up? Based on your food intake and exercise output, where would you expect your health and body composition to look like in 10 years?

  • Do the same with your finances, social life, marriage, and career. After 10 years of living your average day, what is your prediction?

Let’s use a hypothetical example, Rose.

Rose is 45-years old. She’s divorced and works as a first line manager at a large corporation. She’s not in bad shape, but could do with losing 20 pounds. She’s saved some money, but she doesn’t save regularly.

Consider Rose’s average day:

On Monday, Rose stops at Starbucks on the way to work for a café latte and a muffin. Breakfast sets her back about £7 and 1,400 calories, but she has a decent job, so she doesn’t worry about it too much. She figures she deserves it anyway.

She arrives to work 15 minutes late. Not late enough to get into any trouble, but she’s always a little late, so people notice. She’s not setting the world on fire at work, but she does enough to keep her job secure. Like most people, she avoids work if she can get away with it. She believes she deserves to be paid more if they want more work.

She eats lunch out of the vending machine and drinks a bottle of water. Water is good for you, she thinks, so it’s not a horrible lunch.

She drives home at 5:00 and watches the news while her frozen dinner is cooking in the microwave. The meal isn’t healthy, but it’s not too bad either. She eats dinner and surfs the internet…mainly the personal ads looking for the man of her dreams. She finds one man who appeals to her and she pastes the same introduction email she’s sent to few men before.

She watches a little more TV and then reads 20 pages from a love novel. She’s feeling industrious, so she washes all the dishes and pays some bills before getting ready for bed. In bed, she plays on her phone and texts her  secondary school friends.

Tuesday through Friday are similar days.

Where can Rose realistically expect to be in 10 years?

Is your average day remarkably more meaningful and productive? Where will you be in 10 years? Are you living a day that will lead to positive changes in your life? Or are you simply passing the time with short-term comfort in mind?

As you live your day, ask yourself what the long-term implications of your current task are. Does that task matter?