Do you feel stuck in life and wish your life were different?
Do you think your life circumstances would have been different if you were born in a different country or as a different person?
Well, the good news is, if you are thinking these thoughts, you are not dead. And that means your wishes can still come true.
Whatever you set your mind upon you can achieve it, no matter how difficult or far away it may look now.
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10 life lessons to change your life in a year
Let me tell you a real-life story.
Nick Vujicic is an Australian motivational speaker. When he was born, his father was stunned to see him and his mother refused to hold him for four months.
He was born with a rare congenital disorder called tetra-amelia syndrome characterized by the absence of all four limbs.
He grew up feeling depressed and feeling like a failure. He didn’t know why he was born and the purpose of his life. He fell into depression and tried to commit suicide at the age of 10.
During his teenage years, when his mother showed him the article of a man dealing with a severe disability, he got inspired. And he decided to inspire others by sharing his story by becoming a speaker. And at the age of 19, he gave his first speech. Since then, he has traveled the world sharing his story with millions of people.
Today he is an author, musician, actor and his hobbies include fishing, painting, and swimming (Source: lifewithoutlimbs.org). He is also a husband and father of four kids.
Nick was able to change his life completely by changing his thinking. When he changed his thinking, everything around him changed.
If you want to change your life for the better, just know that it all starts in your mind. Now, let’s see what some important life lessons are, that will help to turn your life around.
1. Stop victim thinking
What is the victim thinking?
In Nick’s case, he turned his disability into something beautiful by inspiring people.
The circumstances that he was born with, made him the person he later became.
A victim mentality is where you think, the other people are responsible for the way you feel. Yes, other people can do things to you that make you unhappy, but it’s always up to you how you choose to respond.
When you have a victim mentality, you also feel life is out there to get you. Life is indeed full of ups and downs, but that is not just your life. Every person who lives on this planet is given trials and tribulations.
The way you choose to respond to them will decide how much you will succeed in life. But if you have a victim mentality, you start to point your fingers and never do anything about it.
The life circumstances you were born with or living with may not be your fault. And every circumstance cannot be changed, like the disability you are born with. You couldn’t choose where you were born but you can always choose how you are going to live from now onwards.
Every human being is given this power. And you are no exception.
If you feel like your parents or the house you were born in are the reasons you couldn’t achieve your dreams, think again. You can still change your destiny and create a new life path.
2. Don’t let anyone decide your worth
This one is so important that if you grasp this lesson, your life will change immediately.
The reason many dreams do not rise from the ground is that their wings are burned before the takeoff. We often criticize ourselves more than we should and therefore we decide our dreams are not worth it.
Often the feelings of low self-worth come from our society. No one is born feeling low about themselves.
But as we grow up, we hear opinions about us repeatedly from people around us. We tend to believe them and the repetition creates a pattern in our brain that causes us to believe certain things about us.
Usually, these beliefs are hard to go away once you form them. But if you can recognize the limiting beliefs that hold you back, you can change them through various techniques like affirmations, visualization, hypnosis, etc.
So never let anyone decide your worth. You should know your worth. Let no one tell you that “You will never amount to anything”, or “You are not as good as your brother” or “Your sister is smart, you are not”.
When such thoughts come into your mind, realize that they are just thoughts and they are not a reality. You believe them as a result of thinking them again and again over the years. I repeat it’s not reality, just a thought in your mind. Just like fear.
What is fear?
Fear is just an emotion, not a reality.
Most of the time fear comes to your mind, not as a result of imminent danger, but because you are uncomfortable. Because you have to step into the unknown or unfamiliar situations.
We live our lives chained to this emotion called fear. And we give so many excuses to make it feel true. And in reality, they are just false beliefs and not the truth.
When fear arises, ask yourself this question, “Am I really incapable of doing it? Or is it because I have told myself I am not good enough to do it? What will happen if I try?”
When you ask yourself these questions, you tend to re-evaluate the lies you have believed about yourself.
And start to visualize the positive change that can happen. Continue to dig in and find the REAL YOU. Find your real worth. It will change your life completely.
3. If you want to change your life, implement the life lesson consistently
It feels nice to learn these life lessons. Be it a blog post, a personal development book, or a YouTube video. You get a surge of motivation.
But if you don’t implement them, you are not gonna get the result you want in life. People (including me) look for a magic bullet to change their lives jumping from courses to courses or books to books.
You don’t need a huge idea to change your life. You just need a simple idea that works.
And it’s your job to make it work by executing the idea. To see the change, you have to do it consistently.
You are not gonna get the results you want from meditation if you do it only twice a month. Similarly, you won’t get that beach body if you sweat only when your mood strikes.
You have to show up every day. EVERY.SINGLE.DAY.
It is in the doing part that magic happens, and not the learning part. Learning is important and it is important to feed your brain with positive lessons often. Learning opens you to new perspectives about living your life. But, give more weight to LIVING THE IDEA.
4. Stop complaining and express gratitude every day
I don’t know how many times I have mentioned gratitude on my blog. I always write about it because it is the one single thing that truly changed my life.
It is a very important life lesson I have learned and have benefitted from.
If you take away only one idea from this article, be it showing gratitude every day in your life.
I learned about it first from the book “The Secret”. When I read it, I realized how negative was my thinking and how it was affecting my life.
From then on, I have grown to become a more positive and optimistic person and my life started changing. I am still growing, but I am content with the exciting things that life brings me just because I started showing gratitude.
When you are grateful for the everyday things that you take for granted, you realize how blessed you are and you stop complaining. It also helps with your victim mentality.
So, start counting your blessings and express sincere gratitude for them. You will feel and act much better, I promise.
5. Develop one skill that will help you grow
If you want to change your life in a year, devote your next few months to learning a new skill.
What is that one skill that will help you grow your business or career? Or develop your personality?
Is it better communication skills, leadership skills or designing skills?
Will learning a new language or a new software enhance your business? Will developing more confidence help you face your clients more easily? Take classes or courses that will help you grow your skills. It can make a significant difference in your life.
Over the past years, I have bought tons of books and I also buy online courses when I can afford, to grow my blog and for personality development. They all have helped me so much.
6. Sell your TV and have control over internet use
I heard this advice years ago and I thought I couldn’t ditch this habit.
But gradually, when I started to invest more time in learning new things, I had to borrow more time from my TV time. And then I stopped it altogether. To be honest, it is a habit that chains you to sit idle in one place and stimulates your brain with useless things.
Use that time for something that will benefit you in the long run like reading or self-care exercise or whatever activity you like.
And today, I don’t miss watching TV at all. I am glad I am free of this habit. Well, why should I waste my time watching other people make money and become successful? I would rather try to do something for my life with that precious time.
It is an important life lesson I learned in my life and I teach my kids that too. They don’t watch TV and they use that time to engage in creative play or play outdoors.
But then for many people, the internet or Netflix shows take the place of TV. I am not saying it’s all bad. But have scheduled time blocks for Internet use because I feel social media can be more addictive than TV.
Time is a finite resource. And no matter what you do you cannot increase the time you get in a day. It’s up to you to use it for the things that matter.
- 18 signs you are addicted to your cell phone
- Beat smartphone addiction: How to use your phone more mindfully
- How to Stop Wasting Time and Start Living Purposefully
- 20 Proven Time Management Tips to Get More Done in Less Time
7. Make self-doubt your friend
Self-doubt can be your biggest friend or enemy depending upon how you choose to look at it. Self-doubt is that small voice that speaks to you whenever you want to venture into something out of your comfort zone.
It says, “It’s a good idea, but can YOU do it?”, or tells you with certainty “No, you can’t do it, you’re not good/skilled enough to do it” and so on.
It becomes your enemy when it paralyzes you from taking action because this voice keeps on telling you that you can’t do it. As a result, you don’t even try, and you bury your dream back into the dark corners of your heart and live with it painfully.
As I said earlier, these self-doubts are there in your mind because people told you several things when you were growing up.
Ever seen a scared baby? Babies and toddlers walk into any place and reach for any object that can come within their grasp, even dangerous objects. It is because they don’t truly know what they are capable of and what not.
But as they grow up they know they learn from experience and adults that they better stay away from fire or electric plugs. These are all essential lessons.
But along with these lessons, people tell you many things. They talk about your characteristics, how you are different and you tend to absorb it all like a sponge. And you continue believing it throughout your adult years.
And this belief speaks to you as a nagging voice and paralyzes you. Do not befriend this kind of self-doubt.
But befriend the doubts that will help you grow.
All successful people from all fields have self-doubts even if we don’t see it in them. They see it as a possibility to learn and grow.
Suppose you think you can be a writer because you have so many ideas, but you think you are not good at grammar.
You shouldn’t abandon your dream just because of this doubt. Learn the skill you think you don’t have and then you know more. In this case, self-doubt is good because it helps you to evaluate yourself and get feedback.
If you had no self-doubt and had proceeded with your poor grammar skills, you wouldn’t be a good writer.
I battle with so many self-doubts daily and I had paralyzing fear before starting this blog. But let’s reserve that story for some time else.
The life lesson is, to strike a balance between the self-doubts that will benefit you and break you.
8. Your daily habits determine your success
The word success can mean different things to different people. It is not always money, it can be a whole lot of other things.
But all successful people have one thing in common and that is routines.
The routines you create play an important role in shaping your life. Because if you don’t have a routine, you lack focus.
To achieve any goal, you have to stay focused and stay consistent to see that you achieve the result.
For example, if you want to write a book, you won’t be able to finish it if you write only once in a while.
But if you form a daily writing routine, it gets easier. You set aside some hours for writing daily, or you decide I will write 1000 words a day. This will make sure you achieve the goal within your time frame.
When you try to reach a goal, you won’t always feel motivated and happy about doing the daily chores. Yes, you will get bored when the initial excitement wears off and on some days you don’t want to do it anymore. It’s all part of the journey.
But if you have certain habits and routines installed, you will always get up on time and do a workout even if you don’t want to, and sit down to write your book even if you don’t want to. It is because your habits will keep you going. That’s the power of habits.
Your habits will help you overcome the hurdles you face on the way to success. So form good habits early on and leverage the power it.
9. Failures do not come to break you
Years ago I read Napoleon Hill’s famous book “Think and Grow Rich”. It was one of the first personal development books I read and it taught me some important life lessons. One is the power of thoughts and the power of believing in yourself.
The next one is how to view life’s problems as blessings.
Quoting Napoleon Hill,
Every adversity, every failure, and every headache carries with it the seed of an equivalent or greater benefit.
Whatever problems or failures you have to face in life, they teach you many important virtues. Like patience, grit, strength, willpower, confidence, etc.
Life is not always a bed of roses, it comes with thorns too. Whether you accept it or not, you will face challenges and hurdles in everything you do. And instead of getting desperate and tired, think about the lesson they are teaching you.
What is your illness teaching you? Does it make you more aware of the days you have on earth? Does it inspire you to live more mindfully and be more content?
Does it motivate you to give more and love more? Well, these lessons came to you because of your illness and therefore they did well for you.
Try to think about your business failures. They teach you how to approach the same problem in a better way the next time.
There are no failures in life, only lessons. If you remember this simple fact every day, you learn to approach life positively and become a happier person.
And you don’t have regrets about your past anymore. You know why you had different bad experiences because you know you learned at least one thing from them, that will benefit you in the future.
10. Set a goal and stick with it for a year
You must have set many goals throughout your life. But have you stuck with them for long to see the real results?
Try setting a goal for the next year and work on it. It must be a goal that gives a good return on investment. Goals like,
- Read at least one personal development book a month
- Workout daily for at least 30 minutes
- Launch a business and work on it part-time
- Daily meditation
- Daily planning, journaling, and reviewing your goals
- Learn public speaking
These are some examples. Set a goal that you think will make a difference in your life, and stick with it.
I hope these lessons help you grow exactly like the person you want to be. Now, these may all seem like simple things or something you might have heard a lot of times. But you get real results when you do it.
Here are some articles for further reading:
- 7 common things you do that waste your life
- 8 ways to remove negativity from your life
- How to stay motivated when starting a new habit
- Here’s why weekly planning is a surefire way to get more done
- How to become a morning person even if you are a night owl
What is the biggest lesson you have learned in life? Let me know in the comments below!
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