Do you start the morning excited and ready to conquer the world but find you have accomplished little by the end of the day? You had good intentions but find yourself easily distracted and often defeated. You are often in a rut of routine, doing the same things you have always done, but in your heart, you want more.
We are capable of change but don’t apply ourselves for many reasons. For one, we look to stay in our comfort zone and become complacent. As we age, we become afraid of risk, and a few of us may think it’s too late. Our dreams may seem like a distant memory, and many times, we want to alter our direction and then get stuck moving to the next step. Fear sets in, and before we realize it, we quit before we even start. If any of this sounds familiar, you are not alone. We meet adversity each day, and because of these difficulties, we get discouraged.
If you want to change something in your life, start small.
You are adding to your life, so make sure you are ready and willing to organize yourself to accomplish more. You may need to eliminate items in your routine that take chunks of your day. Do you know where you are spending your time? It may surprise you. A good test is to track your time by taking notes of what you are doing in a week and how much time is spent doing each task.
Once you have determined where your time is going, change things up. Decide what is important to you and where you want to go. Then work towards the goal. Perhaps you are looking at a new career or business venture. Possibly you want to be more creative, start a hobby, or travel more. Take baby steps to move in that direction.
One Step at a Time
If you were planning to run a marathon, you would build up mileage over time, not run twenty-six miles on the first training day. Take note of the changes you want to see and how you may incorporate them into your life. Once you determine what you want, you can then move down that path. With each accomplishment, add more to the plan, and before you realize it, you will have gained new habits so that you become more organized and see a change in your life.
Remember to begin with small things you can accomplish each day. I will refer you to the book Make Your Bed by Admiral William H. McRaven. This inspiring read is about lessons the author learned from basic SEAL training. McRaven uses his experience to teach how these life lessons help anyone become a better person and change the world. The book is short, direct, and moving. McRaven talks about making your bed as a good way of starting the day with an accomplishment.
Stop Putting Off Things That Can Get Done Today
Although it is easy to put off daily tasks, change your attitude to ‘why not do it now and have it done?’ By doing these little tasks, although they may not seem important, you are creating a pattern of discipline. You can establish habits over time, but the point of doing these tasks is to set your attitude for the day and the future.
If you are feeling uncertain about your direction, you may look for collaboration that can be helpful. Don’t miss out on opportunities to learn. It’s not weak to search for input or to ask for another’s opinion. Gathering information will help you make solid decisions. You also may find individuals who will be generous, and your task can become easier to achieve. Find people you trust and whose opinions you value. The bonus of this effort could bring new friends into your life. According to a 2017 Harvard study, The power of having good friendships reduces stress, promotes better overall well-being, and is important to our mental health.
Keep Checking In
Go back to your ideas and desired direction often to see if you are on track or need to adjust. So often, we start a journey with great intentions and get derailed along the way. It’s easy to become discouraged and give up when you have difficulties along the way. Sometimes we find our desired change is not what we wanted and need to reconsider. Change is hard, so stop often and recall why you started on this journey. Remind yourself why it’s important to you.
Many famous individuals had to overcome multiple failures and rejections but kept true to their dreams and stayed on their path. Read about Walt Disney, Albert Einstein, JK Rowling, Jim Carey, Franklin Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, Dr. Seuss, and Steve Jobs. I believe you will find them inspiring, and perhaps their stories will be helpful for overcoming fear and keeping you from giving up on your journey.
What is stopping you? “Only I can change my life. No one can do it for me.” – Carol Burnett. And as a final word, C.S. Lewis said it best, “You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.”
Robin Anne Griffiths has spent a lifetime working with a variety of personalities and business organizations across the United States and internationally, which has included leadership positions with several companies in the field of newspapers, magazines, and broadcasting. Robin is a published author with two books; a memoir of her mother’s extraordinary life and the other a collection of thoughts on life skills and personal development. She also writes for a variety of blogs and publications. Robin is a certified master development coach, personal trainer, and behavior change specialist. She also is a movement instructor for senior populations and specializes in helping people on a journey for change. She works with groups and individuals on life transitions to create personal balance – physically and mentally.