It’s natural that we spend so much time trying to change our lives, rather than letting it shift organically.
Instead of living life on life’s terms, we try to live it on ours.
We change when we let our circumstances control us.
It’s important to find a balance, but it takes constant work and awareness.
Here are nine easy things that will help you live a happy and productive life.
What we Didn't do
Don’t forget the past, but lingering on it for too long can lead to trouble.
Remember to reflect, not regret.
We all make mistakes.
It’s part of life.
How we respond/react to those events is what matters.
It’s not about what could have been or should have been.
You must let go of the past or else you’ll be haunted with an illusion of fear and ego and desire.
Don’t add to what you’re already dealing with in the present.
Blame your ego for making life seem extra complicated.
We always have a choice in every action we take, and normally, it’s either one thing or another.
It’s not about being right or wrong, but about making a choice.
We make decisions for all kinds of reasons.
Don’t waste time on excusing yourself.
Try again or move on.
What We Think We Need
As humans, we often fall into a vicious cycle of feeling successful and happy when we acquire material things.
We connect our pride and emotions to material gain and consistently feel empty as a result.
There is no material object that will improve you as a person, whether it’s a new car, a new house or a new boat.
Relationships, connections, memories – these are what we take with us, what makes us happy.
Material things can bring immediate, but not sustainable happiness.
It is fleeting.
Fear and laziness can keep us from actualizing our dreams into reality.
So instead we waste money on making it look like we’re living our dreams instead of going out there and working hard.
Feeling Safe and Comfortable
We live in fear of sitting with the uncomfortable.
Mentally, physically and spiritually, we always choose safety.
We should rarely be comfortable or ‘in our comfort zone’.
There’s always a chance of being uncomfortable, so we must learn how to live with it.
What if there is a fire in your house, or a burglar? Knowing how to be in these situations is what ultimately keeps us safe.
Failure is not a loss.
It’s one step closer to a win.
We perceive failing as not getting something right, but that’s how we succeed.
We put so much pressure on ourselves to get everything right all the time.
But failure isn’t always a bad thing.
Giving ourselves space to fail means we take away its power as a negative result.
It’s up to us to set the perimeters around failure and define what they both mean.
Some people measure success by getting the result, no matter which path brought them there.
I know someone who is a graduate from Princeton University.
He says they welcomed him there.
In reality, he applied nineteen times until they let him in.
Every one of those times they rejected him could have been seen as a failure, but he refused to believe that.
Instead, he just kept on applying.
Now, he is where he is today because he viewed success differently.
Relationships That Don't Serve Us
Choose friends who you respect and admire because in reality, your friends are a reflection of you.
I like to find friends that make me the best version of myself.
We use friends to inspire us.
Don’t let them be ones who drag you down.
Relying On Other People's Validation
Working for the greater good brings everlasting happiness.
This is what happy people truly believe.
Altruistic people are the ones who benefit the most from helping others.
To do something great in order to stimulate your ego is not a worthy action.
Relying on others’ admiration and approval won’t bring you true happiness and it’s not always present.
If you rely on others for validation, you will never truly be happy.
Think of it this way.
When you die, the things you did for yourself die with you, but the things you did that benefited others? That lives on.
It’s our human nature to judge.
We pass judgements quickly and easily without much thought.
We use judgements for protection and approval.
But remember that the person you’re judging is often a very subjective version of a much fuller human being.
Often, we project our own selves onto the people we are judging, hoping to blame our own flaws on someone else.
Judge, but do so warily.
Step back and think about why you make the assumptions you do.
The End Game
Remember that we’re all in this thing for the journey.
How we get to the end goal is more important than getting there.
Be present, take time to breathe and realize when you’re projecting and when you’re actually seeing.
Keeping an awareness helps to see the big picture while being able to continue to focus on the small steps along the way.