By now you must have realized that working like crazy isn’t working. We have become so wrapped up in the busyness of our lives, that we neglect our personal well being. Take some quiet time and go through the following personal stock take. Do not judge or edit your ideas. Get ready to go to the post office of life and submit a change of address.
“Life is not a stress rehearsal”
1. What really matters?
Step back, clear the “mind” noise of everyday life and focus on the bigger picture. Have a pen and notebook ready. Establishing your priorities is the first step towards achieving a well-balanced life. I apply a great exercise learnt from Laura Fortgang, author of NOW WHAT? 90 Days to a New Life Direction. Ask yourself and answer truthfully:
• If my life could focus on one thing and one thing only, what would that be?
• If I could add a second thing, what would that be?
• A third?
• A fourth?
• A fifth?
If you answer thoughtfully and honestly, the result will be a list of your top five priorities. Your list could include aspects such as family, fulfilling career, gym, spirituality, health, travel.
2. Take Stock
Write down how you envision your ideal life instead of your current reality. Once you know the life that you really want, determine ways to close the gap. Identify what does not feel right about your life and what you want to be different. Write down your findings no matter how absurd they may seem.
Make a “more” list:
List the things that you already have in your life that you want more of.
eg. Going to gym, travelling, time to chill with a fancy cocktail.
Make a “want” list:
List the things that you don’t have that you want.
eg. Inner peace, a productive relationship with my manager, a house in an area closer to work.
3. Create your Vision Board
You might have heard of it but have you actually done it yet? Cut out pictures from magazines of all you wish to bring into your life. It could be the actual object (a car) or it could be a picture depicting an emotion (happiness). Place these on a board, with a photo of yourself in the centre. Position your vision chart where you can clearly see it daily. Be ready for things to start happening really fast! I have created 5 vision boards in the last 6 years. I have to keep making new ones because most of what I had on the previous boards has already materialized.
“People with a vision flourish,
people without a vision perish”
4. Implement change NOW
Decide today what changes you need to make in your life and implement them from NOW-what are you waiting for-that crisis to happen? Being retrenched? Your partner leaving you? For that “push” read the Power of NOW by Eckhart Tolle.
“If I do not work to create the life I want,
I will have to endure the life I get.”
Dave Knowles, Headmaster of St Stithians
5. Apply The Power of POW = Personal Objective Word
Make use of it on waking and repeat it through the day to motivate yourself into action.
Eg. “Avanti” – This is the Italian for “Get going!”
The letters represent: Apply Valuable Action Now Toward Improvement
Other words that can be used are:
Go, Focus, Do it now, I am Alert, Alive, Awake.
Use one of these words or create one (choose a word that has particular personal meaning for you) of your own to motivate you and add energy to your day.
6. Going off track
Be gentle on yourself. Take some time and ask yourself:
What 3 things would I do if I had to have a day completely to myself?
What excuses do I make for not doing these?
What are my dreams?
What is my purpose?
What prevents me from achieving these?
7. Give up the Juggling Act
Let a few of the “balls” you are juggling in your busy life drop. Here are some of the “balls” I recommend you let go first:
• Trying to have everyone like you
• Trying to do everything perfectly
• Trying to do everything
Don’t overwhelm yourself, take baby steps in moving towards creating your dreams. Give yourself a break, stay on the path and develop consistency in the direction you intend to go.
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