One of the challenges we have daily is to maintain a healthy attitude and avoid getting caught up in negativity.
The reason why it’s a daily challenge is because negativity is not hard to find. We don’t have to look for it because it’s always close by via different media such as television, radio or social networks, also via daily conversations with people.
It’s not hard to recognise patterns people we associate with regularly have. Some people get their charge or feel significant by being negative and most times, they may not even realise their own behaviours. Without any provocation, people will blame or complain about:
- Other people including co-workers, significant other or family members.
- The weather.
- The traffic.
- The government.
- How expensive things are.
And the list goes on and on.
If we’re not cautious about what we give our focus and attention to, we can easily get drawn into negativity, which will affect our attitude and energy levels. We must be willing to say “no” to negativity in order to be at our best consistently and be true to who we are.
Even though we all have different definitions of success, one thing for certain is that if we want more success, we must be willing to be uncomfortable.
It’s very rare to attain greater levels of success without challenging ourselves in new ways, which often will cause us to be uncomfortable.
Anyone who has achieved noteworthy success will admit that the success we are seeking is often outside our comfortable zone or outside of things we are familiar with.
To achieve new levels of success will require us to take new actions, which often means doing things we have not done before. One of the best things about life is we are always receiving feedback via our results.
If we are not getting the results we want, that’s feedback that we have to do different things to eventually get the results we want.
If we are always comfortable, it means:
- We are not growing and evolving.
- We are not challenging ourselves.
- We may miss opportunities to learn from new experiences or even from our failures.
- We may become stagnant and play life at a level we are used to.
- We may not have the confidence to do what’s necessary to create the results we want.
Intentionally putting ourselves in uncomfortable situations will develop our mental muscles to deal with whatever comes our way.
Imagine this scenario… you get up in the morning knowing you have so much to get done that day.
The first thing you do is turn on your computer and check your messages and emails. You start responding to messages and emails. Then you check your phone for new notifications and start responding to them. Before you know it, 90 minutes have gone by!
Now, you are feeling really annoyed with yourself and flustered because you’ve lost a good part of your morning and you still haven’t started on the work you were supposed to do. For the next few hours, you’re in reactive mode, trying to make up time you lost in the morning, hoping you can still get everything done that day.
Does that sound familiar? Does that happen to you more often than you’d like to admit?
I think we’ve all been there. We may have had the intention to be productive and get a lot of things done but for whatever reasons, our day just got away from us.
To avoid such situations, we have to be intentional with how we start each day and condition ourselves to be at our best consistently.
We’ve all been through challenging periods in our lives where our problems appeared insurmountable and scary.
Not matter what we tried, things just got worse and worse, and it would have been so easy to say, “This is too much!” and give up.
As a result of what we were going through, we may have experienced:
- A physical, emotional and mental break down.
- High levels of stress and pain.
- Loss of sleep at night.
- Reduced levels of concentration.
- Conflict in our personal and professional relationships.
Can you remember such a time in your life?
While problems are a part of life, if we don’t address them quickly or if we ignore them, we will make things worse for ourselves.
It’s not uncommon for us to feel powerless at times, as we go through life. We have many things that affect our ability to be powerful, so it’s important we find ways to avoid feeling powerless.
One thing that should be clarified is being powerful does not mean we are dominant over others or try to get our own way all the time. It also doesn’t mean we hide aspects of ourselves we don’t like so that we come across as more powerful that we really are to others.
Avoiding feeling powerless means we are willing to show our true self to others without the fear of ridicule or rejection. Feeling powerful very rarely comes from material possessions or success.
In fact, how powerful we feel does not come from anything external or “outside” of ourselves. It totally comes from “within.” If we don’t feel powerful on the inside, then it’ll be very difficult to display it externally.
The less we feel powerless, the less we’ll struggle with self-confidence or self-esteem issues.
The quality of our lives is largely influenced by the events or experiences we’ve had and the lessons we’ve learned along the way.
The older we get, the more experiences we will have, which should also equate to more life wisdom. Well, that’s what it should be.
I’ve met many people who should be wiser as a result of their life experiences, but they keep repeating the same types of behaviours and keep getting the same types of results.
Some of the common behaviours or patterns I see people repeating include:
- Making the same mistakes when they get into new relationships.
- Not being responsible with their finances.
- Putting their careers ahead of their health or personal relationships.
- Pushing themselves too far with their work.
Our time on Earth is limited and even though we’re all on different journeys in life, there are certain things we should never learn late in life.
One of our greatest quests in life is find what makes us happy and live our life from that place of happiness.
While we may have different ideas on what makes us happy, there may be things we are doing, without realising it, that may be preventing us from experiencing greater levels of happiness.
Being happy is a choice. If we have habits that cultivate happiness, then we will experience it more. On the other hand, if we have unhealthy or destructive habits, then we will find it difficult to experience happiness on an ongoing basis.
Many years ago, I had a succesful corporate career, which allowed me to have all the material successes I wanted, however I never felt a sense of true happiness and fulfilment.
Interestingly, when I reflect back on the things I was doing during that period of my life, I had many unsupportive habits that were affecting my emotional state, which in turn, affected my level of happiness.
One of the great things about us is we’re all different. We’re unique individuals with different skills, talents, abilities, gifts, interests and passions.
Even though we know that to be true at some level, we still want or expect other people to act or behave like we do.
If we stop and reflect on our own behaviours, it’s amusing that we allow ourselves to get annoyed or frustrated when other people don’t behave as we expect them to.
Trying to change other people can be costly and it can also affect our emotional well-being. We’ve heard the saying that people resist change and change is difficult.
One valuable idea I learned many years ago was people don’t resist change. Instead, they resist being changed when it’s not their choice.
As human beings, our freedom to choose is one of the most valuable things we have, so when we feel that choice is being taken away, that’s when we are more likely to resist change.
One thing guaranteed in life is that we will face our fair share of adversities, setbacks and painful experiences.
Those experiences often have a major effect on who we become, the decisions we make and on our overall outlook on life
Sometimes these experiences can derail us and cause serious consequences such as:
- Affect our health and well-being.
- Reduce our motivation levels and enthusiasm for life.
- Affect our relationships in a negative way.
When we have a painful experience, it can also cause us to miss new opportunities around us.
The key is to know how to get through the difficult period when we’ve had a painful experience and come out of it with new awareness and clarity on what we want in life moving forward.
It’s quite common for us to feel like we haven’t achieved as much as we’d like at times and become a little discouraged.
While it’s normal to question whether we’re on the right path to more success, all it takes is a switch in perspective to realise there are many signs that indicate we can achieve more success.
We all have different definitions of success, which makes it easier to find evidence that we’re already successful and can achieve more success in the future.
Knowing that being successful does not necessarily mean we have to achieve big goals is encouraging because it’s easy to put a lot of pressure on ourselves and set very high expectations.
While having high expectations or standards is valuable, the downside is the additional pressure we put on ourselves can:
- Cause us to not have a healthy work life.
- Affect our physical health and well-being.
- Impact our relationships in a negative way.
- Cause us to miss opportunities around us.
- Make us continually pursue more and more success while never being satisfied.
Knowing how to look for signs that we’re on the right path and can achieve more success is extremely valuable.