Why do some people seem to get what they want out of life while others do not? There are several common reasons why your life isn’t everything you want it to be. If you understand these common mistakes, you can increase the likelihood of getting what you want. Have you ever wondered why some of your friends are successful… and they aren’t any more talented than you are?
Get what you want by avoiding the most common pitfalls:
- You don’t know what you want. Just because you’re unhappy with your current situation doesn’t mean that you know what you want. It only means that you don’t want what you have.
- Solution: It’s that simple. Make a list of what you want and structure your life around creating that life and attaining those things. Do something each day to get closer to your goal!
- You don’t make the things you want a priority. Do you really want a successful career or to lose the weight you keep talking about? Or would you rather watch Seinfeld reruns and eat Cheetos at night?
- Solution: The real issue isn’t what you want, but what you’re willing to give up. It’s going to take work. Nobody ever got discovered or hit it big by doing nothing. Getting in shape requires giving up certain foods and giving up some free time to hit the gym consistently. How much are you willing to give up to get what you want? Answer that question and you’ll know how much it means to you.
- You aren’t focused. It’s never been easier to get distracted or forgetful than it is right now. Modern life is full of digital distractions. Our ability to focus has never been lower. In the words Mr Myagi in the last Karate Kid movie – “Your focus needs more focus.”
- Solution: Remind yourself of your goals at least twice each day. Read and visualize your goals while you lie in bed, once in the morning and once at night. Keep your intentions fresh in your mind by reminding yourself of them daily.
- You aren’t prepared for the grind. Even the most prestigious accomplishments are a grind 99% of the time. Consider a professional basketball player like Kobe Bryant. There are plenty of stories of Kobe staying after a Friday night game and working with a coach all night long until practice time on Saturday morning.
- Solution: The most impressive accomplishments require mundane, boring tasks repeated over long periods of time. Regardless of the size of your aspirations, it won’t be exciting 99% of the time. Playing music in front of thousands of fans is great. Preparing your gift / talent, writing the songs, recording them, arranging a tour….. not so much.
- Accept that much of your goal requires actions that won’t be fun or exciting.
- You’re not focused on processes. Obsessing over your weight isn’t the key to getting slimmer. The key is the adoption of habits that will automatically carry you to your goal.
- Solution: Create a list of habits that guarantee success. (Things that you can do each day to get closer to your desired goal) Now your only real challenge is to incorporate those habits into your life. Start small and continue to make progressive changes. Trust the process! Don’t get lazy!
- You’re impatient. Success at anything takes time. Depending on your objective, you might find that your sixth month provides more results than the first five months. It’s not unlike trying to roll a boulder down a hill. It can take a lot of energy to get it moving, but it quickly picks up speed with minimal effort after that. #lawofthebigMO 🙂 #JohnMaxwell
- Solution: Don’t rely on your emotions. If you’re doing effective things each day, you’ll get what you want. Avoid giving in to your frustration. Be patient.
Life is frustrating and challenging. It can be especially frustrating when nothing seems to go your way. Know what you want and have a logical plan to achieve it. Have the patience to wait for the results to arrive.
It’s sometimes hard to look around us and find something to be grateful for. But there are so many little blessings that make our life worthwhile! Looking for them will help us develop a grateful heart and increase the joy of our blessings tremendously. Need something to be grateful for today? Consider these…
- Life itself – The blessing of being alive, of breathing and thinking. Never take it for granted!
- Health – This one becomes more precious only when you lose it. But good health is truly a blessing to give thanks for.
- Family – Our children, grandchildren, parents, siblings and spouse. Even extended family make life worthwhile and worth living.
- Your five senses – hearing, touch, sight, taste and smell. Can you imagine a life without these blessings? Even losing one of them is a heartache. Combined, they fill our lives with… life!
- Work – While we sometimes fuss and wish we didn’t have to work, the blessing of a job to provide for our family is definitely something to be grateful for in these uncertain economic times.
- Sunshine – Think of the joy of walking outside and letting the sun kiss your face… hmm… can you feel it?
- Rain – Although it seldom comes at what we consider the “right” time, rain is so necessary to our very survival. Thank goodness we have it!
- Food – So many in the world don’t have enough to eat. What a blessing it is for those who do!
- Loving relationships. The old song says, “love makes the world go ’round.” How true it is! Be thankful for the love in your life.
- Friends – Friends are the family we choose to love. And how wonderful they are!
- Hugs – A loving touch can remove sadness, uplift a spirit and heal a heartache. Definitely something to be grateful for.
- Freedom – The freedom to live and breathe and think your own thoughts is one of the greatest joys in the world.
- A home. It doesn’t have to be large or even impressive, but a home filled with love and laughter is a comfort for the soul. Give thanks for yours!
- Your education. Many people underestimate the value of education but those who’ve acquired it know what a blessing it is.
- Kindness – Only when faced with the opposite—unkindness—can we truly appreciate the kindness we’re shown by others.
- The future. Hope for the future is what gives us strength for the day. Be thankful for what the future may hold.
- Memories – While we certainly don’t want to dwell in the past, an occasional visit down Memory Lane can be a good thing.
- Laughter – There seldom seems to be enough laughter in our lives so enjoy it where you find it and give thanks that it touched your life.
- Honesty – Truth is hard to come by in the world we live in. That’s why it’s such a blessing when we do find it.
- Nature – The trees rustling in the breeze, a gentle stream, squirrels and rabbits scurrying around the yard. Give thanks for the beauty and comfort nature brings.
- Music – The sound of music (no pun intended) has an almost mystical, supernatural affect on the human psyche. Think about how good the music you enjoy makes you feel. That’s something to be thankful for.
Living life with gratitude will help you find contentment and comfort no matter what the day may hold. Search for your own reasons to be thankful today… your whole attitude and demeanor will be changed!
Just thought I would share some of favorite quotes from A.W. Tozer. (Aiden Wilson Tozer was an American Christian pastor, preacher, author, magazine editor, and spiritual mentor.)
“God never hurries. There are no deadlines against which he must work. Only to know this is to quiet our spirits and relax our nerves.”
“Rules for Self Discovery:
1. What we want most;
2. What we think about most;
3. How we use our money;
4. What we do with our leisure time;
5. The company we enjoy;
6. Who and what we admire;
7. What we laugh at.”
“I want the presence of God Himself, or I don’t want anything at all to do with religion… I want all that God has or I don’t want any.”
“Refuse to be average. Let your heart soar as high as it will.”
“One hundred religious persons knit into a unity by careful organization do not constitute a church any more than eleven dead men make a football team.”
“When you kill time, remember that it has no resurrection.”
“The man who would truly know God must give time to Him.”
“Justice is not something God has. Justice is something that God is.”
“True faith rests upon the character of God and asks no further proof than the moral perfections of the One who cannot lie.”
Only in the past few years have I really become comfortable being me. Let me explain: I became a pastor in 2000. At that point – fresh out of Bible College, I felt like I needed to have a certain persona. I had to act a certain way, dress a certain way and basically be the person others expected for such a position.
Here I am 17 years later and I dress how I want to dress and say whatever I’m led to say. I use grace with my language of course but there are times when tough love is needed and I bring it. The reality is; I have finally become comfortable being me. Some people will like me and others not so much. And you know what? I’m good with that. Even Jesus had haters.
Authenticity is underrated. It’s more than being honest with the world. It’s about being honest with yourself. There are many advantages to being authentic. Most importantly, you’ll no longer feel the need to change your words and actions to impress others. You can relax and be yourself.
Before you can be authentic, it’s important to know yourself. If you don’t truly know yourself, you will basically mimic others you admire. That isn’t the true “you” either. Authenticity becomes possible when you know what’s important to you. At the very core is your values and goals.
Embrace authenticity and present yourself honestly:
- Give up the need to appear perfect. God made you unique… a masterpiece and that is good enough. And the great thing is, when you don’t need to appear perfect, you’re in the position to be honest. Avoid putting on a show for the rest of the world. You’ll only feel bad about yourself later or worse, you will wear yourself out with this life time game of charades
- It’s okay to be less than spectacular. Be the best at being yourself.
- Know your values and live by them. If you know your values and live by them consistently, you’re already doing well in the authentic department.
- Make a list of your values and determine the five that are most important to you. Are you living your life according to these values? Would it be obvious to others that you hold these values? Remember: It’s one thing to state your core values…and it’s something else to actually live them out!
- Make your decisions based upon your values. Be willing to share your values with others. This will also give you a level of accountability J
- Notice when you’re not being authentic. It’s not easy to be authentic all the time. You might find yourself transforming based on the situation. A first date is a good example. Are you being authentic or pretending to be someone you’re not?
- Take note of those times your authenticity starts to wane.
- People tend to compartmentalize their lives. They are one way at work and someone different at home. They are one way at church and then act differently at home. STOP!! That seems sooo tiring! And… it’s also fake.
- Know your goals. What do you want out of life? Do you know? Are you willing to let others know? By knowing your goals, you can you live your life accordingly.
- Make a list of your short-term and long-term goals. How well do they align with your values?
- Again it’s easy say my goal is ______ or my dream is to _______. You say it’s your “dream” but if you aren’t taking steps in that direction (forward progress) then what you have is merely a day dream that will never be realized.
- What are your defining characteristics? Describe yourself honestly. Now ask yourself if a casual acquaintance would describe you the same way? How about someone that knows you well? How about your closest friend?
- What are your “negative” characteristics? Are you impatient or messy? Are you willing to allow others to see these characteristics or do you attempt to hide them?
- Remember – nobody is perfect! Stop trying to hide all your flaws. You can actually learn to laugh at yourself. It’s ok….
- Simplify your life. Get rid of everything that’s sucking the life out of you. What you choose to keep will be representative of your preferences and your true self. You will find your true “you” by stripping away the non-essentials. Start with the clothes you never wear, the things you never use, and the activities you don’t enjoy. Only keep the things that mean the most to you. Wooohooo… do you feel the stress level lowering?
7. Do what you say you’ll do. Keep your word and follow through on your promises. You’ll feel more whole and live with consistency if you develop this one area. As you live it out, others will know that “what you say is what you do!” When your words and actions match, you’re demonstrating authenticity.
Life becomes easier when you’re living authentically. You’ll no longer feel the exhaustion that comes with constantly changing your opinions, attitudes, and personality to please others. You’ll no longer feel the need to protect yourself from others. Be authentic with your thoughts, words, and actions.
I hope this helps! I hope you are one step closer to being “set free” Que up Skynard’s Freebird – and know everything is going to be ok. This blog post is a wrap! Till next time. JH