My life was the pits. In the span of a couple of years I dealt with loss, failure and illness. Because of the traumas I had endured in my life, I didn’t take it well. I was in a hole I couldn’t dig myself out of. It was then that I decided that I needed to take control of my life. I was so unhappy because I had based my happiness on external forces. I was handing out my power like someone hands out flyers. When I realized it was only ME who could empower me, I was able to curate a new, better, life for myself.
You’ve probably heard plenty of advice on how to live a happy and fulfilled life. But it can be hard to know what to do when everything constantly changes around you and you feel like your life is spinning out of control. It’s easy to feel like you’re always spinning your wheels or getting lost in the details. But there’s hope! There is a way of looking at things that provides clarity on where you should go next and how you should get there faster.
When I decided that I wanted, no NEEDED, a positive change in my life, I looked in the mirror. I was the one who needed to change, and I was the only one who could empower myself. I needed to stop giving my power to others and I needed to stop blaming others for my unhappiness. So, what can YOU do? The first step towards changing your life? Breaking old patterns and habits. The second step? Deciding what type of new life that you want for yourself. And the third? Finding ways that let you take control of your new life from day-one.
Breaking old habits
At some point in our life, we probably all notice that some of our habits seem to be getting us into more trouble than we would like to admit. Maybe you’re not taking care of yourself or you’re feeling a little overwhelmed. Perhaps you’ve been doing things a certain way for a while and now trying something different that feels a little outside of your comfort zone is scary. Sooner or later, we all hit a point where we examine what we’re doing and why we’re doing it. And that’s the key to breaking old habits and creating new ones.
Even when things don’t feel exactly right, taking time to step back and look at your habits will help you find your way to a new way of doing things. For me it meant identifying what my triggers were and what reward I received from doing whatever it is I was doing over and over again. When I did that, I was able to adjust my habits as well as my reward system. It was a slow “one habit at a time” process and I didn’t always succeed at first try, but in the end, I was able to replace the habits that weren’t for my benefit with ones that were empowering.
Decide what type of new life you want for yourself
Figuring out what you want in life is so important because it gives your life purpose, it influences every aspect of your life – professionally and personally. When you have this purpose, you will know your why and you will be motivated to achieve the goals that you set out for yourself. If you’re like I was, you might feel like you’re just going in some random directions, in circles even, without any purpose and that your life is out of control. Your purpose was dictated or even influenced by others; your power given over to them. But you do have control. You just have to decide to take it back. Your power is yours.
Start by asking yourself what you want from your life. You might even have a very specific goal in mind that you’ve been putting off for a long time. Or you might be less focused on your specific objectives and more interested in giving yourself options for how you can live. It’s important to keep your big goals in mind, but don’t forget to also think about the day-to-day stuff because it’s that daily work that will help you achieve your goals in the long run. It will take effort. You can’t run away from that. But it will be worth it. Journaling really really helps with that.
Find ways to take control of your new life
Take back your power! It’s yours, take it back! The best way to take control of your life is to build a solid foundation. This foundation will give you the space you need to really make changes. Start small and work your way up. Some ways that I started to take more control of my life was by:
- Finding new, more positive, routines: This might seem like a small thing, but if you’re like most people, you probably don’t spend much time doing your favorite things. Routine really is the key to taking control of your life. When you know what you’re doing every day, it’s much easier to know what you need to be doing.
- Finding a community and increasing my social circle: Communities can be found online and in-person. Some examples could be getting involved with sports teams, school groups, or local groups that interest you. I joined some local entrepreneurial groups and attended events I enjoyed like wine tasting, etc.
- Finding a hobby: Find a hobby that interests you and gets you excited about learning more about it. This could be anything from sports to cooking to photography. Whatever you like to do, finding a way to make it your hobby can help you find a way to make it yours. For me, this was getting more seriously into writing and presenting AND making jam!
- Finding your supportive tribe/friends/family: Your tribe is a great way to get support while building yourself and your power. It could be a best friend or even a family member. Partners can be great for showing you what you need to change about yourself and about how you relate to others. For me, I identified and kept around me those who supported my growth, who didn’t judge my mistakes and those who lifted me up – removing those who were energy vampires and those who were draining my power.
Stay motivated to keep going
It’s no mystery that reaching a goal is a lot easier if you stay motivated. So, you need to find ways to keep yourself motivated. It’s different for different people. Here are some effective ways to do that from my own experience:
- Find a like-minded goal partner: Finding someone who shares your interests and goals can be a great way to stay motivated. You can also help each other through those difficult moments.
- Find a challenge: Challenges can help keep you motivated because they force you to push yourself to do better. Challenge yourself to go a little farther or learn something new that you can use when applying it in your own life.
- Find a reward: Rewards can be anything that sparks your interest. They could be a new pair of shoes, a meal out, or a new gadget. Whatever you enjoy, find a way to make it a reward for staying motivated.
- Find a mentor or coach: Mentors and coaches can be anybody who can help you stay motivated and push you to do better. They can also help you re-focus and pivot as required in order to meet your goals.
- Find a new routine: Routine is key to finding motivation as long as it’s not monotonous. If you’re trying to find a new routine, start small. Build on your small routine and it will soon feel like a new routine. New routines or habits take time to take hold so stick with it and be kind as well as patient with yourself.
At some point in your life, you’re going to come to a point where you realize things just aren’t the same as they used to be, and you need a change. Your life is not what you imagined, and you want to be better and do better. Maybe you’re at a career crossroads or you’ve hit a financial snag or you’re tired of surrounding yourself with the wrong people romantically, professionally or socially. Whatever it is, it’s important to take the time to examine it and decide what you want next.
Breaking old habits and creating new ones will help you get there quicker and with less stress. Finding ways to take control of your new life will help you stay motivated and happy along the way. And, staying motivated will help you stay happy and motivated to do better. There are many ways to create a new life. The key is to find ways that work for you and let you take control of your life.
Deep breath. One.Step.At.A.Time.
Don’t forget to request your complimentary copy of my Empowerment Journal HERE.