Have you ever heard the saying, “You have to be in the right place at the right time?”
Maybe you’ve heard, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know that determines what you get in life.”
The sad reality is that most of us buy into these ideas, which forms beliefs for what’s possible for us. What that does is it limits us in so many ways and most times, we aren’t even aware that we’re limiting ourselves.
At one point in my life, I too had the belief that luck and being at the right place at the right time determined whether I would achieve a goal I wanted in life. Some of the costs for having such a belief included:
- Not being willing to have a go at doing new things.
- Not challenging myself to set bigger goals.
- Not having high levels of motivation.
- Feeling stagnant or stuck.
- Thinking others could achieve great results but I couldn’t.
The practice of meditation is becoming more widely accepted as a way to become happier, healthier and more successful in life.
While meditation has been around for centuries, over the past few decades, it has become as an essential practice for a better quality life.
The practice of meditation is about learning to be more present in any situation. It is about separating ourselves from any attachments we may have, whether that’s our thoughts or emotions, and focus only on the present moment.
The objective of having a meditation practice is to learn how to quieten our minds. As we have anywhere between 50,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day, by learning how to meditate, we allow ourselves to become better at deciding which thoughts to give attention to and which ones to let go.
The extent to which we are willing to accept responsibility for all our results has a significant impact on the quality of our lives.
The more responsibility we take for our results, the greater our ability to make changes necessary to achieve what we want. The word “responsibility” can be defined as our ability to respond in any given situation and in any given circumstance.
When we take more responsibility for all aspects of our lives, we will:
- Be more empowered to make better decisions.
- Focus more on what matters most to us.
- Easily let go of things beyond our control.
- Be a positive influence to those we interact with.
- Not give attention to things we cannot influence or change.
Just like any other skill, our ability to become more responsible can be developed over time with consistent focus and discipline.
I love learning new things to improve my skills or just acquire new knowledge about things I am interested in.
The challenge I face and I think many of us can relate to, is finding time to dedicate to learning. Often I don’t give myself enough time to learn something new, which extends how long it takes to learn it.
With so many choices available today, if we don’t have techniques to learn things faster, we will:
- Find ourselves not keeping up with changes.
- Easily get frustrated with ourselves.
- Lose interest and motivation easily.
- Have many unfinished projects or initiatives.
- Feel we are not growing or making progress in life.
Our ability to continually learn and grow is vital to our happiness and overall sense of fulfilment in life.
Our ability to stay motivated consistently and take action determines the types of results we achieve.
While it is easy to set an intention for something we’d like to do, have or experience in life, following through and staying motivated to do what needs to be done can be a lot more challenging.
There are numerous reasons why we lose motivation and some of these include:
- We are no longer interested in the thing we were initially interested in.
- We encounter challenges which we don’t know how to overcome.
- We don’t have the support to overcome challenges we face.
- We allow ourselves to get distracted by other things.
- We take on too many things which prevents us from focusing on what really matters.
The reality is that if we want something new or better in our lives, we will be challenged to do things we have never done before, and overcome hurdles or roadblocks along the way.
Procrastination is often the label given when we do not take action, or when we start something and do not see it all the way through to completion.
At some point in time, even the most productive and focused people succumb to procrastination. We may not even realise it, but procrastination will affect our happiness and how we feel each day.
Why do we Procrastinate?
There are a number of reasons why people procrastinate and these include:
- Having conflicting priorities.
- Not having a clear criteria for deciding what to do next or not willing to make a decision on what to do next.
- Being afraid of making a mistake or doing something wrong, so it is easier not to do anything.
- Avoiding something because it is uncomfortable, difficult or confronting, so it is easier to do something else.
- Not believing in ourselves.
- Not being interested in what we know we should do next.
If we don’t address these things, then we will constantly perpetuate the cycle of being productive, then becoming unproductive for a period of time, before becoming productive again.
One of the great things about life is that we will constantly be interacting with different people.
Some of them will become important to us, whereas some will drop out of our lives at some point in time. It has been said that, on average, we will interact with and have some sort of a relationship with around two hundred and fifty people throughout the course of our lives.
With the technology available today, that figure may actually be in question. One thing that will not change however, is that we all will lose people at some point in our lives. Knowing that gives us the opportunity to mentally prepare for it so that when it does happen, we can cope with it and also move on with our lives.
If we don’t prepare ourselves beforehand, when we lose someone unexpectedly, it can:
- Cause us to go into a downward spiral emotionally.
- Make us lose perspective of what is truly important.
- Cause us to question our self-worth.
- Slow down our progress towards what we want.
- Affect our daily interactions with other people.
One thing that is common amongst busy professionals is that they all wish they could have more time.
The reality is we all get the same twenty-four hours each day. How we use our time determines how much we accomplish and how productive we are.
Most times, it’s the small incremental improvements that will add up to major benefits over a period of time. Rather than making dramatic changes to how we operate each day, it’s helpful to look at how we are currently spending our time and look for opportunities to improve, no matter how small they are.
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learnt is that our time is always allocated to something. Whether we use it wisely or not, time will not stop for us. While we can never get more time, we can be more intentional about how we spend our time.
All we have to do is to ask ourselves, “What am I spending my time on every day?”