If you look down at the back of your hands, you might notice more wrinkles than you had just a couple years before. If you look at the mirror, you might notice more a few extra gray hairs than you had even 2 or 3 years ago. Simple things like your knees and back might hurt a little more in the mornings when you get out of bed. These are all signs that time is moving with or without us.
“Later” is such a common response to the things
that you should be doing today.
Closure of the past year and the arrival of the new is a time where we feel the inclination to get rid of old habits and take some positive steps in the right direction. I’m not about major drastic changes and I don’t find value in going off the deep end in anything, but I do believe in making small steps to improve your life and the lives of those around you. And if the New Year gives you enough motivation to start, then by all means use it as a time to make some changes.
This is something I tell myself on a regular basis:
just do it, and stop making excuses…
If you want to feel financially secure, save the money you make. It really is simple; living extravagant and pressed for cash is much more stressful and less enjoyable than living modest, with cash in the bank and the ability to comfortably pay your bills. If you are stressed for cash, consider ways in which you can spend 10% less on your daily life. Look for inexpensive substitutes for all the “good” things in life. If you want to drive a nice car, look for a used one in great shape that’s a great deal. While a trip across the world is nice, if you have to stress to pay for the trip, the fun you thought you were going to have will be quickly washed away with the stress of having to pay for it. If you want to go on a nice vacation, look for killer deals and ways to vacation for fractions of traditional costs. If you want to eat amazing food, learn to make it. In general, don’t look for happiness to come from spending money, but rather thoroughly enjoying the present in whatever it is you are doing. Just this alone will take the pressure off of feeling like you need to spend excessive amounts of money to achieve some higher level of fulfillment.
Advancing in your career and business is all about forward progress. It’s easy to look at someone who is successful and accomplished and assume they got there overnight. This is also because we are typically only shown the finished product, and not the draft that might have gone through multiple tries and failures. The difference between someone who is successful and someone who isn’t is that a successful person believes in themselves and doesn’t give up when it gets hard. Have a plan for yourself to constantly take one small forward step each day, and as time goes by, you might surprise yourself when you look back. The same is true if you sit back and do nothing.
If you want to lose weight, you might consider eating under roughly 2,000 calories a day. More times than not, make sure those calories are not empty and too harmful. Exercise 3-4 times a week for 30 minutes to an hour. This really isn’t too extreme, and these simple parameters will help you manage a healthier lifestyle. When I’ve strayed too far and gained too much weight, I have to remind myself to get back to this. Don’t frustrate yourself by trying to be extreme, because for most people, it’s not a realistic lifestyle.
Part of my happiness is having the time to fully enjoy my family and being a part of my wife and kid’s lives on a daily basis. I could be successful in all other areas of my life, but if I didn’t have my family to enjoy, I wouldn’t be happy. Having simple boundaries between work and family is what it takes for me to make sure I give my family the attention they deserve. Within your own life, try to create a balance for the people you care about.
Time is your most valuable commodity, and it takes foresight to anticipate things that are going to waste your time and/or monopolize it to a large degree. Value your time and have the ability to say no to things if need be.
Happiness isn’t achieved through any one area alone; it’s creating a successful balance in all areas of your life that ultimately create a more enjoyable experience in this dynamic world.
Don’t let the craziness of this world derail you from your goals. You only have so much time to live on this earth until it’s over, so make each day count. Stop using the words “later” or “impossible,” and start problem solving your way to success.