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If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.
You need to change in order to grow. You can’t grow if you just stay where you are. You can’t grow if you don’t change the way you think and act. In fact, changing your life is a continuous process. It never ends. The moment you stop changing, you stop growing.
I’m not saying that I know everything about changing life. I’m still learning myself. But here I’d like to share with you what I have learned so far.
Here are ten tips to change your life:
1. Slow down
To change your life, you need time to think and reflect. If you are always busy, you won’t have the time to think about your life let alone taking action to change it. You won’t have the room to apply the tips below. So slow down and make the room for change.
Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast – you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.
2. Be willing to change
Willingness is essential. It’s your life; nobody can change it but you. If you aren’t willing to change, then nothing in this world can make you do so.
To build the willingness to change, first you should realize that your life can be better than it is now. No matter how good your life is, it can always be improved. On the other hand, don’t feel hopeless if your life doesn’t seem good right now. You can always change your life for the better.
3. Accept responsibility
Accepting responsibility for your life is a must. Don’t blame other people for the bad things that happen in your life. Don’t blame your family, friends, boss, or the economy. Whether your life goes up or down depends on you and you alone. Once you take the responsibility, real change is within your reach.
We immediately become more effective when we decide to change ourselves rather than asking things to change for us.
4. Find your deepest values
Deep down in your heart, there are some principles that you know is true. Take the time to find them. What do you think is the most valuable thing in life? What principles do you think you must follow to live a fulfilling life? These are the values you need to align yourself with. Find them and remind yourself constantly about them.
5. Find your cause
Change is not easy because there is inertia you need to overcome. Just like a space shuttle needs a powerful rocket to overcome the Earth’s gravity, you also need a powerful source of energy to overcome the inertia to change. Your cause is the source of energy you need. Your cause can give you the strength to overcome the inertia. To find your cause, find what matters to you.
6. Replace limiting beliefs with empowering beliefs
Limiting beliefs are among the biggest obstacles that hinder you from changing your life. You need to identify them before you can effectively handle them. To identify your limiting beliefs, observe your mind for thoughts that contain phrases like:
- “I can’t …”
- “I won’t be able to …”
- “I will always be …”
- “There is no way …”
Whenever you find one, write it down. After some time, look at your list. These are your limiting beliefs.
After identifying your limiting beliefs, you need to replace them with empowering beliefs. Write positive statements that counter the negative ones you wrote before and make positive affirmations using those statements. Do it whenever you realize that a limiting belief is at work.
7. Replace bad habits with positive habits
Besides identifying limiting beliefs, you should also identify bad habits you have. Are there habits that drag you down? Are there habits that you know you need to break? List them all.
Then, rather than focusing on breaking those habits, focus on creating new positive habits that replace them. For example, let’s say the bad habit is watching too much TV. Rather than focusing on reducing your TV time, you should focus on building a positive habit that will use the time in a better way. For instance, you might want to build the habit of reading.
8. Find a mentor
Finding a mentor can greatly help you improve your life. Not only can your mentor give you advice on what to do in certain situations, he can also warn you about possible pitfalls in your path. Without a mentor, most likely you will have to learn many lessons the hard way. Having a mentor will save you serious amount of time.
Getting a good mentor is not easy though. In many cases, you can’t just expect someone to invest his time in you for nothing. At the very least, you should show that you are an open-minded and teachable person. Furthermore, try to be useful to your mentor. Help him in any way you can to make his job easier. This way you send a message that you are a serious mentee that is worth investing in.
9. Have the right expectation
Having the right expectation from the beginning is important. Otherwise, it’s easy for you to be discouraged when things don’t go as expected. Change takes time, especially if you want the change to last. Having the right expectation prepares you to be persistent in difficult times.
10. Maintain the momentum
The most difficult part is always the beginning. Once you go through it, things will become easier if you maintain the momentum. Just think about pushing a car. The most difficult part is getting the car to start moving. Once it’s moving, pushing it will be easy as long as you don’t let it stop again.
Similarly, you should keep improving your life. Change your life day by day. As the quote above says, if you don’t change, you don’t grow.
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