*At the end of this post is a FREE printable worksheet that I have created so you can get started on dominating your life and achieving your goals today!
I’ve gone through a lot of changes recently.
I’ve made a lot of decisions that a lot of people haven’t agreed with me on and right now:
I’m okay with that.
Rewind two years ago and I wouldn’t be saying the same thing. You wouldn’t see the same person, at all. The person you would see made decisions solely on how it might affect others. She wouldn’t dare try to make someone uncomfortable but if they did something to her, well, maybe it was a mistake and they won’t do it again. She wouldn’t want to bring up their error and hurt their feelings, even though they may have shattered hers.
If you look back into my life two years ago you would see a woman that tried so hard to make everyone else happy, she was making herself miserable at the same time. She felt like her feelings weren’t as valid as the next persons and she didn’t want to cause any trouble. People were okay with her, for the most part, because she blended into what they wanted their personal pictures to look like. She didn’t cause trouble, they were free to speak to her as they pleased, and they would almost always get the validation of being right.
But then, something happened. I can’t put my finger on what it was exactly but I woke up one day and decided this is enough. My voice matters. My life matters. I matter.
I deserve to have a life that I’m in control of. I’m responsible and mature enough to make decisions on my own. Yes, even those big life decisions. If I mess up, then so what? Has no one ever messed up before? Did it not take Edison thousands of prototypes until he successfully developed the light bulb?
The thing about falling down in life is not falling down, it’s getting back up. You’re guaranteed to make mistakes in this life but you can either learn from them and move forward or let them weigh you down for the rest of your life. I don’t know about you but the latter frightens me more than the mistake itself.
Maybe you’re in the same place that I was at a few years ago. Maybe you have come to the realization that the only person who is going to make things happen in your life is you.
I don’t know you, but I’m proud of you for that.
You came to this post looking for answers and you just came to the first one on your own. If you want to change your life, you have to do it. You can’t wait around on someone else to come through for you. I’m not trying to sound cynical when I say this but it’s a harsh reality:
Most people are only looking out for themselves.
It’s actually just basic psychology. As a general rule, most people only notice themselves and the things that affect their own lives. That’s normal and that’s how we’re wired. Think about if caveman Bob worried too much about making sure his other cave friends were okay… caveman Bob probably would not have made it very far because he wasn’t watching his own back and got eaten by a bobcat, or something.
So, mine and caveman Bob’s point is that you need to look out for yourself every once and awhile. I know it’s hard to do when you have a family. This is not saying disregard how it will affect your kids, spouse, or significant other. This is allowing yourself to go through the logic of possibly saying:
“If I go back to school and finish my degree, how will it negatively affect my life and those around me?”
You may come up with issues such as time and money, and those are valid points. You may have to devote a few more hours to studying at night or going to classes than to spending time with your family but are these things permanent? No. Which should lead you to the question of how will my decision positively affect my life, in the short or long term?
Using college as the example again, a higher degree may lead to a higher salary, a higher position, doing what you love, or better hours. You may feel a sense of achievement from finally accomplishing your goals.
A degree is just one example but the main point is, while your decision may mildly inconvenience those around you momentarily, it could potentially benefit you exponentially. The fact of it all is that we all make sacrifices for those that we love, at some point. If someone truly cares about your well-being and happiness, they will make the temporary sacrifice to support you.
Those who truly want you to succeed will be supportive of you and happy for you.
Or, you can just do it anyways.
Sometimes, we end up surrounding ourselves with negative people. I read a quote once that said:
” Stay away from negative people. They have a problem for every solution.”
That quote tells us that some people will find something wrong with every little thing, no matter what.
You don’t have to tolerate being berated or belittled. You are not selfish for thinking about doing something for yourself.
You can stand up for yourself. You are allowed to say, “I’m doing this because I believe it is the best decision at the time.” You are also allowed to give no explanation at all. So, my next point is to stop explaining yourself.
You only owe an explanation to yourself. You are only responsible for yourself (non-adult children aside) and your choices. Only you know what is going on inside your mind and only you know what trajectory you want your life to go on.
So, for the end of this post I have an exercise for you:
I want you to write down what it is that you want to change in your life. It doesn’t matter how big or how small you think it is. Write it down.
Next, I want you to write out the steps that you would need to take in order to accomplish that goal. Give yourself a time frame, or not. But figure out what needs to happen, step-by-step to accomplish your new goal.
Finally, once you have everything written out, look at one goal at a time and ask yourself three questions:
- Is this achievable?
- How badly do I want this?
- How do I go about taking the first step to making this a reality?
And just do it! Courage isn’t the absence of fear, after all. It’s okay to be nervous and it’s okay to be afraid. That’s why you are taking this change in bite-size pieces. You will have times where you second-guess yourself and wonder if the status quo wasn’t easier after all. This is normal, too and you need to allow yourself to feel these feelings.
Just as the feelings of self-doubt begin to creep in, I want you to acknowledge them, and then dismiss them. They have no place in your life now, after all.
Now, what are you ready to take back control of in YOUR life?
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