First published on Huffington Post 14th July 2016
FOMO! …. Exhaustion …. Struggle … Overwhelm …. Stress … and the list goes on.
Let’s face it – most of us live our lives with one or more of these feelings appearing regularly every day.
We live like this because we’ve been socially conditioned that our lives can’t be easy. We’re taught long standing, socially acceptable behaviours and that we have to work hard to get ahead. Essentially, although the words aren’t actually used, we’re taught that change should be feared more than death.
What happens when we’re more afraid of change than we are of death? We end up with complex, stressed lives that lead us straight down the path to illness, depression and exhaustion. We become stuck in our own lives and we find ourselves locked in a battle between desperately wishing for something different and being resigned that our lives will be like this forever.
Mmmmm …. feeling familiar?
Don’t stress! The first thing to understand is that you’re not alone – a high percentage of the western population live their lives in exactly the same way you are currently living. You’ve jumped on the drive and migration to success – just like everyone around you.
The second thing to understand is that you can change the direction of your life – sure it can feel daunting to step forward and make change – but only because we’ve been taught that change is hard and traumatic. When we challenge the way we think, react and feel about change we can implement it in our lives with ease.
So where do you start?
Here’s three simple things that can help you move forward when you feel like your life is stuck:
- Make a list of all the things you’re doing and then ask yourself whether you enjoy doing them. If the answer is ‘no’ then write down how you will remove that item from your life;
- What are the things you love doing? How can you make sure that there is one thing every day (no matter how big or small) that you love doing and is just for you?
- Spend 5 minutes at the end of every day thinking about the things you did really well that day. Don’t be shy – you’re acknowledging this to yourself – no one else has to see them. Write them down and read them before going to sleep.
Why are these steps important?
We can often find ourselves in a state of overwhelm. We feel pressure from all around us to perform and succeed and everyone’s opinions can weigh heavily on us. It can leave us feeling drained and as if we can never meet the expectations of the world.
When we get caught up in this demanding cycle we find ourselves giving everything we have to everyone else and it often means we lose sight of ourselves along the way.
The steps above are important to ensure that we keep sight of the things that are important to us – these are the things that bring joy and happiness, love and light into our lives. Without these things our world becomes grey with very little colour or enjoyment.
We’re taught that we should accept the grey life because ‘one day’ we will retire and only then should we be able to relax. I believe it’s time we challenge this – be your own devil’s advocate – don’t wait for permission to enjoy your life.
It’s perfectly acceptable to make up your own rules now you’re an adult. Let’s face it – your life is stuck because you’re playing by everyone else’s rules and if you’re stuck that’s a pretty clear indication that it’s not working for you.
Step up and control your own life. Take back the right to make your own choices. Turn your back on exhaustion and overwhelm – be happy now and watch your life flow.
Want to chat? Email me on firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on +61 438 624 868 and we’ll set up a time!
Bronwen Sciortino is a global thought leader who empowers simple connection and the author of ‘Keep It Super Simple – Tips from a Recovering Perfectionist’ . Join the conversation by subscribing to the tribe at www.sheiqlife.com; www.facebook.com/sheiqlife or https://au.linkedin.com/in/bronwensciortino.