Do you leap out of bed every morning thrilled to meet the day and all its adventure? Or, do you find yourself dragging your feet around in the morning, dreading your day and all that it contains?
If the latter describes you, here are four ways to give yourself a boost in life and to help you start living with more zest:
1. Let Go of Complacency.
I’ve been reading 20,000 Days and Counting by Robert D. Smith and am inspired at his question: “100 years from now, what will you have left behind?”
He challenges readers to consider how many days you’ve lived so far. According to the calculator on his site, I’ve lived 11,418 days. That’s a lot of days and I know that I’ve not lived all of them to the fullest.
You’ve only got one shot at life, so don’t waste it. You were made for more than the status quo.
Do something. Start somewhere. Today is the first day of the rest of your life — however long you have to live. Don’t waste it!
2. Stop Living in Fear.
Fear cripples and suffocates the life from you. It keeps you from even trying. It whispers things in your ear like, “You’re not good enough.” “You’re not qualified enough.” “You’re a failure.”
If you want to stay forever stuck, keep listening and believing those lies. They will bring you down and suck the life out of you.
I read the autobiography of Chuck Norris last year and loved how he said (my paraphrase), “Instead of running from my fears, I force myself to face them head-on.”
He talked about how he was deathly scared of public speaking. He made himself accept speaking engagements and opportunities again and again until he finally got over his fear and now it doesn’t bother him at all.
What are you afraid of?
3. Quit Listening to the Naysayers
There will always be people who disagree with you, criticize the choices you’ve made in life, or are just plain negative. That’s a fact of life.
The surest way to live a miserable life is to try and please everyone. It’s impossible… but you can sure run yourself ragged trying.
Now, let me be clear: If you’ve offended a friend, you need to do your best to make things right. If someone has a legitimate concern about the direction you’re headed or something you’re doing, you definitely should listen to them and take their counsel into consideration.
However, if your life is being picked apart by Negative Nelly and there’s no basis for the negativity, you gotta stop letting her bring you down. You can’t control what other people say about you, but you can control how you let it affect you.
Did you get that? It’s their problem, not yours. Remind yourself of this when you can’t seem to do anything right by someone else. Most of the time, it’s not because there’s anything wrong with you; it’s because they are insecure themselves. And they try to make themselves feel better by criticizing someone else.
Tactfully remove yourself from negative people and situations as much as you can. When it’s not possible to avoid the negativity, picture an invisible shield between you and the negative person and tune out their unfounded attacks remembering that they are unfounded.
In addition, do not respond to negativity with negativity. That only fuels the fire more. Either don’t respond at all or respond with genuine love and kindness.
4. Jump Outside Your Comfort Zone
Jon Acuff posted the above quote that asks a fantastic question: “When was the last time you did something for the first time?”
Does jumping out of the safe zone scare you? Well, then take a tiny baby step. And then another tiny baby step. Whatever you do, though, don’t stay put.
One thing that helps me is to ask myself, “What’s the worst thing that can happen?” In most cases, there are pretty much only two “worst case scenarios” when trying something new: a) You try something and fail at it — which isn’t bad at all, as I already hopefully convinced you of just a minute ago. b) You try something and decide you don’t like it. In that case, there are a billion other possibilities of things you can try next.
I loved this quote from Michael Hyatt that I heard on his Platform University video that I watched yesterday morning:
“The most interesting things in life happen just outside your comfort zone.”
I’ve found this to be true in my own life. There are so many amazing experiences, relationships, and experiences I would have missed out on if I had stayed in the safe zone.
Sure, it’s scary, but if you’re willing to take the risk, I promise that you’ll end up finding it really rewarding. Plus, I’ve discovered that when you start pushing yourself outside your comfort zone, your comfort zone moves. Things that were once completely daunting to you can become exhilarating and invigorating.
And no matter what happens when you get outside of your comfort zone, I promise that it will be more inspiring than staying stuck in a rut.
What helps you wake up more excited about your day — and your life? I’d love to hear!
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