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12 Signs You’re Doing Better Than You Think You Are

12 Signs You’re Doing Better Than You Think You Are

Sometimes in life, we become so focused on what we haven’t achieved that we lose sight of what we have. It’s easy to forget about all the progress we’ve made, and be discouraged by all the things in our lives that are going wrong or ‘missing’.

But maybe it’s time to start taking pride in our progress. Maybe it’s time that we recognize all the accomplishments we’ve made and the true significance of these accomplishments.

That being said, here are 12 signs that you’re doing better than you think you are.

1. You know what you don’t want.

We spend so much of our lives searching for what we truly want. The life partner that will make our lives more meaningful. The career that will make us more fulfilled. We look at those around us and wonder why we haven’t yet achieved all that they have.

But we don’t have to base our lives on other people’s schedules. It’s okay to take your time to figure out what you don’t want. It’s okay to narrow down your choices.

It’s okay to discover what you want through finding out what you don’t. You want to be happy, not just content – and you deserve that.

2. You take responsibility for your life.

We’ve all experienced some form of pain in our lives. Maybe we’ve suffered heartbreak, death of a loved one, financial hardship, or problems with our families and friends.

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We can’t erase those horrible experiences, but we can choose to move forward from them. If you’ve realized that your future is in your hands, then you’re taking responsibility for your life and what happens to you.

You understand that you can’t change the past but you can change what happens from now on.

3. You know the value of genuine relationships.

At one point or another, you’ve probably surrounded yourself with negative, toxic people. People who bring out the worst in you. But now you’ve let those people go.

You understand that it’s not about the quantity of people that you know – but the quality of the relationships. You know that you deserve to spend your time with people who deserve your time.

You refuse to be around people who bring you down and who are unable to share your happiness and you know that you deserve so much better.

4. You know there’s more to life than material possessions.

It’s so easy to get caught up in trying to find happiness through objects, but such happiness doesn’t last. You don’t need to buy the latest products to be happy. Likewise, you don’t need the most expensive clothes or house.

If you know that happiness doesn’t lie in material possessions, then you’re placing more importance in the relationships in your life. You know that a homemade birthday card from a friend can be much more meaningful than an expensive gift from the shop.

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5. You don’t let the little things bother you.

We all get upset from time to time, and for different reasons. Regardless of what the problems are, no matter how big or small, our feelings are always valid. However, we need to remind ourselves that life really is short.

If you don’t let the little things bother you, then you’re giving yourself more time to experience all the good that life has to offer. You’re bouncing back sooner and finding the maturity to move on.

You’re making the conscious decision to choose happiness over anger.

6. You don’t let pride get in the way of asking questions.

We all need help sometimes. Naturally, we all want to grow and to expand our knowledge. If you find yourself struggling to ask questions, don’t let embarrassment and shame talk you out of it.

There’s no such thing as a stupid question. If you already find yourself asking questions when you’re unsure, be proud that you do. You understand and value achieving growth through learning.

7. You know that life is about balance.

It’s easy to struggle with the work-life balance, but you know where your priorities lie. You may not always get it right, but you try your best and that’s what matters. You do what you can to spend time with your family and friends.

You do what you can for yourself and for your career, and you do what you can to look after yourself physically, emotionally and mentally.

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8. You’re grateful for what you do have.

There’s a lot in your life that could improve, but you choose to be a ‘glass half full’ person. You know that there are people in your life that you can depend on and who care about you. You know that your house may not be the most extravagant, but you’re grateful that you have a roof over your head.

Some people aren’t blessed with the basic necessities that you have and you can appreciate that fact. You’re grateful that you have the freedom to do what you want with your life and although you may not ‘have it all’, you’re grateful for all that you do have.

9. You’ve picked yourself up after challenges.

We’ve all climbed mountains we thought we’d never surpass. We’ve been confronted with challenges that have tested us on so many levels.

Yet, here we are, still standing. If you’ve fallen down and picked yourself up, recognize the amount of strength that it took. Acknowledge that you’ve overcome so many adversities you once thought you couldn’t and how you’re so much stronger than you knew.

10. You’ve made progress in an area of your life.

You may not be the best at a specific skill but you’re trying your best. You’ve made improvements and that’s what’s important. Don’t spend time comparing yourself to others – you are your own unique person with your own unique skills and talents.

If you’re making consistent progress, then give yourself a pat on the back, because you’re already heading in the right direction and that’s what matters.

11. You add meaning to the people in your life.

Sometimes, when we’re feeling down about life and all the goals we haven’t achieved, we might forget the impact that we’re having on people’s lives. You might not have the career that you want or achieved the goals that you’ve planned yet, but you’re making people smile. You’re making them laugh. You’re making their lives brighter just by being in it.

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Even if you don’t realize it, you’re likely adding much value to the lives of others just by being there. Paying your friend a compliment may not seem like much to you, but it could be making all the difference to them. I

t could be the thing that gives them hope when they need it the most.

12. You’re striving to become a better person.

Life is a learning curve. We don’t need to be perfect. We don’t need to live free from mistakes. If you are determined to improve yourself and to become better, then you are already halfway there.

You may not be happy with your career, your relationships, with who you are, but you still have the chance and the opportunity to have a brighter future. If you are doing all you can to become better, then maybe you’re doing better than you think you are.

Featured photo credit: Attractive Hipster Male Relaxing Near River via shutterstock.com

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Last Updated on August 6, 2020

6 Reasons Why You Should Think Before You Speak

6 Reasons Why You Should Think Before You Speak

We’ve all done it. That moment when a series of words slithers from your mouth and the instant regret manifests through blushing and profuse apologies. If you could just think before you speak! It doesn’t have to be like this, and with a bit of practice, it’s actually quite easy to prevent.

“Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plant the seed of either success or failure in the mind of another.” – Napolean Hill

Are we speaking the same language?

My mum recently left me a note thanking me for looking after her dog. She’d signed it with “LOL.” In my world, this means “laugh out loud,” and in her world it means “lots of love.” My kids tell me things are “sick” when they’re good, and ”manck” when they’re bad (when I say “bad,” I don’t mean good!). It’s amazing that we manage to communicate at all.

When speaking, we tend to color our language with words and phrases that have become personal to us, things we’ve picked up from our friends, families and even memes from the internet. These colloquialisms become normal, and we expect the listener (or reader) to understand “what we mean.” If you really want the listener to understand your meaning, try to use words and phrases that they might use.

Am I being lazy?

When you’ve been in a relationship for a while, a strange metamorphosis takes place. People tend to become lazier in the way that they communicate with each other, with less thought for the feelings of their partner. There’s no malice intended; we just reach a “comfort zone” and know that our partners “know what we mean.”

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Here’s an exchange from Psychology Today to demonstrate what I mean:

Early in the relationship:

“Honey, I don’t want you to take this wrong, but I’m noticing that your hair is getting a little thin on top. I know guys are sensitive about losing their hair, but I don’t want someone else to embarrass you without your expecting it.”

When the relationship is established:

“Did you know that you’re losing a lot of hair on the back of your head? You’re combing it funny and it doesn’t help. Wear a baseball cap or something if you feel weird about it. Lots of guys get thin on top. It’s no big deal.”

It’s pretty clear which of these statements is more empathetic and more likely to be received well. Recognizing when we do this can be tricky, but with a little practice it becomes easy.

Have I actually got anything to say?

When I was a kid, my gran used to say to me that if I didn’t have anything good to say, I shouldn’t say anything at all. My gran couldn’t stand gossip, so this makes total sense, but you can take this statement a little further and modify it: “If you don’t have anything to say, then don’t say anything at all.”

A lot of the time, people speak to fill “uncomfortable silences,” or because they believe that saying something, anything, is better than staying quiet. It can even be a cause of anxiety for some people.

When somebody else is speaking, listen. Don’t wait to speak. Listen. Actually hear what that person is saying, think about it, and respond if necessary.

Am I painting an accurate picture?

One of the most common forms of miscommunication is the lack of a “referential index,” a type of generalization that fails to refer to specific nouns. As an example, look at these two simple phrases: “Can you pass me that?” and “Pass me that thing over there!”. How often have you said something similar?

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How is the listener supposed to know what you mean? The person that you’re talking to will start to fill in the gaps with something that may very well be completely different to what you mean. You’re thinking “pass me the salt,” but you get passed the pepper. This can be infuriating for the listener, and more importantly, can create a lack of understanding and ultimately produce conflict.

Before you speak, try to label people, places and objects in a way that it is easy for any listeners to understand.

What words am I using?

It’s well known that our use of nouns and verbs (or lack of them) gives an insight into where we grew up, our education, our thoughts and our feelings.

Less well known is that the use of pronouns offers a critical insight into how we emotionally code our sentences. James Pennebaker’s research in the 1990’s concluded that function words are important keys to someone’s psychological state and reveal much more than content words do.

Starting a sentence with “I think…” demonstrates self-focus rather than empathy with the speaker, whereas asking the speaker to elaborate or quantify what they’re saying clearly shows that you’re listening and have respect even if you disagree.

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Is the map really the territory?

Before speaking, we sometimes construct a scenario that makes us act in a way that isn’t necessarily reflective of the actual situation.

A while ago, John promised to help me out in a big way with a project that I was working on. After an initial meeting and some big promises, we put together a plan and set off on its execution. A week or so went by, and I tried to get a hold of John to see how things were going. After voice mails and emails with no reply and general silence, I tried again a week later and still got no response.

I was frustrated and started to get more than a bit vexed. The project obviously meant more to me than it did to him, and I started to construct all manner of crazy scenarios. I finally got through to John and immediately started a mild rant about making promises you can’t keep. He stopped me in my tracks with the news that his brother had died. If I’d have just thought before I spoke…

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