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15 Phrases That Remind You What Life Is For

15 Phrases That Remind You What Life Is For

Life is all about perspective. Your perspective. Life is all about how you frame your experiences and how you choose to physically and emotionally respond to them. Your perspective can make all the difference in your ability to live in the moment with joy, or view each of life’s challenges as a struggle.

This article is inspired by a thought provoking article written by Stephanie Kwong. She encourages us to flip the switch from viewing life’s commitments as “should” and “have to,” into “I get to” instead. Wow! The “I get to” mantra is so much more of a fulfilling and fun privilege.

Phrases like “I get to” keep us mindful of living and loving life. So why stop at just one?

Here are 15 other wonderfully powerful phrases which can inspire you to be present in the moment, to live in alignment with your own life choices, to enjoy life, and keep living it with passion:

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1. The purpose of my life is to be happy.

This is the most important phrase of all. Repeat it to yourself several times a day. The basic reason you are here on Earth is to discover your own inner happiness. When you are happy, that joy and energy you exude will take you to places and experiences you have always dreamed of and more! This is your Big Picture soulful purpose.

2. I’ve got this!

Ahhh, this is all about self empowerment as you move through life. It reminds you to be confident, roll with the punches, and to believe in yourself.

3. I will just “let it go.”

There will be plenty of ups and downs in life. The downs will definitely hold you down. Let it go — the disappointments, the mistakes, the feelings of remorse, regret, guilt, and all those other negative emotions which won’t propel you forward to enjoy the best life has to offer.

4. An Oldie, but a Goodie… I know things could be worse.

When things get tough, put your own situation into perspective. Turn your situation upside down and realize how much worse it could have been. Be thankful for the way it turned out. Practice grateful gratitude!

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5. The only thing holding me back is ME !

Yep, you are in the driver’s seat. With determination, perseverance, effort, attention, and intention you can do anything. Don’t expect a windfall of any sort. You orchestrate every single moment of your life by the way you perceive circumstances and how you choose to respond.

6. Life is not so short to me.

In the United States, the average lifespan for an adult male is 75 years, and 81 years for a female. That’s pretty darn long!  So why does everyone say life is fleeting? Answer: because most people are not living life in the moment. When you are constantly looking behind you or worrying about tomorrow, it seems as if life is passing you by. However, time is actually not moving any faster. When you begin to enjoy each day, each hour, and each minute, the years do not become a blur.

7. My struggles exist to indicate I need to shift.

We all do it from time to time. You have. I have. We all get lost in the struggle — the struggle for more money, more power, more time. We also struggle to have our way be the right way. This inner struggle defeats you and your momentum. It’s a startling reminder that you need to make a needed change in your life (sometimes on many levels). Living without struggle allows for greater freedom. Living freely is the goal of life for us all.

8. There is no wrong turn on my life journey.

Your life path is unique from that of your parents, siblings, children, or friends. It’s creatively designed by a higher force so that you (hopefully) get to learn along the way and uncover your true sense of happiness — your essence! So when you make a choice that didn’t get you where you thought you would land, don’t beat yourself up. That turn you made was one you were supposed to take in order to teach you something you needed to know in order to grow.

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9. All my tears soothe my soul.

Ahhh… tears… your body’s own saltwater! Saltwater heals wounds. Tears not only heal wounds, but they are also the outcome of deep emotions which need to be released — emotions of sadness, despair, frustration, laughter, joy, and bliss. Whether your tears are sorrowful at the loss of someone’s life, or blissful at the birth of your child, or the consequence of a serious belly laugh, they are all meant to soothe your soul. It’s okay to cry.

10. Life is all about my choices.

The life you live is the life you choose. Choices build upon each other. Every single choice you make has implications which will steer you in one direction or another. If a poor choice is made along the way, don’t worry so much. Life is forgiving if you want it to be.

11. I say “Yes” more often.

Growing up, you probably heard more “no’s” from parents, teachers, and caregivers than “yes’s.” So give yourself permission to say “yes” more often, especially to opportunities which will nourish your spirit. Say “yes” to that spontaneous bike ride with your kids. Say “yes” to that massage you so desperately need. Say “yes” to the homeless man begging for that $4 you were going to spend at Starbucks tomorrow morning. A heartfelt “yes” may open your soul to limitless possibilities.

12. I embrace uncertainty.

Most people like certainty. They like a sure thing. Not knowing what’s in store for you can be pretty daunting and scary. That is, if you choose that perspective. The reality is, there will always be uncertainty and randomness. It’s a law of life (and physics). You can’t escape it, so just embrace it. Welcome the change. Welcome the unknown into your life. Get comfy with it so that when things don’t go as planned, you can just go with the flow. Think of how beautiful is it to struggle less.

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13. I put passion behind my purpose.

You are a unique soul in this world and have very special gifts that no one else has. Honing in our your gifts (talents, skills, qualities) will help you identify your life purpose. When you realize why you are here on Earth and what you can contribute, it is essential to put all of your passion behind it. Whether you are an astronaut, sanitary worker, super dad, or the best Lego builder ever, your passion for what you do will drive you toward life happiness.

14. When I’m not learning, I’m not growing.

This is one of my favorite phrases. Your life purpose is to grow, to learn, and to evolve in order to click into your own essence and be happy. The only way to grow is to continue to learn and expand your mind and spirit. I get happy just thinking about how much more I get to learn in my life. Wow!

15. I love you.

The desire to be loved is a human need. To give love to another human or animal is something we hopefully learn how to do along our life path. Love is an extremely powerful energy force. Those three little words (“I love you”) can tear down walls of hatred, halt an attempted suicide, or unite a lifelong partnership. If you haven’t spoken them in awhile, it’s time to begin again. Whispers are allowed. A life filled with love is a life worth living.

Conclusion

These 15 phrases are a little nudge to remind you just how lucky you are to be alive. You have infinite possibilities awaiting you. Live life passionately!

Featured photo credit: www.globesurfer.de via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 22, 2020

What Makes a Good Leader: 9 Critical Leadership Qualities

What Makes a Good Leader: 9 Critical Leadership Qualities

The word “leader” makes you think of people in charge, high-ranking people: your boss, politicians, presidents, CEOs…

But leadership really isn’t about a particular position or a person’s seniority. Just because someone has worked for many years doesn’t mean s/he has gained the qualities and skills to lead a team.

Getting promoted to a managerial position doesn’t automatically turn you into a leader either. CEOs and other high-ranking officials don’t always have great leadership skills.

So what makes a good leader? What are the characteristics of a leader?

Good leadership is about acquiring and honing specific skills. Leadership skills enable you to be a role model for a team in any environment. With great leadership qualities, successful leaders come in all shapes and sizes: in the home, at school, or in the workplace.

The following are some of the many characteristics great leaders exhibit.

1. A Positive Attitude

Great leaders know that they won’t have a happy and motivated team unless they themselves exhibit a positive attitude. This can be done by remaining positive when things go wrong and by creating a relaxed and happy atmosphere in the workplace.

Even some simple things like providing snacks or organizing a team Happy Hour can make a world of difference. An added perk is that team members are likely to work harder and do overtime when needed if they’re happy and appreciated.

Even in the worst situations, such as experiencing low team morale or team members having made a big mistake at work, a great leader stays positive and figures out ways to keep the team motivated to solve the problems.

Walt Disney had his share of hardships and challenges, and like any great leader, he managed to stay positive and find new opportunities. In 1928, Disney found that his film producer, Charles Mintz, wanted to reduce his payments for the Oswald series. Mintz threatened to cut ties entirely if Disney didn’t accept his terms, and Disney chose to part ways. But in leaving Oswald, Disney decided to create something new: the iconic Mickey Mouse[1].

The key is to break down huge challenges into smaller ones and find ways to tackle them one by one.

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Think about the lessons you can learn from the mistake and jot them down because sometimes you win, and sometimes you learn.

2. Confidence

All great leaders have to exhibit an air of confidence if they’re going to succeed. Please don’t confuse this with self-satisfaction and arrogance. You want people to look up to you for inspiration, not so they can punch you in the face.

Confidence is important because people will be looking to you on how to behave, particularly if things aren’t going 100% right. If you remain calm and poised, team members are far more likely to as well. As a result, morale and productivity will remain high, and the problem will be solved more quickly.

If you panic and give up, they will know immediately and things will simply go downhill from there.

Elon Musk is a great example of a leader with confidence. He truly believes that Tesla will be successful, which he has shown many times through his actions. He converted 532,000 stock options at $6.63 each, their value on Dec. 4, 2009, before Tesla went public. It was a hefty bargain considering Tesla’s stock price stood at around $195 per share at that time. He doesn’t apologize for his beliefs and has drawn fire from just about everyone for his political actions.

You can’t instantly become a very confident person, but all the small things you do every day will gradually make you more confident:

  • List 5 things you like about yourself every day (something different every day), and you’ll appreciate yourself more.
  • Work on your strengths and do your best to enhance them.

3. A Sense of Humor

It’s imperative for any kind of leader to have a sense of humor, particularly when things go wrong. And they will.

Your team members are going to be looking to you for how to react in a seemingly dire situation. It would probably be best if you weren’t stringing up a noose for yourself in the corner. You need to be able to laugh things off because if staff morale goes down, so will productivity.

Establish this environment prior to any kind of meltdown by encouraging humor and personal discussions in the workplace.

As a president, Barack Obama exuded confidence and calm during stressful situations. But he was also known for his “dad jokes,”[2] his genuinely funny speeches at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, and appearing on Zack Galifianakis’s Between Two Ferns.[3] Obama’s sense of humor made him grounded, realistic, and honest, which no doubt helped during some tense moments in the White House!

Learn to laugh at yourself. Confident people laugh about their own silly mistakes, and when you do this, others will also trust you more because you’re willing to share your experiences.

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Be observant and learn from the jokes others make. You can also get a lot of inspiration from the internet.

4. Ability to Embrace Failure

No matter how hard you try to avoid it, failures will happen; that’s okay. You just need to know how to deal with them.

Great leaders take them in strides. They remain calm and logically think through the situation and utilize their resources. What they don’t do is fall apart and reveal to their team how worried they are, which leads to negative morale, fear, and binge-drinking under desks.

Great leaders do, in fact, lead, even when they’re faced with setbacks.

Henry Ford experienced a major setback after designing and improving the Ford Quadricycle. He founded the Detroit Automobile Company in 1899, but the resulting cars they produced did not live up to his standards and were too expensive. The company dissolved in 1901. Ford took this in stride and formed the Henry Ford Company. The sales were slow and the company had financial problems; it wasn’t until 1903 that the Ford Motor Company was successful and put the Ford on the map.

Get to the root cause of any problem so you can prevent it from happening again and learn from the mistake.

By asking “why” 5 times (or more) on why something happened, you can find out the key factor that caused the problem and can find the best solution to tackle the problem.

You’ll also learn how to prevent this from happening again in the future after finding out a problem’s root cause.

5. Careful Listening and Feedback

This is far more complex than it actually sounds. Good communication skills are essential for a great leader. You may very well understand the cave of crazy that is your brain, but that doesn’t mean that you can adequately take the ideas out of it and explain them to someone else.

The best leaders need to be able to communicate clearly with the people around them. They also need to be able to interpret other people properly and not take what they say personally.

The Dalai Lama, as a symbol of the unification of the state of Tibet, represents and practices Buddhist values. The Dalai Lama’s leadership is benevolent and aims toward truth and understanding, alongside the other Buddhist precepts. This is a great example for all leaders: if you want to give good directions to others, you have to get feedback from others to understand the situation properly.

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Encourage communication between team members and establish an open door policy.

Practice not interrupting team members when they’re talking. Instead, summarize what they say and ask for feedback after you have talked about your ideas.

6. Knowing How and When to Delegate

No matter how much you might want to, you can’t actually do everything yourself. Even if you could, in a team environment that would be a terrible idea anyway.

Good leaders recognize that delegation does more than simply alleviate their own stress levels (although that’s obviously a nice perk). Delegating to others shows that you have confidence in their abilities, which subsequently results in higher morale in the workplace, as well as loyalty from your staff. They want to feel appreciated and trusted.

Although Steve Jobs was known for focusing in on the smallest of details, he knew how to delegate. By finding, cultivating, and trusting capable team members, Jobs was able to make Apple run smoothly, even when he had to be absent for extended periods of time.

To know when and how to delegate work to team members, you have to be very familiar with each of them:

  • List out all of their strengths, weaknesses, and personalities.
  • Talk with your team members more to know about their passion and interests.

Take a look at this guide and learn more about delegation: How to Delegate Work Effectively (The Definitive Guide for Leaders)

7. Growth Mindset

Any good leader knows how important it is to develop the skills of those around them. The best can recognize those skills early on. Not only will development make work easier as they improve and grow, it will also foster morale. In addition, they may develop some skills that you don’t possess that will be beneficial to the workplace.

Great leaders share their knowledge with the team and give them the opportunity to achieve. This is how leaders gain their respect and loyalty.

Pope Francis has been unusually popular with many Catholics and many non-Catholics. His position isn’t totally traditional, which is part of his appeal, but he also has admirable leadership skills. Pope Francis’s TED talk[4] drew attention because he encouraged leaders to be humble and to demonstrate solidarity with others. This inclusive, kind, and respectful style of leadership is incredibly important for any situation.

It’s important to spend time talking with other team members individually to understand them.

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Find out team members’ current challenges and try to give feedback and encouragement so they will grow and do better.

8. Responsibility

Great leaders know that when it comes to their company, work place or whatever situation they’re in, they need to take personal responsibility for failure. How can they expect employees to hold themselves accountable if they themselves don’t?

The best leaders don’t make excuses; they take the blame and then work out how to fix the problem as soon as possible. This proves that they’re trustworthy and possess integrity.

Howard Gillman is the chancellor of UC Irvine. You might have heard of how the university rescinded a bunch of acceptances, and then changed its mind[5], This past spring, an unusually high number of accepted students decided to matriculate; the school initially responded by rescinding offers over things like missed deadlines. But the college realized this was a mistake and reversed its decision. Gillman and the university accepted responsibility and decided to move past their earlier bad decision.

Always ask yourself what you can do better or what you should change. Take responsibility and think about what you can do better to prevent this from happening next time.

9. A Desire to Learn

It’s safe to say that all great leaders will have to enter unchartered waters at some point during their career. Because of this, they have to be able to trust their intuition and draw on past experiences to guide them.

Great leaders know that there’s always something to learn from everything they have experienced before. They are able to connect the present challenges with the lessons learned in the past to make decisions and take actions promptly.

You can either recall what you’ve learned from your memories or search your notes (ideally, a software that you can access anywhere with things well-organized).

Warren Buffett, one of the richest people in the world, has mostly made the right calls. But in dealing with huge amounts of money, Buffett has also made several multi-million (and sometimes multi-billion) dollar mistakes. He has stated that buying the company Berkshire Hathaway was his biggest mistake[6]. From that poor choice, he realized that it was unwise to pursue “improvements” and “expansions” in the existing textile industry. Despite mistakes like this, Buffett has invested wisely, and it shows.

To effectively learn from the past, write down lessons you’ve learned from any mistakes you’ve made. Have all the lessons well organized, and when similar things happen again in future, take these lessons as references.

The Bottom Line

Leadership traits are learnable. If you practice consistently, you can be a great leader, too.

Make small changes to your habits when you work with your team, wherever that may be. Most of us aren’t presidents or CEOs, but we all work with other people, and our actions always impact others. This gives every person the chance to develop leadership skills and to stand out from the crowd.

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Featured photo credit: Markus Spiske via unsplash.com

Reference

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