Advertising
Advertising

How To Live A Happy And Successful Life: 7 Simple Tips To Enlightenment

How To Live A Happy And Successful Life: 7 Simple Tips To Enlightenment

Everyone wants to live a happy and successful life and nobody wants to live in mediocrity, always feeling inferior. In fact, anyone can be as successful and as happy as they want. You don’t have to be lucky or a rocket scientist to achieve it.

If you look at all the successful people out there, extraordinary people such as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Lionel Messi, and more, you will notice that they all possessed certain traits of success.

And all these great people come from different backgrounds. Some of them lived in poverty before they become famous; some of them are college dropouts and some of them have difficulties in learning.

However, despite all the challenges and difficulties, these successful people go on and produce outstanding results in life.

And guess what, if these people can do it, you can do it too. Living a happy and successful life is not all about driving a sports car or living in a big mansion. It is more about enlightenment from within.

“If an egg is broken by an outside force, life ends. If broken by an inside force, life begins. Great things always begin from the inside.”

Here are 7 tips how to live a happy and successful life:

1. Be More Self-Centered

Self-centered is different from being selfish. It is not being a narcissist and it is not all about you. Self-centered is living life on your own terms without worrying too much about what other people think of you.

Extraordinary people don’t really care how others look at them. If you look at Steve Jobs, he lived a hippie lifestyle when he was young. He went to work with his bare feet; he ate only vegetables and fruits as meals. Did he care what other people thought of him? Not at all.

In fact, successful people are self-centered. They live the way they want and they don’t think too much about how other people look at them.

This is why they are extraordinary. Thomas Edison, one of the greatest inventors who is said to have failed more than 10,000 times at his experiments did not really care about how others thought of his failure.

He knew what he wanted and he continued to work on his inventions. Eventually, he succeeded in inventing the light bulb and changed the world. Imagine what would have happened if Thomas Edison had worried about his failures and constantly thought about how people perceived him.

So, be more self-centered starting from today. Live life on your own terms and bring out the best in you.

You don’t need to follow the crowd and you don’t have to live your life like what other people want you to.

You are you and you need to take 100% responsibility for your life.

Advertising

2. Practice Minimalism

If you want to be happy, practice minimalism. Living in minimalism is not about not owning any car or luxury items, but instead, it is about detachment.

It is about becoming less possessive and focuses more on your inner feelings. It is not about what you own, but how can you shine with what you already have.

A lot of people make the mistake in life and think that being successful is all about driving a luxury car, living in a big mansion, dining in the finest restaurant and spending lavishly.

It is not. Money does not define your level of success. Instead, money is just a score for the value you have created in other people’s lives.

Bill Gates got rich through his invention of an easy-to-use software system that changed everyone’s lives. He foresaw the future where every home has a personal computer.

Warren Buffett made his money through investing in companies and businesses that require capital for growth. Michael Jackson brought entertainment to people and Lionel Messi has great skills that command top dollars.

These extraordinary people are successful because they created some form of value that people want.

It is not material items or shiny objects that made these people successful. If you own a luxury car, it does not mean that you are successful.

Physical things do not define who you are. It is how you shine from within, how you unleash your potential, how you are able to use your capability that creates value for people that count.

Therefore, practice minimalism if you want to be happy and successful.

3. Maintain Your Health Physically And Mentally

Health is wealth. What is there to shout about when you don’t have the health to enjoy life. If you are always feeling sleepy, sick and tired, you can never truly live your life to the fullest.

And when you are not performing at your best or living to the fullest, you will never be happy and successful.

Seriously cut down the consumption of alcohol and get rid of the smoking habit. Spend time exercising and reading. You want to maintain your health both physically and mentally.

Do you know that Xerox CEO, Ursula Burns wakes up at 5:15 am every day and schedules her personal training at 6 am? GE CEO, Jeff Immelt wakes up at 5:30 am to work out. Similarly, Michelle Obama, FLOTUS wakes up early and exercises at 4:30 am. The same goes for Jack Dorsey, the Twitter and Square CEO, who wakes up at 5:30 am for meditation and jogging.

Just like what Laura Vanderkam said in her book, What The Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast,[1] these are extremely busy people and if they spend time waking up early to exercise, it must be something crucial that we cannot miss out on.

Advertising

So, take care of your health. Successful people are productive people. And being productive is all about energy management.

The only way to maintain your energy throughout the day is to maintain your health. Get enough sleep, exercise and eat healthy foods.

When you have the energy, your willpower is stronger and so is your confidence level. And when you have the energy, you can accomplish more than most people who treat their health lightly.

4. Attach To A Meaningful Goal

Albert Einstein once said, “If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or things.”

If you practice being a minimalist, should you still set goals? Allow me to explain.

When it comes to goal setting, a lot of people get the wrong idea and set material goals. They set goals to earn a million dollars. They set goals to own a luxury car or to build a multi-million dollar business.

These goals are good, but you must make sure that your goals are meaningful to you.

There is no point to set a goal such as earn a million dollars, but aren’t passionate to achieve it or do the work.

This, my friend, is why 92% people fail to achieve their goals in life.[2] They follow the crowd and set financial goals or material goals because that is what everybody is doing.

If your goals are not meaningful to you, you will never keep going when the tough times come. People want to be rich because of what they can do with the money. They don’t want to be rich just for the sake of being rich. It is what you get from money that drives you.

Money is just the means to an end. The same goes when you set material goals. What does owning a luxury car mean to you? Why do you want to live in a big mansion by the sea? It is the meaning behind the goal that motivates you.

Thus, make sure you set meaningful goals and not just any goal.

5. Becoming An Inverse Paranoid

Jack Canfield mentioned that one of the success principles that’s responsible for people’s achievements is being an inverse paranoid.

Instead of thinking how the world plots to do you harm, think of how the world is helping and supporting you. When you are fired by your company, think of the possibility and the opportunity that you can get. Maybe you will finally find a better job that you truly love and get better pay.

Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba once said that successful people are extremely positive and they always expect something good to happen in the future. And I strongly believe that this is true.

Advertising

Think about it, would you spend money to innovate and build a better product to sell to the market if you think that the economy is slow? If you are pessimistic, you will never do the extra because you believe that all your effort will be thrown into the drain and no one will appreciate your hard work.

Successful people are inversely paranoid and they are extremely positive about the future. They believe in their dreams and themselves.

You will never buy the lottery ticket if you don’t believe that you stand a chance to win. Similarly, you will never put in the effort if you don’t believe that you are going to get the results.

Hence, when something is out of your control, stay calm and trust that everything happens for a reason. Always look at the bright side and the great possibility that can happen to you.

6. Live In The Moment

Learn to live in the moment. When you are enjoying your holidays with your family, stop worrying about your work. When you are working, stop thinking about having a fun time playing games.

Happy people are people who live in the moment. They are worry-free.

Do you know that humans feel stress because they worry too much? Unlike animals, they only have immediate worries that they can solve right away.

When a lion is hungry, it will hunt for food. When it rains, the lion will find a shelter. Animals don’t suffer delayed worry like humans do and animals can get rid of their worry immediately.

Humans, on the other hand, are stressful because they worry about something in the future and something that they don’t have control over.

They worry about whether they should change jobs. They worry if they have enough money to pay the bills by month’s end. They worry what if they fail to achieve their goals.

These are concerns that we cannot solve immediately. Thus, they make us feel stress and anxiety.

If you want to live a happy life, get rid of these concerns and live in the moment.

There’s no point worrying about the future that you have no control over; instead, do something that you can do right now.

Here’s a meaningful quote for you:

“Yesterday was history, tomorrow is a mystery and today is a gift, that is why they called it the present.”

Advertising

What you can do is right now. You don’t have to worry too much about the past or the future. Instead, choose to learn from your past and use the future you want to inspire you.

Work on the now.

7. Be Action-Oriented

Happy and successful people are action-oriented people. They are always on the move. They don’t wait for things to happen to them; they go ahead and make things happen.

If you want to be successful but you spend your whole day playing games, by the end of the day, you will feel inferior and guilty.

On the other hand, if you use your time to work on your goals and produce some result, you will feel happy and extremely fulfilled. You feel good and you feel satisfied because you are doing things according to your plan.

This is why being action-oriented is important.

Furthermore, success will mean nothing to you if there is no hard work. Think about it, if you are a professional tennis player and you play with a beginner who can’t even serve properly, how would you feel?

You will feel bored and the match will finish in an instant. Conversely, when you play with other professional players, you will feel excited about the match because you will have to put in hard work to win the points.

Hard work is what makes you happy. When you are able to achieve something easily without any hard work, the fulfillment will never last.

Oxygen in the air is available to anyone and thus, no one will appreciate it. You don’t have to work hard to breathe, unless when you have problems breathing.

People will never appreciate things that they don’t need to work hard for. Hence, be action-oriented. Put in the hard work and do the extra.

The more you put in, the more results you will get. The more you work for something, the more satisfaction you will feel.

Conclusion

These are the simple tips that will make you happier and more successful in life. However, you will never see the results right away.

Success takes time, but you will know if you are on the right path when you do. So, follow the suggestions here and live a worthwhile life today.

Featured photo credit: Pexels.com via pexels.com

Reference

More by this author

Shawn Lim

Blogger, Entrepreneur, and Motivation Expert

6 Secrets How Great People Build Powerful Confidence No Motivation? 7 Great Ways To Overcome Loss Of Motivation how to live a happy and successful life How To Live A Happy And Successful Life: 7 Simple Tips To Enlightenment personal productivity The 3 Most Controversial Tips On Personal Productivity 6 Steps On How To Build Success Habits In 2017

Trending in Productivity

1 5 Key Traits of a Charismatic Leadership 2 How to Overcome Your Resistance to Change for a Better Self 3 How to Develop Mental Toughness And Stay Strong 4 13 Work Life Balance Tips for a Happy and Productive Life 5 How to Delegate Tasks Effectively (Step-By-Step Guide)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on December 2, 2019

How to Develop Mental Toughness And Stay Strong

How to Develop Mental Toughness And Stay Strong

Are you the kind of person who wants to achieve massive success in your life? Do you have the mental toughness to make that happen?

I think we can all agree that no matter your ambitions, achieving success can be difficult; and over time, the daily grind can take a toll on your physical, mental, and emotional energy.

Achievers and high performers from all walks of life face ups and downs along the path to success—they face failure, burnout, discouragement, fatigue, self-limiting beliefs, stress, and so much more.

How do some people continually strive towards their personal goals year after year while others give up on them? How do those people stay strong and persevere when there is so much stacked against them?

Studies now show that mental strength is a critical key to success. If you haven’t read Angela Duckworth’s book Grit, you should. In it, she shows that “the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a special blend of passion and persistence she calls ‘grit.’” In other words, mental toughness plays a significant role when it comes to achieving goals.

Sometimes, our goals wear us down and leave us feeling exhausted. Other times, our goals get difficult, and success seems impossible, so we lose hope, become discouraged, and want to quit.

At its core, mental toughness is simply the ability to stick to something when the going gets tough. People with high levels of mental toughness can push beyond these obstacles and forge a path towards success while those with lower levels of mental toughness may abandon their dreams.

Want to know the good news?

No matter who you are, what you’ve been told, or what you currently believe, you can develop the mental toughness you need to be successful.

All you need to do is learn to develop a positive mindset, focus on your why, and utilize the people around you for support.

1. Develop a Positive Mindset

If you’re going to increase your mental toughness, the first thing you have to do is focus on building a strong, positive mindset.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, the average person has 60,000 thoughts per day. Of those, 95% of those thoughts repeat each day and, on average, 80% of repeated ideas are negative.[1]

That’s roughly 45,600 negative thoughts per day!

Carrying around these negative thoughts is like going on a hike in the mountains with a backpack full of rocks. The hike is hard enough on its own, but having extra junk weighing you down is a recipe for failure.

Sometimes, building mental toughness isn’t as much about building new strength as it is about saving your strength for the right tasks. Wouldn’t it be easier to dump the rocks out of the backpack instead of trying to get strong enough to carry the extra weight?

Absolutely!

But how can we learn to spot those 45,600 negative thoughts and get rid of them? How can we empty our metaphorical backpack?

Advertising

Well, it gets a whole lot easier if you know what you’re looking for. Some of the most prominent types of negative thoughts are self-limiting beliefs, all-or-nothing thinking, and dwelling.

Let Go of Self-Limiting Beliefs

It’s pretty hard to be mentally tough when you’re constantly beating yourself up. Self-limiting beliefs are any beliefs that hold you back in some way. Here are some examples:

“I’m not smart enough to…”

“I don’t have enough experience to…”

“I’ve tried that before, and it didn’t go well, so I must just be bad at…”

When we allow these self-limiting beliefs to flood our minds, negative self-talk runs rampant, and we crowd out our ability to think positively. We’re effectively working against ourselves.

If you want to keep your mind strong on your path to success, you have to overcome the self-limiting beliefs that are holding you back by realizing one key truth: self-limiting beliefs are thoughts, not facts.

When you recognize a self-limiting belief cropping up in your mind, quickly silence it by telling yourself that it’s not true and then back that up with some positive affirmations:

  • “I am smart enough; I may just need to do some more research first.”
  • “I may not have as much experience as someone else, but that’s not going to stop me from trying. I have enough experience to get started. I’ll figure the rest out on the way.”
  • “Just because I failed at this last time doesn’t mean I’m going to fail this time. My past does not dictate my future.”

Get Rid of the All-or-Nothing Thinking

Another form of negative thinking that could be preventing you from building mental toughness is all-or-nothing thinking.

All-or-nothing thinking is the concept of thinking in extremes. You are either a success or a failure. Your performance was totally good or totally awful. If you’re not perfect, then you’re a failure.

But this isn’t true!

If you’re trying to lose 30 pounds and only lost 28, isn’t that still better than not losing any weight at all? I’d say so!

If you allow all-or-nothing thinking to rule your mind, you’ll be on cloud nine when you succeed, but you’ll beat yourself up when you “fail.” Acknowledging the shades of gray in between will allow you to see success more often and it will help you celebrate your smaller wins.

When you recognize an all-or-nothing thought, remember to look for the positive in the situation. What did you gain by trying? What would you have missed out on had you not tried? Could you do better if you were to try again?

Ditch the Dwelling

Self-Limiting Beliefs and All-or-Nothing Thinking can lead to a bad case of dwelling on the negative. If you want to build some mental toughness and keep your mind strong, you have to ditch the dwelling.

Every day, bad things happen to each of us, and while there’s nothing we can do to prevent that, we can control how we react to these situations.

When we dwell on our misfortunes, we waste massive amounts of energy that we could be using to achieve our goals. When this happens, we’re more likely to quit altogether.

Advertising

But that doesn’t mean you’re not mentally tough; it just means you’re misusing your energy.

The next time something bad happens, it’s important to allow yourself to feel the disappointment and frustration, but work on reducing the amount of time you dwell on the situation.

Easier said than done, right? Try these:

  1. Call a friend or mentor and talk it through with them. Get some outside perspective on your situation.
  2. Time block your dwelling by allowing yourself to dwell for no more than one hour.
  3. Then, tell yourself to move on, that you’re human, and you’re allowed to make mistakes or experience setbacks.
  4. If all else fails, find a good way to distract yourself until you can calm down and reexamine things with a clear mind.

The faster you can focus on the positives and move past the problem, the quicker you can get back to achieving success in your life.

Be Patient about the Process

No matter which negative thoughts tend to run around your mind, working to replace them with positive thoughts can take time.

Learning to spot self-limiting beliefs, all-or-nothing thinking, or dwelling is one thing, but learning to quiet those thoughts is another thing entirely.

If at first you don’t succeed, don’t fret. Instead, take a deep breath and try again. As you work towards improving your mindfulness and your mental toughness, remember that you’re going to get better with time.

To make things a little easier, it helps to connect with your purpose.

2. Connect with Your Purpose

One of the most critical elements to building mental toughness and keeping a strong and focused mind is having a strong ‘why’ for everything you want to do.

If you set out to achieve a huge goal that you don’t have a ‘why’ for, you’re going to find yourself distracted, discouraged, or disengaged as soon as you experience your first setback.

Think about the last time you were working on a goal or resolution and things weren’t going well, maybe you even wanted to quit. Perhaps you thought you didn’t have enough willpower. Maybe you told yourself that you didn’t have enough discipline.

Here’s the truth: you just didn’t have a strong enough why.

Simon Sinek has been spreading his message “Start with Why” across the globe.[2] In short, he says that:

“Your ‘why’ is the purpose, cause or belief that inspires you.”

One of the biggest drains on your mental energy is pursuing a goal or a task that you don’t have a ‘why’ for. This is when we tend to look for external motivation or question our willpower, but those aren’t the issues.

Often, we set goals because we like the idea of the goal, not the reality of the goal. Without connecting to our why, we can’t intrinsically motivate ourselves to achieve our most challenging goals.

Find Intrinsic Motivation

Intrinsic motivation is our innate desire to do something and it comes when we work towards something that satisfies ourselves above all else—not our parents or our bosses or our teachers.

Advertising

Let’s say you think you want to quit smoking because you know it’s bad for you, but you really enjoy smoking. If you don’t truly want to quit smoking, it’s going to be nearly impossible, regardless of your willpower or mental toughness.

But if you want to quit smoking because you just had a baby, and you don’t want your baby growing up around smoke, then that ‘why’ is going to give you intrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation is far more powerful than sheer stubborn willpower, and it’s far easier to maintain over the long haul.

If you’re trying to develop mental toughness, connecting a why to everything you want to achieve will reduce the effort and energy it will take to achieve those things. Once you’ve found a strong why for all of your goals, you’ll find that you’ll have significantly more energy to pursue your more difficult challenges.

3. Find Strength in Unity

The final aspect of developing mental toughness is embracing the idea that you’re not in this alone. It’s a fact, anyone who’s ever achieved success in anything didn’t do so alone.

Bill Gates didn’t build Microsoft alone. Oprah didn’t build her network by herself. Steve Jobs didn’t invent the iPhone without a team. Michelle Obama didn’t implement the “Let’s Move” campaign on her own.

Behind all of these successful people were countless other people who were there offering support, mentorship, guidance, and encouragement.

If you want to develop unmatched mental toughness, you need to understand that you don’t have to go it alone. Even the toughest Navy Seals have a team backing them up.

If you want to stay strong in your endeavors, you need to build a team of supporters who will step in and back you up when it counts.

Find a Mentor or Committee of Mentors

The benefits of having a great mentor are far too many to list, but to boil it down to the basics, a mentor is someone who will help show you the path to success.

A good mentor will help you discover your greatest strengths, spot and overcome your blind spots, and work through your weaknesses.

If you’re struggling to deal with your internal negativity or with finding your purpose, talk it through with a mentor. Sometimes we lose the forest for the trees, and a mentor can help us take a step back and see the bigger picture.

Here’s how to find the right mentor for yourself: How to Find a Mentor That Will Help You Succeed

Recruit Some Cheerleaders

If you want to stay strong, it never hurts to have a group of personal cheerleaders. Unlike mentors who are going to jump in and help you address your problems, a group of cheerleaders will help keep your spirits up.

Even if you have a strong ‘why’ and a positive mindset, it’s nearly impossible to maintain a positive attitude 100% of the time. It doesn’t make you weak to need some help from time to time. Having a group of people cheering you on will make all the difference in the world.

As you work towards your goals, tell a few close friends about what you’re doing, and when things get tough, tell them about it. And when they give you the pep talk you need, don’t resist their positivity or counter it with your self-limiting beliefs or your all-or-nothing attitude.

Allow their optimism to refill your energy and use that energy to press on.

Form an Accountability Group

Cheerleaders are great, but sometimes we need someone to give us the kick we need to keep going. You might have a strong ‘why’ for running a marathon or losing 30 pounds, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy; and trying to force yourself to follow through is a sure way to tax your mental energy.

Advertising

Why not save some of your mental energy by forming an accountability group?

Find a person or a few people who have similar goals, or at the very least, the need for an accountability partner. Then, form an agreement within the group to push each other every day.

Even if your goals aren’t the same, accountability partners are great for giving us the push we need when we need it most.

Regardless of which relationships you choose, sometimes we have to be able to work through things on our own. Mentors, cheerleaders, and accountability partners are a great way for us to combat our naturally negative mindsets, but occasionally we have to be able to pick ourselves back up.

4. Learn to Pick Yourself Back Up After Setbacks

Building a strong mindset and developing mental toughness isn’t easy! Anyone who’s ever achieved massive success knows that obstacles, setbacks, and failure are inevitable, and you’re no different.

As you work on your goals, you’re going to face many ups and downs, but this doesn’t mean that you don’t have mental toughness, willpower, or discipline.

We all struggle. We all fail. It’s what we decide to do after we fail that truly counts.

When you find yourself in a low spot, ask yourself these questions:

  • “Am I being too hard on myself?”
  • “Are negative thoughts such as Self-Limiting Beliefs or All-or-Nothing Thinking distorting my view?”
  • “What’s the positive side of this setback/obstacle/failure?”
  • “Why was this goal important to me? What was my purpose?”
  • “Is this goal still important to me? Do I still have a ‘why’?”
  • “Who can I ask for help? Who can mentor me or cheer me on? Who can help hold me accountable?”

Asking yourself these questions is a great way to check in on your mindset. When we get lost in negative thinking or lose connection to our purpose, it’s far too easy to become discouraged. When we feel discouraged, we start feeling weak, maybe even a little hopeless.

Also, this article provides some useful tips to help you get back on track: How to Deal with Failure and Pick Yourself Back Up

Tying it All Together

Are you still with me? I know I’ve thrown a lot at you, from developing a positive mindset and combatting your internal voice to connecting with purpose and building a committee of mentors. It’s a lot to take it!

But here’s the bottom line:

A crucial part of developing mental toughness is learning to recognize these tendencies and taking action to correct them early on. Developing mental toughness is not about eliminating weakness, but learning how to deal with it and overcome it.

No one is perfect, but when we focus on the right things, we can develop a mental toughness worthy of life’s biggest challenges.

More About Mental Strength

Featured photo credit: Zulmaury Saavedra via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next