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Last Updated on November 23, 2017

Be The Only Script Writer Of Your Life

Be The Only Script Writer Of Your Life

We live in a fast paced world, and it is getting increasingly difficult to keep up with the tempo of things. With the advent of more sophisticated technology and software, our lives are even more chaotic and disrupted. If we don’t check up on social media in two hours, we start to feel jittery.

We put on the news, even when we don’t want to, so that we don’t miss out on important happenings around the world. We are besieged by emails and text messages that add no value to our lives, yet we feel compelled to open each and every one of them.

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The hours in a day are still 24 hours, same as it was from time immemorial, but it does seem to be getting shorter, because there is so much to do (most of it irrelevant) and not quite enough time to do them all. But we live only once, and we get no other chance to redo what we have done wrong. This is the time to take back our lives, this is the time to reclaim what modern times, technology and our anxiety has taken from us. This is the time to take full control.

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How can you take back control of your life?

The article “50 ways to live life on your own terms.” originally published on Medium, is an extensive and well researched article written by Benjamin P. Hardy, a PhD candidate in Motivation Psychology. Hardy is a husband and foster father of 3, and knows what is important in life and what should be focused on.

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Benjamin has explained 50 ways on how we can take back control of our lives. Here Lifehack  summarises some of the key points that we think you should know. Feel free to take your time to finish the rest of his article by clicking the link.

On Personal Improvement

  • Stop consuming the news: Media outlets have a goal to appeal to your fears by inflating extreme cases. This way, they retain their viewership. Ditch the news and get high quality news curated from sources like Google News.
  • Do something terrifying: Do something every day that terrifies you. Confront your fear and make that call, ask that question, pitch that idea, or post that video.
  • Work on your bucket list: Design your life around your ambitions rather than design your ambitions around your life. Make a list of the things you absolutely must do before you die, and then start working on doing them.
  • Declutter: Remove all non-essentials from your life. We hardly use most of the possessions we own, and these suck energy from our lives. Also, they are dormant value waiting to be exchanged for dollars.
  • Don’t obsess: Stop obsessing about the outcome. Instead, have an expectation in your own ability. This serves as a better predictor of high performance than expectations about a specific outcome. Expect optimal performance from yourself and let the consequence follow.
  • Don’t check social media immediately: Wait at least 60–90 minutes after you wake up before checking your email and social media. If you check immediately, this puts you in a reactive state for the remainder of the day. Instead of responding to other people’s agendas, you’d rather live life on your own terms.
  • Track an improvable habit: Track at least one habit/behavior you’re trying to improve because research has repeatedly found that when behavior is tracked and evaluated, it improves drastically. You can also make tracking creative. Do what works for you. Use a method you will actually do. But start tracking.
  • Reduce the to do list: Have no more than 3 items on your to-do list each day. When you shift your life from day-to-day reactivity to one of creation and purpose, your goals become a lot bigger. Consequently, your priority list becomes smaller. Instead of doing a million things poorly, the goal becomes to do a few things incredibly well.

On Improving Relationships

  • Marry for love: Find yourself a spouse who complements and supports you and makes you better. Remember that being married gives you a higher purpose for being productive. And also remember you don’t marry to make yourself happy, but to make someone else happy.
  • Learn to say “No”: You must say no to people, obligations, requests, and opportunities you’re not interested in from now on. Know what you want and you’ll have the courage and foresight to pass up opportunities that are distractors from your vision.
  • Be spontaneously generous with a stranger: Be spontaneous. When you get the wild thought of buying the person’s food in the car behind you, just do it. Don’t think about it. If you’re driving down the road and see someone with car trouble off to the side, just do it. Don’t think about it. When you want to say “I love you,” to a loved one, just do it. Don’t think about it.
  • Befriend your parents: Become good friends with your parents. Although you won’t always see things the same way your parents do, love them and respect their viewpoints. If your parents are still around, rekindle those ties or increase the flame. You’ll find enormous joy in those relationships.
  • Eat with the family: Eat at least one meal with your family per day because eating together creates a sense of community like nothing else.

On Improving Physical Health

  • Less caffeine: Caffeine in the long run is more detrimental than it is helpful, and most of us are addicted to it. You need to stop depending on caffeine and get motivated from the inside.
  • Quit refined sugar: Research shows that your brain will radically change for the better if you stop consuming sugar. Refined sugar has now been shown to make us cranky, make us make rash decisions, and make us stupid.
  • Go on a fast: You should try fasting from all food at least 24 hours once per week. This is a great way to maintain health and vigor, as fasting leverages the self-healing properties of the human body.
  • Sleep early and rise early: Research studies show that people who go to bed and rise early are better students. They are also better planners, are holistically healthier, and are more optimistic, satisfied, and conscientious
  • Get 7+ hours of sleep each night: When you get a healthy amount of sleep, you have increased memory, longer life, increased creativity, attention and focus, lower stress, decreased dependence on stimulants like caffeine, and decreased risk of getting into accidents.
  • Cold showers instead of warm ones: Replace warm showers with cold ones. Cold water immersion radically facilitates physical and mental wellness. When practiced regularly, it provides long-lasting changes to your body’s immune, lymphatic, circulatory and digestive systems that improve the quality of your life.
  • Wake up with protein: Consume 30 grams of protein within the first 30 minutes of waking up. Protein-rich foods keep you full longer than other foods because they take longer to leave the stomach, so they are great for controlling your eating. Also, protein keeps blood-sugar levels steady, which prevents spikes in hunger. Eat eggs, turkey bacon, organic pork bacon or sausage, or cottage cheese.
  • Replace carbs with healthy fats: Refined carbs and sugars make you fat, and you should replace them with healthy fats instead. Go for avocados, healthy nuts, meat, and fish. Healthy fats are good for your brain and body restoration, and help you perform better mentally and physically.

On Managing Personal Finance

  • Tithe or give 10 percent of your income away: Many of the wealthiest people in the world attribute their healthy financial life and abundance to giving some of it away, because a natural principle of wealth creation is generosity.
  • Buy a small place rather than rent: Don’t pay outlandish amounts on rent each month. If you don’t live in a big city where buying might be difficult, buy your own home. Most mortgage payments are far less than most rent payments. Paying rent is like working hourly. You get money while you’re on the clock. When you’re not on the clock, you get no money.
  • Find out what wealth and happiness mean to you: Define what wealth and happiness mean to you, and never use another person’s definition of success to define what you do with your life. You must define success, wealth, and happiness in your own terms because if you don’t, society will for you, and you will always fall short.
  • Change the way you feel, think, and act about money: Most people have an unhealthy relationship with money. The first step to changing your financial world is to alter your paradigm and feelings about money. Successful people expect to make a lot of money, believe that in a free-market economy, anyone can make as much money as they want, and that your background, highest level of education, or IQ is irrelevant when it comes to earning money. Start thinking that way too.
  • Invest only in industries you are informed about: Don’t put your trust in someone else’s hands by investing in things you don’t understand. Although such investments usually sound incredible on paper, they most often turn out to be disasters.
  • Create an automated income source: Create an automated income source that takes care of the fundamentals. Put a business in place that runs 24/7 even while you’re sleeping, sitting on the beach, or playing with your kids.

Dictate Your Own life

It has never been more important than it is now to take back control, and live life as defined by you. To learn more, we highly encourage you to read the original article.

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Last Updated on September 17, 2018

How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

Today we are expected to work in highly disruptive environments. We sit down at our desks, turn on our computer and immediately we are hit with hundreds of emails all vying for our attention.

Our phones are beeping and pinging with new alerts to messages, likes and comments and our colleagues are complaining about the latest company initiative is designed to get us to do more work and spend less time at home.

All these distractions result in us multitasking where our attention is switching between one crisis and the next.

Multitasking is a problem. But how to stop multitasking?

How bad really is multitasking?

It dilutes your focus and attention so even the easiest of tasks become much harder and take longer to complete.

Studies have shown that while you think you are multitasking, you are in fact task switching, which means your attention is switching between two or more pieces of work and that depletes the energy resources you have to do your work.

This is why, even though you may have done little to no physical activity, you arrive home at the end of the day feeling exhausted and not in the mood to do anything.

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We know it is not a good way to get quality work done, but the demands for out attention persist and rather than reduce, are likely to increase as the years go by.

So what to do about it?

Ways to stop multitasking and increase productivity

Now, forget about how to multitask!

Here are a few strategies on how to stop multitasking so you can get better quality and more work done in the time you have each working day:

1. Get enough rest

When you are tired, your brain has less strength to resist even the tiniest attention seeker. This is why when you find your mind wandering, it is a sign your brain is tired and time to take a break.

This does not just mean taking breaks throughout the day, it also means making sure you get enough sleep every day.

When you are well rested and take short regular breaks throughout the day your brain is fully refuelled and ready to focus in on the work that is important.

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2. Plan your day

When you don’t have a plan for the day, the day will create a plan for you. When you allow outside influences to take control of your day, it is very hard not to be dragged off in all directions.

When you have a plan for the day, when you arrive at work your brain knows exactly what it is you want to accomplish and will subconsciously have prepared itself for a sustained period of focused work.

Your resistance to distractions and other work will be high and you will focus much better on the work that needs doing.

3. Remove everything from your desk and screen except for the work you are doing

I learned this one a long time ago. In my previous work, I worked in a law office and I had case files to deal with. If I had more than one case file on my desk at any one time, I would find my eyes wandering over the other case files on my desk when I had something difficult to do.

I was looking for something easier. This meant often I was working on three or four cases at one time and that always led to mistakes and slower completion.

Now when I am working on something, I am in full-screen mode where all I can see is the work I am working on right now.

4. When at your desk, do work

We are creatures of habit. If we do our online shopping and news reading at our desks as well as our work, we will always have the temptation to be doing stuff that we should not be doing at that moment.

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Do your online shopping from another place—your home or from your phone when you are having a break—and only do your work when at your desk. This conditions your brain to focus in on your work and not other distractions.

5. Learn to say no

Whenever you hear the phrase “learn to say no,” it does not mean going about being rude to everyone. What it does mean is delay saying yes.

Most problems occur when we say “yes” immediately. We then have to spend an inordinate amount of energy thinking of ways to get ourselves out of the commitment we made.

By saying “let me think about it” or “can I let you know later” gives you time to evaluate the offer and allows you to get back to what you were doing quicker.

6. Turn off notifications on your computer

For most of us, we still use computers to do our work. When you have email alert pop-ups and other notifications turned on, they will distract you no matter how strong you feel.

Turn them off and schedule email reviewing for times between doing your focused work. Doing this will give you a lot of time back because you will be able to remain focused on the work in front of you.

7. Find a quiet place to do your most important work

Most workplaces have meeting rooms that are vacant. If you do have important work to get done, ask if you can use one of those rooms and do your work there.

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You can close the door, put on your headphones and just focus on what is important. This is a great way to remove all the other, non-important, tasks demanding your attention and just focus on one piece of work.

The bottom line

Focusing on one piece of work at a time can be hard but the benefits to the amount of work you get done are worth it. You will make fewer mistakes, you will get more done and will feel a lot less tired at the end of the day.

Make a list of the four or five things you want to get done the next day before you finish your work for the day and when you start the day, begin at the top of the list with the first item.

Don’t start anything else until you have finished the first one and then move on to the second one. This one trick will help you to become way more productive.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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