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Last Updated on September 28, 2018

How to Effectively Set Goals in Life to Get Where You Really Want to Be

How to Effectively Set Goals in Life to Get Where You Really Want to Be

I’d love 1 penny for every time I’ve been able to help someone achieve their goals in life fast with the idea I’m going to share today. It’s that frequent that I’d be a millionaire a good few times over!

Often people looking to get somewhere in life advise that they have read 100’s of books, watched tons of Ted talks, attended workshops and masterclasses around the world, invested in programmes, wrote a journal, changed their lifestyle, and even transformed what time they get up in the morning; and yet miraculously they’ve not achieved their goals.

What can possibly have stopped them when they’ve put so much effort into achieving more? And can you really share one thought and change a person’s life?

In a coaching conversation, I’ve watched a client have a look that is a mishmash of horror, elation, eureka and annoyance as they realize that it is this one thing that will define their chances of success. And that it has been stood in their way like a giant rock for years.

Here I share what that is and how to ensure you get the rocks out of the way of your ability to set life goals that get you where you want to go.

1. Look for the things that resonate with you

It can seem obvious that if you are looking to achieve big and get somewhere in life, then you will take the time and money to invest in finding the best ways of achieving that. The issue with this is that your brain didn’t get the memo on what was supposed to work.

    Let me give you an example (I could give you thousands!):

    A client says that they have been getting up at 5am because they read that this was the Golden Hour if you want to achieve big and they shared with me what you were supposed to do in your Golden Hour.

    I asked “Is this working?”

    They replied “well I am reading more and I’m learning, but I’m grumpy as a bear by the afternoon and rowing with the kids and don’t even get a cuddle with my partner in the morning”

    I questioned “So, is it working?”

    They answered “I suppose in some aspects yes but in most aspects no.”

    “So why are you still doing it?”

    They retorted “Because the book said it was good to do!”

    I then asked them a personal question, unrelated to business, careers or success “Do you like the mornings?”

    They laughed “Oh gosh no, I’m a night owl, I hate the mornings!”

    So why were they going out of their way to utilize a system that relied on them going against the very fibre of their being?

    When I raised this to them, they looked like someone had just thrown a bucket of ice cold water over them. It would obviously never work long term because they were fighting who they were.

    Remember while these books are selling in their millions and these speakers are amazing, what works for one does not by definition mean it will work for you. You have to work with ideas, tools and techniques that play to the person you are.

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    It is no good fighting who you are, eventually your brain will fight back. It never got the memo, it didn’t know this was the new way of working and it is not going to play ball.

    There is an argument that you need to stick with things to make your habits change. While I agree with this in principle, if the ideas encourage you to stray massively away from the human you are, it is highly likely you will fail.)

    So how do you fix it?

    Look for the things that resonate with you. If you hate things structured and like to be free flowing then look for ideas that empower you to think and work in that way.

    Another great example is the client who had a big figure in their head that they wanted to earn. And they were going to do it.

    The only issue was that the journey was practically killing them. They were working stupid hours with little down time and their health, personal and social life were suffering, no big deal right?

    Short term losses for long term gains?

    Except this person performed the Values Exercise from my book Fight the fear – that looks at the 12 biggest fears that impact on success, and discovered that the top 3 values that mattered most to them were actually caring about others, friends and exercise.

    Making money was right down the list at number 8! While it’s fine to go for a goal that is not your top value, you do need to still honour the values and the things that make you, you. When you don’t, you can hit all sorts of barriers and road blocks to getting what you want, so don’t fight who you are, your brain just didn’t get the memo.

    2. Filter out what you don’t want and be careful of what you allow in

    Big goals, bucket lists and ambitions — the problem is that while you are busy creating these plans so you achieve them, your brain processes everything you experience.

      Everything from the dog asleep by your feet, the trees moving just at the edge of your vision. The couple arguing in the corner, the coffee stain on the edge of your cup, the siren in the distance, the beep from your phone – everything!

      Whatever is around you, your brain is processing it on some level. While in itself that’s amazing, it also means that you need to be clear on what you say to your brain. Not only is it processing every smell and sound it is processing every thought, belief and word you hear. That’s a lot!

      Filter out the stuff you don’t want and be careful what you allow in. My Mum used to say “Treat advice like water in to a sponge, let everything in just wring out what you don’t want.” This is very apt for this top tip.

      When looking to achieve your goals, people will share ideas, advice and books you “Must read!” Let it all come to you and then genuinely ask:

      • “Does this fit the human I am?”
      • “Does this play to my strengths?”
      • “Is this the best use of my time to get me where I want to go?”

      While many people love videos and inspirational events, if you prefer to be on your own with a good book or speaking one to one with someone which is more likely to help you understand the power of your brain, create powerful actions and work towards your long term goals in life.

      Learn to wring out the stuff that is not relevant to you.

      3. Keep your goal as simple as it can be

      Your brain can process 400 billion bits of information a second and yet we only seem to be aware of around 2000[1] So if this is true, you need to be aware that what you want is not the only thing your brain is working on.

        If you want your goals to feature in the top actions to process, you need to keep it simple.

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        For your desires to feature above anything else, you need to make it something easy to remember and keep at the front of your brain.

        Reword where you want to be and what you want to achieve into 1 sentence. Make it a powerful sentence that enables you to “see” your goal.

        To achieve this you will need to break the goal down. (Which is important for the next top tip too.) Write down the answers to these thoughts:

        • Think of everything that matters to you about this goal.
        • Consider all the emotions you want to feel and don’t want to feel.
        • Where will you be when you’ve achieved this goal. Will your home look different? Will your workplace look the same? Will you be driving a different car?
        • Will you look different? What colour will your hair be (is it going to take you 30 years to achieve and you’ve gone grey or will you have found a new level of confidence and dyed your hair pink like you always wanted to?)
        • What will tell you that you’ve achieved that goal?
        • How will it impact on your life? Your bank balance? Your relationships? Your career? Your happiness? Your hobbies?

        When you’ve considered everything that could feature in your 1 sentence that summarizes your goal, then look to create a sentence that does that. Make it a sentence with:

        • An end result. This helps your brain remember where you want to get to and gives it a specific place to end up.
        • Precise actions. This helps your brain to see what process you want to carry out and enables you to see if you are getting there, so you can analyse your actions results and where you are in the process.
        • Something to strive for not strain for. Your goal should aim to make you strive further than you would naturally choose to. Imagine reaching your arm out to reach something that feels a little tight in your arm as you find yourself thinking “Can I reach this?” However a word of caution here – A goal that over strains you can drain you picture.

        Great sentence choices could be:

        “By the 25th of September 2019 I will have achieved my goal to own a property in X town with 2 bedrooms at a cost of XXX”

        “By the end of 2018 I will have earned an average of xxxxxx a month by increasing sales of my products by 33% incorporating more interactive marketing techniques that engage with a wider audience of 10,000 additional people online.”

        Notice these goal sentences have:

        • Precise outcomes
        • Dates to work towards (ever noticed how some people have months to achieve something and still scrap around getting it done the night before the deadline?)
        • Measurable quantities
        • Precise actions to take.

        Ironic, isn’t it that the brain likes it simple? And to make it simple, I have to explain this tip in more detail than any other top tip!

        However, what I’m doing is sharing with you a little of the science of why coaching works and how to get these tools in your every day life to power up your chances of getting where you want in life. So do take the time to go through this process.

        4. Repeatedly take only a few actions

        Once you have your goal sentence, go back to all of the words you wrote down for Number 1 and write down everything you could do to achieve that goal.

        At this stage, this is not what you will do, this is what you could do. By doing this, you are stretching (not straining) your brain to think further than it would normally about your actions.

        The problem we have is our brain is processing so much that a lot of what it does is automatic (habit). To create new powerful actions, we need to break past that automatic way of thinking.

          As I explain it to clients:

          You are going to start by telling me the obvious ideas and the ideas that you mull over at 2 am but don’t do. You are also likely to share the ideas that you’ve spent months agonising over whether you should do them or not but something always seems to stop you.

          And after that, we can fight through the assumptions of what can be achieved. Overrule the doubts and limiting beliefs about your abilities and get on to finding the real actions that will get you to where you want to go.

          Then when you have a long list of things you could do, choose a maximum of 5 actions that you will do to achieve your goal. It doesn’t mean you won’t do more of the ideas on this list, just that at this stage you are creating priority to concentrate on a maximum of 5 goals.

          5. Break the actions down into smaller ones

          When you’ve completed the above top tip, you need to work out how you’re going to accomplish those 5 actions only ever have a maximum of 5 actions at any one time.

          For me, I put them on a small 8 cm squared post it note, because in this way I know I’m not overloading my to do list.

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          The brain really hates it when you give it too much to process. It’s like trying to load a basket in the supermarket with a trolleys worth of shopping; stuff falls out!

            Break down those 5 actions. This is useful for a number of reasons:

            Firstly, it helps your brain stay focused on the action you are taking and the reasons why.

            Secondly, it enables you to tick things off of your to do list. This always has a sense of achievement and makes us feel good.

            In fact clever scientists tell us that dopamine is released when we achieve something (however small) and our brains love a hit of dopamine. It is a neurotransmitter that our brain produces and enables us to stay focused, motived and get things done.

            So by breaking your goals down, you are rewarding your brain with a hit of the good stuff and that gives you the much needed boost to keep going. Especially if you are incorporating new things into your life that are challenging you to think and act in a new way.

            Lastly, when it comes to breaking it down you don’t need to write a list. If you’re a lover of mindmaps, then create a simple version of this. If you love a spreadsheet – go for it. And if you like it visual, draw it.

            Whatever you do, make sure the 5 actions from the above top tip are broken down and visually near you so that you are able to keep focused on what you want.

            6. Have a list of what to do NOW

            Your brain may not appreciate the need to get on with the “Now” Goals but your success does.

            I’ve often seen clients struggling to achieve what they want to because they’ve not factored in that little thing called life. For instance, you may have a big ambition but you’ve not factored in spending time with family and friends.

            Big deal, right? Short term sacrifice for long term gains, right?

            While in principle I agree, the fact is that while you power on to your big ambitions, your brain is still busy processing that sulky look on your child’s/friends/partners/mum’s face that says “You never have time any more.” And while you can justify that it’s “for the best” in your head, you can create this automatic subconscious process of thoughts that is negative.

              I’ve seen clients realize that the reason they’ve not getting to where they want to go is because their brain has started to scupper their own success! It has rationalized that if they keep working this hard, the people they love will never love them again.

              They realize in their head there are thoughts like “My child/friend/partner/mum thinks I don’t care any more and they will leave me. I can’t afford to achieve this I could lose everyone!”

              I’ve seen the same happen when redecorating the office/kitchen/kids room gets demoted for something else. Or when someone drops their weekly trip to the gym or yoga session. Both of these examples create negative emotions that subconsciously start to eat away at us.

              So if you want to achieve big, have a list of Now goals too. In my experience I help my clients prioritize the top Now goal and the top action for the big ambition. And they don’t move onto the next action on either list until both of the first actions are achieved.

              7. Get a coach to help you

              I hate to say it but going it alone is going to make it harder. You need to find someone that’s going to help you get where you want to go. And that is why a coach is so powerful.

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                A coach is someone that will:

                Listen so you can brain dump.

                Empty your head of all your thoughts, what you’ve done so far, your worries, your failures, your concerns, everything.

                Create the space

                So you can process everything that has been happening, what doesn’t seem to be working, and find a way forward.

                Challenge you

                The problem with turning to friends, family and colleagues is that they all have their own views, ideas, beliefs, values and experiences. And no two people are alike, as such while they may care deeply about you getting what you want, they may try and steer you away from tough choices. Your coach won’t. If anything, they will encourage you to find the things you fear or steer clear of and help you find a way to remove those obstacles so they never feature in your life again!

                Cheer lead you

                Sometimes what we need more than anything is a reminder of how awesome we are. The problem is that if you go around asking your friends for that and you can look needy, arrogant or a bit egocentric. However, we all need a cheer leader.

                This is not just to inflate your ego, but it’s remind you of how you achieve. We all have natural ways of behaving that works for us and by having a cheer leader on your side you can stay motivated and concentrate on remembering what helped you achieve in the past and how to migrate those skills, beliefs and actions to this moment in your life.

                Keep you on track

                Alas we are so easily distracted. And even those going for big goals in life can find that they are on a completely different path and have no idea how it happened!

                Quite often, someone has suggested a great idea to you and while it is a great idea, you need to challenge yourself “Does this great idea fit into my big goal or is this a distraction from it?” With a coach, they ask a lot of questions so you can really understand your way of thinking and its impact on you and your results.

                If you find yourself easily distracted, other good questions to ask are “For what reason do I get distracted?” and “What is it that I don’t want to face in my own path to success?” Facing your fears and hidden negative assumptions is a massive part of getting to where you want to go and a real power of a coach.

                Retrain your brain

                When I first got my dog, she would bark at everything and when I say everything I mean everything. A leaf in the garden would get as much yapping noise as the postman. And for someone who has always had big dogs, even though my dog is more like something Jim Henson created for Muppets, she is not going to destroy my seaside peace and quiet (or my neighbours)

                What has this to do with why you need the right coach to help you achieve your personal goals? Well, my dog was on her own agenda and she hadn’t had anyone explain to her that this wasn’t the best way of behaving. (The last owners had got rid of her because she barked too much) She needed to retrain so that she could be happy, but no one had told her this.

                A coach will confront you with the hard lessons in life. In a nice way, I like to say “I kick butt, with love!” My dog is welcome to bark when the doorbell chimes or if she thinks there is an intruder but not at the bird having a drink of water or the leaf that flutters across the lawn.

                Be cautious of whose agenda you are on, does it serve the other party more than you? Will it help you get the result you want?

                And a word of caution about your coach:

                If they do more talking than listening, they are not coaching you. Your coach is there to help you process everything in your head, and that can’t happen if someone is adding more to your brain.

                A coach listens for over 60% of the conversation. It is an unusual conversation because the coach’s view is irrelevant, the only person that matters in the conversation is you.

                So if you aren’t getting that from the person you rely on to help you achieve your big goals, then they aren’t coaching you to success, they are trying to tell you how to be successful.

                And while mentoring and consulting have their place in helping people to get where they want to go in life, to really get there you need to find your own answers. And hopefully in this article I’ve helped you do just that.

                Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                Reference

                [1] Dr Joe Dispenza and Encyclopaedia Britannica: Brain process information

                More by this author

                Mandie Holgate

                Coach, International BEST Selling Author, Speaker & Blogger helping thousands around the world.

                How to Make Positive Changes Now (And Start Living a Fulfilling Life) What Is Self Efficacy and How to Improve Yours 6 Types of Fear of Success and How to Overcome Them 20 Coping Skills for Stress That Will Help You Stay Strong How to Stop Living in Fear and Start Stepping out of Your Comfort Zone

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                Last Updated on July 23, 2019

                15 Ways to Practice Positive Self-Talk for Success

                15 Ways to Practice Positive Self-Talk for Success

                “You live the words you tell yourself in your mind.” — Dr. Magdalena Battles

                Self-talk is the act of talking to yourself either aloud or mentally. No matter good or bad, these are the messages that you are telling yourself all day long about yourself.

                The messages you tell yourself will encourage and motivate you, or they will limit you because they are negative.

                For example, if you go to a work party and make a joke in front of 10 colleagues and no one really laughs, just a few chuckles from those being nice, what do you tell yourself after the party? Do you drive home thinking “I should have just kept my mouth shut, now they think I am an idiot,” or do you tell yourself “No big deal, at least I put myself out there and tried.”

                Version one of self-talk will make you question yourself at your next social event. You may even hold yourself back from saying too much out of fear of embarrassment or making yourself feel bad. Worse yet, you may develop an aversion to social situations because you feel insecure about your interactions with others.

                Version two of self-talk allows you to give yourself a pass to try again, to just be human and interact with others. We cannot all be on spot with humor and social interactions 100% of the time, but it is worth the effort to at least try.

                Self-talk is so important as these are the messages that determine whether you should keep trying or not. The messages you send yourself can either help you succeed, or they can hold you back and keep you paralyzed in fear.

                Here are 15 tips to help you provide yourself with good, positive self talk for success:

                1. Have a Purpose Higher Than Self

                Having a strong faith in a higher power is helpful in having positive self-talk. Research shows that teens who had “regular religious service attendance, high subjective importance of faith and years spent in religious youth groups, are associated with higher self-esteem and more positive self-attitudes.”[1]

                Having faith in a higher power, along with involvement in a religious community, helps individuals have higher self-esteem. Self-esteem and self-talk go hand in hand.

                For example, if you believe that God (or any higher power) is good and loves you, then your feelings toward yourself will be kinder. You were created by a higher being who made you for a purpose. When you believe this in your heart, you are more apt to believe in yourself and pursue the positive things that you are created for in life.

                When you feel that you have purpose, you focus on the positive reasons for which you were created to pursue and accomplish.

                2. Cut Overly Negative People out of Your Life

                Everyone can have a down day and be negative or moody. However, some people seem to have down days every day of their life. If you have some of these people in your life, it may be time to distance yourself from them.

                Attitudes of the people you are around will have an effect on your own attitude. If someone has a negative attitude, they are likely to bring down those around them, especially if their negativity is pervasive over time and across a variety of situations.

                It is hard to cut family or co-workers out of your life. However, you can limit your time and exposure to these people. Don’t spend time off work with negative co-workers. Don’t hang with negative co-workers in the break room.

                Keep the negativity to a minimum in your life by limiting your time with negative people.

                3. Be Grateful

                A great way to find the positive in your life and create positive self-talk, is to recognize the things in your life for which you can be grateful. A study in Psychology Today showed that:[2]

                “Young adults assigned to keep gratitude journals showed greater increases in determination, attention, enthusiasm and energy compared to the other groups.”

                Finding things you are grateful for in life daily helps to improve your attitude, which will help you have better, more positive self-talk..

                One way to practice gratitude is by starting a gratitude journal. Use it to write the things you are grateful each day.

                Some of the things will big and some will be small. This will help you focus on the good things that are happening in your life, even if it was something as simple as seeing a rainbow or spending time walking and talking with a friend.

                The expression of your gratitude in a journal makes these emotions and experiences more tangible. You are helping yourself focus on the goodness in your life.

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                It doesn’t need to be a long winded journal either. You can simply start by finding a notebook and jotting down 3 to 5 things at the end of each day that are grateful for on that particular day.

                4. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

                When you are constantly comparing what you lack to what others have, you can easily get down on yourself.

                It is easy to become negative about your life if you are playing the comparison game. Instead, find gratitude in what you do have, rather than concentrating on what you don’t have.

                For example, you may have a casual friend who is always getting a new vehicle every two years. They are always top of line, beautiful vehicles. You, on the other hand, are driving a ten year old minivan. You have kids the same age, the same educational background, and you both are married to successful husbands. You compare yourself to what she has and wonder why you can’t also have a new vehicle each year.

                What you don’t know is that she and her husband have a large amount of debt. They do not live within their means and have planned very little for their retirement. You and your husband have been very responsible in your spending and retirement planning.

                It is not wise to compare yourself to this woman or anyone else, because you likely don’t know the whole story.

                You can always find others who are better off than you or worse off than you. It’s more important to concentrate on yourself and on being grateful for your own life.

                Live your life and stop making any comparisons.

                5. Use Positive Words with Others

                If we are negative with our words with others, then we are likely to be negative about ourselves as well.

                Having negative thoughts leads to negative self-talk. If you are in a negativity rut, then stop now.

                Start speaking life and affirmation to the people in your life that you love, including yourself. Doing so will help improve the attitude in your heart.

                For example, when you get to work in the morning, do you start your first conversation by complaining about all the things that went wrong with your morning? Or are you grateful that the sun is shining and that you have a job to pay the bills and you express these sentiments to your co-workers?

                What comes out of your month can be positive or it can be negative. The choice is up to you. If you chose the negative, it will not bring about anything positive for your day or life.

                Another example is how we treat our loved ones. Do you constantly nag or find fault in your spouse or partner? Or do you focus on the positives and speak encouraging words to them?

                If you find yourself focusing on the dishes sitting in the sink, them leaving wet towels on the floor, and them failing to walk the dog once again, you will speak these words to your loved one.

                When you speak words of negativity, nagging, and fault to your loved ones, they begin to feel negative around you. Their response to you is likely not going to be positive. They will probably respond with a negative remark such as “you always nag me” or “you never help with the laundry.” Thus begins a pattern of negativity.

                If you can let the little things go and instead, focus on the positive and use uplifting words, your home life will be much happier. For example, say “thank you for taking out the trash” and “thank you for helping put the kids to bed”. Even if you expect them to do these things, it still feels good to get a compliment and words of praise. These positive words will bring positive words in return and likely more positive actions from them.

                Your relationships will become more positive because of your focus on their positive actions. Your willingness to take the time to recognize these things and verbally provide praise and thanks will enhance your relationships.

                Positivity breeds positivity, and negativity breeds negativity. Choose the positive for yourself and others.

                6. Believe in Your Success

                Believe in your ability to succeed. Believe in the abilities and skills that you have, so that you can propel yourself toward success.

                Doubting yourself holds you back from trying and thus holds you back from succeeding. Believe you can succeed, even if it takes multiple tries.

                For instance, if you go into a workout class and have already told yourself that you won’t be able to complete it, then you will indeed fail. You are setting yourself up for failure when you go into a situation telling yourself mentally that you can’t or won’t be able to complete the task at hand.

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                Commit to telling yourself that you can do it. Even if you have to modify your movements to keep going, tell yourself that you will not quit. Tell yourself that one way or another you will get the job done.

                You need to tell yourself you can do what needs to be done and you can succeed at whatever you put your mind to. If you don’t believe in yourself, then who will?

                7. Don’t Fear Failure

                Don’t fear failure as it is often the road to success. Some of the greatest success stories in life are of people who failed multiple times before becoming successful. If they had given up the first time after failing, then they never would have become hugely successful.

                Fear of failure holds back many people from ever even trying to succeed. They remain in their status quo in life because they live in fear of failure.

                If Milton Hersey had given up after his first three candy companies failed, he wouldn’t have gone on to create the world-famous Hershey’s candy company. He is just one of many examples who failed many times before finally succeeding: 10 Famous Failures to Success Stories That Will Inspire You to Carry On

                Don’t allow fear to hold you back from trying. Tell yourself you can keep trying if you do fail!

                For example, if you bomb on a work project, don’t tell yourself you are a failure. Instead, look at it as an opportunity to learn a new way to go at the project and to grow in your skill set.

                Don’t take the failure and accept it. Instead, reframe the experience as an opportunity for more growth and development of whatever job you may be doing.

                Don’t throw out your previous work because someone rejected it. You may need it later. Set it to the side and save it for future reference. You never know when that project that didn’t worked for that instance may work for another.

                Your efforts are not in vain if you look at a failure as an opportunity to try again and take a fresh approach.

                8. Replace Negative Thoughts with Positive Ones

                Negative thoughts happen. It’s hard to provide yourself with positive thoughts all the time.

                However, you can start replacing negative thoughts with the positive ones. There is always a flip side or upside to any situation. It’s up to you to start finding the positive in order to begin changing your negatives into positives.

                For example, if you have a tendency to tell yourself that you are fat, you will feel fat and bad about the way you appear. If you aren’t fat, then stop telling yourself this message!

                If you are overweight but are working to improve your physical health, then focus on those thoughts. When it pops into your mind that you look fat as you wash your hands at the bathroom mirror, replace those thoughts immediately. Instead, tell yourself that you are working to make positive changes in your physique and are making strides in being healthier every day.

                Tell yourself that you are pleased with yourself because you are making efforts daily to improve that which you see needs improvement. Say “job well done” when you get your workouts done. Give yourself a mental pat on the back and feel good about what you are doing for yourself.

                Focus on what you are doing to change what you don’t like about yourself or your life. If the message that you are feeding yourself is false, then stop. Replace the thoughts with correct messages such as “I am fit, in shape, and I should be proud of how hard I have worked to get to my physical fitness level”.

                Be positive when negative thoughts creep into your mind. Doing so will help you find the motivation to try again in the future.

                If you concentrate on the negative, you are mentally holding yourself back from trying again.

                9. Post Positive Affirmations

                A great way to provide positive self-talk to yourself is to write it down.

                Have positive mantras, scriptures, and affirmations written and posted for you to view throughout your day. Post them on your refrigerator, your bathroom mirror, next to your computer screen, or wherever you can see them often on a daily basis.

                Having positive messages around you helps to shape positive self-talk in your mind.

                Here are some examples that you can post on your bathroom mirror today, just use some sticky notes:

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                • I am adventurous and I am embrace all that life has to offer.
                • I feed my spirit daily.
                • I am in charge of how I feel today.
                • I am grateful for…
                • I will choose happiness and gratitude today.
                • I am special and unique, nobody else in the world is exactly like me.
                • I am proud of myself for…
                • I show love to myself and others daily in all that I do.
                • I find joy in all situations.
                • I am kind to others and to myself.
                • I am of value and have purpose in this world.

                Or you can try out these apps: 10 Uplifting Positive Affirmation Apps That Help You Re-Center on the Go

                10. Don’t Dwell in the Past

                Don’t be too hard on yourself. Everyone has a past. Everyone has bad things in their past.

                Don’t concentrate on these failures, mistakes, or negative things that have happened in your life.

                Keep your mind focused on the future and what is possible, especially the positive things that are possible.

                For example, imagine that you are in a new relationship after going through a divorce or bad breakup. You harbor ill feelings toward your ex because they cheated on you. You have the right to be angry, but there comes a time to move forward.

                Put the past in the past. Don’t bring up your ex every time you watch a movie that involves infidelity. Don’t bring up your ex and their wrongs on a regular basis. Doing so is bringing your ex into your current relationship. Your current spouse or partner didn’t sign up for you and another person in tow.

                Leave your baggage at the door. Don’t speak the words about your past when they aren’t necessary. Doing so keeps them going and gives them new life.

                Don’t provide breathe and space in your life for the negative things of your past. Focus on moving forward and the new relationship that you do have.

                Centralize on the fact that you were strong enough to move forward and embrace your future.

                There is a reason why your windshield is so big and your rear-view mirror is so small in your vehicle. What’s ahead is far more important than what is behind you.

                11. Visualize Your Success

                Your ability to visualize your success is tied to your ability to actually achieve success.

                For example, if you want to run 10 miles today, envision the beginning, middle, and end. Think about how you will prepare for your run. Think about what it will feel like as you get going and how you plan to push through the tough moments you will have on your run.

                Strategize about what you will tell yourself to keep yourself going when times get tough. Also, think about how you will react when things get rough, and tell yourself that you will push through, even when it gets really difficult.

                Then, envision yourself finishing your run and how you will feel once you completed your goal. Visualize the entire process and how you get to your success. This will help you when you get to the actual run because you have thought about your commitment to that success and what it takes to get there.

                You have also created strategies for pushing through any bumps in the road to keep yourself going. You are committed to not quitting.

                Envisioning the entire run, which includes the difficulties, will help you get to the end goal which is successful completion of the 10 miles.

                Visualizing helps you think positively about your situation and encourages you to see that your vision of success is possible.

                12. Limit Your Intake of the News and Media

                The news and media can be predominantly negative. When you are constantly feeding your mind negative messages, it becomes very difficult to find positive self-talk.

                Limit your exposure to news and media. It’s good to be an informed citizen but sometimes, it is good for your mind and soul to shut off the TV and cut off the negativity that is happening everywhere in the world.

                For example, if you have made it a habit of listening to a news station on your commute, you may want to change that habit.

                Filling your hour long commute with all that is wrong in the world will not help you start your day out right. Instead, listen to a news station that provides a quick recap of the news. Spend only a small percentage of your commute listening to the news. The remainder of the time you can listen to an audio book that is uplifting or helping you become a better version of yourself.

                Putting a limit on the amount of time for your news intake can help you focus more time and energy on other positive activities.

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                When you do listen to the news, remind yourself there are lots of positive things happening in the world too; but they just aren’t often put on the news.

                13. Help Others

                Helping others is a way to bless others, but it can also be an even bigger blessing to yourself. This article on helping others shows how beneficial this act can be to yourself.

                You can experience feelings of being more positive, empowered, and optimistic by helping others. These feelings will help you have better self-talk during your day and improve your mental health.

                Try to do one thing each day to help another person, so that you can begin the habit of helping others on a regular basis. You will thank yourself later, as will the people you help.

                For example, on your way to work, hold the door open for others. Smile at those who are looking to make eye contact. You can also buy a cup of coffee for a co-worker, genuinely compliment people on their appearance. Or you can let someone who looks super rushed ahead of you in line.

                The list is almost endless of the kind things you can do for others on a daily basis. Start looking for ways that you can help others see the bright side of life.

                You can be a light in the world and some of these people may otherwise only be feeling and experiencing darkness. Your light can make a difference in the world.

                14. Be Physically Active

                There are a great many benefits to becoming active; such benefits include increased creativity, reduced anxiety, improved self-confidence, reduced stress, increase in happy brain chemicals and more.[3]

                All of these factors will help with your ability to practice positive self talk to yourself and eventually succeed in life.

                Get up, get active, and improve your body and mind together by exercising on a regular basis.

                Think you’re too busy to exercise? Here’re 5 ways to find time for exercise.

                15. Dream and Set Goals

                A great way to begin positive self-talk is to dream about the future.

                What is your desire in life? What do you want out of life? Where do you see yourself in 5, 10, or 15 years?

                Allow yourself to dream big and then set smaller goals toward reaching those end goals.

                Encourage yourself toward your life successes by providing supportive messages about how you will achieve these goals.

                When you reach these small goals, you will become more positive about your abilities and skills that help you achieve these milestones. This helps with your positive self-talk.

                Don’t get down on yourself if you do have failures along the way. Allow for flexibility and changing of plans along your route, and you will be a happier person.

                Tell yourself it’s okay to let go of some dreams and take on new ones as well. Your life is yours. Allow yourself to dream and to go for those dreams.

                Shoot for the stars; you never know which one you will hit. If not the first one, then try, and try again.

                Respect and appreciate yourself and your ability to keep trying.

                More About Positivity

                Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                Reference

                [1] National Study of Youth Religion: Sociologists Find that Religious Teens Are More Positive About Life
                [2] Psychology Today: The Grateful Today
                [3] Greatist: Benefits of Exercise

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