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Published on April 10, 2019

How to Reinvent Yourself And Redefine Your Future

How to Reinvent Yourself And Redefine Your Future

Do you ever wish you could change your past?

We all go through struggles in life, make mistakes, and face certain hardships and challenges that prevent us from moving ahead. The important thing is to learn how to come out stronger, and become even better than you were before.

Though, this is easier said than done. Many of us may find that we’re stuck or bogged down by certain limitations that prevent us from achieving our goals and progressing in life.

This can be super frustrating, especially if you’ve been feeling this way for a while. When you aren’t able to find a solution or way out of a rut, it can be demoralizing and cause you to spiral further downward.

Yet, it is possible to break free from those limitations or set backs, and to get ahead in life again. You can indeed take control of your actions and reactions to work them in your favor. I’ve experienced this first hand over my many years working as a life coach.

Here are 4 ways to start re-inventing yourself right now so you can achieve a better version of you!

1. Refresh Your Perspective

Before you decide to re-invent yourself, it’s important to double check your attitude.

If you’ve been having negative thoughts about the situation you’re in, then chances are you’re not going to progress much even if you’ve made up your mind that you want to change.

This is especially so when you’ve been facing the setback for a while–you may feel accustomed to accepting the negativity. Below are some negative attitudes to get rid of, and more positive ones that you can adopt:

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Limit/RemoveSelf-defeating talk
Replace it with: Positive affirmations:

  • I am confident in the presence of others.
  • Everything will work out for me.
  • The tools I need to succeed are in my possession.
  • Happiness is within my grasp.
  • I will say “No” when I do not have the time or inclination to act.
  • If I fail, I will fail forward.
  • Positivity is a choice that I choose to make.
  • My commitment to myself is real.

Limit/RemoveToxic people who bring you down rather than lift you up.
Replace them with: People who inspire, uplift, and empower you.

Limit/Remove
Comparing yourself to others.  
Replace it with: 
Comparing yourself to who you were yesterday.

Limit/RemoveAn abundance of “should haves” / regrets.
Replace it with: An abundance of ‘could haves’. Learn from your mistakes and move forward in a productive manner. Stop “shoulding” all over yourself!

By simply mastering a positive perspective, you can really change your overall outlook and see possibilities you hadn’t before.

2. Recognize the Power of Purpose

The next important step to overcoming your limitations is to know your purpose. Whatever it is that you’re wanting to achieve or do, you need to know why you are doing it. This way, you can leverage your positive attitude and get to where you want to go.

Your purpose doesn’t need to be revolutionary, such as overcoming injustice in the world. It can be as simple as wanting to be a healthier you for your family and loved ones!

The key is in knowing ‘why’ you’re doing something, as it needs to bring meaning to your life.Many times, we find ourselves lost, stuck or feeling demotivated–and this is often because we never quite have our purpose figured out. If there is no concrete meaning or reason to why we were chasing after something, what’s the reason for doing it? Why feel motivated?

“Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of meaning and purpose.” — Viktor Frankl

Having a purpose gives you direction and allows you to outline what is and what isn’t important. By having a purpose, you can plan out goals that align to your purpose, and ensure it will get met.

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Even if you find yourself lost or facing a setback, you at least have a purpose to go back to–and a new sense of direction goals to work towards.

3. Understand How to Hit Your Goals

Once you have identified your true purpose, you can get down to setting out SMART goals!

SMART goal setting is a goal setting method that considers certain factors about a goal relative to the person setting it.

They are:

  • S — Specific
  • M — Measurable
  • A — Achievable
  • R — Realistic
  • T — Time bound

The strength of SMART goals is that they set a clear path to achieving goals, and they have a clear time frame in which to achieve them. When you understand how to reach those goals, things will seem less complicated, and you’ll find yourself feeling more confident about certain decisions or actions.

Specific
It is important to have a clear idea of what you want to achieve. That way you can focus your time and energy on achieving your goal. Also, having a specific goal helps you stay away from distractions.

Let’s use the example of wanting to be a ‘healthier you’. Saying that you want to be healthier is vague. Instead, you could say that “you want to lose 15kg within a year”.

Measurable
You want to know when you’ve achieved your goal.

You should also be able to tell how far you’ve come during the process, and how much further to go. Be specific with how much or how many about your goal.Using our example while explaining the Specific acronym, you can make the goal more measurable by saying, “I will start to lose weight by exercising 5 times a week”.

Achievable
Look at what skills and resources you already have, and compare them to the things needed to achieve your goal. Think about whether you’ll be able to learn or get the things you lack right now.

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A goal like this is not achievable: “I want to lose 20 pounds in 1 week.” Meanwhile, this person is not at all in shape, and losing weight and building muscle would realistically take months.

Realistic
Before you proceed to making the commitment toward that goal, you need to think about how realistic it is. Being realistic means you are willing to make all the commitments required for that goal to be achieved.

Research all the stats, facts and figures relevant to your goal. Then consider the resources available to you, such as your budget, time, help from others, etc. Ask yourself if your goal makes sense in your situation.In the case of our example, it would be unrealistic and unhealthy for someone to achieve that much weight loss in 1 week.

Time Bound
Every goal must have a commencement date and an end date. The act of having deadlines set to your goals is ample motivation to drive you into action. Without a deadline, it is not possible for you to know if you’re making headway with your goals.

“I will start losing 20 pounds by exercising 5 times a week for the next 12 months” is a time bound goal.

Remember that some goals are short term while some are long term. It is important to always bear this in mind, because this will help you in making a clearer and realistic strategy for your SMART goal setting.

4. Know the Value of Your Time

Re-inventing yourself requires you to know the value of your time. Time is extremely valuable; it is something we can never get back once it’s gone, and it’s very limited in quantity. Therefore, we need to know just what is it that we’re using our time for, and to be sure to use it well.

So what are you prioritizing? Is it aligned with your purpose?

How do your habits stack up to your time budget? Are you spending more time in a wasteful rather than productive way?

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To learn more about how you can quantify and put a value to the time you spend on certain tasks, I’ll recommend you read this article:

The Ultimate Guide to Prioritizing Your Work And Life

Once when you’ve figured out what’s unimportant, what do you do with those tasks? One way is delegate out those tasks. If you’re unsure of what should be delegated, this article will show you how:

Have You Fallen Into the ‘Busy’ Trap? Here’s Your Way Out

Make Progress Towards an Improved Version of You

These 4 steps may seem overwhelming at first, but once you can take some time to go through each, you’ll be making progress in no time.

Refreshing your perspective enables you to step out of your current mindset to see new possibilities. Knowing your purpose will allow you to use the refreshed perspective you now have to get moving in the right direction.

Understanding how to set goals that align to your purpose will also prevent you from falling into potential setbacks or spending time on things that don’t bring meaning to your life.

And finally, knowing the value of your time will ensure that the tasks you do will multiply your available time and help you progress towards actual goals and the future that you dream of.

By implementing these steps, you’ll soon discover that it is possible to overcome whatever circumstance you’re currently facing, and be ready to take on goals that actually align to your purpose.

Featured photo credit: Photo by Green Chameleon on Unsplash via unsplash.com

More by this author

Leon Ho

Founder & CEO of Lifehack

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Published on April 16, 2019

How Self Care Can Help You Live Your Best Life

How Self Care Can Help You Live Your Best Life

When was the last time you did something for yourself?

Whether it was deciding to treat yourself with a little something or travel for some R&R, how often do you practice self-care?

Well, as good as above sounds, there’s a common misconception that many of us have about self-care: that it’s only about indulgence and enjoyment.

However, self-care goes far beyond indulgence. It’s actually about respecting your mind and body, understanding its limits, and being able to take care of every part of yourself, in a holistic way.

And, you really don’t have to go to extreme measures or do anything specific–like meditating or following a plant based diet–in order to practice self-care. You just have to make sure that what you’re doing is in your best interests.

So how can you make that happen?

Below are a few proven methods that will help you become a better version of you. Follow through with these regularly and you’ll be well on your way to living your very best life.

Listen to Yourself

The bulk of self-care is knowing yourself.

This means knowing your body’s limitations, and being in tune with your feelings, emotions and thoughts. So it’s important, then, to know who you are and what you want to do in life, in order to truly say that you know yourself. 

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What is your purpose?

Have you ever thought about this question?

Your purpose doesn’t have to remain the same throughout your life. What you found a purpose in at age 19 would likely be different at age 49.

In your current situation, think about the different roles that you have – as a working professional, a spouse, a partner, a parent, etc.

Do you feel like you are fulfilling your purpose through any of these roles?

All you have to do is ensure that what you’re chasing is meaningful to you; this will bring focus and motivation as you strive to achieve your goals.

If you have your purpose defined, then that’s awesome! You know what drives you and why.

But, if you don’t feel like you have a purpose nailed down, it’s good to start by asking why.

For example, why are you working in your particular job or industry? If the reason is vague or unclear, then your motivational energy will be the same. In which case, you may find yourself not having a direction for where you’re headed in life.

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If you’d like to learn more about finding your purpose, then I recommend you check out this article:

How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up

Seek Out Continuous Education

Now, this may seem less common when you think of self-care, but lifelong learning is incredibly useful and an important component of taking care of yourself.

It’s Super Practical

Lifelong learning is extremely practical these days and does not require as much effort as it may have in the past. Long gone are the days when you could only find information on something by visiting a library. In this day of the internet, anything you can imagine is at your fingertips.

You don’t need to physically go to a learning institution to learn. You can watch Youtube videos to learn new skills, take online courses to earn a degree, and scroll through an endless amount of articles, books and journals from reputable news and informative sites.

When you’re constantly pushing yourself to learn and take up new things, your mental health also improves. Research shows that an active and engaged mind is responsible for diminishing age-related memory loss and improves overall cognitive abilities.

Your Confidence Will Skyrocket

You’ll also have improved self worth as it teaches you to step outside of your comfort zone, which will undoubtedly improve your confidence.

You’ll also connect better with others by expanding your knowledge base. Learning exposes you to a multitude of new ideas and perspectives that you may have otherwise never considered. This also increases your adaptability. Whether it’s at work or just wanting to adapt to society, your peers, and loved ones, life long learning prepares you to take on new challenges.

You’ll Be More Desired in the Job Market

Another obvious reason for continuous education, is that your employability will also increase.

With the ever changing economy, and huge influences from technology, social media, science etc., job descriptions today are moving targets. Assignments and roles change so quickly in response to changing business demands, it becomes a Herculean task to keep a job description database current.

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In years past, stability was a characteristic of the world of work. Procedures, information, jobs, and organizations were established and provided continuity. Education was completed in the first 14 to 22 years of one’s life, followed by a long career occasionally punctuated by short-term job training.

Today, however, jobs, companies, and technology are disappearing and being created simultaneously. To remain current and maintain a competitive advantage in the human capital marketplace, an individual is challenged to continually learn.

People return to school at every age to enrich their skills and knowledge for their current positions. Some even prepare themselves for new jobs or career changes, moving them forward into new opportunities and technology.

We can be assured that we will be challenged to continue to learn new tasks and information throughout our lives. Successful careers belong to flexible, curious learners who are prepared for opportunities because they know themselves and where they make their best contribution. As Peter Drucker, the father of modern management stated,

“Knowledge is choice.”

Lifelong learning also increases social awareness and perspective. To genuinely understand and empathize with others, increase social awareness, and foster strong interpersonal relationships, it’s important to seek out new perspectives. Enhancing the skills that positively impact emotional intelligence can bring even greater happiness and success, both personally and at work; and, this is all part of self-care.

Improve Your Habits (Both at Work and at Home)

Now, the last piece of advice I want to introduce to your self-care regimen, is to improve your habits.

Habits define who you are, and are built up over time. You are what you eat is a great example of this. If you make it a habit to eat foods that nourish your body, rather than make your body feel bad, then you will be much healthier overall.

Good Habits Allow You to Reach Your Goals

Since habits dictate your days and nights, such as waking up every morning to get to work before a certain time, or brushing your teeth before bedtime every night, they play a major role in whether we do or do not reach our goals.

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When you form habits that allow you to progress towards your goals, you’re automatically living a purposeful day, everyday.

Habits Make Your Time a Priority

How do you spend your free time? Do you opt to lounge on the couch watching Netflix passively, or do you engage in activities that support your purpose in life?

It’s natural to waste a lot of time during the day, but fostering good habits will make you set a pattern for how you spend your time and give you the choice of what you choose to spend your time on. By improving your habits, you’ll find that you can be a LOT more productive. When you create good habits, you become more efficient with your time and a lot less is wasted.

This in essence creates an overall positive influence on your life, allowing you to treat your mind and body well, which is why improving your habits are so important to self-care.

Your Well Being Comes First

We live in such a fast-paced society, where we are often so caught up in our work, families, maintaining our social lives, our studies and everything in between. It’s an understatement to say that life can get a little overwhelming at times.

If you’ve ever watched the safety video onboard a plane, you’ll know that they always ask for a parent or adult to put on the safety mask first, before tending to the child. This may sound selfish, but the fact is that if you truly want to ensure the child’s safety, then your safety needs to come first so that you can protect and care for the child without complications from your end.

The same goes for self-care. We need to ensure that our well being is priority, so that we can be the best for the people around us.

Listening to yourself, practicing lifelong learning and improving your habits are steps that you can take to ensure you’re constantly in the best state of mind, alongside the indulgence and rest that you reward yourself with.

Featured photo credit: Photo by Raychan on Unsplash via unsplash.com

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