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10 Reasons Why Today Should be Your Someday

10 Reasons Why Today Should be Your Someday

When you imagine your future, what exactly do you see? Do you see someone in rapid pursuit of their goals? Or do you see someone who wanted to achieve a lot in life, but never really did much to make it happen?

If you’re reading this right now, I know you’re that first person, not the second one.

There’s no better time than the present to take action. I want to inspire you, and light a fire inside of you. I want to create some urgency and remind you that putting things off for tomorrow, isn’t always the best course of action.  Below are few reasons why today is the best possible day you can choose to start chasing those dreams and goals you want so bad.

1. You’ll never be “ready”

It’s true, sometimes and in certain situations you actually can be “ready”. But for the majority of things that really matter, the experiences and challenges that will change your life, you can’t be 100% ready. And if you keep waiting for that readiness to appear, you’ll wait forever and before you know it, you’ve missed your chance.

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2. Your competition started yesterday

While you were waiting to get ready, your competition was working, which means you’ve got some ground to make up. The longer you wait, the bigger that gap is going to get. Don’t get discouraged and say, “Well I’m already behind, why bother now?”. It’s tempting, but if it’s something you really want to get done, you’ve got to get moving.

3. Planning is pointless when it’s not followed by action

You know all those lavish, detailed, calculated plans you’ve been making? They’ll be nothing more than an absolute waste of time if you don’t act on those plans. Isn’t that the whole reason for planning, to actually do something? You’re wasting valuable time by not executing on those plans today.

4. You deserve to happy

Happiness is something we’re all entitled to. But many times, happiness is a direct product of you taking life by the horns and making something happen. Today  should be the day you make something happen. Today should be the day you get happy about life again.

5. You deserve to be excited

So many people dread Monday mornings. Is there something inherently wrong about Monday? Is Monday plotting an evil scheme against you and your dreams? Of course not. You deserve to wake up every day with an excitement to take on the day. Why make yourself wait for that?

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6. There’s no refund for lost time

Time is the one thing that you can never get back. Once it’s gone, it’s gone for good. The last thing you want to do is to wait 20 years, then look back and wonder “what-if?” It’s okay to fail. It’s okay to stumble, but to never take action isn’t something you should accept. The longer you wait, the less time you have to reach those goals.

7. You need to get comfortable with being uncomfortable

You know that warm fuzzy place where life is so easy and everything makes sense? That’s your comfort zone, and nothing amazing happens there. If you want to make progress towards achieving things that matter in life, you have to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.

All of your growth and progress is going to happen right outside of your comfort zone. And the longer you wait, the harder it’s going to be to break out of your comfort zone.

8. Your excuses suck

A lack of time, money, resources, skills, and knowledge are nothing more than excuses that are preventing you from achieving those goals you want so badly. If you’re productive and prioritize correctly, you’ll easily find the time you need.

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Money is often a self inflicted barrier. There are ways to start now, with the money you have, you just need to look deeper. And if the money turns out to be a necessity, I’m sure that with 100% focus, you’ll find  a way to get it.

Resources, like money, can be found when you really focus on getting them.

Skills and knowledge are easier to find when you’re taking action.

9. You’re more than a passenger in life

You can’t live life with a third person perspective. No one else in charge of your life except for you, and that’s a good thing. That means that you have all the permission you need to steer your life in a direction that moves you closer to those goals that really matter.

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10. Practice makes perfect

Chances are, whatever it is you want to achieve, it’s going to take some practice to get it done. But you won’t get that practice if you don’t take action. And the sooner you take action, the sooner you’ll start making progress.

Featured photo credit: photosteve101 via flickr.com

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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