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4 Simple Hacks for Becoming a Better Person

4 Simple Hacks for Becoming a Better Person

When living out our daily lives, we’re often bombarded with too many choices from different things around us, telling us what’s good for us and how we can improve ourselves. It soon becomes apparent that the amount of choices we’re offered from our society can be too overwhelming, which causes us to stop dead in our tracks. This becomes detrimental to our overall growth as individuals since the key to growing and becoming a better person is through clarity and knowing what you want.

This is a problem I’ve personally had to face on a number of occasions, and didn’t know what to do with my life for a long time. It was at this point that I knew something had to change and that in order to develop focus, I would have to change course and find another alternative to doing things, since my current lifestyle wasn’t giving me what I wanted.

Why too much choice is never ideal

We’re often told that having more would lead to happiness when in actual fact, the opposite occurs. Having too much choice inevitably causes us to lose value in the very thing we’re seeking since there is an abundance of it already, and it becomes something to take for granted, knowing that it will always be there.

The key to avoiding this would be to eliminate everything that’s currently distracting you and to develop a clear mind, which will help you make better decisions as you move forward.

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Get rid of distractions

Looking back, the times in which I was the most confused and frustrated was when I had an abundance of choice, which caused me to settle and not look for improvements or a higher purpose. Life and routine suddenly became a distraction and I found myself going through the motions on a daily basis, rather than stopping and reviewing my current circumstances.

I knew that I had to somehow remove these distractions and to start discovering more challenges so I could begin pushing myself.

What’s distracting you in your life?

Are they things you’re comfortable with?

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What can you do right now that will make you feel uncomfortable?

Write a list of everything that’s currently bothering you.

The goal of this exercise is to discover what needs to improve in your life and to develop the habit of creating higher goals for yourself. If there’s no movement or progress in your life, then it becomes obvious that this needs to change.

Create goals and milestones

After you gain clarity about your current issues, it’s now imperative to write milestones for yourself that will help you push past your current threshold. Having a higher purpose is what will drive us to better ourselves and to not settle as explained earlier.

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Look to consistently create larger goals for yourself as it will help guide you in the direction you’ve always wanted.

Appreciate what you currently have

People often lose sight of the things around them and that causes them to turn in on themselves from time to time. It’s human nature to overlook the things we currently have and to feel dissatisfied of it due to having obtained it. It therefore becomes imperative to remind ourselves that what we currently have is a blessing, and to write about that daily.

Attempting to grow without initially appreciating what we have will often always lead to dissatisfaction in the future due to lack of focus. Find appreciation in the things you have and in the life you currently lead. This will make it easier to grow, and will change the focus on growing to improve for the sake of improving and not just to obtain more and better things.

Be willing to fail

It is often said that if you’ve never failed, you’ve never lived, and this is something i definitely agree with. Looking back at my past, everything I’ve become has all resulted in failing numerous times until I developed competence at what I did in order to move forward.

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Don’t let fear stop you: use it as a learning tool to show you what you need to do in order to succeed. Learn to challenge yourself and step outside of your comfort zone. If something scares you, use it as a signal from your body to take action. It is an opportunity to grow and to become the person you’ve always wanted to be.

Whatever person you wish to become in the future, these 4 hacks should provide you with a solid foundation to now go ahead and take action.

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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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