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3 Highly Effective Ways to Become Happy, Awake, Fulfilled and Free

3 Highly Effective Ways to Become Happy, Awake, Fulfilled and Free

Does the journey you’re on define you? Or, do you define the journey?

I think it varies depending on the person. Some of us conform and follow the status quo, while others make the decision to write their own script; they choose to look at life without limits. The only difference between these two groups of people is the second group made a conscious choice to take action on their passions and dreams.

Introducing a new way of looking at the journey and the pursuit we’re all on:

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H.A.F.F.

I like to refer to this process, which has been given many names (lifestyle design, live on your own terms, paid to exist, find your passion, follow your dreams, etc.), as H.A.F.F.—the process of becoming happy, awake, fulfilled, and free. Each has a very specific meaning and place in putting together a strategy for your vision of the future.

  • Happy means to live your life on your terms; to have passion for your life and the work you do in it; to find joy in the moments and the clarity in your struggles.
  • Awake is becoming aware that dreams can actually come true, and aren’t just for the highly talented and prestigious. It’s about opening your eyes and discovering your true potential and deepest desires.
  • Fulfilled is something you will become on your journey. There will come a time when you understand the true meaning of your life and place in it; when everything comes together and you realize your place in the world and how you can use it to make a difference and discover the true power of giving.
  • Free means what I can only describe as having true freedom in all aspects of life; having the ability to use your knowledge and expertise to create a life where you can become financially free and live life on your own terms.

This may resonate with you and it may not. The important thing to remember is that your path will look different from mine. That’s a good thing—you will come up with your own definitions. What makes me H.A.F.F. is knowing that the vision I see for my future is one of constant possibilities for progressing and moving forward in both my life and my journey to make the world a better place.

Here are three highly effective techniques to becoming your definition of happy, awake, fulfilled, and free:

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1. Change your Perception

If you want to start the process of becoming H.A.F.F., you need to start putting yourself in a frame of mind which allows you to look at life from an optimistic point of view. You need to be open to the idea that anything is possible, and you need to change anything negative in your life into a positive. Changing your perception of how you see your life can prove to be difficult, especially if there are a lot of negative factors in your life. So how do you do it?

  • Put yourself in an environment that inspires you to believe.
  • Surround yourself with positive people who also believe that anything is possible.
  • Read books and articles that inspire change

2. Discover your Purpose

The difference between people who are fully immersed in becoming happy, awake, fulfilled, and free, and those who live a life of suffering, negativity, mediocrity, regret, etc., is that the first group has taken action on changing their mindset to pursue something greater than themselves. We all have a deep need to be loved and to matter.

Those of us who are on the path of changing our circumstances and going against the status quo come to understand that the path brings positive change for ourselves, but more importantly, it helps us realize the importance of helping others who are on the same path. There is a far greater reward: having a purpose greater than yourself. Doing so includes using your knowledge and experience of what you’ve learned on your journey to make a difference in the lives of others, and in the world. Only then can truly start your journey to becoming happy, awake, fulfilled, and free.

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Below are some techniques that can make the transformation from egoism to altruism more acceptable. Seeing as how we are egoistic in nature, you need to change your focus to the others in your environment.

  • Build stronger relationships– Give the people who are closest to you your full, conscious attention. We are social beings and need the connections with others to push us, move us, inspire us, and help us when we need them. Give yourself to your environment and you will receive an abundance of happiness and fulfillment, just by knowing you matter to those around you.
  • Connect– Connecting with the people who are in the environment you want to be in is one of the most powerful actions you can take to find and live with purpose and meaning. Make connections by being yourself, and approach others as if they were potential friends.
  • Care– If you want to be able to get a sense of what it really means to have a purpose, then you should genuinely care about people; have genuine interest and care for others. We are an interconnected global world, all emotional beings, and all a part of the same system. The time has come to quit hiding ourselves from the world and surround ourselves with hope, inspiration, and love.

3. Follow your Dreams

On your journey, you will also discover the rewards and benefits of living life the way you want to, on your own terms, and the power that comes with doing something that matters.

*Warning: Following these three techniques takes an incredible amount of desire, inspiration, motivation, and the willingness to help others. Be prepared to have your life changed.

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  • Reason– You need a reason to believe that what you want for your life is possible. Having a reason, a purpose for your life, helps you build the desire, and gives you the passion needed to start.
  • Action- You know, most people have strong desires, passions, ideas, and dreams for the future, and those who act on those desires are already moving closer to what drives them. All you have to do is start. Like my five year old daughter told me last week, “You don’t have to do it all at once daddy. You just take it one step at a time”.
  • Effort- Your desires and passions will be the catapult to your effort. The larger your vision for the future, the more immense the amount of effort needed to reach your goals. That’s why it’s so critical to have a purpose and the right mindset for it.

 

More by this author

Justin Harmon

Justin helps people break free from the status quo and start living a life of personal freedom, fulfillment, and purpose.

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Last Updated on September 28, 2020

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

At the start of the year, if you had asked anyone if they could do their work from home, many would have said no. They would have cited the need for team meetings, a place to be able to sit down and get on with their work, the camaraderie of the office, and being able to meet customers and clients face to face.

Almost ten months later, most of us have learned that we can do our work from home and in many ways, we have discovered working from home is a lot better than doing our work in a busy, bustling office environment where we are inundated with distractions and noise.

One of the things the 2020 pandemic has reminded us is we humans are incredibly adaptable. It is one of the strengths of our kind. Yet we have been unknowingly practicing this for years. When we move house we go through enormous upheaval.

When we change jobs, we not only change our work environment but we also change the surrounding people. Humans are adaptable and this adaptability gives us strength.

So, what are the pros and cons of working from home? Below I will share some things I have discovered since I made the change to being predominantly a person who works from home.

Pro #1: A More Relaxed Start to the Day

This one I love. When I had to be at a place of work in the past, I would always set my alarm to give me just enough time to make coffee, take a shower, and change. Mornings always felt like a rush.

Now, I can wake up a little later, make coffee and instead of rushing to get out of the door at a specific time, I can spend ten minutes writing in my journal, reviewing my plan for the day, and start the day in a more relaxed frame of mind.

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When you start the day in a relaxed state, you begin more positively. You find you have more clarity and more focus and you are not wasting energy worrying about whether you will be late.

Pro #2: More Quiet, Focused Time = Increased Productivity

One of the biggest difficulties of working in an office is the noise and distractions. If a colleague or boss can see you sat at your desk, you are more approachable. It is easier for them to ask you questions or engage you in meaningless conversations.

Working from home allows you to shut the door and get on with an hour or two of quiet focused work. If you close down your Slack and Email, you avoid the risk of being disturbed and it is amazing how much work you can get done.

An experiment conducted in 2012 found that working from home increased a person’s productivity by 13%, and more recent studies also find significant increases in productivity.[1]

When our productivity increases, the amount of time we need to perform our work decreases, and this means we can spend more time on activities that can bring us closer to our family and friends as well as improve our mental health.

Pro #3: More Control Over Your Day

Without bosses and colleagues watching over us all day, we have a lot more control over what we do. While some work will inevitably be more urgent than others, we still get a lot more choice about what we work on.

We also get more control over where we work. I remember when working in an office, we were given a fixed workstation. Some of these workstations were pleasant with a lot of natural sunlight, but other areas were less pleasant. It was often the luck of the draw whether we find ourselves in a good place to work or not.

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By working from home we can choose what work to work on and whether we want to face a window or not. We can get up and move to another place, and we can move from room to room. And if you have a garden, on nice days you could spend a few hours working outside.

Pro #4: You Get to Choose Your Office Environment

While many companies will provide you with a laptop or other equipment to do your work, others will give you an allowance to purchase your equipment. But with furniture such as your chair and desk, you have a lot of freedom.

I have seen a lot of amazing home working spaces with wonderful sets up—better chairs, laptop stands that make working from a laptop much more ergonomic and therefore, better for your neck.

You can also choose your wall art and the little nick-nacks on your desk or table. With all this freedom, you can create a very personal and excellent working environment that is a pleasure to work in. When you are happy doing your work, you will inevitably do better work.

Con #1: We Move a Lot Less

When we commute to a place of work, there is movement involved. Many people commute using public transport, which means walking to the bus stop or train station. Then, there is the movement at lunchtime when we go out to buy our lunch. Working in a place of work requires us to move more.

Unfortunately, working from home naturally causes us to move less and this means we are not burning as many calories as we need to.

Moving is essential to our health and if you are working from home you need to become much more aware of your movement. To ensure you are moving enough, make sure you take your lunch breaks. Get up from your desk and move. Go outside, if you can, and take a walk. And, of course, refrain from regular trips to the refrigerator.

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Con #2: Less Human Interaction

One of the nicest things about bringing a group of people together to work is the camaraderie and relationships that are built over time. Working from home takes us away from that human interaction and for many, this can cause a feeling of loss.

Humans are a social species—we need to be with other people. Without that connection, we start to feel lonely and that can lead to mental health issues.

Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting cannot replace that interaction. Often, the interactions we get at our workplaces are spontaneous. But with video calls, there is nothing spontaneous—most of these calls are prearranged and that’s not spontaneous.

This lack of spontaneous interaction can also reduce a team’s ability to develop creative solutions—there’s just something about a group of incredibly creative people coming together in a room to thrash out ideas together that lends itself to creativity.

While video calls can be useful, they don’t match the connection between a group of people working on a solution together.

Con #3: The Cost of Buying Home Office Equipment

Not all companies are going to provide you with a nice allowance to buy expensive home office equipment. 100% remote companies such as Doist (the creators of Todoist and Twist) provide a $2,000 allowance to all their staff every two years to buy office equipment. Others are not so generous.

This can prove to be expensive for many people to create their ideal work-from-home workspace. Many people must make do with what they already have, and that could mean unsuitable chairs that damage backs and necks.

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For a future that will likely involve more flexible working arrangements, companies will need to support their staff in ways that will add additional costs to an already reduced bottom line.

Con #4: Unique Distractions

Not all people have the benefit of being able to afford childcare for young children, and this means they need to balance working and taking care of their kids.

For many parents, being able to go to a workplace gives them time away from the noise and demands of a young family, so they could get on with their work. Working from home removes this and can make doing video calls almost impossible.

To overcome this, where possible, you need to set some boundaries. I know this is not always possible, but it is something you need to try. You should do whatever you can to make sure you have some boundaries between your work life and home life.

Final Thoughts

Working from home can be hugely beneficial for many people, but it can also bring serious challenges to others.

We are moving towards a new way of working. Therefore, companies need to look at both the pros and cons of working from home and be prepared to support their staff in making this transition. It will not be impossible, but a lot of thought will need to go into it.

More About Working From Home

Featured photo credit: Standsome Worklifestyle via unsplash.com

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