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How to Adopt an All Or Nothing Attitude (And How It Can Level Up Your Life)

How to Adopt an All Or Nothing Attitude (And How It Can Level Up Your Life)

    There comes a point in life where your back is against the wall, options are running low…and you have to act — it’s now or never.

    You’ve been slacking, putting things on hold that are high priority, and following your passion just seems like a hopeless dream.

    I was in this situation a few years ago: I was a failing college student with no passions, goals, or any idea of where I was heading. That’s when I decided to adopt an “All Or Nothing” attitude.

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    It’s as simple as this:

    1. Ask yourself: What do I want out of this life? What is it that I want to accomplish? What is it that I love doing, that gets me up in the morning?
    2. Once you can answer number one, then ask yourself: What fundamental steps must I take to work towards building my future? My dream? If a bodybuilder wants to be Mr. Universe, then what does a bodybuilder do in order to reach his pinnacle? In order for a writer to become great, one must relentlessly read and write. Focus on the relevant, important steps towards your idea, and do just that.
    3. The last step: start today. Start right now. Think of it like this: If this were your last day, would be happy with what you’re doing?

    Why this mindset?

    Be honest with yourself: Why have you been putting off your goals? Why have you put off writing that book, building that business, or spending more time with your family? If you’re beating yourself up because you failed to do it last year (and the year before that), then are you ready to beat yourself up again at the end of this year?

    When my back was against the wall, I knew it was time to act. No more delaying. No more procrastinating. No more lying to myself that things would work out in some magical way.

    It may be extreme to tell yourself that you might die if you don’t do this final act, but if it motivates you like it did for me…then so be it. Because honestly, how much further down can you go before hitting rock bottom? How much more do you want to wind up shooting yourself in the foot before you actually realize that taking your goals a step at a time is the sensible — if not only — method?

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    All or nothing

    This is it, baby.

    A few things I told myself that motivated me to keep moving my feet forward:

    • There are people — friends and family — that want me to do well. They want to see me live a fruitful life. Why continue to disappoint them? Why continue to disappoint yourself? You’re better than this…
    • Patience. Take it a step at a time. This whole time you’ve been procrastinating; you haven’t been putting any pieces together — just staring at them. Now is the time to slowly build your way up, even if it means starting at the bottom — because there is nothing wrong with starting at the bottom.
    • Take it day by day. Or as famous writer Anne Lamont says, “Bird by bird.”
    • Focus on the relevant steps towards building your dream. If building your business requires you to brainstorm and really break down what it is you’re offering to your customers, then you must do that until it’s right. If becoming fit, healthy, and lean requires daily exercise and healthy eating habits, then stick to that. Don’t allow distractions or shortcuts divert your focus: there is no such thing as quick-and-easy success.
    • Last but not least, this is all or nothing. Tell yourself: If I don’t do this, then what will I do? Suffer? Always be frustrated and angry? Tell myself on New Years that this year I’ll be sure to accomplish my tasks? (Let’s be real…)

    It starts with your positive attitude

    Adopting this positive attitude can change your life for the better. It can give you that jumpstart that you’ve been desperately searching for. It can reinvigorate you, unleashing your potential to propel you forward in your life.

    Instead of forcing yourself to commit to productive acts, why not first adopt a productive attitude so the rest can follow through?

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    This is about challenging yourself. This is about the all-or-nothing attitude. Because at the end of the day, it really does come down to all or nothing. You have two choices:

    • Continue living the life where you procrastinate, daydream, and tell yourself that things will be alright.
    • Or…develop this mindset, exercise it, and see yourself grow into the person that you envisioned to be.

    Also, when walking this path, I must warn that at times you will be frustrated, just like anyone else who is pursuing their dreams. The point is to not allow your frustrations, resentment, or anger dictate your next move. They say patience is a virtue — and at this point, you have to be willing to be believe that. What other choice do you have?

    Adopting this positive attitude can be the start of your new life. The life where you actually meet your goals, stay productive, and learn more about yourself. This all-or-nothing attitude can be your game-changer, the butt-kicking you’ve needed to get moving, the jumpstart that will change the course of your life as long as you commit to it.

    Stop waiting for something to happen and go make something happen — consistently tell yourself:

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    “This is it, this is all or nothing. If I don’t do it, who will?”

    Not only do your friends and family need you to pursue your dreams: the world needs it. We don’t need you sitting around daydreaming, not doing what it requires to be great. We don’t need anymore frustrated people who procrastinate and complain — we have enough of that. We need people that have the positive attitude that allows them to live their life to their desire, and to inspire others to do the same. We need more people living their passions, building their dreams, and adopting a mentality that motivates them to keep moving forward.

    How will you adopt this positive attitude? What other ways have you found productive to get started on your goals and dreams? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

    (Photo credit: All In via Shutterstock)

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    Paul Jun

    Paul Jun is a content strategist, community builder, writer, and photographer. He shares motivational tips on Lifehack.

    How to Get “I Can’t Do It” Out of Your Vocabulary The Real Meaning of Success The 2 Steps to Embracing Sudden Realizations How to Adopt an All Or Nothing Attitude (And How It Can Level Up Your Life)

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    Last Updated on July 10, 2020

    How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

    How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

    We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

    We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

    So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

    Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

    What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

    Boundaries are limits

    —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

    Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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    Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

    Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

    Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

    How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

    Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

    1. Self-Awareness Comes First

    Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

    You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

    To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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    You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

    • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
    • When do you feel disrespected?
    • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
    • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
    • When do you want to be alone?
    • How much space do you need?

    You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

    2. Clear Communication Is Essential

    Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

    Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

    3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

    Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

    That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

    Sample language:

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    • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
    • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
    • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
    • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
    • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
    • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
    • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

    Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

    4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

    Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

    Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

    Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

    We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

    It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

    It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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    Final Thoughts

    Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

    Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

    Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

    The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

    Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

    Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

    They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

    Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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