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7 Harsh Truths That Will Lead You To Success

7 Harsh Truths That Will Lead You To Success
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Sometimes it takes a healthy dose of tough love to snap people out of their sluggish existence. If you want to lead a successful life, you need to confront these seven harsh truths today.

1. The grave is where you will end your life, so it’s not like you have anything to lose.

“The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” ― Mark Twain

You are going to die. Sure, you can eat healthy and exercise to add years to your lifespan, but there is no escaping the inevitable fate of death. Since the grim reaper will find you no matter how hard you try to hide, don’t you think it’s time to do the ambitious things you have always dreamed of doing?

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2. Nothing you care about matters, so you need to stop worrying about everything.

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” ― Horace Walpole

You are obsessed with trivial things. Yes, it is a bummer to go through a nasty break-up or job-loss, but you’ve gotta confess such things are trivial when compared to the grim realities of poverty and violence that are every day occurrences in other countries. Since positive action trumps negative thoughts every time, don’t you think it’s time to get over it?

3. “Reality” is a safety net built by people who had the balls to do it, so you should break rules more often.

“I have certain rules I live by. My first rule: I don’t believe anything the government tells me. Nothing. Zero.” ― George Carlin

You are a sheep. I know, you’re afraid of getting criticized or upsetting people; but if no one is rattled by what you have to say, you are probably following a script that was determined by others. Since meaningful change is achieved by people who have the guts to march to the beat of their own drum, don’t you think it’s time to set the rule book on fire?

4. Agonizing over painful memories won’t get you anywhere, so you might as well deal with them.

“It’s so hard to forget pain, but it’s even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.” ― Chuck Palahniuk

You are a slave to your past. Yes, your life might include unfortunate events that are worth getting upset about, but these mishaps are meaningless when viewed through the context of your entire existence. Since your future happiness is determined by how you react in the present, don’t you think it’s time to forget about the past?

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5. Being ordinary will get you nowhere, so you better get comfortable with taking risks.

“Who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed?” ― Hunter S. Thompson

You are a weakling. Sure, it’s scary to stretch yourself beyond that bubble of comfort you have constructed for yourself, but the only way to accomplish audacious goals is through taking bold actions. Since bowing down to your fear of failure will cripple your progress before you start, don’t you think it’s time to take a risk?

6. Trying to impress people who don’t appreciate your true personality is stupid, so you need to knock it off.

“Happiness is when you feel good about yourself without feeling the need for anyone else’s approval.” ― Unknown

You are a people-pleaser. I know, life can get lonely without friends to hang out with, but a friendship built on lies isn’t a relationship worth having. Since you would be a lot happier if you focused on the true friends who appreciate you, don’t you think it’s time to stop giving a crap about the rest?

7. Doing scary things is the only way to achieve success, so it’s in your best interest to lean in to your fear.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be?” ― Marianne Williamson

You are spine-less. Sure, it’s difficult to overcome your feelings of unworthiness, but there is no way to achieve success without a firm belief in your ability to achieve. Since becoming fearless will create more opportunities than you could ever imagine, don’t you think it’s time to rip every ounce of self-consciousness out of you?

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If your friends would be helped by these harsh truths, click the share button to pass along a healthy dose of tough love.

Featured photo credit: Moon rising: A Day After Supermoon/kaybee07 via flickr.com

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Daniel Wallen

Daniel is a writer who focuses on blogging about happiness and motivation at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

More on Building Habits

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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