#10. LEARN SOMETHING NEW
Learn something new: a new software program, a sport, craft or hobby. Ask yourself, “When is the last time I did something for the very first time?” It’ll engage your mind, increase confidence, open your world up to new opportunities and maybe make you more marketable.
Recently I learned how to shoot and edit video for family and client projects. At first I felt like a dummy. I couldn’t even figure out how to get the video file out of the camcorder and onto my Mac. (Oh, a card reader? Huh.)
Here’s the key: make it something you can do without permission from anyone else. It puts you in charge and you can get started right away. All you need are some how-to videos on YouTube or an instruction guide.
Keep your mind open to new possibilities and avoid rejecting something new just because you can’t see yourself doing it. Create a new persona, a new way of defining yourself. Mary Smith: actor, hiker, painter, day trader, writer, etc. Give it a name, then pursue it!
#11. RE-ARRANGE THE FURNITURE
Change the furniture at home or in your office. Pretend you’re “staging” your space like they do on the HGTV home shows. (Leave the light on at night for a while so you don’t stumble into anything in the dark.) While you’re at it, give your room a thorough cleaning. Throw out unnecessary files, old magazines and newspapers. Be ruthless!
Doing a purge and/or repositioning furniture may give you a new perspective that spills over into other areas of your life. Feel what it’s like to make a positive change in your environment. It’s invigorating!
You may soon find yourself taking charge of other issues at home or at work. Increased optimism and a greater sense of control leads to a more productive mindset. And we all know that small changes can help us leapfrog to tackling bigger achievements.
See the world with fresh eyes. Get out of the rut you’re in by taking charge of as much of the world you can!
#12. DEFINE WHAT SUCCESS LOOKS LIKE
Success is a word many of us struggle to define. If we articulate it, we’ve set expectations that we should go after it and make it happen. Pressure sets in. Too high a goal raises the possibility we could fail. If we decide to pursue something less, it’s a compromise that may leave us dissatisfied. Be clear about what you want out of life. Make a long list rather than just one or two outcomes. That way you can achieve success in many areas: relationships, finances, faith, fitness, etc.
Too often, we measure success by what someone else has achieved. Social media amplifies others’ accomplishments. Some people only post the positive parts of their lives: trips, promotions, a new love, new house, new baby or degree. After a steady stream of those posts, our “grass is greener” mindset shifts into gear. We wonder, “What’s wrong with me?” But we don’t see all the setbacks, time and effort they put into achieving their goal. And we don’t place enough value on the successes we have gained along the way.
Recently my husband and I went to the “Parade of Homes” where builders open model homes to the public. You pay an entrance fee and then get to go inside a number of high-end homes. It’s wonderful to see the decorations, colors, unique structural components built into these homes. But then you go back to your own home, which may not be anything like the houses you toured that day. It’s easy to compare and find your own environment lacking. Fight back. Don’t allow comparisons to suck the joy out of the life you have built for yourself.
Good things take time and there are many marks along the scale that qualify as “success.” You don’t have to go from zero to one hundred in sixty seconds or less to be successful. Have you influenced someone to take constructive steps in their life? Are you now able to raise issues with confidence? Steady forward movement counts. Set the bar at a reasonable level, then insert measurable points along the way that show your progress.
These 12 Steps are meant to provide measurable points as well as inspiration to maintain progress on your personal development journey. Decide how you want to be known, traits you want to develop and markers of success. Before long, you’ll look back with a new mindset and appreciate just how far you’ve come!
Share with Friends
Like this series of articles? Please forward to friends, family and colleagues. They’ll thank you for it!