For those of you who are committed enough to take ownership of your life, which is more than most, I want to share with you a set of core values I live by that has transformed my life and will surely elevate yours as well. The following five simple concepts are the difference between a beautiful mosaic that is your life and one of struggle and strife:
- Self Reliance – Let’s face it, we all need help from time to time and accepting help and/or working together towards a goal is a blessing in this world, however the concept of Self Reliance focuses on building plans and systems that you control as much as possible. Whenever you hang your hopes on another’s actions, more often than not you will be disappointed. Trust yourself. Take the time to learn what you need to learn and build your life directly. No one cares more about your life than you, so set your mind right and get to doing what needs to be done with yourself as the lead. Then, carefully add others to help enhance your activity, which leads to the second core value:
- Commit to Yourself First – On every commercial flight an attendant will go over emergency procedures before takeoff. Most of us don’t pay much attention however a key point is relayed every time. If the cabin loses pressure and oxygen masks come down, you are instructed to put a mask on yourself first and then help others with theirs. How amazing this model for living life is casually shared all over the world and yet it’s one of the keys to life. You must take care of yourself first in order to live and to be empowered to help anyone else. Make sure you are fulfilled in every way as you share your gifts with the world. The richest people in the world are those that lovingly give to themselves so they can share their abundance with others.
- Play to Win – While this may seem obvious, most people as they get older get into a mindset of playing ‘not to lose’. There is a huge difference! Playing to win means strategizing ways to grow and expand, to go above and beyond and compound successful actions into a new stratum of existence. If you land a job, a relationship, a house and some stuff and then set out to simply protect those things, you will lose no matter what happens. You may very well be successful at protecting all those things but you will miss out on all the marvels that life has to offer by not reaching for bigger challenges. Part of your plan should, of course, include some defense or security but it must also include growth. True happiness in life is never sustained by simple achievement, but by the journey of growth.
- Stay Present – We are creatures of habit and our rituals. We live by metaphors – Be Aware and Awake! Do you really need three meals today? Check if you’re actually hungry. When you are eating do you stop when you feel full or continue until the plate is empty? Must you indulge in heavy foods and drinks during holidays? Are you forced to take the weekends off? Or wear that uncomfortable outfit to work? Stay in that group? Live in that house? The point is to every day stay present with your every moment and make certain the habits and routines are truly serving you in this present day. There are countless stories of people who won the lottery and lost all the money within a year or so. They simply failed to acknowledge that a material change had occurred in their lives and to accordingly change their entire pattern of finances, habits and relationships. As you wake up every day, check how you feel about everything you’ve created (yes, what you have created and are demonstrating) in your life and get honest with yourself about how it feels. If you’re truly fed up with something then don’t waste another precious day feeling miserable – Change It! Make the decision and anchor it in with a deliberate and committed action. Write down the outcome and put a date on it. Then, take measurable steps to continue on the new path each following day until you are satisfied. A minor course change of only a few degrees will sail a ship into another corner of the world! Stay alert on your journey.
- Cultivate a Successful Mindset – It’s so easy to commiserate with the cynical world we live in. Bad news is on tap 24/7 and depending on who you hang around with, one could easily feel that life is hopeless. Don’t do it! Remember – no matter what is going on around you or in the world, there’s always someone doing well. Discover what they’re doing and model it (duplicate their actions). If you are facing a challenge, explore the opportunity in your circumstance. It’s tough at first but if you cultivate this thought process, you will actually get excited about things that seem like setbacks to everyone else. This will be your edge in that you will develop the ability to see opportunities where others see despair. In order to be effective at this, you need to practice the art of getting into a resourceful state on demand. For me, I have found that daily meditation is a great way to get into that state and to clear the mind of negative thoughts, fears, and doubts. The mechanics of your circumstance will still exist. By meditating, you will eliminate all of the energy draining thoughts, and from that clarity, you will be able to take positive action and stay consistent in your progress.