How many times have you sat down after a long day at work (or just a regular day at work) and thought to yourself..."is this it?" You wonder if you are actually living or just existing. And believe me, there is a big difference between living and existing (but I'll get into that in another article). We've all been there and we all wish we could find a way to never find ourselves there again. Here are 5 habits that are currently helping me to go from dreaming on the couch to forging the future I desire for myself.
1. Read About Things You're Passionate About
This may be one of the most talked about and under practiced disciplines in existence. There is no way to quantify the impact that reading quality articles, books, and blogs can add to your life. I'm passionate about personal development because I know that when I develop my own skills, disciplines, and habits, I become better equipped to make my dreams of living off a residual income, a reality. Since I am passionate about personal development, I read books like "The Slight Edge" by Jeff Olson which goes into great detail regarding the power of tiny decisions each day. If you are passionate about gardening, pick up a gardening book from your library. If it's starting your own business, pick up a book or look up a blog that will keep you informed about the latest happenings in that field. You will be amazed by how many ideas are generated by simply keeping yourself informed about whatever you are passionate about. So get out there and read!
2. Exercise Regularly
This one may take you by surprise and appear a bit out of place. You're probably asking yourself, "How can regular exercise bring me closer to achieving my goals instead of just dreaming about them?". The truth is, exercise goes hand in hand with a healthy lifestyle, and it is when you are living in a healthy manner that you are most motivated to do more with your life. Take up running, or yoga, or anything that will get those endorphins flowing and help you get in better shape. You will love the increased energy levels that accompany proper eating and exercise habits. So get out there and run!
3. Build Good, Consistent Habits
Consistency is immensely important in helping you achieve your goals in life. We are the composite of the little habits we live out from day to day. Whether we like it or not, the person we are in 10 years can be directly tied to the habits of our day to day lives today. So start building good consistency in your life. Consistently floss your teeth. Consistently run 1 mile. Consistently read for 20 minutes. These habits will do more to shape you into the person that you desire to be than you can imagine. In our microwave society, we want all the change to happen right away, but that is not how long-lasting, transforming change takes place. This kind of change takes place gradually and is built upon the back of the habits that we consistently hold to from day to day. Build good, consistent habits in your life!
Tell people about your passions, dreams, and goals in life. The more you talk about them, the more you will feel the pressure to do something about them. Also, the more that people around you hear about them, the more they will ask you how they are coming along. You will be surprised at how many people you know that might actually be able to help you make your dreams a reality if they only knew what your dreams are. Be vocal and get the word out about your dreams!
5. Set Goals
You should have seen this one coming by now. It is imperative that you set goals if you intend to achieve anything in your life. My dad use to tell me, "if you aim at nothing, you're bound to hit it." And many people do just that and wonder why their lives get off track from where they want to be. Mel Gibson said it best in The Patriot, "Aim small, miss small". Keep your goals tight within your sights and you will find yourself getting closer and closer to them. Set specific goals for yourself and write them down (or at the very least utilize number 4 and seek some accountability from friends by talking about your goals). You should have goals for today, this week, this month, this year, five years, and ten years from now. So get out there and write down some goals!
Remember, achieving your goals, dreams, and passions does not happen overnight. You must put steps in place today in order to achieve success in the future. This is not an exhaustive list, but it does give you a good starting point. And that first step is the most important.
I hope you find yourself looking back on your life a few years from now with satisfaction in knowing that you have achieved your dreams through the implementation of small, seemingly insignificant daily habits.