Welcome to Format Free Fridays, the one day a week when I break the format of answering your questions and I dispense that which we rarely welcome in life: Unsolicited Information.
If you’re unhappy with any aspect of your life ~ the amount of money you have, the quality of your relationships, or your inability to reach your goals, it’s a result of 2 things: The way you’re thinking and the way you are acting.
To get a new result, you’re going to have to adopt and employ a new way of thinking and acting. It is that simple.
How can I be certain that you have to replace your current way of thinking and acting? Because the definition of insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result, and I’m making the presumption that you’re not insane.
Below are the 6 most common irrational beliefs that create unhappy lives.
Number 1 Reason Why Your Life Blows
You believe that you have no control over your life. You think that things just happen to you and that you are not responsible for the way things happen to you.
You will NEVER effect change in your life if you continuously blame outside circumstances for your life. It’s that simple. If it’s your girlfriend’s fault, your mother’s fault, your boss’ fault, etc., you are stuck in a no-win way of thinking and you will NEVER improve your circumstances, because you have failed to accept the most basic premise of change: The acceptance that whether you’re aware of it or not, you are creating everything that’s happening in your life.
You are not intentionally creating a life that blows. You are unconsciously creating a life that blows, and this unconscious process controls what you attract and what you’re attracted to.
The bottom line is that you believe that no matter what you do in life, no matter what changes you make, nothing will have the desired effect. Its called learned helplessness, folks, and its a scientific fact.
Unless you have been aware of this problem for a very long time, you will not be able to change it any time soon.
WHAT TO DO:
Adopt a new belief system: “Although I’m unaware of how I’m creating my life, I am creating it.”
When you adopt this belief and become genuinely curious about what it is you’re doing to create your life, you will begin to see ways in which you can change it.
I CAN’T DO IT!
If you aren’t willing to accept that you are 100% responsible for your life, than do yourself a favor: ACCEPT your life the way it is, try and find the positive in the things that you are dissatisfied with, and stop wishing for change, because you’ll only drive yourself crazy.
Number 2 Reason Why Your Life Blows
You habitually think about and focus on what you don’t want and/or what you want to avoid. You attract and create what you think about, so the more you think about what you don’t want, the more you’ll attract it.
It’s called a self-fulfilling prophecy. It means that you have certain beliefs about the world (which are often inaccurate), and these beliefs cause you to behave in certain ways (ways in which you would not behave if you had a different set of beliefs) and the ways you behave create the outcome that you’re trying to avoid.
So, unknowingly, you create more of what you don’t want. Each additional negative experience confirms your (irrational) belief about the world, which creates a vicious cycle of negativity, until you have a mountain of evidence to validate why your belief is not “irrational” but rational.
WHAT TO DO:
Take note of how every negative outcome that you experience directly correlates with a negative belief that you have about the world. Eventually, when the process of connecting these two dots (negative thought = negative experience) becomes second nature, you’ll have built up the emotional muscle necessary to decide whether you want to keep the same belief system or replace it with one that would create better outcomes.
I CAN’T DO IT!
If you can’t bring yourself to question your beliefs, try to accept your life the way it is. Take some satisfaction from knowing that you couldn’t maintain the relationships that you have if you were to engage in this exponential growth. It’s ok to choose certainty and predictability.
Number 3 Reason Why Your Life Blows
You aren’t willing to examine your beliefs.
You knew it was coming…If you fell into the I CAN’T DO IT CATEGORY for the first 2 reasons why your life blows, you are the poster child for the Third Reason Why Your Life Blows.
Think about it: We’ve established that the reason why your life blows is because the way you’ve been thinking and acting isn’t working. We’ve further agreed that the definition of insanity is repeating the same behaviors and hoping for different results. How then, do you expect to change anything if you’re unwilling to examine your beliefs?
Here’s the irony about human nature: Most people would rather be right than be happy. Change, for many people, implies that the original state was ‘wrong.’ Does this sound like a breeding ground for progress? It is the breeding ground for stagnation, oppression and ignorance.
WHAT TO DO:
Question the rules you follow (and your reasons for following them), question your values and principals (those things that fall into Right and Wrong categories), and open your mind to new information, new thoughts and feelings about old philosophies.
I CAN’T DO IT:
You are afraid of change. You’ve likely been deeply traumatized and have a primary need for safety, which is the antithesis of change. You tend to shut down to protect yourself. It’s ok. Plenty of people go through life like this.
Number 4 Reason Why Your Life Blows
Your fear of failure stops you from acting.
You shut down to avoid disappointment, rejection, and other negative feelings. Unfortunately, shutting down, quitting, and giving in just creates more of what you don’t want, because you’re living your life in avoidance of something. You can’t avoid something without thinking about it (consciously or unconsciously) and we attract what we think about, whether we want it or not.
You’re avoiding something because you fear it. Now, you may think that fear is a natural reaction, an emotion that you have no control over. Wrong. Fear is based on a belief. It’s the byproduct of that belief that triggers fear.
WHAT TO DO:
Choose to focus on what you want rather than what you don’t want. Then, ACT on it. Do something to promote your desired outcome. One of two things will happen: Either you’ll get what you want, or you’ll get something of equal value: Information.
Information about what doesn’t work is as valuable as knowing what works. We call this wisdom. Successful people turn failure into valuable lessons. Everyone else (those who aren’t successful) walks away with their tails between their legs, feeling like a failure, rejected and hopeless. Successful people do not give in to this reaction. Successful people take action dozens of times for every one action taken by their counterparts. The result? They fail far more often than unsuccessful people. Each failure teaches them something. As a result, they learn what not to do again (because a successful person doesn’t do the same thing repeatedly hoping for a different outcome).
Failure is an urban myth. Every action yields one of two outcomes: Success or Wisdom.
I CAN’T DO IT!
Yes you can. You’re choosing not to try.
Number 5 Reason Why Your Life Blows
You’re focused on yourself to the exclusion of the needs of those around you.
If you’re unsatisfied with your relationships or with the amount of money you have, this one’s for you.
WHAT TO DO:
Stop focusing on what you want and start focusing on giving others what you want. If you want money, donate to charity. If you want a relationship, stop bemoaning your life’s misfortunes and start investing in the relationships you currently have. Make a list of everything you want from a friend or a lover & then start dispensing each item on the people in your own life. Look for ways to help the people who you interact with each week. Even if you don’t personally know the person, but say for example, you read their blog regularly. If you happen to be a web designer or someone who’s an SEO expert, shoot the owner an email to tell them how they can improve their blog. Your efforts will come back to you tenfold.
I CAN’T DO IT!
Everyone can do it. Karma is a universal principal. You get what you give. If you’re lacking in your life, give what you wish to receive. Don’t focus on when you’ll get it back. Focus on others. Stop focusing on thyself!
Number 6 Reason Why Your Life Blows
You’re waiting for everything to be ok before you become happy.
If that’s what you’re waiting for, you’re never going to be happy, because everything is never going to be OK.
Humans are NEVER without problems. We get sick, people die, we buy shitty products, bad people hurt us, and the list goes on. As long as you say things like, “As soon as…” you’re signing up for a lifetime of delayed peace. Don’t be a peace procrastinator. Decide to be happy right now regardless of what your life looks like today.
Life has its ups and downs. My mother loves to say, Nothing lasts forever – good or bad. I think she intended for me to find some comfort in the down times as opposed to knowing that good times are bound to end…
You can’t appreciate a dry foot unless you’ve stepped in ice-cold slush wearing sneakers. We need the shorter days of winter to appreciate how long June 21st is. When I wake up and my feet hit the ground and I don’t feel sore, I’m psyched! Why? Because as someone who dances regularly, I know what it feels like to get out of bed and feel like I survived mild torture. I wouldn’t appreciate the perfect days if I didn’t have those achy ones.
Life isn’t about winning, or feeling perfect, or having reached all of your goals. Life is about being flexible. Most of your discomfort comes from resisting the way things are today and from holding your breath waiting for a better day. I’m here to tell you that you won’t make it to the next day unless you learn how to breathe through this one. So stop the excuses.
Stop looking for the world to accommodate you and hoping it will comply with your wishes. Grab your ovaries or the male version thereof, take 100% responsibility for your life and START LIVING TODAY!