“Change your thoughts and you change your world.” — Norman Vincent Peale
Change is constant. It’s never-ending. It surrounds us and immerses us. The truth is that, on a microscopic-level, our bodies and the world around us, is changing every moment of every day. But it sure doesn’t feel that way. Does it? Most people describe life as mundane. They’re bored. Tired. Stuck in routine. Stricken with bad habits. There’s no change occurring. Nope. Not at all.
Of course, most of us do want to change our lives. We have big dreams. Goals. Desires. Wishes. But we can’t seem to extricate ourselves from the status quo. We can’t seem to pull it together to change things for good. So how do you actually go about enacting such changes that could create revolutionary and monumental impacts in your life?
Clearly, this isn’t rocket science. It doesn’t take genius to do it. But it sure feels like that, doesn’t it? When we take a glimpse at the lives of the rich and famous — who we more easily witness today as their glamorous travel and day-to-day spectacle of hyper-cars, mansions and nights out are splashed all over social media — we take on this poor-me attitude.
Sure, we all want to change. But we can’t seem to bring ourselves to do it. We’re shackled by our inability to take action. But there is a way to break the proverbial chains. There is a way out. If you’re serious and committed enough, you can achieve and do anything. Even if you’ve failed repeatedly or you’ve been too immersed in the fear of failure to act, there is a pathway forward.
We all know that failure can be tough. But not just failure. Even the fear of failure frighten us into a state of inaction. Because we’re so afraid, and because that fear is built into our subconscious minds, instead of changing our lives, we’re stricken by the routines that govern us from day to day. In effect, the bad habits continue to control and guide us forward.
How To Change Your Life Right Now
Look, we’ve all failed. We’ve all experienced hardships. Some us more than others. But life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to those events. Think about it for a moment. You likely have a friend who’s always happy. No matter what happens, they take things in stride. You think to yourself, how can they always be happy? Right?
That’s because happiness is a state of mind. It’s not a destination. If you’re unhappy right now and things in your life seem to be bringing you down, then it’s time for a change. Not just physically or in your surroundings. But mentally as well. That nagging little inner voice is part of a war being waged in your subconscious mind. You see, every single one of us is controlled by something called the psychic apparatus.
The psychic apparatus was coined by the late father of modern psychology, Sigmund Freud. It states that there are three parts to your mind. Each of the three parts plays a different role in your thoughts, behaviors and your emotions. Your life, and everything that you have or are, is a result of the interplaying actions occurring between those three parts of your mind.
The id is basal. It’s instinctive. We’re all born with it. It controls our sudden and deepest urges to eat, procreate and defecate. It’s that part of you that wants what you want when you want it. Think about a baby crying because they want milk or don’t have a pacifier, or for any other reason for that matter.
When you’re born, you only have the id. It’s the devil on your shoulder. Thankfully, the id doesn’t remain as the only part of your mind as you grow into an adult. If it did, we would all just do what we wanted at any given time. There would be sheer lawlessness in the world. Could you imagine how bad it would get?
As you grow, your mind breaks off from the id, which remains submerged in your subconscious. That’s where the superego is formed. The superego is created through moral fortitude and societal norms.It’s the angel on your other shoulder. It forms through proper upbringing and guidance by parents or guardians who work to teach their children the difference between right and wrong.
Depending on your unique environment and genetic makeup, your superego is going to be different from the next person’s. That’s just how it works. There are so many factors involved in the creation of a superego that it would be impossible to guess or estimate the effects of any single action on a child such as scolding, reprimanding, or even the lack thereof.
The ego is the referee. The ego decides whether or not to satisfy the urges of the id or listen to the reasoning of the superego. It wants to give you what you want, but it also needs to listen to the practicality of the superego. Thus, the ego has a very difficult decision to often make.
The ego knows you can’t always have what you want, when you want it. It’s governed by reality. Thus, it works hard to get you what you want realistically, right now. That’s why get-rich-quick schemes and fad weight-loss diets are so popular. It helps the ego’s reasoning by giving you what you want today when the mind is triggered to make that purchase.
Leveraging The Psychic Apparatus
The reason why I talk about the psychic apparatus before even diving into the 10 ways you can change your life right now, is because everything that you do is born from the interaction of these three parts in your mind. Thus, the better you understand the conversation that’s occurring in your mind, the better you can control the sway and outcome of your life and change it for good.
There’s an easy way to do this. Anytime you feel discomfort or uneasy about a decision, stop and listen. Take 5 minutes to turn off all your distractions. Sit still with your eyes closed and listen to the conversation in your mind. Look for the negative voice. It leaves clues. It presents pain in the form of the fear of failure.
It’s impossible to change your life if you can’t control the conversation in your mind. Plain and simple. When you fall into routines and bad habits, it’s simply avoiding the fear of failure or potential for pain that would be caused by trying to achieve something difficult or overcome some major obstacle. That’s all it is.
#1 — Set Goals The Right Way
Most of us set goals the wrong way. That’s just the plain and simple truth. Did you know that only 8% of people who set goals on New Year’s Eve actually achieve them? I can’t imagine that’s a shock to anyone. Why do you think that is? One simple reason. We don’t write them down and we don’t plan them out. When you fail to do that, it’s almost impossible to achieve your goals.
#2 — Find Real Meaning To Your Life
You can’t change your life without meaning. What do things mean to you? I’m not talking about the superficial. I’m talking about deep down inside. What’s your purpose? Why do you do what you do? Take the time to create a mission statement. What is your contribution to this world? Are you doing it for your kids? Freedom? Security? Love? Country? Define it if you’re serious about creating lasting and real change.
#3 — Control Your Sudden Urges
Look, the id is all powerful. We know that. You stop at a fast food restaurant, even though you know you should eat healthier, because it’s quick, easy and it tastes good. The same thing goes for smoking or drinking or anything else for that matter. But you can’t allow the id to control you. You have to control it. Without that, you’ll find it difficult to change any aspect of your life because you’ll always cave into your deepest desires.
#4 — Overcome Procrastination
Procrastination can ruin us. Tony Robbins calls it the silent killer. And it is. But if you want to change your life, you have to overcome procrastination. Use the 15-minute rule to do this. Set a timer for 15 minutes and put it in front of you. Do the one thing you’ve been putting off for 15 minutes. That’s it. Don’t promise yourself more than that. What you’ll find is that this goal is too small to fail at. And it will break the habit of inaction.
#5 — Quit Your Bad Habits
Bad habits can be brutal. However, like anything else in life, you can change your bad habits and replace them with good habits. It’s not easy. No. Not at all. Especially if those bad habits have been a part of your life for years and decades. But you can do it. In fact, you must do it if you’re serious about achieving certain big goals. Dig deep and find the strength to overcome them before it’s too late.
#6 — Contribute To Others
Sometimes, in order to change your life, you need to change the lives of others. What can you contribute today to help make the world a better place? If you have no money, what about your time? Could you spend your time helping other people achieve their dreams? Remember, it’s not always about money. Yes, money can help someone else out of a tight spot, but time could help them more. Teach them something of real value.
#7 — Ignore Negativity
Unfortunately, we live in a world replete with negativity. It’s hard to avoid it. But you can ignore it. Develop thick skin and learn to take things with a grain of salt. I know it’s hard to do it. But it’s vital to your own life. You can’t allow the words or actions of someone else to impact you so severely that you’re forced into a state of inaction. Rise above and move past all of the noise. There’s no way you can make progress if you sit around and worry about what others think or say about you. None.
#8 — Do Something You Love Every Day
It’s easy to get caught up chasing goals and dreams. You forget about the things that really matter. Kids. Husbands. Wives. And even the simple little things begin to fall to the wayside. Don’t allow that to happen. Do something you love every single day. Walk on the beach. Have a long and meaningful conversation. Go for an exhilarating run. Listen to your favorite song. Anything. It’s important to do this at least once per day. Remember, not everything should be about achieving. Learn to be present.
#9 — Get Inspired And Motivated
It’s hard to change your life when you lack motivation or inspiration. You have to find ways you can get inspired and motivated daily. If you’re serious about achieving outlandish results, then this has to be at the forefront of your mind. Follow people who will inspire and motivate you. Tony Robbins, Gary Vaynerchuck, John Assaraf, Lewis Howes, and many others fit the bill here. Use YouTube, Ted Talks and other resources to find content and people that will propel you forward.
#10 — Never Give Up On Your Dreams
I know it sounds very rah-rah-rah. But, you should never give up. If you’re serious about making monumental changes in your life, then you have to push forward. Even if you’ve failed. It’s okay. It doesn’t matter. Don’t let it dissuade you. Even the most famous people in the world have failed the most times. Don’t allow failure to get to your heart. Push forward. Stay persistent. There is light at the end of the tunnel as long as you don’t stop. Remember, fall down 7 times, stand up 8.