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Based on the U-Bend of Life, people spend the majority of their lives unhappy. According to the chart, happiness levels are high until we reach 18 years old. It declines sharply in our early 20’s, level out and then dip again in our late 30s. It increases again in our mid-50s, only to peak again in our 60’s. We spend nearly 40 years of our adulthood unhappy.
I urge you to BREAK THE CYCLE and don’t become the norm. Be the exception!
7 Steps To A No Regret Life Starting Today
Follow these 7 steps in your 20’s to ensure you don’t have regrets in your 30’s and 40’s.
1.) Set Clear Goals
“People with goals succeed because they know where they are going… It’s a simple as that.”
– Earl Nightengale
Get clear on what you want in life and go for it! Sit down and write down 5 goals you would like to accomplish in the next 6 months; then for the next 12 months and again for the next 5 years. When you set a clear vision for what you want, you have something to work towards, and a reason to get out of bed in the morning. Write your vision on notecards and hang them in your bathroom mirror. Have another set at your desk. That way your goals are always in front of you.
“You can be married to someone for 3 years and bitter about it for the next 30.” – TD Jakes
Get clear on what you desire in relationships. Write down the characteristics of your ideal mate and don’t settle! A series of bad relationships can leave you traumatized and scarred. Choosing the wrong mate can also stifle your creativity, kill your ambition and deter you from living your dreams.
Get clear on your ideal mate and keep your mind focused on the traits you want and off the traits you don’t want. The Law of Attraction will bring you what you focus on the most, so if you’re constantly focusing on what you don’t want, you’ll keep getting it.
Focus, be patient and don’t settle. It’s better to be single, happy and living a blissful life than to be stifled, miserable and trapped in a nightmare marriage that slowly corrodes your soul.
3.) Be Passionate
“Some people have so given up on life, they’ve joined the Thank God It’s Friday Club. How Sad.” – Jim Rohn
Be selective about your job and don’t just take one for security. There is nothing worse than feeling like you are wasting away at a job you hate.Nearly 87% of people worldwide go to jobs every day that they don’t like.
Sometimes you may have to work a job you dislike in order to get to your dream job, but make sure you are constantly moving towards your goals. Don’t stay stagnate in a job that you don’t desire and then complain about it every day over alcoholic drinks.
Ask yourself: What would you do every day if all of your lifestyle expenses were paid? What problem do you want to solve for the world? Seek a job or mission within those areas and it will bring you immense joy and freedom.
4.) Spend wisely
“Half of the stress that we go through is trying to pay for and take care of what we own.” – Joyce Meyer
The quickest way to get into financial chains is spending money beyond your means in order to look good for others. Some people put a lot of time and energy into looking like they have money, but don’t do the same for actually creating multiple streams of income.
Many people are trapped in jobs they hate because of mortgages and car payments and then write off their happiness for the sake of “Golden Handcuffs.” Be responsible and make good financial decisions. Take classes and get advice from financial counselors.
Invest your money into growth vehicles and don’t spend your money to impress people who don’t care about you anyway.
5.) Be Mindful of Advice
“Opinions are the cheapest commodities on earth. Everyone has a flock of opinions ready to be wished upon anyone who will accept them. If you are influenced by ‘opinions’ when you reach DECISIONS, you will not succeed in any undertaking.” – Napoleon Hill
Seek out successful people who have the results that you desire and emulate them. Be mindful of people giving you advice that don’t have the results you desire. When you buy someone’s opinion, you buy their lifestyle. If you were looking to buy a Mercedes, would you seek advice from someone who drives a Dodge Neon?
This includes your family and friends. They may give you well intended advice in order to save you from yourself, but if they are unhappy and miserable in their marriage, can they really tell you how to fix yours?
We all have 24 hours in a day. Spend your time learning from the people who are successful in the areas you desire success and avoid negative people who only want to bring you down.
6.) Expect Failure
“I think that everything that happens in our life is here to teach us something about living.”
The more you want in life and the greater you desire to become, failure will be a natural part of the process. If you realize that most highly successful people failed (epically) before achieving success, then you won’t feel like a loser when it happens to you. Failure is a stepping stone on the way to achievement. Find the lesson in your failure and apply it in your next attempt. Thomas Edison failed 10,000 times while inventing the lightbulb. If you quit only after one attempt, do you really deserve success?
7.) Regularly Evaluate Your Inner Circle
“Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.” Albert Einstein
Just like the seasons change, there will be people in your life for a season and very few for your lifetime. When friendships and relationships become toxic and you feel like you are being held back and choked out, it’s time to let them go.
A key phrase of when it’s time to leave, is when people ask, “Who do you think you are?”
This applies to your friends and coworkers. Don’t allow others to impose their limitations and fears on you. Be mindful if you are playing small in order to fit in with the group you are around. It’s said that you are the average of your 5 closest friends. If they are all broke and you desire more money, it’s time to get new friends.
The leaves on trees dry up and fall way in the fall, but a new set comes fresh and anew in spring. Make room for new friendships and experiences by cutting way the old. Only then will you see what you are really capable of achieving.
Keep these 7 points with you as you move through life. You have the power to choose how you show up in this world every single day. Be kind, love others, love yourself and you’ll discover a whole new world. This life is not a dress rehearsal. This is it!! Live full and die empty!