They just happen, sometimes they go unnoticed—but they are there. Just to let us know that something isn’t going right.
The most important things we can do are to recognize them for what they are, create an action plan and then take immediate action to enhance our lives.
Procrastination is a very popular habit, but this is not the time to give in. Feel free to procrastinate in other areas, just not this one. Immediate action is crucial to get the absolute most out of your moment of clarity.
In my life so far (I just turned 31), I have noticed three life changing moments. Personally, I prefer to call them “What the f*ck am I doing with my life?” moments, and for good reason. For each of my 3 life altering moments, I achieved them by stepping back and asking myself, “what the f*ck am I doing with my life?” It might be a harsh word, but it’s powerful and really gets me thinking.
I have had them for many different areas in my life, such as: career, parenting, financial, health, fitness, happiness and my overall day to day life. It always seems to be more than one area that is out of whack.
After immediately taking action to remedy the issues, the results only seem to last a year or two. Then something else gets wonky and I’m off track again until I have another life changing moment.
Just last week, I had another “what the f*ck am I doing with my life?” moments and knew I had to immediately take action to create a better life. I’m starting to realize that once every 5 years or so is not often enough to have these moments of clarity. So I’m going to start creating them myself to make sure I stay on track and avoid lost time, unhappiness and feeling like crap.
How To Create Your Own Defining Moments:
Is living the life you want worth half of an hour? If not, then you really need to do this anyway.
Can 30 minutes really change your life? Yes—if you let it.
All you need to do to create your defining moment is to be somewhere quite where you can think straight. Then start off asking yourself what you’re doing with life in all areas and take your time. You might want to take notes, life moves way too fast for us to remember everything. Try to step back and look at your life, like others do. Sometimes we get so caught up that we miss what is right in front of us.
Any area that is important to you is worth assessing, as are the common and sometimes boring ones such as: family, friends, love, work or career, finances, health, fitness, your attitude, religion or spirituality, helping others or even just your day to day life.
Are all these areas the way you really want them to be? Are you getting the most out of life or wasting time in the wrong areas? Could something be better than it is? Are you completely failing in one area?
#1 You’re still living in apartments after all these years when all you ever really wanted was your own house. You’re buried in debt, broke and your credit sucks. There’s no way you could own a house.
#2 You’re 50 pounds overweight and you just can’t seem to lose it. So you keep trying various diets, pills and whatnot, but you keep quitting before you reach your goal. You’re unhappy, it feels impossible and you just don’t know what to do anymore—maybe you’ve even given up altogether.
#3 You’re stuck at home everyday with no real career or life outside of your family. This isn’t the life you thought you would have, but you’re stuck going through the day to day motions and can’t break free.
A little introspection can go a long ways, but you still need a plan. Without a plan, you could be stuck in the same rut years from now. That’s not what you want; is it?
Creating Your Action Plan:
Example from the #1 above:
- Get copies of credit report and review for inaccuracies and a clear picture of current credit standing (don’t pay for these, you can get them for free)
- Get credit score and start monitoring monthly to track progress. (don’t pay for this either, you can also do it for free)
- Determine the total amount you owe and start digging yourself out of debt.
- Start tracking spending to see where the money is really going
- Create a super-easy budget (or spending plan) to get started and adjust it until it works. It should reflect your personal needs, values and goals.
- Start saving money, even if you’re broke for either a down-payment, emergency fund or other costs of buying a house.
Everybody’s plan will be totally different, what matters is that it gives us something to work from. Maybe the plan will need to be adjusted later, all the better. We’re all changing everyday and our priorities change right with us. We need the action plan to help us focus, get started and to help us build momentum.
Taking Immediate Action:
Immediate action means right now! What is something on your action plan that can be done right this second to get you closer to the life you want? You need to get the ball running NOW and build up momentum to get the most out of your defining moment.
Even one little thing that only takes a minute or two to complete is enough. Oh, what’s that…you don’t have time right now because you’re too busy. Stop being too busy. Easier said than done, I know—but you have to take a few minutes for yourself. If you don’t, then maybe you never will.
Change takes action and persistence. Anybody can create a change in their lives, but it takes work. It will be worth it in the end, but you must put yourself first and do what needs to be done.
If you need to lose weight, don’t wait until Monday, the 1st, tomorrow, after you make a plan or go grocery shopping. Start NOW! So what if you had a bag of cookies for breakfast, the whole day isn’t ruined if you start fixing it now. You have your fresh start right now and your life doesn’t have to be the way it was. Forget the past, the things that you do today will determine tomorrow. Every minute is a chance to change your future, don’t get caught up with waiting for the right time.
We never know if tomorrow is going to come, we could die in our sleep or a plethora of other things could happen. All we have is today—and it can be what we want it to be, or it can be a waste.
Slow down, get your head straight and start living the life you are meant to live. Take your first action now and keep doing it as often and much as possible and you will reap the rewards.
Is having the life you really want worth 1/2 hour of your time?
Image Credits: http://www.flickr.com/photos/javmorcas/6946196371/, http://www.flickr.com/photos/johannahobbs/2202435049/, http://www.flickr.com/photos/bmcirillo/86555028/