Someday I want to be that old lady looking back on a life full of amazing experiences. I wantto have a big life. I want to raise my kids and love every moment of their lives, but I also wantto speak foreign languages and tap dance, and be a gourmet cook, and travel the world, andbe a writer and speaker and mentor. How can we cope with a demanding life? Here are 15 tips.
Tip # 1 : Reflect on what’s importantI find we are taking on more than our parents ever did. We’re just having busier lives. For many ofus, I suspect we’ve operated in auto-pilot for so long, we don’t even know if what we’re doing iscongruent to our values and goals in life. My advice is to take some time and reflect on what’s trulyimportant in your life then structure your schedule accordingly so you can focus on the right things.
Tip # 2 : Be the master of your own destinyThis is your life. Remember, you can be happy if you choose to and our limitations are mostlyself imposed. If there is an aspect of your life which you are unhappy with, then you owe it toyourself to change and make a difference. Take charge and be the master of your owndestiny. Too stressful at work? Delegate some tasks. Quit. Anything – just take action.
Tip # 3 : Simplify where possibleFrom a physical perspective, all we need is food, clothing and shelter. Our emotional needs are morecomplex, but as long as we’re happy, everything else is just bonus. Take a moment to look at your life,what you have and what you do. You might find that maybe there are aspects to your life and routinewhich add to your stress but aren’t really essential to your well being. Eliminate these where possible.
Tip # 4 : Learn to cope with stressSometimes, things can’t be further simplified. Instead of making our lives less stressful, we canimprove our stress coping abilities. Some people read a novel or practice yoga, whilst others spendhours at the golf course or take time out to go on holidays and recharge. Whatever suits your fancy,but do spend the time to de-stress. It is not healthy to operate constantly under high levels of stress.
Tip # 5 : Talk to yourselfTalking to yourself is a powerful tool everyone should have in their personal development arsenal.When I’m faced with a stressful situation, talking to myself gets me calm so I can focus on the taskat hand. What you do and how you react, is determined by what you say to yourself. So make ahabit to say the right things, to help ensure the right results.
Tip # 6 : Talk to othersWhen life feels too demanding and stressful, find someone you can confide in. Remember, youdon’t have to live life alone. Talk to others – family or friends – and get their emotional support.Not only can they be a good sounding board, but you might find they can offer solutions to yourtroubles which you haven’t thought of before.
Tip # 7 : Leave work at workMany people I know don’t stop working when work stops. Leave work at work. Make sure theplanning provides sufficient time to get things done without breaking your back. It’s ok once inawhile to bring work home, but don’t do it consistently. Learn to draw boundaries and allocatesuitable time boxes to spend on things. This applies to everything and not just work.
Tip # 8 : Remove the clutterIf you have an overly demanding lifestyle, try to remove the clutter. Make sure things are filed in theappropriate places, so that when you’re working on one thing you only have the material related towhat you’re working on within arm’s reach. Everything else is a distraction and shouldn’t be easilyaccessible until you’re ready to work on them. So clean things up. Get organized.
Tip # 9 : Write things downIf you have too many things in your head, you’d inevitable forget something and they don’t getdone. If you have too many things in your head, your stress levels tend to be higher. Life feels alot more complicated, doesn’t it? So, if you haven’t got a task list, start making one. Write thingsdown and free your brain to concentrate on the tasks at hand.
Tip # 10 : Finish things offWhether you’re a busy professional, a college student or stay at home parent, at any one time youprobably juggle several things simultaneously. Whilst multi-tasking is a good skill to have, try not tohandle too many things at the same time. Instead, make a point to finish things off. So try to getthings done and closed off, instead of leaving them partially done and occupying brain cycles.
Tip # 11 : Learn to say ‘No’If you find yourself being overwhelmed with the pressures of your current commitments, learn tosay ‘No’ to new commitments. It just means, that for now, you don’t have sufficient bandwidth totake on new things. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s better to give your existing commitmentsthe time they deserve and do a proper job rather than take on too much and do things poorly.
Tip # 12 : Ask for help if you need itMany people are afraid to ask for help. To them, asking for help is a sign of failure or inability toget things done. To me it is the complete opposite. Asking for help shows maturity and highlightsa person’s desire to do a good job. I’d rather work with someone who knows when to ask forhelp, than someone who works crazily, to the detriment of the project and their health.
Tip # 13 : Accept that life is a series of ups and downsThere are people who observe their health on a daily basis. Every time something unusual happens,they think it’s a terminal medical condition! Similarly, there are people who take life too seriouslyand are adversely affected emotionally whenever something bad happens. My advice is not totake life seriously. There will always be ups and downs. Don’t get too stressed out. This is just life.
Tip # 14 : Adopt a positive outlook and approach to lifeYou can choose to either look at the obstacles life presents as problems or you can look at themas opportunities. Though it won’t relieve you from your daily pressures, adopting a positive outlookwill affect how you approach life’s challenges for positive gain. Remember that life is a journey tobe enjoyed. Start now and change the way you look at life.
Tip # 15 : Have faith in yourselfThe last tip I have to help with coping with a demanding life is to have faith in yourself. The humanspirit is our greatest strength. Only when faced with the most difficult situations, challenges anddanger do we learn and grow. Believe in yourself! Persevere. If life is tough, then be tougher.You’d be surprised by how amazing you can be if you give yourself a chance.
So, I enrolled in a class this fall. It’s a good start. I just turned 42. If I’m lucky, I have 30 or40 years to fill up with learning and adventure. To get my life as big as I want it to be, I’dbetter get started now. I do hope that you also realize the time you have left and seewhat is the most important thing in your life and get started now!!!
Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself. Thank You Very Much Sompong Yusoontorn