When it comes to success and life hacks, there are countless sources all over the Internet, who are eager to give you the “TEN BEST WAYS TO SUCCEED IN LIFE AND BECOME VERY RICH RIGHT NOW”. And don’t get me wrong — I’m not trying to demean what they’re saying. Because, for the most part, they’ve got a good idea and they’re backed by good intentions. The way the information is presented, however, tends to be … lacking.
It’s easy to say things like “just be confident” and “keep trying until you make it”, but that’s not what most of the people who are looking for advice need to hear. As a matter of fact, I can bet that you’ve personally heard this advice more times than you can count. You’re probably bored of hearing them. And for a good reason.
Hello everyone, and welcome back to my success series. I’m your host — Antoaneta, and today, I’ll give you some advice about … advice. Yes, that’s right — we’ll be talking about some of the most popular pieces of advice and what people actually mean when they’re giving it.
I’ll not give you a list of good advice to follow, and I’ll also try to explain what each of the tips means. My list consists of the best and most widely applicable advice that’s related to success. We’ll talk about:
- Advice that is well-known.
- Advice that is established.
- Advice that is definitely worth your time.
- Advice that I’ve personally followed and enjoyed.
And now, without further ado, let’s dive right in!
Figure out what you really want from life
Starting off with one of the big life hacks, on number one we’ve got something that a lot of people manage to miss. Figuring out what you actually want to do with your life can sound tough, time-consuming and maybe even a bit overwhelming. But believe me when I say this — the time you invest here is well worth it.
Here’s how to do it:
Pick a calm weekend afternoon, turn off your phone, disconnect from social media, sit back and relax. Now, think about the future that you’d want to live in.
- Where would you want to be five years from now? What about ten, or even fifteen years?
- Where would you want to grow old?
- Who would you want to grow old with?
- How would a day in the life of this “future you” go?
If you’re having difficulties piecing it all together, here’s a hint that really helped me — start by figuring out who you want to be in the future. Now, I know a lot of the people reading this are adults, already in their late twenties to mid-thirties. Or maybe you’re even older. But don’t fall into the trap of believing that this is who they have to be until the end. It’s never too late to change for the better!
Among the great life hacks that I often recommend to my younger readers is to think about what type of person they respect the most. Concentrate on why you respect this type of person. What are they like? What qualities do they possess? How do they act in different situations?
And, just like that, you found more things that you can improve in yourself!
Yes, it’s that simple.
Focus on the things you love
Now that you know who you want to be, and you’ve narrowed down the things that you have to do to live that life, let’s see if there are any life hacks about your passion.
Being passionate is important in all areas of life. Ideally, you’d be passionate about your studies, your career, your hobbies and your private life. Of course, we don’t always get to do things that we love, but you should try and steer yourself in their direction.
- If you’re passionate about your studies, you’ll have a much easier time learning things.
- If you’re passionate about your job, you’ll find it much easier to progress your career or grow your business.
- If you’re passionate about your personal life and relationships, you’ll be able to truly enjoy yourself during your time off.
- And if you’re not passionate about your hobbies, well … I don’t want to sound judgmental, but I think that you might be doing it wrong.
If you still haven’t found your passions, then you can always use the approach in Tip #1 to figure some of them out. If you’re really attracted to a specific activity, personality type or idea, there’s generally a reason behind it. Just take your time and enjoy the exploration.
Expand your comfort zone
Comfort zones are “comfortable” because they keep us safe. They are a sort of “safe” space for our minds. Here, we feel calmer, more confident and “in control” of everything. But you’ll quickly realise that following the first two tips without leaving your comfort zone is almost impossible. This is why I always tell people to work on expanding their comfort zone.
You don’t need to do anything drastic, especially not at first. As with all big changes, coming out of your comfort zone will feel confusing and maybe even intimidating. So, start gradually. Take small and careful steps. Once you get started, the sky’s the limit!
“How do you eat an elephant?
One bite at a time!”
As a side-note, I’d highly advise against eating actual elephants.
Learn from the difficult moments
In case you haven’t noticed, life isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. But this doesn’t give you an excuse to crawl into the corner and cry “woe is me”. This never helped anyone. Realise that you aren’t alone and that nobody in the whole world has it “easy”. The things that come naturally to you might be very scary for others. Likewise, your “disasters” might sound like a walk in the park to someone else.
We all come from different backgrounds, we’ve been through different experiences, we enjoy different things and the meaning of and applying life hacks will, of course, be different to all of us. But we all have something in common — we all have to deal with difficulties. If you let them get the best of you, you’re only setting yourself up for failure in the long-term. Successful people use every opportunity to learn new things, and so should you.
So, the next time something bad happens, try to analyse it. Think about what you did right and where you went wrong. Usually, the answers are very obvious. Now, learn from your analysis and move on.
Never linger on the negatives. Just learn what you can and keep on keeping on.
Don’t ever judge a book by its cover.
Yes, I know that you’ve heard this one a million times before. I know that it sounds very cheap. But it’s also a very useful concept, once you really understand the idea behind it.
The next time you see a new thing or you meet someone for the first time, try to understand what makes them tick. The idea, business or person might seem silly at first, they might be the most illogical thing that you’ve ever come across. But it’s a great chance to learn new things.
Besides, you never know what you might find.
For all you know, this might be an excellent business opportunity, a fantastic business partner, a potentially useful connection, or even a new friend that can teach you even more life hacks.
Work on your listening skills
We all like to think that we’re good at listening and processing information, but the reality is that most people are … pretty bad at it. No, I’m not trying to be mean. It’s just a simple fact.
And do you know what bad listeners prefer doing? They like to talk. A lot. And that’s a big mistake.
If you don’t listen to what others have to say, if you hastily cut them off or just assume that you know better than them, you’ll just come off as impolite and annoying.
Don’t be that person who just “takes the spotlight” and talks and talks and talks until everyone gets bored. In a social situation, this will make people dislike you. In a professional sense, it will make you very difficult to work with.
The next time someone else tries to tell you something, make a conscious effort to hear them out. Yes, even if you think that they’re wrong. Even if you believe that “you know better”. Listen carefully to what they have to say and try to understand where they’re coming from. Try to “walk in their shoes”, at least for the duration of the conversation.
If you’re able to do this consistently, it’s a real game-changer.
Stop overestimating yourself
No matter how much you know about something, there’s always someone out there who understands it better. You might be a skilled professional, with over 15 years of experience in your field, you might’ve read tons of books, you might have fancy degrees and qualifications … but I’m willing to bet that you don’t know everything about a subject.
“Waste no more time arguing about what a good [person] should be. Be one.”
“Never proclaim yourself a philosopher nor make much talk [..] about your principles but show them by actions.”
There is always more to learn just around the corner. Understand this simple fact, embrace it and …
Always look for new things to learn
And I don’t’ just mean in the professional sense. Of course, it’s always good to know more about your career or business. After all, that’s what puts the food on your table. But there’s a deeper idea here — a “deeper meaning”.
We, humans, are a complicated bunch. We run on instincts, on emotions, on desires. We all like and dislike different things. Some things make us happy, other things make us sad. And while a big portion of this will vary from person to person, we also share a lot of likes and dislikes.
The more you learn about our world and the people who live in it, the better you will become as a person. You’ll be able to improve your life and the lives of those around you. You’ll find more and more ways to have a positive impact on your friends and loved ones. And everyone will be happier for it.
Relationships takes work
This is one of those life hacks which can be applied both to personal and to professional environments.
Relationships are always a two-way street. You’re not in them just to take, and you aren’t there only to give. And yes, this takes effort. Sometimes, it will feel like you’re barely trying, and things are going great. That’s the best possible outcome. And that’s what you see in romcoms and some TV shows.
More often than not, however, you’ll have the opposite situation on your hands. It will seem like you’re putting in tons of effort and you’re barely making progress. And, I’ll be honest with you here — that’s just how life is sometimes. But, if the relationship is worth it, if you really believe in what you’re working towards, then you’ll stick with it. You won’t bail at the first sight of difficulty. You’ll sit down, talk it through with your partner and see what you can improve.
Just remember that it takes two to tango. If it’s only one person doing all the heavy lifting, then you’ll have a hard time getting anywhere.
Stop trying to please everyone
It’s just not possible to keep everyone happy at all times. Remember how we mentioned that everyone is slightly different? This means that, whenever you do something, someone, somewhere will be displeased with your actions. But don’t let this get to you.
Don’t obsess over the opinions of others. Work on the things that you are passionate about, following the principle that you believe in and don’t let anyone hold you back!
Keep your emotions in check when making important decisions
I talk about this one a lot in my investing content, but it definitely deserves to be mentioned here as well.
You never want to make important decisions when you’re emotional. And yes, this goes both for positive and for negative emotions. Anger, happiness, sadness and fear are the worst advisors in the whole world.
If you aren’t put on the spot and forced to react “right now”, it’s usually best to take the time to relax and fully calm down before taking action. Take a couple of deep breaths, weigh your options and make a rational choice, based on logic, rather than emotions.
Take care of yourself
Your health is really important. It’s one of the most crucial factors for success in any field. When we’re not feeling well:
- We are impatient.
- We are impulsive.
- We are easily irritated.
- We are less productive.
- We are less likely to give tasks our full attention.
- We’re much more likely to overlook key details.
- We’re going to have a hard time concentrating.
- We’re not going to be as inclined to learn new things.
The list goes on and on. Neglecting your health has thousands of downsides and no upsides to speak of.
And, to top it all off, if you do manage to succeed despite neglecting your health, you’ll have a tough time enjoying your success.
Learning how to invest early and planning for your retirement are two things which are very important for your overall happiness and wellbeing. But, since this is a very broad subject, I’m only making a brief mention here.
When you’re young, you’ll generally have a lot more ways to spend money than to make money, and you won’t really see any merit in investing “just yet”. After all, you’ll have plenty of time to look into it, once you get that “career” of yours going, right?
Not exactly. While I’m a firm believer in the “it’s never too late to get started” principle, investing is slightly different. Here, the sooner you begin, the better it is. As a matter of fact, I’d say that if you’re a teenager who is still living with their parents, you’re in the ideal position! If you begin while you’re in your early twenties, you can give yourself a significant head-start, and set yourself up for early retirement.
If you’d like to learn more about the Stock Market or investing in general, don’t worry — I’ve got plenty of stuff waiting for you! Just take a look at the resource section down below, and you’ll find everything you need to get started!
Before we wrap it up for this post, I’d like to remind you that this article, just like everything else on my channels, is based on my personal experience and research. I am not a doctor, a certified guru or a life coach. Please remember to always do your own research and consult with a certified professional before committing to any serious or life-altering decisions.
But enough about me. Let’s talk about you!
Have you tried any of these life hacks before? How did it work out? Do you have any personal favourites? Did you manage to introduce some positive changes in your life with them? Please feel free to share your own life hacks, thoughts, ideas, experiences and suggestions in the comments section down below — I always love hearing from you!
Thank you all for reading, and until next time:
Stay green and motivated!
More about investing:
- Practical Investing Advice — Some Simple and Practical Investing Tips to help you get started
- 9 Benefits of Investing in the Stock Market — A comparison between the Stock Market and Property Investments
- How to Invest in 2020 — An up-to-date quick-start guide to investing in 2020
My Investing Courses:
More about self-improvement:
- Goals That Will Help Improve Your Life in 2020 — If you’re looking to build that “better you”, this is the place to start!
- 17 ways to Avoid Regrets in Your Life — Because regrets are never worth it
- How to use Ionised Water — Say goodbye to buying bottled water and dramatically decrease your plastic consumption at the same time.
- How to live a minimalist life — In this book, I’ll tell you about the common problems, experienced by people uninitiated in the fine art of minimalism, and I’ll offer you the solutions.
- Water — The Wonderful and Unique Life Source — You won’t believe what you can do at home to make your water help you fight off illness
- Water: For Health, for Healing, for Life — Thirsty readers will discover what they never knew, that water can actually do a lot more than satisfy your thirst