Wake Up with Intention and Take Control of the Day

Photo by Ioana Tabarcea

Are you a snoozer or a napper? Do you dread morning? It won’t come as a surprise to you that these habits are false friends that entice you with a fun activity only to later realize that it derailed you from your goals. And even more, all these sentiments, conditions and limitations that we put on ourselves are sabotaging the great work we have achieved in the day before. How?

Action requires commitment, discipline, passion and motivation. By indulging in habits that are destructive we break the chain of uplifting qualities that we’ve built the day before, having to redo it all. Neutral attitudes, such as leaving the bed with the first alarm, making yourself a cup of warm water, stretching, reading, exercising, without necessarily being over the moon, allow you to make things happen.

While waking up with a smile might not come naturally for a while, stick to routines you can build by using your environment. Build strong processes and your emotions will follow.

How to Avoid Confrontation

Photo by Trent Haaland

We raise our voice, stamp our foot and clench our fist – all signs of power that we rob our opponent from. How do we manage a conversation without feeding into this destructive pattern?

  1. We quietly listen, without interrupting our counterpart.
  2. We ask ‘how’ and ‘what’ questions – what do you think we should do next? How would you act if you were me?
  3. We treat the other person the way we would like them to treat us: with calm, respect and consideration

This is not as easy as 1, 2, 3 but I know that whenever I don’t give into the other person’s rage fit I feel better about myself. I might still not feel 100% ponies on the field tea party but I feel better than the times when I try to match anger with anger.

As a long term strategy, simply avoiding people who put all their emotions into an anger pot works better than managing constant friction. Choose your daily interactions carefully, every person we meet shapes our behavior and, to a certain degree, our identity.

Adjusting Your Goals Makes Them Attainable

Photo by Balaji Malliswamy

Those dreams you had as a child most likely can still happen. Sure, it takes willpower, discipline, commitment, work but they’re as alive as you allow yourself to be.

So instead of thinking I’m 40 years old, I won’t study and retire from being a brain surgeon by the time I’m 65, readjust your goal. Some things take time and that’s what makes them worthwhile. Growing and gaining understanding of what you want and how long it will take you to get there realistically makes it easier. Set smaller milestones rather than one, big goal that you know you want to achieve it, but you can’t really see it happening.

Look at the areas of your life that you haven’t reviewed in a while. Is your body in the best shape it can be? How about your diet? Your circle of influence? Your learning process. When was it the last time you’ve exposed yourself to new ideas? Goals are a fun way to measure our success, make them work in your benefit.

The Good News Conversations

Photo by Allie Smith

Imagine you only have today. What would you say to every single person you meet? What do you want to be remembered by?

I’ve only recently recognized the power of putting positive events at the forefront of my mind and of my conversations. It does exactly what you’d expect it to do: it changes perceptions. It changes how you feel about yourself and how other people perceive you. The way other people perceive you also impacts how you feel about yourself.

Sharing good news lifts spirits up. This doesn’t mean that negative experiences should be dealt with quietly. We can share negative experiences with friends just to feel like we belong, to reassure them that we don’t have it all together. That does everyone a disservice. Asking for advice from people who are in a position to give it or who can support you towards a resolution is valuable.

Share good news instead of bad news and people will come bringing good news to you.

Time for Kind Thoughts, Kind Words and Kind Actions

Broke or rich? Rested or tired? Grateful or depressed? Every situation has one resource in common: time. The day will still be 24 hours long and an hour 60 minutes long. What do you do with it?

One of my personal goals is to surround myself with positive people. To do so, I have to become a positive person first. I have to be calm, calculated, understanding and also ruthless. Cut off time investments that prevent me from achieving the life I want for myself and from being the person I want to become.

How can we use time to achieve positivity?

  1. Allow time for self-growth. Good reads, podcasts, interviews, growing new habits all take time. Positive thinking takes not only positive influences, but also positive habits. Do an audit, what can you change?
  2. Set your own terms. May it be regarding business meetings or family and friends, set a time and a day when you touch base with key people in your life.
  3. Limit interactions with negative people. If there’s someone with whom you have differences or the conversation ends on a negative tone, try and limit the interactions. When you do engage with these people try and bring positivity. You might want to start in small doses.