“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do and liking how you do it.” – Maya Angelou
For the last two years of my life, I have been on a never-ending pursuit of trying to figure out what it means to truly live my best life. I have set goals for myself, I have clearly defined my dreams, and have worked harder than I ever have before.
But still, the thought sometimes crosses my mind of whether or not it was worth it. Aside from noticeable changes on the inside, my life looks pretty similar on the outside.
One thing that I have always struggled with in life is the desire for instantaneous gratification. You know, wanting something immediately without really needing to work for it. As we all know, though, rarely does this ever happen.
Every time we open up our phones we are immediately flooded with images, text, and videos of those who have achieved some of their desires. It makes us wonder if we are less, if we have the strength to achieve our goals, or if we too are capable of achieving the life that we envision for ourselves.
What we see, and what we solely focus on is a finished ending. We see an end goal in mind and wonder whether or not we will ever get there without taking the time to recognize the years of hard work and dedication that goes into achieving any worthwhile goal.
Do yourself a favor and look at the lives of anyone who has, to your definition, made it BIG! Find as much information on the individuals who you admire the most and gather it together. The vast majority of the time, you’ll find a span (usually of around 5 years) of extreme commitment, failure, and focus.
Ask yourself if you are willing to devote that amount of time, if not more to master your craft? How many years would you be willing to constantly ask questions, to learn from those around you, to be willing to make mistakes, and to learn from those mistakes without giving up?
While it doesn’t sound as appealing when put this way, this is how many of those that we look up to the most achieved the level of success that they have. There is no magic switch or an overnight success. Sure, their lives may have changed drastically in a short amount of time, but it’s been years in the making.
Whatever you want to do in life, just know that you can. It doesn’t mean that it’s going to be easy, but as long as you are willing to never give up on yourself or on your dreams, know that anything is possible.
It is up to you to create an incredible routine that is going to help you to upgrade your life. It is up to you to focus on being efficient, productive, and creative. It is up to you to find the secrets to upgrading your entire life and continuing to practice and develop upon them to find the success and happiness that you deserve.
As long as you are willing to put in the time, dedication, and energy, there isn’t anything you can’t achieve.
Here are the 7 secrets to upgrading your entire life.
1. Focus on achieving one goal at a time.
Having big goals for yourself isn’t the reason why you have yet to achieve the life that you desire. The real problem comes from the fact that you want too many things at once that you aren’t able to focus on the one most important thing that is going to help you to upgrade your life.
Instead of focusing on wanting anything and everything that you lay eyes on, narrow your focus, choose one goal to pursue at a time, and simply make that goal your one and only priority until you achieve it.
People don’t go far in life for the simple fact that they lack focus. They want too many different things all at once to the point where they don’t even know where to begin – so they don’t.
Take a moment and set your focus on one goal. Visualize what your life will look like once you achieve that goal. Remember this feeling, embrace the emotions you have for it, and repeat this process every day until your goal becomes your reality.
The more you visualize your goal, the more your brain can actually see it. The more your brain can actually see it, the more motivating it will be.
2. Recognize that it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
“Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty.” – Theodore Roosevelt
The pursuit of our goals is a marathon, not a sprint. Unfortunately, you aren’t going to be able to snap your fingers to achieve the things that you desire the most or wake up tomorrow having achieved everything that you dreamt of the night before. You need to be committed to working towards your goals each and every single day until you achieve them if you ever do want to achieve them.
You will only get the results that you are committed to. Once you’re totally committed to a specific outcome, then everything else will slowly start to fall into place. You’ll develop a plan that will help you achieve your goal, create subgoals to help keep you motivated, and find the time in your day to create the life that you want to live.
When you aren’t totally committed, that’s when you will start to struggle. You need to be committed to the marathon if you want to win. Maybe you achieve your goals at the midway point or sooner. If so, all the more power to you. But if you aren’t willing to commit regardless of the time that it takes, you are not going to achieve the finish you desire.
3. Create time first thing in the morning for yourself.
Don’t have time to pursue your goals? Create time first thing in the morning. If that means going to bed a few hours earlier so that you can wake up an hour or two earlier, then that is what you need to be willing to do.
The mornings are going to be your most productive time, especially if you wake up early than you normally do. It’s because not many people wake up at 5 or 6 in the morning. When you are the only one up, there are going to be fewer distractions that are going to try and steal your time. It is going to be you, your thoughts, and your goals.
If you truly want to achieve your goals, then you need to prioritize one goal at a time and pursue it first thing in the morning. Not only will you find that there are fewer distractions in the world around you, but there will also be fewer distractions and consuming thoughts flooding your mind as well.
Pursue the goals that matter to you the most when your brain is the freshest. Wake up earlier in the morning and commit time to pursue the goals that you desire.
4. Avoid mindless evenings.
“A mistake repeated more than once is a decision.” – Paulo Coelho
If you are struggling to find the strength and energy to wake up in the morning, it’s probably because you are spending much of your evening being unproductive.
I get it, after a long day at work, all you want to do is relax and unwind.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t relax and watch your favorite show or unwind and take some time for yourself. It simply means to be careful about how you use your time.
Don’t over-consume your time with things that aren’t going to benefit you. Laying in bed scrolling through social media isn’t going to help you achieve your goals. Watching re-runs of a show you’ve already seen three times won’t lead to you living the life you desire. Avoid mindless evenings so that you can wake up earlier feeling refreshed and energized to achieve the goals that you have set for yourself.
5. Keep a to-do list handy at all times.
One of the best and easiest things that you can do to upgrade your output and efficiency is to keep a to-do list on you at all times. Personally, I just keep a small field notebook in my pocket with what I have to accomplish throughout the day.
Doing so is beneficial for two primary reasons.
- The first reason is that it will help to keep you focused. When you know exactly what it is that you need to accomplish in order to make strides towards your goals, you are going to be more likely to actually put in the work.
- The second reason is that it will help you to remember what you need to do. How many times do you have a brilliant idea pass through your mind only to forget what it was later? For me, this happened all the time. I would write down certain tasks that I wanted to complete, would try to memorize them, and would forget about them until it was too late.
If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail.
It shouldn’t take long, but whether it is the first thing in the morning or at right before you go to sleep at night, give yourself some time to prepare your day, write down the things that you need to do, and plan for how you are going to achieve your success.
Having a plan and a list of what you need to accomplish means you’ve taken the first step to set yourself up for success. You have started putting the pieces together so that you can think less and do more.
6. Track your progress consistently.
If you’re going to achieve any meaningful goal, then not only do you need to be courageous and pursue that goal, but you also need to track your progress consistently. You need to take bold steps in the direction of your goal, track the progress that you have made on a daily basis towards that goal, and develop a plan for how you are going to move forward.
As Antoine de Saint-Exupery said, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” If you don’t track your progress consistently, you are not going to know which direction to head in next.
When you track your progress consistently, you start to see how much you are progressing towards your goals, even if at a slow pace. As you continue to make progress, your subconscious will start to take over to where you are working towards your goals without intentionally having to prioritize them.
7. Challenge your standards and beliefs.
Lastly, if you want to know the secrets to upgrading your entire life, then look no further than the mirror. You are the only person who can upgrade your life. It starts with upgrading your standards and upgrading your beliefs. If you don’t pursue goals that are going to bring you the life you envision for yourself and actually believe that you have the strength and courage to achieve them, how can you expect them to become your reality?
Challenging your standards means raising your expectations, demanding only the best from yourself, and challenging yourself to break out of your comfort zone.
While it may be scary to do these things, that’s the price you need to be willing to pay if you want to upgrade your life. Nothing new comes to those who stay within their comfort zones. If you want bigger and better for yourself, it means challenging yourself in any way possible until you achieve what bigger and better looks like for you.
It takes time to master your craft and achieve the goals that you have for yourself. But as long as you are willing to show up each and every single day and work towards achieving your goals, then there isn’t anything that you aren’t capable of achieving.
Don’t expect your life to change overnight. Set realistic goals, give yourself a realistic timeframe, and enjoy each step of the process as it is a moment in time that you will never get back. As long as you enjoy what you’re doing and find meaning in it, your life will change faster and in more ways than you could have ever imagined.