Ways To Be Successful Aside Being Great At Your Job

Right now, it seems the only noble or worthwhile thing to do is to become an entrepreneur, a leader, a creative professional, or at least the most valuable person in the room. The problem is that not everybody is suited to do these things, and even fewer actually want to. But when we use our jobs as means of emotional validation – something we can work on to prove our inherent worth – this is what emerges. There are so many ways to measure a good life, aside from your day job, so here are a few ways to begin gauging the depth of your character beyond the implication of your title and the sum of your paycheck….

1. Do good work. Not what you think other people think is good work, but work in which you put forth so much complete, genuine effort that you are at peace with yourself at the end of the day.

2. Be the kind of person who actively, consciously seeks out the loving, kind parts of even the most undeserving, unkind people.

3. Always be open to the idea that you could be wrong, or your perspective could be misinformed, especially if you want to demand the same from others.

4. Learn to enjoy your life while not having to forego your responsibilities. Learn to find that enjoyment in them, not in spite of them.

5. Become the kind of person you think the world needs more of. Do what you often feel compelled to advise other people to do. Make the change you think needs to happen on the planet within your personal life.

6. Learn to live within your means, and happily so. Pay all of your bills, and save what you can. Relish in the kind of independence that brings.

7. Be the kind of person that other people feel better just for having been around. Learn how to comfort without placating, and love without losing yourself.

8. Be an incredible friend, one who is able to sustain a friendship despite major life changes, moves, or time. One who reaches out, makes phone calls, sends thank you cards.

9. Decide that what you have is enough – this is the only way to stop wanting.

10. Enjoy the holidays the way you did as a kid. Create your own traditions. Treat the people you love well.

11. Value your own opinions just a little bit more than you do other people’s. Don’t live your life trying to make sure everyone loves you but you.

12. Speak out when you see injustice, but do so by offering a better solution, not another personal attack just coming from a different angle.

13. Be the kind of person that your child self would be proud of.

14. Practicing loving people unconditionally – no matter what.

15. Learn to love yourself that way first.

16. Validate the emotions of the people who are closest to you. Doing so is an art form, and the essence of real intimacy (platonic or not).

17. Make time to do things you love, even if that something will never lead to a job, and even if you will never be the best at it.

18. Whatever you want to spend the most time consumed by – the family you already have, the family you want to build, the joy you find in your morning coffee or working on your novel-to-be for an hour each night – be someone who sticks to their priorities. Define your life with something you’re proud of, not just whatever you’re afraid not to have.

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Signs You’ve Evolved More Than You Give Yourself Credit For

It’s hard to see how far along the path you’ve come while you’re so focused on taking each step – so to say. You’ve probably had the experience of a third party commenting on how much you’ve changed but barely being able to realize only because you’re with yourself each day. This is normal, but is also the product of focusing on how what’s left to do rather than what you’ve already accomplished – which is why it’s often hard to give yourself the credit you really deserve.

1. You have something in your life that you would have previously considered impossible, or at least, a dream come true. Sobriety, a degree, a partner, a dream job…

2. You forget how much you’ve gone through, simply because it doesn’t cross your mind anymore. Your past seems like it happened “in a different life.”

3. Your criteria for a romantic “type” are personality traits, not physical characteristics. Your idea of “love” has expanded beyond just the feeling that sexual attraction gives you.

4. You have more than just your problems to tal
bout with friends. More interests you than just gossip – as you’ve learned that those conversations have very little to do with other people, and absolutely everything to do with you.

5. The worst happened, and then it passed. You lost the person you thought you couldn’t live without and then you kept living. You lost your job then found another one. You began to realize that “safety” isn’t in certainty – but in faith that you can simply keep going.

6. You’ve created your own belief system, if not entirely and thoroughly questioned your existing one. You no longer subscribe to anything that doesn’t resonate or make sense to you.

8. You’re more discerning of who you spend your time with. You value your closest friends more than you do the idea of a “group.”

9. You don’t change any part of yourself – your personality, your opinions, even your clothes – based on who you’re going to be around that day.

10. You don’t blame other people for your problems anymore. You don’t choose to suffer because you assume if you complain loudly enough, the Universe will have to fix it.

11. You don’t relate to a lot of your old friends anymore, but you can still keep in touch and appreciate the role they had in your life.

12. You’re not worried about fitting in anymore, you sincerely don’t want to be “normal,” and you sincerely do not care about being “cool,” as you now see that the “cool kids” usually don’t get very far past high school.

13. You can talk about the problems in your life that you thought you’d absolutely never get over and you can also talk about exactly how you got over them.

14. You stop and enjoy life more often, rather than just sprinting from goal to goal.

15. You’re highly skeptical of anything that’s fed to you as being “just the way things are.” You’re always open to the idea that there could be a different, better, kinder, more enlightened way to live, and you’re always willing to at least try for it.

16. If you were to tell your younger self about the life you have now, they sincerely wouldn’t believe you.

Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Afraid To Ruthlessly Edit Your Life

People are very judgmental of those who like to “edit” their lives. They accuse them of not being happy in the moment, never being satisfied, being flighty, and so on. While it’s not to say that any one of those things is untrue – it is to say that everybody should take it upon themselves to edit their lives, and while being mindful of the feelings of those involved, still not apologize for pursuing what you truly want.

1. Greatness is a product of practice and commitment – you’re not supposed to get it “right” the first time. Any relationship, project, achievement or endeavor – from how you decorate your house to publish your first book – is a linear process. It’s never a matter of whether or not you get it right the first time, but how willing you are to keep trying.

2. It takes courage to change by your own volition. It takes guts to say “this is not the life I wanted… so I’m going to start over again.” It’s likely that the people who are judgmental of this wish they could do it, or that they had the means to.

3. Settling is the easy way out disguised as the comfortable, “ideal” option. And often, we can confuse the peace and ease and lure of “settling” with what we actually desire.

4. People who edit their lives believe they deserve the lives they want. They believe they deserve loving friends, and happy relationships, and to actualize all of their dreams, even if they have to work really hard to get there. It’s their inherent feeling of being worthy that makes them push forward.

5. It takes intelligence and heart to admit that you weren’t right the first time. Many people avoid changing their lives simply because they don’t want to take the ego hit of feeling as though they were “wrong.”

6. Everything is about evolution, at the end of the day. You will become excellent at what you practice each day – regardless of whether that’s art or gossip or brooding or music. Your life will accumulate to the sum of the little moments – no matter what they’re filled with. You will grow regardless, edit your life so it’s in a direction you actually want.

Signs You’re Not Unhappy – You’ve Just Outgrown Your Current Life

People do not change until not changing is the least comfortable option. Yet, the space between “realizing something isn’t right” and “taking action to fix it” can be decades and lifetimes long. Luckily, we don’t have to suffer forever and wait for things to get so bad, our survival instincts give us the energy to plow through. Here, a few signs you’re not actually unhappy, you’re just waiting for the life you’ve outgrown to get uncomfortable enough before you change it.

1. When you hangout with friends, you always end up talking about gossip or something negative, only because that’s what you bond over. Your time spent with others breeds pettiness and negativity, only because you aren’t genuinely connected enough to share anything more than that.

2. You get lost in thought, and find yourself binge thinking to the point of creating problems just to have something to deal with. When this happens, it’s just a product of being bored with your life, or not having something to entertain your mind with. (When the brain isn’t positively stimulated, it reverts to what it knows: fear and survival).

3. You’re becoming increasingly jealous of other people’s successes, even if you have no desire to achieve what they do. When this happens, it’s not because we want what someone else has, it’s because we know we aren’t working hard.enough toward what we want for ourselves.

4. You know what needs to change, you just don’t want to do it yourself. When this happens, it’s because we aren’t yet to the point of being so uncomfortable that we have no choice but to change. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it) when you recognize what needs to shift, you will get to that point eventually (so better to take action now).

5. You are self-sabotaging by neglecting your responsibilities. Despite believing that they are important, you just don’t do them, or don’t do them on time. This is what happens when we don’t have a real desire to sustain the life we’re living – it’s a form of subconscious self-sabotage that pushes us to rebuild something new. (Luckily, we can do that rebuilding without the sabotage…)

6. You anxiety-scroll. You are at the peak of your social media addiction. You check random people’s pages with fervor, you feel as though if you were to neglect doing so at any point in time, you’d actually end up missing something extremely important, and you don’t want to be “surprised” by it. You think that this keeps you “safe” in a strange, delusional way. You enjoy posting photos of something more than you enjoy doing it. Validation of your online persona is beginning to supplement the lack validation you feel for who you actually are.

7. Your fear-thoughts motivate you. Imagining the worst possible outcome scares you into performing better, or getting more work done. When this is the case, it is almost always because you are doing something you should not be doing – or something you don’t actually want to be doing in the first place.

8. Your daily routine consists of things that satisfy your immediate desires, not your long-term goals. When you live jumping from whim-to-whim, it’s because you don’t have any bigger-picture goals to aspire to. You’re essentially just circling around yourself each day by constantly giving into what you want in the moment as opposed to what would be best for you in the long-term. You aren’t moving forward.

Uncomfortable Feelings That Actually Indicate You’re On The Right Path

Discomfort is what happens when we are on the precipice of change. Unfortunately, we often confuse it for unhappiness, and cope with the latter while running from the former. It usually takes a bit of discomfort to break through to a new understanding, to release a limiting belief, to motivate ourselves to create real change. Discomfort is a signal, one that is often very helpful. Here are a few (less than desirable) feelings that may indicate you’re on the right path after all- Brianna Weist

1. Feeling as though you are reliving your childhood struggles. You find that you’re seeing issues you struggled with as a kid reappear in your adult life, and while on the surface this may seem like a matter of not having overcome them, it really means you are becoming conscious of why you think and feel, so you can change it.

2. Feeling “lost,” or directionless. Feeling lost is actually a sign you’re becoming more present in your life – you’re living less within the narratives and ideas that you premeditated, and more in the moment at hand. Until you’re used to this, it will feel as though you’re off track (you aren’t).

3. “Left brain” fogginess. When you’re utilizing the right hemisphere more often (you’re becoming more intuitive, you’re dealing with emotions, you’re creating) sometimes it can seem as though “left brain” functions leave you feeling fuzzy. Things like focusing, organizing, remembering small details suddenly become difficult.

4. Having random influxes of irrational anger or sadness that intensify until you can’t ignore them anymore. When emotions erupt it’s usually because they’re “coming up” to be recognized, and our job is to learn to stop grappling with them or resisting them, and to simply become fully conscious of them (after that, we control them, not the opposite way around).

5. Experiencing unpredictable and scattered sleeping patterns. You’ll need to sleep a lot more or a lot less, you’ll wake up in the middle of the night because you can’t stop thinking about something, you find yourself full of energy or completely exhausted, and with little in-between.

6. A life-changing event is taking place, or just has. You suddenly having to move, getting divorced, losing a job, having a car break down, etc.

7. Having an intense need to be alone.
You’re suddenly disenchanted with the idea of spending every weekend out socializing, and other people’s problems are draining you more than they are intriguing you. This means you’re re-calibrating.

8. Intense, vivid dreaming that you almost always remember in detail. If dreams are how your subconscious mind communicates with you (or projects an image of your experience) then yours is definitely trying to say something. You’re having dreams at an intensity that you’ve never experienced before.

9. Downsizing your friend group; feeling more and more uncomfortable around negative people. The thing about negative people is that they rarely realize they are negative, and because you feel uncomfortable saying anything (and you’re even more uncomfortable keeping that in your life) you’re ghosting a bit on old friends.

10. Feeling like the dreams you had for your life are collapsing. What you do not realize at this moment is that it is making way for a reality better than you could have thought of, one that’s more aligned with who you are, not who you thought you would be.

11. Feeling as though your worst enemy are your thoughts. You’re beginning to realize that your thoughts do create your experience, and it’s often not until we’re pushed to our wit’s end that we even try to take control of them – and that’s when we realize that we were in control all along.

12. Feeling unsure of who you really are.
Your past illusions about who you ‘should’ be are dissolving. You feel unsure because it is uncertain! You’re in the process of evolving, and we don’t become uncertain when we change for the worse (we become angry and closed off). In other words: if what you’re experiencing is insecurity or uncertainty, it’s usually going to lead to something better.

13. Recognizing how far you still have to go. When you realize this, it’s because you can also see where you’re headed, it means you finally know where and who you want to be.

14. “Knowing” things you don’t want to know. Such as what someone is really feeling, or that a relationship isn’t going to last, or that you won’t be at your job much longer. A lot of “irrational” anxiety comes from subconsciously sensing something, yet not taking it seriously because it isn’t logical.

15. Having a radically intense desire to speak up for yourself. Becoming angry with how much you’ve let yourself be walked on, or how much you’ve let other people’s voices get into your head is a sign that you’re finally ready to stop listening, and love yourself by respecting yourself first.

16. Realizing you are the only person responsible for your life, and your happiness. This kind of emotional autonomy is terrifying, because it means that if you mess up, it’s all on you. At the same time, realizing it is the only way to be truly free. The risk is worth the reward on this one, always.

17 Ideas You’re Protecting About Your Life That Are Only Swaying You Back

1. If you work hard enough, success is a guarantee. Most people are rarely “successful” in the way they first set out to be. Rather than work toward an end-goal, work toward liking the process of getting there. Whether success is a product of chance or fate, all you can control is how much work you put in (not exactly what comes out).

2. Wanting something badly enough qualifies you to have it. Nobody ever got anything from just wanting it badly enough. You have to want it badly enough to sacrifice, and to work hard, become qualified, keep your head up through tons of rejection and doubt, and then rinse/repeat for as long as it takes.

3. You’ll be the exception to everything, so you don’t have to wear sunscreen or save money, or worry about your retirement plan or treat people respectfully, because your circumstances are just different than everyone else’s.

4. You’re a celebrity in your own mind – everyone is watching you, and judging your choices. The “spotlight complex” is undoubtedly linked to social media, but regardless, nobody is thinking about you the way you are thinking about you, nor nearly as much. Nobody cares if you wear an unflattering shirt out to the pharmacy. Nobody really cares what you do with your life, so stop making choices as though they do.

5. If you’re doing something right, results will be instantaneous. If you’re doing something right, the results will take a very long time to build up and produce an outcome you’re happy with.

6. “Busyness” is a good thing. Being busy is what happens when people are ill-equipped to manage their stress. People who actually have a lot to do just focus on getting it done, simply because they don’t have another choice.

7. There’s a “right time” to create. Or get married, or have a child, or start pursuing the life you feel called to. If you’re looking for an excuse as to why it’s not the right time, you’ll always find one.

8. Adulthood is “hard.” There are lots of things that are challenging and heartbreaking and trying in a life, but learning how to perform basic functions is not one of them.

9. Your purpose is something existentially profound. Your purpose is just to be here, and to do whatever job you find yourself doing. You don’t have to be consciously changing the world to fulfill it.

10. Everybody can have a job they love if they work hard enough. Everybody can find a way to enjoy their job – regardless of the inevitable challenges that come with any job – but nobody is entitled to do work that happens to fit precisely within their realm of interest and comfort.

11. You’re not responsible for that which you do unintentionally. Accidentally hurting someone’s feelings doesn’t really hurt them; time you don’t realize wasting isn’t wasted; money spent on “necessities” isn’t money spent. Essentially, if you aren’t conscious of the repercussions of something, they don’t count.

12. Your life partner is responsible for making you feel one very specific way. And you use that singular feeling to determine whether or not your relationship is “good,” or worthwhile.

13. To accept something, you must be happy about it, or at least okay with it. You can accept your circumstances (acknowledge they are real) while still disliking them strongly. You don’t have to like everything, but if you want to preserve your sanity, you have to accept whatever comes into your life before you can change it.

14. People are ruminating on the embarrassing stuff you did five years ago. They’re busy ruminating on their own stuff, the same way you are. (Are you thinking about things other people did over the years to any significant degree? It’s unlikely.)

15. You must be “right” to be a valid, intelligent human being. Really the most intelligent people are more open to being wrong than anyone (that’s how they learn) but regardless, you do not need to be consistently right or exceedingly smart or stunningly beautiful or anything else to be worthwhile, and lovable.

16. You are your struggles. You say “I am an anxious person,” rather than “I sometimes feel anxiety.” You identify with your problems, which is likely a huge reason why you can’t overcome them.

17. You can only be as happy as your circumstances allow. You will only be as happy as you choose to focus on what’s positive, reconcile and problem-solve what’s negative, build the relationships that matter, validate yourself, and develop your mindset. You cannot choose a feeling, but you can always choose what you think about. Rejecting the idea that you can do so is to submit and doom yourself to a life in which you are never truly happy at all.

10 Signs Your Life Is Changing For The Better (Even If It Feels Difficult Right Now)

The best thing about the worst things we go through is that they are always pathways to something better. A breakdown = a breakthrough we haven’t seen the other side yet. Often when we think our lives are most in chaos, it’s because they’re re-setting to where we want them to be. Here, a few (sometimes difficult) signs that your life is actually changing for the better, even if it doesn’t feel like it right now- Brianna Weist

1. You’re recognizing what you don’t want. All of a sudden, you’re becoming acutely aware of how much you dislike your work habits and how much your “friends” drain you and how little you feel like yourself lately. It may seem like you’re dissecting the anatomy of a disaster, but really, you’re getting clear on what you don’t want so you can get clearer about what you do.

2. You’re opening up to people again; isolation is no longer the most appealing option. Even if you’re just thinking about the fact that you need to open your heart more to the people around you, you’re already on the right track.

3. You’re unpredictably emotional. It’s just another way of saying that you’re not suppressing everything anymore. You’re beginning to feel again, which brings you one step closer to being able to deal with those feelings in a real way.

4. A lot of annoying clichés are starting to make sense. You’re seeing why hard work is important, and being present matters and positivity is a choice. You’re seeing how love is something you create and your life is what you make it and everything else that seemed like vapid, useless fodder is now the answer to everything, if only you could master it.

5. You’re becoming hyper self-conscious. It’s just a side effect of becoming more self-aware. Alternatively, you’re finally reaching a healthy equilibrium of being able to recognize both the positive and negative aspects about who you are, without denying or inflating either/or.

6. The changes you desire in your life surround wanting to feel more like yourself, not less. In the past, you may have dreamt of a life where you were über successful or incredibly beautiful or completely loved, all in an effort to combat feeling proportionately shitty about yourself. When you’re more in your center, you want your life to reflect who you are, not who you wish you were.

7. You feel “lost,” which is just another way of saying you’re detaching from your old ideas about what your life should be, or what the future should hold, and so on. Living in the present feels an awful lot like being “lost” before we get used to it.

8. You’re seeing your hardships as portals to a better understanding of yourself. Rather than battle off your emotional trauma or low self-esteem – or worse, try to control something else in its place – you’re beginning to realize that on the other side of the things that most deeply plague you is a deeper truth about who you are.

9. You’re beginning to realize that if you have a problem in your life, the problem is you. Aside from the fact that people love to project their issues onto other people and deflect from their own faults, whether or not a situation was your fault, if it is affecting you, it is your responsibility to change. The blame game is an irrelevant one. It’s as simple as that.

10. You know you’re not getting enough out of life, but now you’re starting to that maybe you’re not giving enough, either. You complain that you don’t have love but you don’t actually go out and try to date. You hate your job, but you don’t look for a new one. You’re always stressed, but you don’t work on being better about regulating your emotions or being able to focus harder and work more efficiently. You both recognize that you want more from your life and understand that it’s time you start making that happen.

12 Things You’re Carrying With You That Are Only Weighing You Down

When it comes to emotional decluttering, we often don’t realize that the thoughts and feelings that hold us back are really rooted in the things we have and the people we’ve loved and lost and thought we needed to be. When it’s time to clean house, make sure you clean head and heart, too.

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1. The city you thought you had to live in. As we grow up, we realize that the “big city” dream is kind of an empty one: aside from a more robust job selection, smaller cities and lesser-known parts of town are more conducive to community and financial independence and so on. Untie your dream life from logistical nightmares.

2. The ideal job you’re still waiting for. Work is work, whether you like what you do or not. Your dream job is whatever you decide it is. If you don’t learn to like whatever you do now, chances are you’ll feel similarly later. (Wherever you go, there you are.)

3. The clutter you’ve just been too lazy to get rid of. The papers that need to be shredded, the old clothes and cluttered closets that you’ve left to just keep accumulating junk… these things aren’t little things, they are everything, and they affect your life more than you realize.

4. The person you think other people want you to be. Inconsistencies make people uncomfortable, which is why we feel apprehensive to changing ourselves. But the risk of stepping out of other people’s comfort zones comes with a reward that’s more important than anything else: getting to be who you really are.

5. The idea that life is still in it’s “dress rehearsal” phase. When we’re in school, we’re kind of taught that everything is just “preparation” for the future. There is no seamless transition into waking up and realizing that it’s just time to live.

6. The debt you took on to become someone you’re not. There’s a difference between a wise (albeit large) investment, like a student loan, and a maxed out credit card that is nothing but the product of your crippling belief that you aren’t enough.

7. Friends you’ve kept out of proximity, not connection. Spending your time with people you don’t actually like, doing things that don’t actually fulfill you may seem innocuous, but letting it become a habit will drain you in ways you probably won’t even be aware of.

8. The fear of discomfort. If you spend your life avoiding discomfort, you’ll spend your life avoiding growth.

9. A spotlight complex. Nobody is thinking about you the way that you are thinking about you. In fact, nobody is looking at you the same way either. You’re likely not a celebrity, an maintaining the idea that you are makes you behave as though you are, when really, it’s a kind of entertainment that cripples, rather than bolsters, your self-image.

10. The love you’re still waiting for.
Whether it’s the one that got away, the friends you think you need to have, or the popularity you’re still trying to build… the love you’re waiting for is just a projection of the love you’re not already giving yourself.

11. The idea that success is the ultimate end-goal. If being wealthy or popular is your #1 priority, you will likely have to sacrifice a lot on the way: your relationships, your sanctity of mind. If that’s what you want, fine, but if it’s not, be aware of what you’re working toward before you arrive somewhere you never wanted to be.

12. The way you thought your life would look. The way you thought your life would be was only a projection of what you knew at the time. It’s not a matter of changing it so it better suits what you once thought it would be like, but changing your perception of the present.

Repost: Your Purpose Is On The Other Side Of Your Pain

Chasing a dream is never easy, but the most passionate people stop at nothing once they decide to go for it.

For most of my life, I lacked what I now call an emotional navigation system. I either didn’t have the tools to express the anxiety I felt, or didn’t feel I could do so without being punished for it in some way. So I just avoided pain. Or, I tried to avoid pain. I was obsessed with figuring out what I was meant to do, or being able to determine who I was meant to be with. I thought that if I only did what I was “meant” to, I could never be wrong, I could never get hurt, and I could never lose anything. Growing up, I would sit for hours looking up college course catalogs, making lists of things I could become. On the outside, it looked like ambition, on the inside, it just hurt.

I was a binge thinker. I would identify a problem, and craft a solution. This was how I got by, this is what propelled me. I thought I could calculate success, or make a formula for happiness. My subconscious mantra was “I will be happy when.” If only I could fix this thing about myself, I would feel better. If I only had this much money, or had this relationship, or wore this pant size, it would feel better. But it never felt better. There was perpetually one step between me and feeling okay.

My every move revolved around “purpose.” I thought that if I could figure out what I was here to do, everything would feel better. Everything would be worth it. The truth is that I didn’t have the capability to recognize what was preventing me from feeling happy in the first place. I didn’t understand that the same part of the brain that governs rumination also controls problem-solving, and creativity. The more depressed I was, the more successful I became. Until that became too much.

I know now that being afraid of things going wrong is not the way to make them go right. Releasing that fear is knowing there’s no “right” way for things to go.

What’s interesting about tracing the story back is that along the way, the elusive “signs” of the purpose I spent my life looking for were right in front of me. I was a professional writing major in college, but I never took a creative writing class, because I was too shy to share my thoughts and feelings with peers. In my relationships, as soon as things inched past the point of intimacy that I was comfortable with, I relied on asking myself “Is this right?” rather than “Do I feel this is right?”

I didn’t actually want to be successful, I just wanted to feel better, and I didn’t understand any other way to do that other than to change my life. My greatest success didn’t come from being successful, but who I had to become along the way.

In 2012, I read an article by the writer Ryan O’Connell for the first time – a friend pulled it up for me in the newspaper office in which we worked. I was heartbroken and reeling and heavily medicated and barely getting by. But when I read that article, a weight lifted (literally, physically).

For the first time, someone had articulated exactly what I was going through. I had never read anything like it before. I didn’t know that it was what I wanted to do, I only knew that it made me feel better. So I started doing it, too.
I was first published nearly by accident (I thought it would look good on a résumé). And then, something happened. Something I couldn’t have planned for, something I couldn’t have chosen, yet something that every single thing was leading me to. People started reading. And I kept writing. And then people started reading by the millions. And then tens of millions. The deeper I looked into my own problems, the more thoroughly I analyzed them and expressed them and shared them, the more I could understand other people, and the more rapidly they would respond. The more intimate my confessions, the more people would click and share.

Every little part of my life meant something, I just didn’t know it at the time. Every moment – however unbearable – was crucial. My only purpose was to just be here, and that was it. It would add up on its own. My life would calculate itself; it didn’t need me to judge whatever it came out to. I do believe in purpose, but I don’t believe that you need to know what it is to live it.

I know now that being afraid of things going wrong is not the way to make them go right. Releasing that fear is knowing there’s no “right” way for things to go. It’s a presupposition, one that will hurt you more than it will ever help.

10 Questions To Ask Yourself When You Don’t Know Where Your Life Should Go Next

1. If you had the life you think you want, what would tomorrow be like? When you imagine the life you want, rather than focus on the elevator speech (“I am this, I do this…”) focus on the daily routine. If you had the life you think you want, what would you do tomorrow? How different would it be from what you’re doing now? What from that vision can you actually start doing tomorrow?

2. If social media didn’t exist, what would you do differently? Would you dress differently, feel bad about where you live, care about what your apartment looks like? What choices would you make if you didn’t feel they were being silently policed by the faceless mob of people that lie behind the screens of social media? What would matter? What would you do? Who would you be?

3. If nobody would know what you did with the rest of your life, what would you do? If your life wasn’t the slightest bit performative – if there was nothing you could get from doing something other than just the act of doing it, how would you spend your time? What would you be interested in doing? What would energize you?

4. If you died yesterday, what would you most regret? Forget imagining if you died tomorrow… what if you were already dead? What would you regret the most? What would you wish you had done differently, saw differently, responded to differently?

5. If you could choose five things that matter most to you, what would they be? Whether you realize it or not, your life will fundamentally be built off of the few things you care about the most. When it’s not, it will feel out of alignment at best, or off-the-rails at worst. Fulfillment is living in accordance with what we genuinely value.

6. To what in your life do you feel a subtle, unexplainable “nudge?” What gives you a feeling of subtle, unexplainable enjoyment? What do you like, even though you don’t understand why you like it? These are the things to pay attention to. These are the things that are real. Your mind is responding to what you think you like, your emotions are responding to what actually resonates.

7. If you knew nobody would judge you, what would you do with your days? If you would only be praised for your work, for your life, and for your choices – which would you make? What would you do?

8. What are you struggling with the most right now? Interestingly enough, the things that plague you the most deeply are signals toward where you must move next. If your deepest issue is not having a romantic relationship, the next phase of your life will likely need to involve at least trying to develop that. The things that you’re struggling with the most right now can tell you what you really want, and toward which direction you should step.

9. What do you already have going for you at this present moment? The mantra of any major life change should always be: “start where you are, use what you have, do what you can.” There is no other way to get anywhere.

10. If you had to live tomorrow on repeat for the rest of your life, what would you do? Or, put another way: if you lived today on repeat forever, where would you be? What would you have accomplished? Would you be thriving at work? Would you have made time for the people you love? Would you have written a book, or played music, or be spending your money in a healthy way? Would you be dressing like yourself, and enjoying the sunrise, and eating in a way that will sustain you over the long-term? Your life exists in it’s days. Not in your ideas about those days. Your habits accumulate, and begin to default. Imagining that you’ll never grow out of them is the fastest way to a reality check.

16 Signs You’re What’s Known As An ‘Intrinsically Motivated’ Person

Motivation

1. You find it hard, if not impossible, to complete tasks that don’t interest you. While this sounds like a virtue, it’s a liability in terms of feeling like you always lack the motivation to do the boring (but important stuff) in life.

2. You were always the kid who was just a little bit different than the rest – you’re more inclined to do things for how they feel, not how they make you look. In everything from the clothes you choose to the people you hang out with, you’re influenced more by how you genuinely feel than what you assume other people will think about it.

3. You’re hard on yourself, and are always on a warpath to fix your flaws. You feel a duty to be the best version of yourself possible. Because you know your ability to enjoy your life is dependent on how capable you are of doing so, you’re hyper-sensitive to all of your failings and misgivings.

Basically, you don’t want to disappoint yourself.

4. You’re reflective – you think a lot about who you are and who you want to become. You spent a lot of time evaluating yourself and reflecting on how things happened and why. You think about your life as much as you spend your time actually living it.

5. You don’t hold other people responsible for your feelings. You don’t blame and victimize yourself as a means of thwarting your own emotional responsibility. You don’t need other people to make you happy (even if you do enjoy having them around).
6. You see obstacles as opportunities.

Intrinsically motivated people see discomfort as a sign that they are on the precipice of something new, not that they are victims of a suffering for which they must unfairly endure.

7. You value “bad” feelings, too. All emotions are part of the same signaling system – they direct and guide us toward what we want, and what we don’t. We disrupt the process when we avoid some emotions and value others. Intrinsically motivated people listen to everything their response systems tell them, and evaluate accordingly.

8. You’re highly intuitive. People who are connected to their own internal navigation systems are that much more attuned to the habits, intentions and responses of other people. (Knowing yourself is the path to understanding others).

9. You romanticize everything. Whether you’re just always looking at the world with rose-colored glasses or you’re actually inclined to want romantic love and companionship, you’re very aware of what makes your head and heart swoon (and you seek it often).

10. You pursue what you love, even if not as your full-time job. Whether it’s only as a side-gig, or something you do as a hobby on the weekends, you know how absolutely imperative it is to follow the things that call you. You believe in a higher purpose.

11. You’re a natural psychologist. People who are driven by their own interests are naturally more self-aware, which makes them able to interpret other people’s issues that much more easily.

12. You understand that “loving yourself” is the first and final act of a life well lived. You are only as useful to others as you are capable of taking care of yourself – you understand that “loving yourself” isn’t just treating yourself to a hot bath now and again but respecting your feelings and listening to yourself and taking time to become the best person you can be. The people you love (and the world, really) are relying on it.

13. You value quality > quantity when it comes to friends and relatives. If you don’t feel genuinely connected to someone, it’s difficult for you to feign a relationship with them.

14. You’re on a never-ending quest to understand things more deeply. The more you understand yourself, the more you understand your life, the world, other people, etc. You want to know why things are the way they are, and what purpose they serve, and so on.

15. You believe that happiness is a choice. Even if you can’t always (or don’t always want) to choose it, your fundamental belief system surrounds the idea that you are ultimately in control of what you think and how you feel – if only you take responsibility for it.

16. You believe that life is about growth. You believe that everything in your life serves to teach you and make you a better person than you were before – and that, in itself, is the main motivating force in your life.

18 Little Reminders For Anyone Who Feels Like They Don’t Know What They’re Doing With Their Life

1. Nobody knows what they are “doing with their lives.” Some people have a better idea of what they’re working toward, but ultimately, none of us can accurately anticipate or summarize what our existence is about. Not yet.

2. You decide what your life is defined by. The feeling of being “lost” isn’t what happens when you go off-path, it’s when you forfeit control. It’s what happens when you don’t want to accept the course of events that have unfolded. Being found again is a matter of owning what happened to you, and continuing to write the story.

3. J.K. Rowling didn’t know she was going to be one of the most famous writers in the world, she was just writing a story for her kids. Steve Jobs didn’t know he’d be a pioneer of how humanity interacts with technology, he was just a guy in his garage making a computer. Oprah didn’t know she’d become the poster woman for self-improvement and success, she was just trying to do a job. You don’t need to know what you’re doing to still do something extraordinary.

4. There is no way you will be able to predict or plan what will be happening in 5 years from now.

5. If you can predict and plan for that, dream bigger. Try harder.

6. Planning your life (or having a cohesive idea of “what you’re doing”) isn’t necessarily ambition, it’s more just a soothing notion. Focus instead on what you want to do with each and every day of your existence. That’s noble. That’s worthwhile. That will get you somewhere.

7. You owe nothing to your younger self. You are not responsible for being the person you once thought you’d be.

8. You owe everything to the adult you are today. You owe it to yourself to ask yourself what you like, what you want, what calls you, what you need, and what you deserve.

9. Do you know why you don’t have the things you once thought you wanted? Because you don’t want them anymore. Not badly enough.

10. It’s likely that you’re between realizing you don’t want what you once did, and giving yourself permission to want what you want now.

11. Give yourself permission to want what you want now.

12. If you want to change your life, stop thinking about how you feel lost and start coming up with actions you can take that move you in a direction – any direction – that’s positive. It’s a lot harder to think your way into a new way of acting than it is to act your way into a new way of thinking.

13. Nobody’s life is as good as it looks online.

14. Nobody cares about your social media presence as much as you do.

15. Social media has uniquely and distinctly made us ever-more concerned with the next big “goal.” If you feel like you don’t know where your life is going, it’s likely because you don’t know what you want your next big impressive “goal” to be.

16. You don’t need to accomplish anything to be a worthwhile human being. Very few people are actually meant to be extraordinary. That does not mean you cannot know contentment, love, joy, and all the real wonders of life.

17. Your life is only ever as good as your perception of it is. Feeling lost or like you “don’t know what you’re doing” is only solved by learning to think about things differently. That’s all.

18. Stop asking: “What am I doing with my life?” and start asking: “What am I doing with today?

Repost: 23 Sentence Reminders For Anyone Who Knows They Have A Greater Purpose In Life

1. Your purpose is what you do with each moment of your life – the big things are just small things, done over and over again.
2. You do not have to know what your purpose is to be already living it out.
3. There is no purpose that is greater than another, we all affect one another in mysterious and invisible ways.
4. Your skills are not random, they show you what you’re here to work with.
5. The things you worry about are not random, they show you what you’re here to work toward.
6. Your greatest happiness will not come from being comfortable, it will come from being useful.
7. You are not here to be happy all the time, you are here to create and appreciate, two things that tend to arise from discomfort.
8. You will help people more by changing yourself than by telling people how to change themselves.
9. You will inspire more people by being yourself than telling others to be themselves.
10. Everything that happens to you is a resource, it is showing you a part of yourself and forcing you to think in a way you never would have before.
11. You are always growing, so it’s not about whether or not you’re moving forward, but which direction you’re going.
12. Your entire life does not need to unfold today.
13. What you think about you will bring about; what you focus on you will continue to create.
14. Your power, therefore your purpose, mostly resides in how you think.
15. Your purpose is not just that you do one specific thing, but how you go about doing everything.
16. It’s not about how perfect you appear, it’s about how you rationalize your actions and how you mend mistakes when you make them.
17. The most powerful work is that which is done willingly without applause.
18. You do not need applause to be doing purposeful work.
19. You can always decide what you want your purpose to be, and it’s best if you choose something that helps others and makes you feel alive.
20. Purposeful work is not always fun.
21. That does not mean you can’t choose to love it anyway.
22. Your purpose happens in the moment, not in ideas of the past or future or how you appear to others.
23. When all is said and done, people care far less about what you’ve accomplished than they do how you treat others.

By: Brianna Weist

Repost: 23 Sentence Reminders For Anyone Who Knows They Have A Greater Purpose In Life #BriannaWeist #Inspiration

1. Your purpose is what you do with each moment of your life – the big things are just small things, done over and over again.

2. You do not have to know what your purpose is to be already living it out.

3. There is no purpose that is greater than another, we all affect one another in mysterious and invisible ways.

4. Your skills are not random, they show you what you’re here to work with.

5. The things you worry about are not random, they show you what you’re here to work toward.

6. Your greatest happiness will not come from being comfortable, it will come from being useful.

7. You are not here to be happy all the time, you are here to create and appreciate, two things that tend to arise from discomfort.

8. You will help people more by changing yourself than by telling people how to change themselves.

9. You will inspire more people by being yourself than telling others to be themselves.

10. Everything that happens to you is a resource, it is showing you a part of yourself and forcing you to think in a way you never would have before.

11. You are always growing, so it’s not about whether or not you’re moving forward, but which direction you’re going.

12. Your entire life does not need to unfold today.

13. What you think about you will bring about; what you focus on you will continue to create.

14. Your power, therefore your purpose, mostly resides in how you think.

15. Your purpose is not just that you do one specific thing, but how you go about doing everything.

16. It’s not about how perfect you appear, it’s about how you rationalize your actions and how you mend mistakes when you make them.

17. The most powerful work is that which is done willingly without applause.

18. You do not need applause to be doing purposeful work.

19. You can always decide what you want your purpose to be, and it’s best if you choose something that helps others and makes you feel alive.

20. Purposeful work is not always fun.

21. That does not mean you can’t choose to love it anyway.

22. Your purpose happens in the moment, not in ideas of the past or future or how you appear to others.

23. When all is said and done, people care far less about what you’ve accomplished than they do how you treat others.

What You Need To Realize If You Feel Like You Aren’t As Far As You Should Be In Life #BriannaWeist

1. Sometimes the thing you keep trying to fix about yourself isn’t meant to be fixed.

A lot of culture tries to tell us that we can be perfect if we work hard enough – and that not being perfect is a product of laziness. But there are things about ourselves we are not meant to change. It’s human nature to want to feel like we belong, but what makes us different sets us apart. We’re not meant to shed the things that make us who we are – even if those things are sometimes quirks and weaknesses and fears.

Sometimes you keep the weight on because when you think you can’t rely on your looks, you start to develop your interests and your sense of self.

Sometimes you can’t finish the project because that’s not the project that you have in you to create. Sometimes you keep having emotional breakdowns because you’re trying to stop yourself from going any farther down the wrong path. Instead of trying to change the things that make us uncomfortable, sometimes we have to trust them.

2. Your life isn’t going to change if it doesn’t need to change.
There are some things in life that are hard to change, but you need to change, like staying in a relationship that’s hurting you, not being able to hold down a job, living outside of your means, abusing a substance or not getting help for a mental illness. But these things are extreme. Being obsessed with changing yourself can make your life exponentially worse if you begin to discard everything that’s good in favor of what could be better.

Your life will not change if it doesn’t need to change – that’s what nobody will tell you. If you’ve paid your bills and do work you find at least somewhat enjoyable and spend time with a few people who are close to you and have some clothes in your closet and know where your next meal is coming from, you’re doing better than you think you are.

Continually “fixing” yourself when nothing is wrong will only exhaust you. It will make you miserable. It will condition your brain to be anxious about nothing and everything.

If you can take an honest look at yourself and acknowledge that you’re doing alright, maybe the problem is more that you don’t know how to be content and weather the natural discomforts of life, rather than uproot and overhaul the second you experience a slightly uncomfortable feeling.

3. Timing is everything – and the thing about timing is that you can only understand it in retrospect.
You will not meet your life partner a day before you are ready to. The job opportunity you’ve been searching for will not present itself until you’ve learned what you need to from where you are. Sometimes you are meant to have seasons of idleness. Sometimes what you find on the detour ends up being the better destination.

Sometimes the novel is not ready to be written because you haven’t met the inspiration for your main character yet. Sometimes you need two more years of life experience before you can make your masterpiece into something that will feel real and true and raw to other people.

Sometimes you’re not falling in love because whatever you need to know about yourself is only knowable through solitude. Sometimes you haven’t met your next collaborator. Sometimes your sadness encircles you because, one day, it will be the opus upon which you build your life. – Jamie Varon

4. There’s no one blueprint for how a life should go.

Forcing your life into specific timelines is what’s causing you pain. It’s not that you aren’t where you should be, it’s that you think you should be somewhere else. You can’t do “growth” wrong. Becoming who you are isn’t something that takes a set number of weeks or months or years in your 20s.

You are not supposed to be the person you thought you’d grow up to be when you were in high school. You made projections based on the limited knowledge you had then. You made assumptions that turned out not to be true. You do not owe it to your younger self – or anyone else – to be something you that no longer suits you.

5. The hardest and longest lesson that any one of us can learn is to do what we can, and surrender to the rest.
By showing you what you cannot control, you are reminded of what you can. By making you feel helpless, you are pushed to take action. By taking away what you thought you couldn’t bear to lose, you see that you are not reliant on anything but your heart and mind. By bringing waves of unexplainable pain, you remember that not everything can be understood, but it must still be endured. By showing you what you do not have success doing, you begin to redefine what you think you’re here for.

When we are confronted with what we can’t change, we are shown what we can. Life is always trying to awaken us to an inner power.

6. Sometimes the best and most poignant parts of your life will be the ones in which you aren’t all that happy.
If you think you’re not where you should be in life, it’s probably because you aren’t as happy as you imagined you could be.
But “happiness” is such a crude measure of whether or not you’re doing alright, because it doesn’t account for what really makes people thrive: fulfillment, purpose, movement, meaning.

Sometimes, you will uncover the best parts of yourself as you dig yourself out from uncertainty and despair. Sometimes, the work that will make you most proud and fulfilled is the same work that exhausted you and kept you up until 1 a.m. every weeknight creating it.

Sometimes, the forever person you’ve been waiting for is on the other side of the challenging relationship you have to get through now.

A happy life is not consistent with a good one. Happiness tends to breed complacency, which is good – for a bit. But wildfires are as necessary to human hearts as they are to nature:
We think of forest fires as these devastating events that we need to stop, but they are actually vital to ecological health of an area. There are plants that require the heat of a wildfire for their seeds to burst open and plant themselves in the earth. There are others that are meant to be flammable, so that fires quells competition. As it turns out, forests are made to have a periodic cleansing by fire. Your heart is made this way, also. – Chrissy Stockton

7. You are exactly where you are supposed to be.
It’s easy to think that we are only ever “meant” for good things, that the only seasons of our lives that are “correct” are the ones that we enjoy. But the dark moments of your life are just as intentional as the better ones. They serve just as much purpose.

There is no instance in which you are ever not where you are supposed to be. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be there. Rather than constantly running to the next thing, the next goal, the next change, consider that everything that’s in front of you – the good and the bad – is there on purpose, and your real job is only to figure out what that purpose is.