There is a very simple reason why we fail at our New Year’s resolutions.
It’s that we don’t really want to do them. We love the idea of doing them, but when it comes to the crunch, we don’t actually want to put the hard work in to make them happen. It’s easier just to dream about the exciting, glamorous life we could have, than to persevere at it until things change. So we settle for mediocre, and stay in our comfortable rut of work, eat, sleep, even though we are, deep down, intensely dissatisfied with that, knowing that we are meant for so much more, but not being sufficiently motivated to go out and get that dream life.
So what is the simple secret to actually making it happen?
In my book, “How to have a mid-life crisis”, I set out a simple, step-by-step process to figure out what it is that truly motivates and excites you, and gives you the most sense of satisfaction, purpose and meaning in life, so that you can design a life that fulfils those things. It’s based on defining your core values. Everyone shares an understanding that values like love, peace, trust, freedom, honesty, teamwork, etc are inherently good things. But every individual gives different weighting to those values, depending upon our unique combination of temperament, upbringing and life experiences. Some values are more important to us than others, and we all have a unique combination of core values. If we live a life that doesn’t fulfil our core values, we will be unhappy and dissatisfied, because there is a fundamental discord between the values represented by our lifestyle and the values from which we get our satisfaction.
Take two women – one is a carefree, barefoot bohemian who loves the beach, camping, and music festivals; the other is in the military and thrives on the discipline and structure. Take both those women and swap their lives around – the bohemian has to join the military, and the military recruit has to live in a yurt by the beach. Both women will be miserable. Why? Because the bohemian values freedom, independence, lack of rules and constraint, creativity and freedom of emotional expression. The military recruit values teamwork, discipline, order, training, and the satisfaction of achieving a collective outcome when each person fulfils their allotted function like a well oiled machine. The military would crush the spirit of the bohemian, and the unstructured life of the bohemian would feel devoid of meaning and purpose to the military recruit.
Many of us, at any given time, are living with some level of dissatisfaction with our career, our relationships, our lives. We joke about quitting our jobs the instant we win the lottery. It is tragic that this is the way we spend our one, allotted life. It shouldn’t be this way, and it doesn’t have to be. There really is so much more that we are meant for.
Understanding what your own, unique core values are will give you the tools to design a life that fulfils those values, and gives you a sense of purpose, meaning and satisfaction in life. And that will look very different for everyone. Only you can know what is truly meaningful to you. And you don’t have a minute to waste. Life is short. Sieze the day and make it happen.
To follow my simple, step-by-step process to figure out what is most important to you and translate that into a plan of action to transform your life, simply download my Kindle book “How to have a mid-life crisis“, available on Amazon, and start your journey to your dream life today!