How to Craft a Life that Matters
Written by Corine Gatti
All of us desire to create a life that is transformative and compelling. If we are honest with ourselves this is never an uncomplicated task to accomplish because there are always those twists and turns that attempt to uproot us. There are many things we can’t control in our lives. When it comes to people we can’t pick our siblings, our neighbors or our co-workers. We have no control of external events like bad weather, destruction or famine.
All of these people and all of these events can be prominent in our lives. They influence our happiness and may impact us in a negative matter. Yet, we can make the decision to not allow external circumstances to crush us. We are fighters by nature and some of us have to work harder to foster a path for a more meaningful life. Perhaps you were the one that never measured up or you underwent from past abuse. This is where we need to become sly and create a life that matters despite scars and beliefs to the contrary. If you are ready to embrace a new life, let’s get started. Here are ways on how you can craft a life that matters.
Develop your own inspirational toolbox.
Keep an inspirational toolbox ready when you need a pick-me-up. Stock up on affirmations and Scriptures to help you when you are feeling upset or discouraged. Keep audiobooks on hand to keep you going and keep playing them over and over again. These can be self-help audiobooks or inspirational audiobooks. Whether you are looking for spiritual inspiration, career advice or meditations to start your day off right. Play them while you are driving, exercising, cooking or relaxing on the beach! We don’t have time to read and audiobooks can be one of those tools you can use in a pinch when you really need it. Stock up on some of your favorites feel-good titles and enjoy!
Don’t chase money.
Having money can be a blessing or a curse. Many of the wealthiest and the most famous people are not happy. We can see this in Hollywood where we hear of celebrities taking their lives or dying from substance abuse. They seem to have it all, but there is something missing. There nothing wrong with having enough money to pay bills and to go on a vacation. Chasing income will never leave you satisfied. But following your passion will satisfy you. When we focus on putting our passions to work, life becomes more enjoyable because our priorities change. Write down the reasons that money may have become so important to you. Then, work to balance priorities more where money is not your 100 percent focus. Maybe it is focusing on your more family or on your friends more than working all the time.
Redefine what success is.
What is the definition of success? Even if only portions of you dreams come true, you made it. Having an all-or-nothing mindset will hinder you and keep you in disappointment. Failure doesn’t need to be a hindrance. In fact, it can launch you into becoming more tougher and more fearless! Focus on the positives and what you learned from the experiences, instead of beating yourself up for not reaching your goals. Use failure as a motivation to tackle the situation from another angle. Maybe God is using the situation to encourage you to reconsider another path.
Don’t let criticism derail you.
We tend to internalize rejection when it happens. People will object and say unkind things. You can acknowledge the hurt feelings, but don’t allow it to control your decisions or your life. Sometimes people will diminish our accomplishments and then we start developing cynical views. Substitute negative thoughts with wholesome ones. Instead of saying to yourself that “Maybe I am a failure,” choose healthier thoughts to neutralize the negative thoughts: “I might not have accomplished everything that I set out to do, but this criticism does not define me.”
Get grounded in gratitude.
During hard times look at what is good in your life. Gratitude lifts your inner man and can allow you to be joyful. Try making a gratitude journal of all your blessings from the past and in the present. Keeping an attitude of gratitude will help add to your foundation when things become unsettling. Having this position will make you a powerhouse when everything is failing or falling around you. You will also discover to appreciate the small things in life like appreciating the array of different hues in the sky just before sunset.
Help others achieve their dreams.
If you want a life that matters you need to live outside yourself. Helping others achieve their dreams is special. Having aspirations and goals are great, but nothing will leave a lasting impact in this world more than helping another. By helping another person reach their potential, you are helping yourself because it empowers you and encourages you to stop obsessing over your own life. Helping people will make you feel happier and will connect you to other like-minded people.
Start to accept yourself more.
Building a meaningful life starts by embracing your flaws. You will make mistakes and you will fail, but this doesn’t mean you need to love yourself any less. When you watch movies and when you watch television, don’t be fooled–there are no perfect lives or perfect people as projected on the screen. In a culture where people want to be affirmed, people are nervous to be themselves because of the fear of rejection. Be the rule breaker and decide to be who you really are not what you think others want you to be. Decide to be yourself today. If people don’t like your laugh or your new direction stay the course anyway. It’s important for you to be authentic.
Crafting a life that matters takes time as there are multiple moving parts. We may have been born with little opportunities or dealt with continual setbacks. Regardless of where you started, you can finish well in life no matter what. You just need to take the first step and that is making the decision to change. If it sounds moderately scary–it is. However, by using tools like audiobooks, volunteering and being more open towards loving yourself, you are well on your way.