Live life on your own terms
Live life on your own terms – this starts with knowing and prioritising your values. Your values are the principles and beliefs that guide your behaviour and decision-making. When you know your values, you can make decisions that align with them and avoid getting sidetracked by external factors that don’t matter to you.
For example, if one of your core values is family, you may prioritise spending time with loved ones over working long hours at the office. Or if you value creativity, you may prioritise taking on projects that allow you to express your artistic side. Prioritising your values means making conscious choices that are in line with your values, beliefs and aspirations.
With this in mind, here are 10 areas that will guide you in living life on your terms.
1. Take responsibility for your life:
Taking responsibility for your life is a critical aspect to be able life on your own terms. It means recognising that you are the only one in control of your life. Only you can take ownership of your decisions, actions, and outcomes. When you take responsibility, you’re not a victim of circumstances, but rather an active participant in your life.
I drew an analogy of you driving your own bus, and not being a passenger on it. This means being honest with yourself about your strengths and weaknesses and working to improve them. It also means taking action towards your goals and not waiting for things to happen to you. No one is coming to save you. Its down to you. We can all play the victim, but it gets us no where in the long term.
2. Cultivate a positive mindset:
A positive mindset is essential for living life on your own terms. It means looking at challenges as opportunities for growth, focusing on the good things in life, and believing in yourself. Maintaining a positive mindset takes practice and requires you to be intentional about your thoughts and beliefs. You can do this by surrounding yourself with positive influences, practicing gratitude, and reframing negative thoughts into positive ones. We all carry some negative baggage, that’s just life. The trick is to turn that negativity into something that motivates us positively.
3. Embrace your uniqueness:
Embracing your uniqueness means being proud of who you are and what makes **you** different from others. It means celebrating your quirks, interests, and passions, and not trying to fit in with others’ expectations or societal norms. When you embrace your uniqueness, you give yourself permission to be yourself and pursue your dreams on your terms. Be yourself, everyone else is taken.
4. Create healthy habits:
Creating healthy habits is the foundation of longevity and good health. It means investing in your physical and mental health by adopting habits that support your well-being. This includes things like regular exercise, healthy eating, getting enough sleep, and practicing self-care.
When you take care of your body and mind, you have the energy and focus to pursue your goals and live life on your terms. We all want a burger and fries and a few beers now and again, and in moderation that’s fine. But life is a long journey and we need our health as the foundation for that journey.
5. Surround yourself with positive influences:
We are the sum of the five people we spend most time with. This means surrounding yourself with people who support and encourage you to pursue your dreams and goals. These can be friends, family, mentors, or coaches who believe in you and your potential. If you can’t hide from all of the negative people, particularly if they are close to you, find support through books, events, even videos online. When you have a support system that believes in you, you’re more likely to stay motivated and focused on your path.
6. Create a life of learning:
Continuously learning and growing is at the core of expanding your knowledge and comfort zone. It means seeking out new experiences, challenging yourself, and expanding your knowledge and skills. This can be done through reading books, attending seminars, taking courses, or pursuing new hobbies.
When you’re constantly learning and growing, you’re able to adapt to changes and take on new challenges with confidence. The world is a big place and people are a huge source of learning, travel, talk to people about their lives and see how enriching this is.
7. Set achievable goals:
Goals help you focus on what you want to achieve and give you direction. Setting achievable goals helps you break down big dreams into small, actionable steps. The key is to set goals that are challenging yet realistic. Unrealistic goals can lead to disappointment and frustration, while overly easy goals may not push you enough.
When setting goals, consider how these goals could turn into habits. Want to write a book, write a page a day. Concentrate on small consistent habits. Remember to to measure how far you’ve come, some goals take years and its important not to lose sight of big goals being achievable.
8. Take calculated risks:
Taking risks can be scary, but it’s necessary for growth and achieving success. Living life on your own terms means being willing to step outside your comfort zone and take chances that can bring you closer to your goals. However, taking calculated risks is key. This means weighing the pros and cons, doing your research, and making informed decisions.
It’s also important to be prepared for the possibility of failure and have a plan in place to bounce back. Richard Branson is/was a great believer in covering the down side if things went wrong. In many cases failure just means going back to the way things were. That doesn’t mean we can’t have another go with a different plan.
9. Learn to say no:
Learning to say no means setting boundaries and prioritising your time and energy. Saying no doesn’t mean being rude or selfish, but rather being honest and respectful of yourself and others. When you say no to things that don’t align with your goals or values, you free up space for things that do. Its what Greg McKeown described as Essentialism, doing less but better.
10. Practice mindfulness:
Practicing mindfulness means being present and aware of your thoughts, feelings, and surroundings without judgment. It allows you to tune out external distractions and focus on the present moment, which can help you make intentional choices and avoid getting caught up in negative thoughts or emotions. By practicing mindfulness, you can learn to detach from external influences and cultivate a deeper sense of self-awareness, which can help you live a life with clarity and purpose.
By following these principles, you can create a life that aligns with your aspirations, passions, and beliefs. It’s important to remember that living life on your own terms is a journey, and it takes time and effort to get there. Without negatives there are no positives, but with dedication and persistence, you can create a life that’s fulfilling and authentic.
Live life on your own terms