Do you feel stuck in your life? Maybe you’re not where you want to be?
Don’t worry because I know how you feel.
There was a time when I felt stuck in life. I felt stuck because I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life!
I hated my job and wanted a change. But to what? I had no idea.
I had no direction in life. I was out of shape. Most of my free time was spent on the computer or watching TV.
I was too tired to be social. All I wanted to do was relax at home after surviving another night at my horrible job.
I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I had all these dreams in my mind. I either kinda tried before quitting, or didn’t even try at all.
I had nights when I cried myself to sleep. It’s embarrassing to tell you, but it’s the truth. My life sucked that bad.
If you met me, I looked like I had it all. I had a 1900 sq ft house, a BMW and a house full of whatever I wanted to buy.
Inside I felt empty. Lost. Sad. Frustrated.
I felt stuck and nothing was going to come save me.
The Turning Point
I don’t know what was different about that one night in October 2010. It was another busy and stressful night at the restaurant where I worked. That was typical.
That night while driving home, I stared straight ahead with no emotion on my face. Inside though, I had lots of anger at myself. For so many years I’ve wanted to make a change but I hadn’t yet.
I had felt this way many times before, but that night was different. That night I had this strong feeling I finally had to make a choice. I could continue down this miserable path, or make a serious effort to have the life I wanted.
I made up my mind right then. I decided I had enough! I wasn’t going to accept the way my life had become.
I had to do something different. Anything was better than how I was feeling! Even if I failed, at least I was trying. If I succeeded, it could be life changing.
This time I wouldn’t stop until I created the life I wanted for myself.
It had been five years since I’ve wanted to find work that I loved to do. I needed to stop wasting time. I had to start now and keep working today, tomorrow and until I was satisfied.
I got home and typed a manifesto to myself. I taped it up to my wall and bathroom mirror. I needed to be reminded every single day.
I did NOT want to feel what I felt that night in the car ever again.
What did I change first?
Maybe selling everything I owned, move to a new city, and start fresh would have been the best idea. Sounds exciting, but it doesn’t change the most important aspect of the situation – me.
Actually I did that. I moved to Taipei and Sydney for two years before that. I had to get away from my job. I thought moving away would give me clarity for my future.
Though I had the best time of my life in those two years, and met my future wife, I came back home to the same crappy job. The same job I tried to get away from.
20 months after that two year hiatus, I drove home in October frustrated, sad and stuck.
Looking back now, I know why I didn’t get the results I wanted.
It’s because I didn’t focus on changing ME.
This time it would be different because I would start to change from the inside.
Changing from the inside out takes time and diligence, but the rewards are infinite.
No matter what is going on around us, we can always change the biggest factor in our success, well being, health, and happiness – ourselves.
Here are three areas you can start to change today, no matter your circumstances. I guarantee if you improve in these three areas, it’ll start a snowball effect for more great changes in your life.
I was very out of shape in October 2010. My pants were tight. I didn’t sleep too well at night. I just didn’t feel good about myself.
Improving my health was a top priority.
I set a crazy, but achievable goal of running a half marathon. I had never run that distance before, but I felt if I could complete a half marathon, I would be in pretty good shape.
I followed a beginner’s program and ran three miles the first week. It wasn’t easy, but every week I ran further and felt better.
I also started going to the gym twice a week to strength train.
I also changed my diet. If I was serious about losing weight, I knew I had to eat much cleaner.
Richard Branson, the billionaire entrepreneur of 400 companies, said that his #1 productivity tip is to workout. He said he gets twice as much done in a day when he does.
Why is that? When we exercise, endorphins start flowing. Because they are naturally produced by the body, endorphins are possibly the best (and most legal way) to achieve a natural high.
The more we exercise, the better we’ll feel about ourselves. We have more energy, less stress, combat disease, and sleep better.
When I felt fat and out of shape, I lacked confidence and motivation. I didn’t want to do anything.
Now I felt my mojo coming back. Overtime my body began to change. I was losing weight. I felt much better about myself.
It carried over into everything else I was doing. I had more focus into blogging and working on my first iPhone app.
In December 2010, I ran my first half marathon in 2:04. I had lost 15 pounds and felt amazing.
One huge lesson I learned was to start taking 100% responsibility for my life. I had heard it before, but now I really understood it.
Before I’d rely on luck or a miracle to change my life. It’s like I wanted a genie to come and grant me three wishes. I know it sounds ridiculous, but that was my attitude.
I didn’t want to take responsibility for my situation. I complained so much and placed the blame on others.
Not this time. Not any more.
I began to take my life into my own hands. Every choice I made would be up to me. If I chose to stay in my crappy job, that was my choice. I had to live with it and stop complaining.
If I wanted to start a blog or create an app, it was up to me.
Every result that I would achieve would be because of a choice I had made. If I wanted great results, I had to made the right choices.
I stopped waiting for life to begin and started to take control of my life.
If I didn’t realize this, I wouldn’t be in the situation I am in right now.
I started to realize that I was feeding my brain with dirty water for so long.
What’s dirty water? It’s news, gossip, pointless television shows, and mindless web surfing.
It was junk in and junk out. Blah.
What did I get from it? Self doubt, poor results and a lack of motivation.
If I really wanted to make positive changes to my life, I had to start feeding my mind with information that would actually help me.
I needed to fill my mind with clean water.
I cut way back on watching television. I stopped reading the local paper, which is garbage and full of negativity. I still spent a lot of time online, but doing more productive reading.
It was at this time I found blogs like Smart Passive Income and Think Traffic. I learned so much valuable info on starting a blog and business. I also got inspiration from learning about their success.
I began re-reading personal development books. I went to the library and checked out audio CDs to listen to in the car. I began reading inspirational stories. I listened to motivational speeches on Youtube.
I didn’t see massive changes overnight. That’s just not realistic. But at least I was doing things that were getting me closer to the type of person I wanted to be.
Little by little, I started to think differently. I had more motivation. My outlook on life brightened. My mood improved.
Changing what I fed my brain had a huge impact on the results I have achieved thus far.
These are areas you can start working on right now. It doesn’t matter your circumstances.
If you live in a crack house with abusive parents, you can still work on changing what’s on the inside first.
What’s inside of us is the only thing we can control. We can’t control what happens around us. We can only control our own health, thoughts, behaviors, and actions.
When you start working on these three areas, results won’t happen instantly. Too many people will try it for a month and say “Nothing has changed. This is stupid. I give up.”
However if you make these positive habits and perform them consistently, the rewards are infinite.
Personally, I have seen such a big change in myself. My wife, who knew me back when I was miserable, says I’m a completely different person. She likes this version of me and so do I.
No matter where are you are in life right now, I encourage you to take a close hard look at these three areas. If you’re not happy with the results you’re getting, work on making some changes.
If you feel stuck in life and need a way to get unstuck, start by changing these three areas of your life first.