For most of us the answer is going to be somewhat different, though there will almost always be similarities. We all have different goals in our careers for instance and different priorities in general in our lives but there are still generally some basics we can mostly agree on. Most of us want:
- A loving family
- A sense of purpose
That’s a fairly extensive list of items that incorporate a broad range of other things. Some of those things are abstract and not even easy to define. Success for one person is always going to be different from success for someone else. Likewise, ‘happiness’ could be accused of being a fairly ambiguous term that may well just rely on a specific balance of hormones and other biological chemistry.
Other things might seem like they’re outside of your grasp. How can you have health if you have a chronic illness?
Getting everything you want from life is a rather vague aim and something that’s rather destined for failure. But is there a strategy that you can take to put you on the right course?
Are there things you can do to ensure you’re always moving in the right direction?
Is there a formula for success that can help you to progress in every area of your life?
In this guide we’ll be going over some of the advice shared by the top ‘self-help’ gurus in the business, we’ll be looking at some psychological principles and we’ll be taking a grounded approach to getting what you want.
If you find the advice in this report helpful, then I highly recommend checking out the Life Category where we have a lot more space to dive into things in more detail.
Before you can get everything you want from life, the first thing you have to do is to know what you want from life. This way, you can then take the next step and come up with a plan of how to achieve that.
Problem is, knowing what you want is much harder than most people expect and there are very few of us who can easily sum up all our heart desires in a single sentence.
So often you’ll go to a motivational talk or read a business/self-help book and the take-home message will be ‘go after that one thing you’re really passionate about’. What if you’re passionate about lots of things? What if you can’t decide being a famous writer, or an athlete?
Likewise, what if you can’t choose between your career and your family? Very often we are tugged in multiple directions – our head says one thing, our heart says another.
Guys: how often have you been torn between settling down with the love of your life, or travelling the world and having adventures and romances? This is pretty much what’s behind every mid-life crisis out there!
But if you try and go after everything all at once, you’ll end up being pulled in every-which-way and you’ll never make any progress in any given area.
Here are some strategies you can use to start narrowing it down and coming up with an actual strategy to be happier…
Look for Commonalities
Write a list of all the things you really want out of life and then look for commonalities between them and the things that you want most. Very often, you’ll find that those two things you want are actually one thing.
Ask the Five Whys
If it’s not immediately obviously what the things you want have in common, then try asking yourself the ‘five whys’.
This simply means asking why you want something five times.
So let’s say you want to be an astronaut. Fair enough.
Now it’s time to ask yourself why you want that, five times:
Why do I want to be an astronaut?
Because it’s amazing.
Why is it amazing?
Because I’ll get to be the first to discover new things.
Why do you want to be the first to discover new things?
Because I love exploration and adventure.
Why do you love exploration and adventure?
Because I wish my life was more like a movie.
Why do you wish your life was more like a movie?
Because I don’t want to lead a conventional life and work in an office with no impact.
Now realistically, you may find that it’s too late to genuinely be an astronaut. What you can do though, is to discover new things and lead a life that makes an impact as a pioneer. How?
Maybe as a researcher. Or perhaps you could help map the sea bed. Or maybe you could give guided tours through wild areas.
In other words, when you work out what you really want beyond the superficial, there will almost always be multiple ways to accomplish that thing.
And likewise, you’re bound to find out that many of your goals in life really have the same objectives, whether that’s status, whether that’s a sense of accomplishment, or whether that’s having an easy life.
Consider someone who wants to be a rock star but also loves teaching. Maybe this person really likes the idea of being a role model for others? Maybe they could be a life coach!
Or consider the person who wants to be a football player, a rock star and a business person. For them, perhaps it’s about the reactions of others and having that feeling of importance and status. This person might be able to achieve the same thing by rising to the top of their current position at work.
Look to Your Role Models
Another way to understand what it is you really want out of life is to look at your role models.
What do the people you look up to most do? What do they have in common with each other?
Role models are particularly useful because they give you a blueprint for how they achieved what they did in life and they give you a set of tools you can follow to accomplish the same thing.
A tip though is to try and pick role models who are at least somewhat similar to you. Look for people who had a similar start in life, who perhaps have similar physical characteristics, but who made amazing lives for themselves. This will not only serve as a blueprint and as an idea for what you can do with your life but it will also be a great motivation and inspiration.
By using these techniques, you should have started to narrow down what you want and to start looking at slightly higher-order and more abstract goals. Hopefully, you’ve crossed ‘become super rich’ off your list and instead you’ve looked at what you want out of that wealth: ‘become financially independent, work less’. Likewise, you should have removed specific career objectives and replaced them with something along the lines of ‘find a job that makes me happy/find a job that gives me status/find a job where I make an impact’.
Whatever the case, you’re still going to have some conflicting interests most likely:
for instance you may be interested in becoming fitter and healthier as well as accomplishing that financial freedom.
So now you need to prioritize – at least to begin with.
Look at the list of things you want out of life and decide for yourself what it is that you most want to accomplish from it.
At the same time though, you should also look at which of those items on the list is going to be the easiest to get a ‘win’ on. Some of these goals are going to be big projects that require a lot of work and effort.
Others are going to be much smaller projects that you can probably achieve if you just bite the bullet and go for it. This is important because you’ll find that many of the items on your list are more connected than you realize. Getting in shape for instance is easier when you’re happy at work because you’ll be coming home and you’ll have energy and won’t be stressed. Likewise, it’s easier to find love when you look good.
So prioritize something as your first project and choose something that matters to you a lot and is relatively easy to fix. This might mean changing jobs or it might mean just moving house.
Write Your Eulogy
One more tip to help you define what you want most out of life is to practice writing your eulogy. Pretend that you’ve died and you’re writing the speech you wish people would give at your funeral.
How do they describe you? Are you someone who everyone remembers as a loving family
man/woman? Or do you want people to remember you for your great works?
Be honest with yourself here and write what you genuinely would want people to say. This is an eye-opening exercise that can show you what really matters to you and what you want from life.
Think About What Makes You Happy
Another good way to quickly decide what you need to accomplish is to think about the times you were happiest. Sometimes it’s not what we expect!
A lot of us for instance will work incredibly hard to get further in our career thinking that that will make us happier, more successful and less stressed. But then if you think about the last time you were truly happy there’s a very good chance that it wasn’t when you were last in the office!
What does it tell you? It tells you that you’re focussing your efforts in the wrong place!
Think back: were you last happiest when you were still living at home with your family? Then there’s an easy answer! Were you last happiest when you were at college? You can’t return to those days but what was it about those days that made you so happy? Apply the five whys!
Now you know what you want out of life, the next thing is to go and grab it.
This is the bit where plans often come crumbling down. But in many cases, getting what you want out of life can be much easier than you expect.
The key thing to do though is to stop waiting and to start acting.
Unfortunately, a lot of us have been conditioned and raised to believe that we get our reward once we’ve worked to retirement. Put in the hard work now and eventually you’ll be able to retire and have a decent pension.
But is that really what you want? Do you want to have the money to be comfortable right when you’re too old to enjoy it?
Are you going to wait to do that travelling until you’re 70?
Are you going to keep on working that office job, dreaming of having a big mansion with the hopes you’ll one day win the lottery?
Hopefully you’re guessing at this point that the right answer is no on both counts.
So what do you do?
The answer is to come up with a strategy that you can use to get the things you really want that much faster.
Let’s take a look at the wealth thing for instance. Using the techniques we described already, think about why it is you really want to be wealthy. Close your eyes and what comes to mind?
For most of us wealth is really a means to an end, not an end in itself!
So what do you see when you close your eyes? Perhaps it’s a nice big, clean, modern home that you just feel incredibly comfortable in.
But guess what? You likely don’t need to be wealthy to make that happen!
In fact, you probably don’t even need to move home! Most people could make their homes much nicer and much more impressive simply by making a few simple changes.
Surprisingly, one thing that’s often worth doing is just to throw out more of your things. When you reduce the amount of clutter in your home, you instantly increase the average value of the items that remain. It’s much nicer to have three beautiful items than it is to have a hundred naff ones.
What’s more, is that it will be much easier to keep your home clean and tidy and therefore looking the way you imagine it.
And why not hire a cleaner to help keep things in check? Can’t afford that? Then consider changing that expensive TV subscription you have! You can watch most things online anyway!
Remember: it’s all about prioritizing. You can still aim to earn more money and to one-day move to a much bigger house but don’t put your life on hold waiting for that to happen. Work towards getting the things you want right now rather than waiting for all the stars to align for you.
The same thing goes for travelling. Want to travel the world? Perhaps you’ve been putting off going on a gap year for the last two decades.
Once again, this is simply the wrong approach. You don’t need to be wealthy in order to travel. How about travelling somewhere closer to begin with so you’re not paying for expensive flights? You only need a long weekend to travel somewhere short-haul and if you stay somewhere using AirBnB then you can probably afford the whole trip for under $100.
Or how about taking a sabbatical? Or switching careers and taking time out in between to travel? You could even look into finding a job that you can do remotely, thus allowing yourself to become a ‘digital nomad’.
A lot of this is about overcoming your fear of change and fear of failure – both of which we’ll be looking at in the Life Section. We’ll also discover how to mitigate risk so that you have nothing to be afraid of when you try and make the change.
Either way though, the point is that you don’t need to wait for some kind of miracle to get what you want. Work with what you have and aim to get as much as you can, as soon as you can. This even applies to the unfortunate situation we referred to earlier where you’re struggling with a disabling illness. Don’t wait for some miracle cure to start chasing after the life you want. Think about what’s missing from your life due to your poor health and then work out the fastest and best way to get as much of that back as possible.
Miss being physical? Then make it your goal to become a Paralympic athlete. Struggling with pain? Then prioritise pain management techniques.
Want to be a writer? You can be one today.
Want to be a rock musician? Likewise, you can be one right now.
How do you become a rock musician overnight, you ask? Simple: you start playing rock music! In other words, as soon as you start doing the thing you want to do, you are that thing. If you want to write, write! If you want to run a business, start coming up with a plan!
Sure, you’re not professional yet and you might not even be particularly good at what you do; but you are still a writer/CEO/rock start/football player. If it’s what you really enjoy doing then you should be able to derive enjoyment directly from that thing without getting external rewards from doing it.
This is the mistake a lot of people make: they put far too much stock in their job and they forget to have aims and ambitions outside of that.
I know someone who went through art school but she’s happy to work in telesales. Why?
Because that’s not where she gets her sense of purpose and satisfaction. That comes from the fact that she has a beautiful home studio where she creates works of art at the end of the day and which she sells for a fair amount of money.
When she’s introducing herself to people at parties and they ask: ‘what do you do?’, she answers that she’s an artist.
Of course the fact she makes money on the side is also a nice bonus and this is something else you need to consider: your wealth is not solely a product of your salary. Wealth is all about how many overheads you have going out of your account, it’s about how much money you make on the side… it’s even about how much money your Grandma gives you! Don’t be solely reliant on how much your boss pays you to fund your dreams and ambitions.
And you never know, once you start that side project you may just find that you’re able to start turning that hobby into a career!
Hopefully, you’re already starting to see that you really can achieve anything once you know how to change the way you approach your goals. There’s an awful lot more to cover though and we’re only just scratching the surface.
In Viral Rang Life, you’ll learn:
- How to use the ‘step back’ technique to get quick wins
- How to use ‘springboarding’ to take one success and use it to fuel others
- Why you should apologise instead of asking for permission
- Why you must never be pressured by others
- How to use the law of attraction
- Why you need to think about what your goals really entail
- How to use lifestyle design to get the life you want
- Why there is never a ‘perfect time’ to do something
- How to use ‘fear setting’ to stop making excuses
- How to effectively write and execute goals
- Why little changes add up to big differences (Kaizen)
- Why you need to change everything all at once
- How to use CBT to be more thankful for what you have
- Why your happiness comes from plans
- And much more!
I’ll see you over there and in the meantime, I hope you get everything that your heart desires!