As we embark on the journey into a brand-new year and a new decade, we should be interested in attaining an emotionally happy and fulfilling life, in the new year and beyond. The critical template is aiming to travel light into the new year. Old (bad) things should truly be allowed to pass away, so we can be rejuvenated to achieve more.
There are 10 simple and basic steps that can serve as signposts along this journey to self-rejuvenation:
- Let go of grudges and previous hurts: It never helps to hold on to grudges and hurts….it poisons our system and spreads bile and bitterness which sucks up any joy and happiness from our present situation. Let go of previous baggage and discard them. Remember, so you learn from your mistakes of the past, but don’t dwell on the negative emotions….otherwise you will be stuck in the rut and will not make progress.
- Don’t give room for negative emotions such as anger and jealousy: Anger has been described as the punishment you inflict upon yourself, for another person’s bad behaviour. It clouds our thinking and deprives us of the ability to make clear and logical decisions.
That’s why anger management is essential. Ditto, negative emotions such as jealousy and envy should have no place in your headspace. We are all living different lives, so stop comparing yourself with others, and focus on improving yourself.
- Look after yourself: Ensure you rest, exercise regularly and sleep well. Take good care of yourself and be interested in your personal growth and development. No one owes you that but yourself.
- Learn to be hopeful and optimistic. The strongest human force of motivation is hope. It gives us the energy to work hard and to keep moving forward. Never lose hope, no matter the odds. If you encounter failure, re-strategise and learn from it. Failures are normal, in the school of life. They become costly, when we refuse to learn the lessons therefrom.
- Invest in human relationships: We all maintain an Emotional Bank Account in our everyday relationships. We need to invest by ensuring we are making more deposits (things that make others happy with us) than withdrawals (actions or inactions that make others unhappy, angry, disappointed or hurt with us).
We need a healthy emotional bank account with others, so we can cash in, during our low moments. But even more importantly, because it improves our happiness to make others happy. We should also cut off negative influences, while we are at it.
- Manage your time better…. you have limited time: Our life (time available to us) is like the hourglass that is rapidly depleting every day. And unfortunately, at any point in time, we never know for sure, how much time we have left. So, don’t waste it. Your time is precious. Use it wisely on things that truly matter to you.
- Prudent Financial Management: Aim to save at least 25 per cent of your earnings. Financial freedom comes from having resources for the rainy day. And it does not matter, how much you are earning. If you spend everything you earn when you are earning N5,000 a month, you are likely to do same if you are earning N500,000 a month.
Its never prudent to spend ALL that you earn. You can start with saving five per cent monthly or a small token daily depending on your type of earnings. Then progress to investing your pool of funds, to generate more income.
- Set realistic goals: You will be setting yourself up for failure if you set unrealistic targets. Aim for modest but incremental progress and you will be just fine.
- Work really hard: If you only worked on the days you feel like working, you will achieve absolutely nothing. Hard work pays, so apply yourself at work. Don’t aim to simply get by at work. Aim to excel.
- Self-discipline is key: In all the psychological theories of human development, the highest level of attainment is self-actualization and gaining mastery over our base instincts (primitive urges).
If you want to achieve a happy and fulfilling life, you need to be disciplined and not be overly indulgent of your base instincts. Every sphere of our life requires discipline. Acquire it.
This is wishing us all a happy, fulfilling and emotionally healthy new year. Let’s enjoy every single day that we wake up. Be truly alive and present in all our relationships and be happy. Its no one’s job description to make you happy….you owe yourself that duty. Refuse to be upset by the action or inactions of others and jealously protect your emotional tranquility. Keep a date with us on this column through the coming year, as we present nuggets on how to achieve this.