Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Don’t live a life you didn’t choose for yourself

You can design your life rather than letting it run on by default.  In this post I’m going to show you 5 simple steps that you can use to actively design your life.

If you don’t design your life you will get to your deathbed feeling that you could have done, been and had so much more.  Taking control of your life means that you will create a unique, interesting and satisfying life according to your own standards.  Others will be on awe of your level of control and satisfaction and you will be a fantastic role model for your family, your friends and your colleagues.

The way you do this is to set aside a few minutes a day to be alone with your thoughts and to actively design, in writing, your ideal life.

If you read the biographies of great men and women it is clear that they had a clear vision of what they wanted.  They may not have written it down, although many have done, but they designed the specifics of their lives and did not allow themselves to get caught up with the day to day trivialities that we all face.  

It’s not that they didn’t have to do the mundane chores that are part of everybody’s lives – they did.  Where they differed from most of us was that they didn’t let themselves get distracted by the necessities of life.  They knew that they had to stay focused on the life they wanted for themselves and how to get there.

If you want to be sure of giving your ideal life the right amount of focus I suggest you do this:

1. Commit right now to spending 5 minutes today focusing on your ideal life.

2. Spend 2 minutes now and write down why you MUST focus on your ideal life.  If you can’t think of reasons ask yourself “If I DID know why must I do it?”

3. During your 5 minutes today just pick one aspect of your life, doesn’t matter what it is, and spend the whole time in writing down what it looks, feels, sounds like.  Don’t worry about doing it perfectly, just make sure you do it the best you can.

4. Don’t be tempted to go on after 5 minutes – the commitment you made was to 5 minutes and so you should stick to that.  If you spend the rest of the day thinking about your ideal life that’s great but don’t keep writing once the 5 minutes is up.

5. Rinse and repeat – complete steps 1 – 4 from now on and see how it impacts upon your life.

In future posts I might elaborate on why I think this simple technique works and share some of the specific ways I spend my 5 minutes but for now try the 5 steps and let me know how you get on in the days ahead.