One chapter in Happy Ever After gamely makes the case for polyamorous relationships as a path to increased happiness, but whatever your reaction to that prospect — thrilling erotic adventure, or indescribable hassle? But the comforting truth is that so is everyone else. This is ironic, since Buddhism embodies one of the earliest confrontations with the truth about the perfectionist standards by which we judge the world and ourselves — that this is a recipe for permanent dissatisfaction.
The basic situation, Buddha famously said, is that life is suffering. Everything is impermanent; old age, sickness and death are our inescapable human fate.
And your philosophy of happiness had better acknowledge these realities, otherwise the only possible result is even more suffering, for you and everyone around you. In Seoul, where he lives, he presides over a Zen-infused therapy centre, the School for Broken Hearts, but the primary vehicle for his teaching is Twitter. With luck, extreme agony will be very infrequent in your life, but a background sense of things being not quite right may be truly close to universal.
The first step towards relieving this kind of discontent, Haemin suggests, is to recognise the untenability of the demand that you, or anyone you encounter, should demonstrate perfection to begin with. Much of the bothersomeness of daily life arises not from circumstances themselves, but from the insistence that they ought to be other than they are. This is not a counsel of resignation; having accepted the reality of your situation, it may well be appropriate to try to change it. But not denying how things stand is the essential first step.
Ironically, if not very surprisingly, the wellbeing industry has proved adept at turning this new spirit of modesty and acceptance into another expensive consumerist pursuit. Your effort to become the sort of person who finds happiness in what they already have can easily become its own interminable quest, in which success — and therefore happiness — always lies in some fantasy of the future, rather than in the here and now. This is one of the lessons of an absorbing recent addition to the anti-perfectionist self-help subgenre, The Courage to Be Disliked , by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga, published in English last year.
By then, it had reportedly already sold more than 3. He held that we frequently cling to our problems, no matter how much we complain about them and claim we want to eradicate them, because overcoming them necessitates an encounter with fear. It can be easier to locate fulfilment — and fulfilment in intimate relationships above all — in the future, where we never quite have to do what it takes to attain it, rather than run the interpersonal risks involved in trying to achieve it now. The problem, as Kishimi and Koga make clear, is that this only makes for more suffering in the present, by systematically biasing you towards taking the kind of actions that postpone, rather than build, a meaningful life.
Transformative self-reinvention may be an overoptimistic dream, but defeatism about change is its own kind of false comfort, too: both are forms of absolutism that serve to justify passivity. We will fail to reinvent ourselves this January, or next month, or next January, or ever. But once we finally get that fact into our heads, we might at last be able to start making a few improvements. Give up the rat race, accept reality and have the courage to be disliked — the latest self-help trend is not about self-reinvention but finding contentment in the life you have by Oliver Burkeman.
Main image: Illustration by Francesco Ciccolella. Illustration: Francesco Ciccolella Sat 12 Jan Facebook Twitter Pinterest. The most successful people are organized and decide ahead of time how they are going to spend their time, often scheduling in every hour. Also, successful people tend to focus their attention toward the positive vs. Many people struggle because they have old patterns that are entrenched. Often these patterns have been online since you have been a child.
They may have been helpful and adaptive back then, but now they are hurting you. You became super-independent. The pattern of not letting anyone in might have worked for you when you were growing up maybe the pattern even allowed you to survive. Psychology can help us figure out what is getting in the way from making progress toward our goals. You know what you want Step 1. You know how to get there Step 2. When you move forward toward your want, what happens? What gets in the way? It can be helpful to get some insight into the block.
Is this a pattern that feels familiar? Does it remind you of anything from your childhood? What needs to happen in your life for you to make it through your block and get going toward your want? Sometimes you need the help of a psychologist or counselor. The fourth step has to do with physiology and your body. Have you ever felt really anxious or depressed , and then realized you were exhausted, hungry, or hungover?
The state of your body was negatively impacting the state of your mind. There are ways you can prime your state or physiology to put yourself in the best possible position to transform your life. Tony Robbins has a routine he engages in each morning where he thinks about 3 things he is grateful for , and then he visualizes the 3 most important things he wants to accomplish today. He pictures them being completed, and the feeling that would accompany his victory.
These are just some ideas to try. Find out what works for you. But remember, our physiology can be a powerful determinant of our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. If you find yourself in a down mood or feeling sluggish, get your body moving and do something to shift your physiology.
Blog | Lena Kay | Transformation Coach, Speaker & Trainer
Sometimes change and transformation takes a long time. In these situations, you absolutely have to be patient with yourself and persist. I remember back in high school when I was trying to lose weight. I made a commitment to eat healthy and run every day. About a month into my commitment, I looked in the mirror and started to cry. I thought I looked exactly the same. I started to feel depressed.
2. Find the habit associated with the thing you want to change.
There was a part of me that wanted to quit. Fast forward 6 months: I had lost 60 pounds and completely transformed my body. If you want to reach your goals, you absolutely have to keep going when you feel discouraged. Your breakthrough might be just around the corner. Another key consideration when working to transform your life is the reality of setbacks.
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Change rarely occurs in a perfectly straight line. Usually people take two steps forward, and one step back.
How To Transform Your Entire Life (7 Steps)
This is normal. When you experience a setback, press the pause button and think about what happened. What were the choices that led up to your setback? How could you have stopped your progression at the first or second step, before it was too late? How could you do something different in the future? After you have learned from your setback, re-engage with your change effort. In the grand scheme of things, your setback is small.
When you have transformed your life and achieved your goal, your setback will be just a small part of your story. The first 5 steps have all been about engagement, transformation, and change. Life is difficult and full of problems. Some problems are not easily solved. There are times in life when we run into one of our limitations.
What do we do then? Acceptance absolutely needs to be a tool in your toolbox. When you have a clear picture of what you want, have implemented an effective plan of action, worked through your psychology, primed your physiology, and persisted over time, you put yourself in the best possible position to transform your life and reach your goals. But what if you still fall short of where you want to be? I remember my freshman year of college, I ran cross-country. As hard as I worked, I struggled to improve.
I dealt with injuries such as shin splints, which made it difficult for me to increase my mileage and train hard. The reality was that I was not going to be a star cross-country runner. I had reached a limitation. I had two options. I could get angry and depressed about my limitation, and be unhappy. Or, I could shift gears, accept and grieve my limitation, and move on.
There were other things in life that I could work on and apply my energy toward. And that was okay. The Stoic philosopher Cicero said that the archer does everything in his power to hit the target, but once the arrow leaves his bow, the outcome is not up to him. If you want to be happy, make sure you have acceptance and peace in your toolbox when life throws you a curveball. What do you think of the 6 steps for transformation? How have they worked for you? Where have you gotten stuck in your quest to transform your life? What has been most helpful for you? Your email address will not be published.
Identify Your Values One key thing to do when trying to get a clear picture of what you want is to identify and get clear on your values. Make the Want Something You Can Control One critical mistake people make when picturing what they want is to focus on something that is outside their control. Miracle Question One helpful exercise I like to use to help people clarify their want is the miracle question. Step 2: Plan The second step is to put together a practical plan of action that will move you in the direction of what you want. Start Small Once you get your team in place and start to learn what you need to do to transform your life, set out small but attainable goals.
Action is Key The key when implementing a plan of action is that last word: action. Step 3: Psychology This step is where things start to get a bit more complicated. Block 1: Lack of Motivation Some people struggle with a lack of motivation to make changes in their lives. Block 2: Bad Habits As human beings, we tend to automate our actions and behaviors. Block 5: Old Patterns Many people struggle because they have old patterns that are entrenched.
Navigating Blocks Psychology can help us figure out what is getting in the way from making progress toward our goals.
Step 4: Physiology The fourth step has to do with physiology and your body. Sleep is essential for healthy living. Most people need hours of sleep per night. Go to bed and get up at around the same time every day. Exercise is key for a healthy life. Are you eating enough healthy foods each day? Are you eating in moderation i. Are you eating natural foods? Forget the processed crap. Stay on the outer perimeter of the grocery store. Are you drinking enough water each day?