It’s this time of the year again. Christmas just went by and New Year’s eve is knocking at our doors. We both hope you all had an awesome Christmas! I actually did have an unhealthy one, so that’s good… Lots of good food, lots of good drinks, lots of good games, lots of laughter (which is inherently good). And I’d almost forget the presents!
New Year’s Resolutions
Then the one which is knocking at the door. NYE. New Year. New Beginning. New Year’s resolutions. At least for some of us. I actually do not understand why people make these. For me it sounds like an excuse for postponing an adjustment for the better in your life, that you actually don’t really want to make, although you know you should make it. And I would dare to bet on it that that’s part of the reason why a lot of people give up their resolution as soon as the next weekend has arrived. Why wait to make a change if it’s for the better?? Hats off to those who do push through.
Anyways. This one is for the ones who do want to make a New Year’s resolution. And it’s also for the ones who make resolutions at the very moment they want to make it. Actually, it is for everyone who is keen on seeing some sort of progress in their lives.
Remember my first blog post, where I shared the roller coaster ride of publishing the first blog? About fear, comfort zones, choices and what not. My goal was to let you guys identify with those feelings and struggles and, ideally, to bring you a step closer to taking action. Getting what you want is impossible if you don’t take action. It is often the last missing link between what we want and what we get. I did indeed get some cool feedback from people who did recognize themselves in it. But unfortunately I haven’t heard or saw anyone taking action, yet.
Not Giving a F@&k
Now! Michel alerted me to an insightful article at Wait But Why, an awesome blog on everything life. Tim Urban, writer of the blog, wrote an awesome piece that indeed gives you a lot of insight in why you do what you do. Or better yet, why you do NOT do what you want to do. I see his blog post as a B-E-A-utiful compliment to my attempt to make you take action. And secretly as a personal blogging goal of mine.
Mr. Urban writes, how we are evolutionary wired to do what we think society finds we should do. He calls it the “Social Survival Mammoth”, and it’s in our way. After that he gives a recipe, and it simply boils down to: how to not give a f@&k (of course within sociopathic boundaries). He wants you to replace the Mammoth with your Authentic Voice.
How to Find the Authentic Voice?
Finding that Authentic Voice is the first part, and it might be the hardest. I think we all know someone, or a few people who are miles away from their Authentic Voice (AV). It might even be yourself. And that’s ok, but it is hard to admit it. And I speak from experience here. It’s not for nothing that I had to wait a long time to make the choices I wanted to make, and be happy with them on top of that! The feeling of freedom you get at those moments are even bigger than the feelings you get when you’re on holidays, or while skydiving! (although for some the latter feels like having been food poisoned… like the other guy… who puked… during the jump… with his instructor attached… behind him…).
So, to accelerate the search for your AV, I want to share three of the techniques that have helped me.
- I know this sounds wishy washy to a lot of people, but it isn’t! It’s only a breathing exercise. Ever saw a calm, healthy man breath fast and chaotic? Indeed. No. And furthermore, you’ll get to know your thought patterns. (which is really hard, seeing that humans on average have around 40.000 thoughts a day). More about this one in the future!
- Get comfortable being on your own
- You have to be able being with yourself. Normally you’re surrounded by people you like, and you will accept advice from the people you like faster as well. So learn to be surrounded by yourself.
- Read books
- Books (and blogs of course, which are shorter) give you insights and food for thought that you otherwise might not encounter. They will tell you a lot about yourself as well. Michel already wrote a cool, insightful piece about that one.
- Just. Make. The Choice. Often times you can only know if a choice is right, after you made it. You have to learn to trust your instinct, or gut feeling. The way to do that is to give it a chance. (It gets easier after you tried the first three, by the way). You will encounter dilemma’s in your life, and no analysis or science in the world can help you solve them. And it’s as good as never the end of the world…