Why your life is not the way you want it to be is most likely based on the fact that you have not consciously decided what you want it to be like!! This is something I (unfortunately) hear very frequently and it saddens me. I want you to live your life on your terms and not be limited by your life expectations!
Your expectations of what your life should be like
We all have ideas and expectations of what our life should be like. These life expectations are ideas we have built over long periods of time and ideas that are constantly being reaffirmed in our minds. We take in everything that we get in contact with during our lives, to larger or smaller extent. Since early childhood we have been bombarded with information in different formats and it has just become more intense with the development of new infrastructure like the internet and smartphones with constant access.
During our upbringing our parents, relatives and close friends are helping us shaping our reality of life, what to expect and what to strive for and early on we hear about the importance of success. For most people success means a job with long title, a large salary, a big house and a nice car and a happy family. As this is the message most of us have been brainwashed with since childhood, this has become part of our “blue print” of life, what is important us and formed our life expectations.
I don’t think I have ever had a discussion around the definition of success (at least not till I was an adult) and what it means or that it absolutely should be individually defined! If we are brought up focusing on achievement and “success”, that means the pressure is on from the very beginning (or at least from when we are very young). As kids we compare ourselves with others all the time; during class, in sports and really in any situation we find ourselves in and as we want to feel loved by our parents, most kids push themselves to try making their parents proud.
With the introduction of the internet, this “comparison” aspect of our lives has brought a completely new dimension, a paradigm shift. If we before used to compare ourselves with the people in our closest vicinity to determine whether we were successful or not, we now compare ourselves with everyone and everything we get in contact with, all the time! You can argue that this is complete bs but our brains and our subconscious minds are like sponges and they do pay attention all the time.
This focus on “success” has led to an insane consumerism and constant bombarding of advertisements all over the place and if you are spending hours online every day like most people, you are getting your fair share and more. Just think about it for a second. If companies hire psychologist, marketers and programmers for the sole purpose of making you take action (often purchase something), don’t you think this has an impact on you and how you feel about the way you are living your life? At the same time, all your “friends” on social media constantly post their best pictures to show how “great” of a life they are living.
We constantly compare ourselves with all the people we know or follow in real life and in particular on the internet and often the message is the very same: “look at me, I am so successful”! This is adding on to our life expectations.
Companies have one goal and that is to make money! As long as it is legal (and sometimes even if it is not), they will do anything to make that sell! Most of them are not trying to sell you something you really need, they just want you to feel you must have it for what ever reason and many of them are extremely sophisticated in how they do their marketing to make an impact on us.
This is of course overly simplistic but I would ask you to spend a minute just to think about the above and what you think has helped form your expectations of what your life should be like.
If we had taken away the internet or at least all the marketing and all the comparisons and show-offs that are taking place, do you really think your life expectations would have been the same as they are now? I for sure don’t!
The constant comparison taking place puts enormous pressure on us to conform and be, act and look the part even if we hate it and there is an unstoppable, never-ending flow of new ideals and products! The sad thing is that most people seem to feel the same way (at least when you speak to them in isolation) but they still keep doing the same thing because that is what they think their friends are expecting from them! This really is an extremely sad catch 22 because if we feel bad but keep up the same kind of behavior, we are putting the same pressure on our friends, who have to do the same thing and it just goes back and forth!
If your current reality doesn’t match your life expectations, it normally leads to stress and anxiety and possibly even to depression and other diseases. It all starts in your head but it might show up somewhere else in your body and you don’t want any of that. This is why it’s so important to understand why you feel the way you do and what you can do about it.
The life you are actually living
To be completely blunt, we get what we tolerate and what we constantly tell ourselves. As Earl Nightingale put it “We become what we think about”! What do I mean by this? We have on average 50,000 – 80,000 thoughts per day, out of these 90% are recycled from the day before and out of those, 70% are negative!
If you just spend a moment reflecting upon the thoughts you have had over the last couple of days, weeks and months, I am pretty sure you have some dominant ones that never seem to go away, right? If we have the same thoughts over and over again, we tend to do the same thing over and over again (habits) and surprise, if we do the same thing over and over again, we get the exact same result as the previous time!
What I am saying is that we are constantly feeding our brain with our thoughts and these thoughts are shaping the reality we are currently living! All these thoughts are fed to our subconscious mind, so we are basically telling it that these reoccurring thoughts are extremely important to us and they become part of our identity and our lives.
Our brilliant Reticular Activating System (RAS) (post on that topic here) is one of the systems guiding us through our lives. This system is the filter of our brains for what is important to us as well as what is not important and we for sure need it as we are constantly being bombarded with information.
The RAS is filtering through everything our senses get in contact with at all times and works like a gate-keeper in only letting things through which we have trained it to know as really important to us. This is something most of us have done unconsciously as we have not been controlling our thoughts.
This means that your current reality has been built upon the foundation you have given it when feeding your brain with your repetitive and mostly negative thoughts. If you don’t have a clear picture of what it is that you want in different aspects of your life (goals) and feed those thoughts to your brain constantly, other random and often negative thoughts will win the battle and create your reality.
Your actions are based on your thoughts and if you have limiting or negative beliefs and thoughts, you most likely take little or no action and you get little or no result. This of course strengthens your limiting beliefs even more and you take even less action and as you can see, this is an extremely negative spiral since this loop will feed on itself. If you don’t see the result you want or think you want, those are the thoughts you are telling yourself (like “I am not good enough”, “I am not worthy” etc.) and these destructive thoughts are then shaping your life!
The life you are living is absolutely based on your dominant thoughts and the actions you have taken. So if you want different results in your life (regardless of what that is) you will have to change your thoughts and your actions. For your life to change, you have to change!
The path to a new personal reality
What we should all do is to ruminate and contemplate what success really means to us instead of to those around us. So is your life different from the way you want it to be OR different from the way you think those around you think your life should be like? Are your life expectations really your own true expectations?
If we don’t define success and what it genuinely means to us, it will be very very hard to live a meaningful life where one is making progress and at the same time enjoying the journey. If we are living our lives on someone else’s terms or expectations, is that really to live ones life? I would be inclined to call it partial living if even that…
The best definition of success I have ever heard is something I read in the book: The strangest secret, by Earl Nightingale and it goes: “The progressive realization of a worthy ideal”. That means you should do what it is that you want to do and not what you think others want you to do because that is a sure path to misery!
When we have our own definition of success and it has a genuine meaning to us and we start living by that meaning and working towards those goals and dreams, things will change. We will start to appreciate different things, we might think and reason differently because our life is no longer a life that is going to be lived based upon other people’s opinions!
When we start living like this, there will be a change in our personalities and those around us might not understand what is happening because they are still stuck in their old tracks (thoughts and habits) but that is ok. Those friends who are true friends, who we are open with, they listen and they will understand why you have chosen to start living your life on your terms. If not, maybe it’s time to find some new, real friends.
What is happening during this process (inner journey) if you allow it, is that you will start seeing these changes in your personality since you have re-shaped your view of the world and what really is important to you. When this happens, you will for sure have new thoughts, new insights, new ideas, new goals and dreams and all of these things will lead to new actions. New actions lead to new results and these results are forming your new reality in life.
This process will transform your life and take you on a journey true to yourself, give you meaning and insights that very few in today’s hectic world posses.
Now you know what you really want your life to be like and you are not chasing and getting stressed about everything and anything that comes your way. By knowing that you are living by those terms, you will feel so much more fulfilled since your personal reality will now match your life expectations.
Your life should be on your terms and not someone else’s. When you know what your terms are, you can start creating that path or you can (will) forever walk on the same path as most people, running around on autopilot wondering why their lives never became the way they wanted…. The choice is all yours and that is a luxury we have as humans. You either make a choice or you don’t but it’s still a choice and you will have to live with the results of your choices, which is called your life.
Actions to take:
- Figure out what you want by starting with our Visions & Goals section
- Learn about your thoughts
- Learn about your subconscious mind
- Learn why Autosuggestion works – we become what we think about
- Create your own Vision board to train your mind
- Brain-wash yourself to success!
- The importance of your a Powerful Body Language