How to make the most of yourself
I have been doing a lot of research into what needs to be done to make the most of yourself. What do we need to do to help ourselves reach our best possible potential? After reading many books, observing and asking clients, I have come up with an extensive list of what, ideally, is needed to make the most of yourself. I keep this list in a place where I can see it regularly and it helps to keep me focused on where I need to go and what I need to do to achieve what is most important to me.
Don’t pretend to be someone else
It’s possible to keep up pretenses for a while but eventually the facade will slip. Stop hiding who you really are. The only reason we do this is because we fear people won;t like us for who we really are. Those that do, and will love us, will love as warts and all. Have a little faith that who you are is good enough. Let the real you shine!
Improve your self awareness
It’s really essential to figure yourself out, to know what you like and don’t like if you want to make the most of yourself. Sometimes, even though you’d think we should know, we don’t know that much about ourselves. This is sometimes due to the fact that we put our true wishes aside and listen to what others want for us (partners, parents, society). We end up thinking that we want things that, in reality, we don’t/ Think back to what you enjoyed as a child. What made you laugh? What gave you that buzz? Is there anything that you enjoy doing that passes the time really quickly? When you’re “in the zone” you are doing something you really love. It’s great to be able to tune the world out and just be in your special happy place now and then. Get to know yourself well, this will get you closer to your true potential. Tune inwards and listen…
Let go of what you can’t control
Seriously – get to know the difference between what you can and can’t control. If you do this, you will save yourself a lot of grief and anxiety. You will also free up a lot of energy for more positive things. Learn to let go of those things you can’t control – such as what other people think and do. You can’t control the weather, traffic, other people’s feelings and behaviour etc
Focus your energy on the things you can control, such as your effort, energy, attitude and reactions…this is far more empowering.
Make anxiety your friend
Yes, I know this is a tough one. But think about it – we cannot get rid of anxiety entirely so it makes sense to learn how to manage anxiety better. Write down your worries for thirty days. Nagging worries seem huge at the time but after some time, they lose their power. Writing worries down helps reduce their power too. Understand the difference between a real worry and a “what if” worry. A “what if” worry is often something you can’t control and it may never happen. Learn to dismiss worries, especially if you aren’t trying to find a solution and worrying just for the sake of it. Make the most of yourself by managing anxiety.
Accept responsibility for where you are in life
Finding self confidence requires accepting responsibility for your own happiness, and recognising that you are a product not only of your genetic code and environment, but also of the choices you make. Once you accept you are responsible, you can make your own decisions and take control of your future. Give up blaming others and circumstance.
Be brave and take calculated risks
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Risk taking takes bravery but it definitely builds confidence. Even if the risk doesn’t quite work out, you still test out your abilities to cope with adversity which also improves confidence. When considering any risk, define a clear goal. Review the positive, practical and the potential losses. When you focus on risks that have a larger purpose you can’t go wrong. Act. Take a risk and live your life with less fear.
Think and speak positively
I know this is a tough one too and even though it’s impossible to always think and speak positively in order to make the most of yourself, at least work towards looking on the positive side or at least being open minded and neutral as much as possible. There is something called a “self fulfilling prophecy” – the way we think can end up inviting that sort of attitude/tone into our lives because we focus on it so much.
For example – if you think negatively in general about your job “I hate my job, I will never enjoy it, my boss is stingy and won’t give me an increase…”, your attitude will focus you on all that confirms that attitude and you may end up inadvertently welcoming more negative into your life.
Invest in your personal growth
Reading this blog is a good way to do that… 😉 Read a lot, try new things and expand your horizons regularly.
Don’t delay making decisions
Indecision breeds more indecision. The next time you ponder a decision, think of everything that could go right and ask yourself, “What do I have to lose, really?” Fear of the unknown often limits us..this is when you need to be brave…take a risk
Smile and be kind
Put positive energy out there and it will come back to you. Spread positive cheer whenever and wherever you can. It will make you feel better about yourself too.
Be aware of the media’s messages
Sometimes the media twists things, airbrushes images and makes us feel bad about ourselves in order to get us to buy their products. Ignore this – you don’t need extra cosmetics or more clothes to be better. All you need is to think more highly of yourself – your attitude will get you further than spending money on products will.
Keep good company
Positive feeds positive and negative breeds negative. Stick with people who inspire you rather than tear you down or criticise you. If you can’t avoid toxic people, do your best to limit time with them.
We can be our harshest critics so learn to be kind to yourself and treat yourself as you would someone you truly loved. Give yourself that well earned break or have a day off – you deserve it.
Never accept messages that damage your self esteem
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. Who has the right to put you down? It is much easier to improve/change your behaviour when you believe you are loveable and capable. If someone criticises you, ask yourself, “What is on this person’s screen?”. In other words – assume that they have some sort of shortcoming. Remember that people can only criticise if they are perfect and no one is.It’s also highly unlikely that their criticism is based on any accurate perception of you. It’s much more likely that the critic is reacting to emotions, memories and behaviour patterns that have nothing to do with you and everything to do with them and their internal chaotic world. Happy peaceful people don’t spread negativity and meanness. Thinking less of yourself because of a criticism is a mistake. When someone criticises you, say to yourself, “Wow, they must be pretty unhappy inside to be projecting such nastiness”. It’s more often than not about them and not you. Don’t take it personally.
Be aware of your thoughts
We all constantly have thoughts going through our heads, many of them unwelcome and self critical.Remember to turn up the volume on the positive thoughts and turn down the volume on any negative messages about yourself – thoughts aren’t facts. If you want to be happy – follow your happy feelings, not your unhappy ones.
Use positive affirmations
Have a few positive statements that appeal to you and help you to feel stronger and confident. I use them a lot, some of mine: “I am loveable”, “I will find a way to handle whatever comes my way”. Choose your own and say them to yourself regularly.
A small success can bring a big feeling of competence
Small steps lead to more steps. Pat yourself on the back every time you have a small success. Every step counts! Take a step at a time in the right direction, this is the practice of self esteem.
See yourself as amazing in order to give yourself the best chance in this life. Protect your self esteem at all costs. Focus on your strengths and never allow negative critical people dent your confidence. Use the above list to give your self esteem and your true potential the best chance ever!
Any other tips you would like add? Write and let me know….