Is a mindset adjustment
The way you view your past, present, and future will actually determine your level of fulfillment in life.
If you dwell on past regrets or have a bad relationship with the future, it’s time to look at your life from a different point of view.
Appreciating the past
While some of us look at the past and mostly see missed opportunities, sadness about moving on, or trauma we can’t burry deep enough, the most fulfilled people look at the past with mostly gratitude.
Life is a big learning experience. We don’t have a map or cheat sheet. For all the things that have gone wrong in your life, consider all you have learned. For all the things that have gone right, consider all you have learned. You have come so far in both regards!
Responding to the present
I talk about this a lot. The whole, “we can’t control what happens to us, but we can control how we respond” shtick. I says this so much, because it is a simple truth we forget so often. I forget all the time! Just today I woke up feeling inadequate because…
- I had to let go of a business client that wasn’t working out.
- I hurt my son’s feelings.
- I have to take my cat to the vet today and didn’t have time to bathe her last night.
- I’ve let overwhelm this week ruin perfectly good moments with Bruce.
- I haven’t taken the time to visit my mom.
My present is messy right now. But it’s not real messy. None of that is life and death. I woke up feeling inadequate because I gave each of these events control over how I view myself as a business partner, mom, cat mom, wife, and daughter. But let’s look at these with a “positive responsive mindset” (totally made that up) versus the negative passive one I experienced this morning.
- I gained valuable business experience and am motivated to expand on strengths I found in the process.
- I am letting my son learn and grow when things in life do not go his way, but I learned a little more about communicating with him at his level.
- At least I’m taking my cat to the vet! Most people would probably skip the booster shots.
- I am becoming more self-aware of how I manage my “obsessive” tendencies and am reminded how lucky I am to have a husband who is a good listener.
- We have family plans today and I’ll be sure to spend some quality time catching up with mom.
Isn’t it crazy how looking at all the things life “throws” at you as things life “gives” you? We can really shape our perception of fulfillment with a little perspective.
Influencing the future
That “positive responsive mindset” is probably the biggest factor in influencing the future, but what else can you do? You can do a lot of things that influence your future, but it all requires action.
If you want to be a nurse, go to school. If want to start your own business, find a mentor, read a lot, and explore your ideas. If you want to travel, save up and GO.
What? It’s not as easy as I made it sound? I bet whatever want for your future has a lot of “can’ts” swirling around those ideas. That’s because you haven’t made or you haven’t stuck to a plan to achieve the future you want. Once you know what you want to achieve, be intentional about making it happen, and it will.
Even baby steps add up over time and how passionate you are about getting “there” determines your level of motivation to keep going. For that reason, don’t pick a future that is “good enough.” Choose a future you can get excited about and the path to get there will be just as fulfilling as achieving it.
I believe in you.