CREATE A BETTER LIFE BY TAKING CHARGE OF THESE 5 AREAS





Your twenties should be spent on personal development.

I do not not mean self discovery. I wasted a lot of time the first few months after college trying to ‘find myself .’

I soon discovered that it was esoteric nonsense and a waste of my time. I was not going to get any answers by ‘looking within’ and thinking really hard.

Personal development focuses on more practical issues like improving your health and mental wellness, your relationships, your personal finances, your career, your contribution to global or societal issues and so on.

Your first years after college should be spent mastering these concepts and beginning to apply them on your life one at a time.

In short, you should be learning how the world works and how you can operate in it moving forward to see to it that you become all round successful.

Learn as much as you can about not just being an adult but a responsible adult who will positively contribute to others.

You probably do not  have  the dream job and the dream life just yet. You don't have it all figured out and that is okay.

You may not even have an ideal living situation, maybe you are still living at home with your parents.

Maybe you are working a shitty job. Do not spend your early twenties regretting the life that you do not have just yet or daydreaming about the life you want.

Do not put pressure on yourself to have it all right now.

Rather, spend that energy learning how to enjoy where you are, how to get where you want to go and how to stay there when you eventually do.

Spend your twenties learning and setting yourself up for success.

You may not be able to open a savings account and start dropping thousands of dollars every month into it to create wealth for yourself. 

But you can learn everything you need to know about personal finance, saving, investing and giving back. Be prepared.


The life you want is a curated life. It does not just happen.

Personal development can be really wide, but here are five areas that you can begin with and some resources to help you out:


1. DEFINING SUCCESS AND HOW TO ATTAIN IT

The first and most important thing you must learn is how to be successful in life.

How to die well and without regrets. You must choose for yourself an ideal and pursue it.

For me success does include but is more than making a lot of money.

Success is being a kind and loving person and joining the fight to end global poverty.

Success means working on projects I am passionate about (like this blog) and being able to provide for myself and my family at the same time.

Success means having family that I am close to and loving them well. Success means taking care of my health and mental wellness.

Success means having some fun and letting lose.

You must decide for yourself what success looks like and determined to pursue it.

I encourage you to have a meaning of success that is broader than yourself.

More than accumulating stuff or traveling the entire world.  Find a meaning of success that means people suffering less.

Life can be wonderful and amazing but it is hard for other people and we can find so much joy and fulfillment helping them out.

If you need help deciding what to do with the rest of your life, read this article

Once you have figured out what it means to be successful for you, identify role models and emulate them.

People who have done what you want to do and in whose footsteps you can follow. You have no business reinventing the wheel or repeating mistakes others have already made. 

One of my role models is Amy Carmichael, who went to India in the 1800s and saved hundreds of young girls who were being sold to temple prostitution.

Amy was bold, courageous, uncompromising but also self sacrifing, sweet and kind. The kind of Christian I want to be. 

You need to find your own Amy in life and work and learn how to be successful from them.



2. PERSONAL FINANCE

Even before you get your first paycheck please learn how to use it well.

One of the first things I did immediately after graduating College was reading The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey. I am so glad I did. It helped me so much.

If you do not know where to start because personal finance is such a wide topic, read this article on 7 steps to sort out your personal finances.

How you spend your money today determines a lot of outcomes in your future.

You do not have to aspire to be a multi-millionaire. But at the very least, you need a plan that will ensure you are not in debt, you have an emergency fund and you have something for retirement.

Under Personal Finance you need to learn how to make more money. This article talks about saving and investing on a low income. 

That is how to either get promotions at work or how to build successful businesses.

I went to Law School, I never had any business training but through books, YouTube videos and podcast, I learned how to build a successfulfreelance writing business and now a blog that earns me money

Your life can completely change just from the information available online for free. 

Now, I have enough time to pursue my real passion which is working with the poor and destitute since I do not have a rigid 9 to 5. 



3. MAKING AND KEEPING STRONG RELATIONSHIPS


Life is only as beautiful as the people you share it with.

One of the most important things you can do for yourself is to learn how to make and keep good, lifelong friends and maintain close relationships with family.

Click here to read about how to make life long friends as an adult. 

How to enjoy them. How to be more mature. To be empathetic and to be socially aware.

Learn to detach yourself from the world of social media and movies where immaturity and selfishness reign supreme.

A lot of people struggle to learn how to be better at romantic relationships and neglect how to be better friends.

We live a culture when people are constantly encouraged to cut off people or to label others as toxic.

Rise above that. Before you burn bridges or make accusations, try to introspect, to take responsibility, to apologise and to reform.

Learn to give people multiple chances but also to control the amount of damage they can bring into your life.

I always say, the art of making and keeping friends is far more important than networking and dating.

I am asking you to build some social mileage for yourself.

Please keep your family close. Repair broken relationships.

Reach out to people you have been holding grudges against. Set them free. Life is really short. 


If you are not on speaking terms with your parents repair that relationship as far as it is up to you.

The older people get, the more isolated they become the more baggage they have to walk around with.

I want you to be that 70 year old who has friends, life long friends to turn to when things go wrong in your life, to enjoy life with.

This is the time to focus on building your relationships.



4. HEALTH, FITNESS AND MENTAL WELLNESS

Another thing I want you to do in your journey to personal development to learn how to take care of your health and fitness.

No need to obsess over having the sexiest body but if you do need to lose a few pounds, here is how I did it.

Develop some healthy habits like drinking water, doing regular exercise, eating healthy, getting enough sleep and stick to them. 

I also want you to finally take care of your mental health this year.

This is the time. Do not let another year pass by before you address your social anxiety or your depression or your deep-seated insecurities. This is the year.

Take actual steps towards wholeness. Reach out to friends tell them about your struggles, hear about their own struggles.

Surround yourself with people who care about you.

Take this year to focus more on your mental well-being than on a bank account number.

From a young age I had always been an overachiever. I was so used to getting awards, constantly being affirmed, being congratulated and people noticing me.

This particular boss only spoke when things went wrong, and a day could not pass by without her noticing or coming up with something to criticize.
It was not personal but I felt as if it was.

On my most embarrassing experience in life and at work, she found me crying after one of her usual tirades.

I will never forget what she said to me. She said I was the smartest and most hard working person to ever hold my position and yet from the beginning she could tell I was an affirmation junkie.

She decided not to give me any because she wanted me to start believing in myself and not relying on superiors to tell me I was good enough. She changed my life.

I am learning to let go of what people think about me and to rely on much more than people’s praises to determine my worth.




5. PRODUCTIVITY AND HABIT FORMATION

For people like me who are not naturally motivated, who need a little bit more enticement to get out of bed in the morning, building habits and having some productivity hacks is essential.


There are so many barriers in our minds that try to keep us from doing things that are uncomfortable or that are not instantly gratifying no matter how necessary or urgent they are.

It is not the most self-motivated people who overcome these barriers. It is the people who know them, understand them and counter them.

For example, for a very long time I was held back by the fear of failing.

I already told you that I am the kind of person who needs positive reinforcement from other people constantly.

So naturally I only wanted to do things that I was guaranteed would success. 

In the real world, nothing is guaranteed. I can minimize risk but I cannot eradicate it completely.

So I kept procrastinating and making excuses.

Once I understood that it was my deep seated issues with outward affirmation that was holding me back, it became much easier for me to reshape my thinking to stop caring so much about other people and just work.

On a practical level, I recently read James Clears' Atomic Habits. Changed my life. I learned so much about how to create lasting habits.

Create the habit of working when you need to even when would rather be on your phone.

The habit of doing hard things now because they will benefit you later. 

Break the habit of indulging in temporary gratification only to suffer consequences later. 

Break the habit of taking your people for granted. 

Build healthy habits, good financial habits and build a habit of reading your Bible and praying every day (if you are a Christian). 


Finally stop obsessing over quick outcomes.

Think about processes. Commit to the process.

So I'm asking you today, take this year to develop yourself and give yourself time to achieve your goals.

All the best my friends. Comment down below if any of these tips will help you create that new life you want. Share because you never know who needs to know this today. 


Comments