How to Get a Life if You Don't Have One
I hate to break it to you, but if you are looking for a life, you already have one. It started on the day you were born and will end on the day you die. There is no "getting" a life. If you can read this article, you already own one.
In fact, the life you have is actually quite remarkable. If your life were a book in a library, there would be no other book like it. Your life is one of a kind. Never before or never again will there be another life like yours.
So, now that we have settled the matter of how to "get" a life, I think what you are asking is- how do I make the most of the life I have? Now we're talking.
First things first- it is time to take inventory of your life today. Not yesterday, and not tomorrow. Look at the following aspects of your life and decide if you are happy and content with how things are, or if you are sad, hopeless, or despairing. It may be something in between.
Area of life
What it encompasses
Spouses, children, parents, relatives
Girlfriends, neighbors, aquaintances, colleagues
Level of satisfaction, lifestyle, type of work
Mental, physical, self-esteem, body image
Relationship with God, your sense of purpose, ethics, morals
Interests, skills, enjoyable pasttimes
Wealthy, struggling, content
Special mission, project, activity, desire
Happy with the place you live or unsettled
Have you settled accounts, forgiveness, debts owed
Money, fame, drugs, alcohol, gambling
The million dollar question
After you take a closer look at your current state of affairs, here comes the most difficult part: In the areas where you feel like your life is not going well, is it because you need a change in your circumstances or a change in your mindset? Let's take a closer look.
Stay at home mom
Let's say you are a mother who is miserable with life. Your kids are constantly nagging you, you feel fat and unsatisfied and useless. You want to work and feel like a woman again. So what is the solution? Is it to get a job outside the home, or do you need to adjust your mindset?
You have no intimate relationships and you aren't getting any younger. Your job takes all your time and energy. Do you quit your job so you can pursue a love life or do you need to adjust your ideas about work so you can have a relationship too?
No matter how much you work, the money doesn't come in. In order to make more money, you'd have to take on a second job. Your finances are a wreck and your kids feel the strain. Is it time to jump into a new career, or is it a problem with your relationship with money?
The problem is, this article cannot find the answer to your question. However, let this be a bit of a guide for you:
People who can change their mindset are usually happier than those that require a circumstantial change in order to feel satisfied. But those who never take risks, don't ever know what they are capable of.
Probably didn't help that much huh?
Okay, let's get really practical about how to make something of your life.
The top ten habits that "zap" your life
- Watching too much television.
- Thinking you can't before you've even tried.
- Fear of rejection.
- Video games (sorry, but it's true)!
- Refusing to do things out of your comfort zone.
- Holding onto money too tightly.
It doesn't matter how much money you make, what sort of family life you have, or your job. There is purpose everywhere. Usually those who find "their" place in the Universe will be able to spot a purpose outside of themselves.
As soon as you focus your energy on something or someone else, you'll begin to taste purpose. Purpose brings creativity and inspiration and ultimately...hope.
Sometimes, you have to break outside of your comfort zone. Find friends just a little bit more crazy than you. Go to a new coffee shop in the morning, read science fiction instead of romance, sign up for an art class. Do something you don't think you can do.
If you need a little boost, here are some extra hints:
- Turn off the television. Stop watching someone else's life happen.
- Go outside at least once a day. Touch a tree, grow a garden, or pet an animal.
- Learn to love your library. You can get all sorts of crazy "life" ideas there.
- You are never too old for school. It doesn't have to be college; it could be an adult education class, an online webinar, or an audio podcast.
Thankfulness keeps a heart happy. Happy people attract other happy people. Good things happen when happy and motivated people hang out together. Make it a habit to thank God for the things you've been given, no matter how small and insignificant. Thankfulness is choosing to appreciate what is in the glass, half full, full, or only a drop.
Set small goals
You don't have to wake up one day and say, "Okay- today I will have a life!" If you are dissatisfied with yourself, just pick one thing to do. Try to do it for 30 days. Make it a habit first before you add something else. Here is an example.
If your ultimate goal is to get up at 6am every morning to work on your artwork, and you've been the kind of person who lazes around until 10am, don't just decide to wake up at six. Start small.
- For a month, when you get up, get dressed right away...all the way to your shoes. You'll feel more productive.
- For the next month, try to go to bed a bit earlier. You may find you wake up a bit earlier on your own.
- Once you've got those two habits down, move your wake up time earlier.
Make sure you know what "get a life means" to you...
There is no sense in pursuing a law degree if you think having a life means frolicking in the snow with polar bears at Christmas time. Take a bit of time to figure out, what does it mean to "get a life"? Does it mean,
- Having more friends?
- Going out more?
- Having a better job? More money?
- Starting a family?
One thing is for sure: Do not blame other people for your lack of a life. You have control over yourself, your life, and your choices. And if you cannot change your circumstances, you can change your mindset. Of all the changes you can make, that is the most powerful one of all.