Thursday, November 25, 2010

Knowing What You Want

This is a great post by Michael Hyatt, about overcoming bad habits. He lists possible alternatives one can focus on instead of ones habits. I have one more to add, one that I think heads them all:

Know what you want instead of knowing what you don't want.

We all know what we don't want. We don't want to get lung cancer, we don't want to get fat, we don't want to be poor, we don't want to raise our kids the way our parents raised us, we don't want to be outcasts of society, we don't want to argue... the list is long of things we don't want. We especially don't want to worry all the time. When we do this, we make ourselves the biggest obstacle to overcome.

The trick is to figure out what we want instead, and to visualize it as best as possible. I started doing this actively about a year ago.

For example, I told myself the following:

1. I want to enjoy my body - so I started rock climbing, which is a lot of fun for me.
The result: I lost approximately 10 pounds within 9 or 10 months and my backaches are a thing of the past.

2. I want my body to be free of toxins and unnecessary hormones even in old age - so I started eating mostly organic food, and stopped taking the pill.
The result: I have no more headaches or stomach cramps.

3. I want to finish a book - so I made a plan, sat down and wrote.
The result: I got to write The End on a manuscript and now have something to query with.

4. I want to enjoy (meeting new) people (something the prospect of always gave me a stomach ache) - this one wasn't so easy, and often still isn't. But I figured out it's easier if it's not important what others think of you. And the way to achieve that is, basically, the next point:

5. I want to feel worth something to myself - so every day I repeat my mantra: "I take the most interesting, beautiful and valuable person into my heart – myself." The hardest thing about that 'excercise' is admitting that you are, in fact, worth everything you could ever want for yourself. You deserve it, just because you want it (if you want it for the right reasons).
The result (of the last two): I've become more outgoing, I don't blush as easily, I can voice my opinions, I have opinions of my own, and I know what I want for my future, not some future somebody else envisions for me.

Basically, I've made my strengths, dreams and fun my priority, not my weaknesses, vices and other people's opinions. It doesn't make me ignorant of them, not by a long shot, but they've become less important and so lose some of their hold over me.

It is freedom, pure and simple.


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