Easy Ways to Have an Extraordinary Life Instead of Autopilot
“My upbringing did not shape me into the person I am today. Because of the choices I’ve made, I am what I am now.” – Stephen Covey
When I was alive, I was a zombie.
It’s not that I had a near-death experience and was brought back to life; rather, I used to go through life on autopilot.
Trying one’s best to behave ethically in a given situation. Taking advantage of each opportunity as it presents itself, moving forward and upward.
Before I found myself cooped up in a cubicle, I was making a six-figure paycheck, but I felt like my spirit was slipping away.
I was completely unaware of it. I had the impression that this was something that most people did.
Everyone in my immediate vicinity was the same. They were miserable, but just like me, they remained because of the money and the working circumstances.
At the time, I was oblivious to the fact that we were all pursuing the road of least resistance. Because we were all too afraid to make a change, we buried our hopes and ambitions.
Every single one of us was being really dishonest with ourselves and letting our lives run on autopilot.
A good many of my former coworkers continue to do so. But not me.
My body and mind had been aching for years to try something new. I was envious of those who earned a livelihood by assisting other people. But I believed that life hadn’t picked me and that this wasn’t the way I should go.
It didn’t occur to me that I was making decisions about my future every single day.
I was unaware that the fact that I had not made a deliberate decision to improve myself in either my actions or my character was leading me down the road to a life of misery.
Whether you are aware of it or not, you make decisions on how you will spend each day of your life. And making the decision to live an incredible life doesn’t have to be difficult at all.
Today I try to live my life with more awareness. I’ve decided to go in a different direction, and I’m working really hard to get there.
I haven’t arrived there yet, but even without it, my life has become more incredible. I’m working hard to make some of my goals come true while pursuing others.
I am careful to make decisions that are in line with my ideals and objectives, and I never accept anything less than the very best.
I have uncovered five easy techniques to make one’s life more extraordinary.
1. Place an Emphasis on Interrelation Rather Than Perfection
You are under a lot of pressure to achieve perfection in all that you do.
You may strive to have a perfectly healthy life or to be the ideal parent, employee, or lover.
In the past, I used to set my alarm for 5:30 every morning so that I could complete my daily routine of working out, meditating, and cleaning before heading to work.
In order to get everything done, I had to forgo spending meaningful time with my family.
It takes a lot of time and effort to achieve all of that, and it won’t even make you happy. Because it takes away time that you might have spent with the people you care about, it makes the experience of living your life less joyful and less remarkable.
These days, I let myself sleep in a little bit, and I wake up when one of my children climbs into bed with me for a snuggle.
When you put less of a focus on perfection and more on relationships, life becomes more spectacular. The joy and fulfillment we get in life come from the people and connections we have.
Put an end to giving attention to the nagging voice of “should.” The one that suggests that even if you are currently putting in a decent amount of effort, you should be working out or working more.
Because time is short and relationships are the most important thing in the world, it is imperative that you spend time with the people who are most important to you.
2. Conduct Your Life According to Your Core Principles
Do you ever have the feeling that something is off, but you just can’t place your finger on what it is?
Perhaps you’ve gone in for a job interview, and everything appears fine, but there’s still something missing.
Or maybe you’ve just made the acquaintance of a new person who seems to be a decent person, but there’s something off about them. Something that you are unable to put into words.
This sensation, most of the time, should serve as a warning sign that something in your life is not aligned with your core beliefs.
There is a mismatch between your fundamental values and the values of the person or item that does not seem to be a good fit if you take the time to sit down and list both sets of values.
That uneasy sensation is trying to tell you that something is not functioning properly and needs to be adjusted. The fact that I ignored this warning for such a lengthy period of time ultimately caused me to run into issues.
When I accepted the high-paying job offer, I did so because the organization was centered on helping people, which is something I have always been passionate about doing.
After some time, I came to the conclusion that the manner in which they assisted individuals was not congruent with the ideals that I uphold. The process of drafting and enforcing policy did not satisfy me.
I want to communicate with others via writing so that I may encourage and inspire them.
While I place a high value on my relationships with other individuals, the corporation places a high value on structure and governance.
If I had recognized this mismatch sooner and taken action on it, I believe I would have had more happiness.
Having a life that is guided by your values helps you find your flow. From that point on, everything becomes much simpler.
3. Allow Fear to Serve as Your Primary Driving Force
A number of years ago, I came across an essay that was written by a senior executive who was leaving a huge company.
He wrote something to the effect of, “I’ve put in a lot of hard work here for more than forty years.
I have worked long hours and taken time away from my friends and family in order to get this far. And you are aware of what?
It was not worth the trouble.
What a bummer. It was too late for him to turn his life around since he had spent it on autopilot.
When I am tempted to choose the path that is less difficult, I remind myself of his narrative. I doubt my motivation.
Am I beginning to operate on autopilot, or is this what I intend to do? What would it cost me if I didn’t have the confidence to go for what I want if it’s tough and scary?
Your primary motivators should be the dread of failing to attempt, the fear of feeling regret, and the fear of squandering your life.
4. Don’t Trust Omens
Do you ever stop to consider the possibility that anything you’re experiencing is a message from the greater cosmos?
The harsh reality is that there are no indications from the cosmos to be found anywhere in the universe. You won’t get any indications from the universe.
When someone believes that there is a sign that encourages or discourages a certain course of action, it simply indicates that they have added to a circumstance or event that already existed.
And when you’re already struggling with self-doubt, that’s when you start to question whether it’s a sign.
If you go to the supermarket in search of chicken for supper and find that the shop is out of chicken, you don’t start to question whether or not this is a message from the universe telling you to quit eating.
You merely adjust your plans and cook something different for supper. You remain committed to achieving your objectives and go on.
If Thomas Edison had heeded the indications, he would have given up on his invention years earlier, and all of us would be sitting here in the dark.
His instructors criticized him, claiming that he was “too stupid to learn anything.” Because of his inability to contribute to the success of his employers, he was let go from his first two positions.
The first thousand of his efforts to create the light bulb were unsuccessful. There are one thousand!
What was his understanding of the circumstances? The light bulb was the result of an innovation that included one thousand stages.
Never stop striving for the realization of your goals. Even if they walk a thousand feet, it won’t matter.
5. Return as Often As You Can to the Dream Chamber
Walt Disney formerly had a number of chambers in which he and his staff could meet in order to come up with their most brilliant ideas.
The initial one was called the Dream Room, and it was a place where anything could be suggested and there was no room for criticism.
It was encouraged to indulge in pure imagination, regardless of how fantastical or bizarre the ideas could be.
The second area was known as the realist area, and it was in this space that Walt and his crew made their plans for putting the concepts into action.
The last room was known as the “Critic Room.” They would search for issues here and express their criticism in an open manner.
They would consider everything that could go wrong with the project, as well as the ways in which they could avoid issues and the potential costs of the endeavor.
People were encouraged to dream by Walt’s method, but they were also pushed to plan so that they might make their wildest fantasies come true.
Am I allowed to be brutally honest with you? The type of honesty where you are surprised that someone would say that. The cold, hard reality no holds barred (brace yourself).
The fact that you are unable to leave the critique room is now an issue for you.
You get a glimmer of a wonderful idea, but before you can develop it further and figure out how it may possibly work, you snuff it out like a candle in the wind.
It’s not possible since it’s either too tough, too costly, or both. Or it’s simply too terrifying.
You immediately begin to criticize things, despite the fact that you have not had the chance to prepare them. So you don’t even have the courage to dream.
You experience the fear even before you begin to consider the likelihood that anything bad will really occur.
You let every critique you’ve ever heard in your life gather around you like a mob and say, “You’re not good enough,” in your ear over and over again.
This is the Honest Truth About It
The fact of the matter is that you are on par with anyone else in terms of ability.
You are on par with everyone else who is now living the ideal life that you desire for yourself.
The one and only distinction is one’s level of resolve. Because the first step in living the life of your dreams is to imagine what that life might be like.
But this is only the beginning of things. People who work hard to make an excellent life for themselves are the ones who succeed.
You can’t simply laze about and expect your goals to materialize on their own. You are required to work toward achieving them. You must have determination.
The fact of the matter is, therefore, that you do have a choice.
You have the power to choose to live an extraordinary life. You may also decide to be a zombie, follow the path of least resistance, and just sit there on autopilot. Which option are you going to go with?