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Life is hard. This is something everyone knows. We all struggle from time to time, whether it be at college, at work or even in our minds. It can be difficult to figure out things but receiving an outside perspective; a simple piece of advice can be really helpful. Here are five pieces of advice that can help in anyone’s life.

Try to strive for progress, not perfection.

People may end up with distorted perceptions of themselves or about life in general because they keep seeing how far their goal is, and not the progress they have made so far. This can make people focus on their failures, which subsequently causes demotivation and low energy. Sometimes, it is not important to master the art of focusing, rather it is more helpful to figure out what to focus on. 

Thoughts are not facts.

No, seriously. Think. It is possible to misinterpret our own emotions and have that carry us away from our goal. There is a reason why people should prioritize calming themselves down when they are angry. When someone is in a calm state of mind, they are more likely to have a clear understanding of things and the decisions they make. Most people who put in their best work, whether it be on an assignment, a date or even a conversation are not rushing. If your mind is calm, you will be more efficient.

Learn how to be healthily competitive.

While being competitive can be a good thing, it can also cost one their mental health. Being unhealthily competitive can eventually spread out to other parts of the mind. It may develop into pettiness over little things and take away one’s ability to be happy as they always look for people doing better than them. Jealousy can become a huge problem for these people too. If anything, no one wants their happiness to be dependent on meaningless validation. The best validation comes from you. It is important that individuals learn to be competitive but in a non-destructive way.

There’s never a perfect moment to have hard conversations.

Initiating conversations over tough topics can be difficult and that is very understandable, but there won’t always be a perfect moment. It is unnecessary to stress oneself over waiting for that perfect time. The best way is to figure out what you want to say and make the first step; starting the conversation. The first step is usually the hardest but it is worth it.

Learn how to relax.

There can be times when we get so caught up with life that we forget to take a breath. If one learns to truly relax, they let their body chemistry be free of stress chemicals and adrenaline. It is important to consider that there will be stressors, but if one manages to develop a habit of reducing this stress chemistry, it can help the brain do its best. One can do small things such as looking in the mirror and seeing their body and face relax or do 10 minutes of meditation. It is always worth it. 

These pieces of advice won’t be the ultimate medicine to fixing our life and reaching our goals, but they can get us one step closer.

I am Shafa, and I am a freshman majoring in Psychology at Penn State UP. Huge lover of bubble tea<3
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